Looking for Thai food that is super quick and easy? Try our crispy baked peanut tofu! The homemade peanut sauce is made in minutes, and tastes amazing on tofu, chicken, spring rolls, or Asian dumplings. And for extra brownie points, this meal is vegan and gluten free, so add this recipe to your Meatless Monday dinners. You won't be disappointed!
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- Tofu: extra firm or super firm organic
- Sweetener: brown sugar
- Nuts: natural smooth unsalted peanut butter
- Oil: sesame
- Acid: rice vinegar and lime wedges
- Umami: liquid aminos or soy sauce, and roasted red chili paste (use an alternative for vegan)
- Spicy: sriracha sauce
- Aromatics: garlic and green onions
- Seeds: black or white sesame seeds
How to Make
Gather all the ingredients. Mince the garlic, cut the green onion on the diagonal, and cut a lime into four wedges.
- Make the peanut sauce. Add the brown sugar and the natural unsalted peanut butter to a small saucepan that is set over medium heat. Add the rice vinegar, liquid aminos, and sesame oil next.
- Whisk in the minced garlic, roasted red chili paste (see variations for a vegan substitute), and sriracha (for heat). Continue to whisk, and let the sauce cook for 3 minutes. Remove it from the heat and set aside.
3. Drain the water from the package and then press the extra moisture out. Preheat the oven to 400°F.
4. Cut the tofu into cubes of equal size and arrange on a parchment-lined tray. Bake for 15 to 20 minutes.
5. Once it is baked, place in a bowl and pour the peanut sauce over top. Allow to sit for 15 minutes.
6. Cook enough ramen noodles for 4 people according to the directions on the package.
Serve the baked tofu on top of ramen noodles, pour any extra peanut sauce on top, and sprinkle with a garnish of black sesame seeds and green onion. Just before eating, squeeze a fresh lime wedge over top and enjoy. Enjoy with a side of boiled or roasted broccoli.
How should tofu be cooked for this recipe?
Start off by cutting into cubes, then decide upon the cooking method: pan fried in oil, baked in the oven with no oil, or in an air fryer.
How do you add flavor to tofu?
First, start off by making sure it is drained and pressed properly. If there is too much moisture, the it won't be able to absorb any new flavors. One idea for adding flavor, is to marinate it for 20 minutes or overnight. Tofu can also be baked or pan fried with a dusting of cornstarch and a drizzle of oil and soy sauce, then coated in a flavorful sauce like teriyaki or peanut. It also tastes amazing when braised in a sauce, like in our Chipotle sofritas.
What is good with peanut sauce?
Peanut sauce can be used as a dip with raw vegetables or Asian dumplings, or as a sauce with chicken, pork, seafood skewers, spring rolls, or tofu cubes.
How many calories are in baked tofu peanut sauce?
For a 4 ounce serving with 3 tablespoons of peanut sauce, there are 295 calories, 22.1g of carbs, 17.9g of fat and 13.1g of protein. For more nutritional information, please scroll to the end of the recipe card.
- Don't want brown sugar? Use maple syrup or cane sugar.
- Don't have smooth natural unsalted peanut butter? Use chunky.
- Allergic to peanut butter? Swap it out with almond butter, sesame butter, or sunflower seed butter.
- Don't have sesame oil? Use some other neutral oil.
- Need this gluten free? Use coconut aminos, liquid aminos, or tamari in stead of soy sauce.
- Need this vegan? Swap out the red chili paste for tomato paste with chili powder or use sambal oelek with cornstarch.
- Want a more chewy texture? You can freeze it, thaw in the fridge, then drain and blot off extra moisture with paper towels. This step will take out more moisture.
- Want it spicier? Increase the sriracha in the peanut sauce.
- Want it crispy on the outside and softer in the inside? Cut the cubes larger, so it doesn't dry out in the oven.
- Need a twist? Add fresh grated ginger to the sauce.
- Need the sauce thicker? Stir in a slurry of water and cornstarch or arrowroot.
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Crispy Baked Peanut Tofu
For the Tofu
For the Garnish
- 1 tablespoon black sesame seeds
- ⅓ cup green onion, sliced on diagonal
- 1 lime, cut into 4 wedges
- If serving with jasmine rice, cook rice according to directions on package.
- Preheat the oven to 400 F and line a baking tray with parchment paper. If using super firm, drain and blot dry with paper towels. Cut into cubes of similar shape and place on baking tray.
- Bake for 20 minutes at 400 F.
- While the tofu is getting crispy, make the peanut sauce. Place the next 8 ingredients into a small saucepan over medium heat. Whisk and cook for 3 minutes, then remove from the heat. This recipe makes ¾ cup.
- When it is done, place in a bowl and pour the peanut sauce over top. Allow the tofu to sit in the peanut sauce for 15 minutes.
- If you are planning on serving with ramen noodles, cook the noodles according to the package while the tofu is marinating.
- Serve it over noodles or Jasmine rice and pour any leftover peanut sauce on top. Garnish with a sprinkle of black sesame seeds and green onion. Serve with a lime wedge and ask guests to squeeze it on just before serving. To round out your meal, serve it with boiled or roasted broccoli.
- If you need this vegan, swap out the red chili paste for tomato paste with chili powder or use sambal oelek with cornstarch.
- You can freeze the tofu, thaw in the fridge, then drain and blot off extra moisture with paper towels. This will give you a more chewy texture.
- If you want a more spicy peanut sauce, increase the sriracha.
- To keep it from drying out, cut the cubes larger.
- Add fresh grated ginger to the peanut sauce for a different twist.
- If you want a thick sauce, stir in a slurry of water and cornstarch or arrowroot and simmer the sauce until thickened.