cut tofu

Tofu is good and healthy for everyone, and it’s been known as the number one meat substitute. It’s full of protein (though you will probably need a lot of grams of tofu in comparison to just meat), but it’s a lot lower in all the bad stuff (total cholesterol — triglycerides and low-density lipoprotein, and total fat). Depending on how you cook it, it can be really delicious as well as healthy.

Tofu originates from Asia and it’s commonly found in a lot of Asian supermarkets, but over the past few years, more and more people are adapting and climbing on the tofu train.

I personally cook my tofu by stir frying in oil and I know that’s not the best way. It tends to soak up a lot of oil so be careful how much and what type of oil you use.

If you have never cooked with tofu before, here are some some tips and ways to cook it:

Tip #1: Don’t use olive oil, use peanut or vegetable oil to cook it.

You’re probably going to cook it at a high temperature, so be sure to pick out a oil with a high smoke point. Cooking with olive oil will cause it to smoke up, which can be poisonous (and it will also make it taste and smell really bad).

Tip #2: Be sure to dry it when you take it out

Tofu is usually soaked in water beforehand. If you want crispy skin with hard tofu, make sure to pat it dry before you fry it.

Tip #3: Freeze it before cooking it to change the texture

If you freeze the tofu, the skin tends to be harder and you will get a consistency more similar to meat.

Tip #4: Press before you marinate it

Always press the water out (more specifically if you’re working with hard tofu) because it won’t absorb any flavor if it’s already filled with water.

If you’re a beginner or if you’re looking for some cooking inspiration, check out these recipes. They range from various Asian to Western styles.

 1. Mapo Tofu

mapo tofu
Credits to elaine luo

Mapo tofu is one of THE best things to come from Asian culture. It tends to be spicy, but you can change the amount of spice that you want or eat it with rice to diminish the spice. Use soft tofu for this one. Give it a shot — you’ll probably like it.

2. Cornmeal Crusted Tofu (with mashed sweet potatoes)

corn crusted tofu

If you’re not completely comfortable cooking with the Asian way, try this easy breaded recipe. It’s an American twist on the classic tofu recipe. It’s crispy and crunchy and it probably tastes as good as it looks.

3. Crispy Tofu Snack Pockets with Crunchy Vegetable Filling

crispy tofu snack pockets

This is a great snack for the weekends. It’s simple and easy, but pretty healthy. They only take around 15 minutes to cook! Be sure not to use too much oil or else it’ll be too soaked.

4. Vegan General Tso’s Tofu

general tso tofu

This one is apparently just perfect. It’s a mixture of Asian style and Western taste. It’s crispy, sweet and a little spicy. The reviews for this are amazing though, so we would recommend this as a perfect starter to those just trying tofu for their first time.

Tell us…

Do you know how to make tofu? Do you have any favorite recipes for it?