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holding a piece of eggplant tofu with chopsticks.
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4.23 from 49 votes

Panda Express Eggplant Tofu Copycat Recipe

This copycat recipe for Panda Express eggplant tofu has a homemade sweet and spicy sauce that is totally amazing.  Plus, the crispy tofu and flavorful eggplant will make you a lifetime fan.  It's perfect for vegans, and is gluten free friendly.
Prep Time30 minutes
Cook Time20 minutes
Total Time50 minutes
Servings: 4 servings
Calories: 429kcal


For the Sauce

  • ½ cup vegetable broth
  • ¼ cup soy sauce or liquid aminos
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 1 tablespoon sesame oil
  • 1 tablespoon sambal oelek
  • 1 tablespoon rice vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch or arrowroot
  • 2 tablespoons water

For the Stir Fry

  • ½ cup olive oil
  • 1 pound eggplant cut in chunks
  • 1 pound extra firm tofu cubed
  • 2 red bell peppers cut in chunks
  • 1 tablespoon garlic minced
  • 1 tablespoon ginger grated
  • ¼ teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 3 tablespoons green onion chopped (optional)


  • Whisk all the sauce ingredients in a bowl or a measuring cup.
  • Drain the tofu.  We used super firm, which doesn't need to be pressed.  If you're using extra firm, press the tofu for 30 minutes before proceeding with the recipe.
  • Cut the tofu into cubes.  Heat 3 tablespoons of olive oil in a wok over medium high heat, then add the tofu.  Fry in oil until golden, then drain on a paper towel-lined plate.
  • Heat 3 tablespoons of oil in a wok, then add the eggplant and stir fry until softened, about 4 minutes.  Stir constantly, adding more oil when needed, as it soaks up the oil quickly.  Drain on a paper towel-lined plate.
  • Heat 1 tablespoon of oil, stir fry the red bell peppers for 2 minutes, stirring constantly. Drain on a plate.
  • Heat ½ tablespoon of oil, then add the garlic, ginger, and red pepper flakes and stir fry for 30 seconds.  Set aside.
  • Whisk the sauce again, then pour it into the empty wok and cook until it thickens, about a minute.
  • Add the garlic mixture and mix it with the sauce, then add the vegetables and tofu.  Gently stir until everything is coated with the sauce.
  • Serve warm, and garnish with green onion and sesame seeds.


  • To make this go smoothly, have everything ready before cooking.
  • Drain the tofu and vegetables on paper towel-lined plates to absorb the extra oil.
  • This recipe calls for a lot of oil because the eggplant absorbs a lot of it during the cooking process.
  • Reduce the amount of oil needed by salting the eggplant and letting it drain in a colander for 20 minutes, or try baking or air frying the eggplant. This other cooking methods will change the texture.


Serving: 1.75cups | Calories: 429kcal | Carbohydrates: 24g | Protein: 12g | Fat: 33g | Saturated Fat: 5g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 6g | Monounsaturated Fat: 22g | Sodium: 1009mg | Potassium: 637mg | Fiber: 5g | Sugar: 15g | Vitamin A: 2043IU | Vitamin C: 81mg | Calcium: 62mg | Iron: 3mg