Craving Japanese takeout, but you want something homemade? Try this crispy baked teriyaki tofu recipe. It's better than takeout, and so easy to make! The teriyaki sauce has just the right amount of fresh ginger, garlic, and maple syrup to make it absolutely delicious. Serve the sauce over the crispy golden brown tofu, and you've got a match made in heaven.
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This recipe is quick to throw together for a weeknight dinner. The homemade teriyaki is assembled while the tofu cubes are baking in the oven.
- Tofu: extra firm or super firm organic that is pressed and cut into cubes.
- Starch: cornstarch or arrowroot to coat the cubes for a nice texture when baking and to use for thickening.
- Fresh Aromatics: ginger, garlic and green onion all provide the wow factor in this dish.
- Oil: light olive oil or another neutral oil and sesame oil.
- Vinegar: rice vinegar.
- Sweetener: maple syrup, agave nectar, or brown sugar can be used.
- Umami: soy sauce or tamari provides flavor and a nice dark brown color.
- Seeds: white or toasted sesame seeds provide a nice touch for a garnish.
How to Make
Gather all the ingredients. Grate the ginger, mince the garlic, and chop the green onion, then measure out the liquids and the cornstarch (or arrowroot for a GF version).
- Preheat the oven to 400°F and line a large baking tray with parchment paper or foil. Press the extra firm tofu for 30 minutes, or blot off the extra moisture with paper towel if using super firm. Slice the tofu into cubes that are similar in size.
- In a bowl, place the cornstarch (or arrowroot) then carefully place the cubes of tofu on top. Gently toss by lifting the bowl and giving it a shake. Continue until all the cubes are coated.
3. Evenly spread out the cubes on the lined baking tray then drizzle with light olive oil and tamari.
4. Bake for 15 minutes at 400F. Take the tray out and stir the cubes around then bake for another 15 minutes.
5. Put the first 6 teriyaki ingredients into a small saucepan and whisk over medium heat. In a small bowl, make the slurry by stirring together the water and the cornstarch (arrowroot) then slowly pour it in while whisking.
6. Bring it to a low boil, then reduce the heat and whisk until it has thickened, roughly 3 to 4 minutes. Remove from the heat it will thicken as it cools.
7. Remove it from the baking tray and place it in a bowl. Pour ¼ to ⅓ of the sauce over the cubes.
8. Serve while it is still warm over rice, Asian noodles, or quinoa. Garnish with sesame seeds and green onion. Put out small bowls with 1 tablespoon of sauce for each guest to use for dipping.
Is teriyaki vegan?
Yes, both commercially made teriyaki and our homemade version are vegan. A typical store-bought teriyaki has soy sauce, sugar, vinegar, salt, spices, and preservatives. When you make your own, it doesn't have any preservatives, and tastes better because the ingredients are fresh. You can easily use tamari or coconut aminos instead of soy sauce.
Is teriyaki sauce healthy?
Since it is consumed in small amounts, it can be considered healthy when eaten in moderation, despite the sauce being high in sodium, carbs, and sugar.
What does teriyaki mean?
In Japanese, teri is a noun, and it refers to the shine or luster the sauce gets from the sugar. Yaki refers to the how the meat is prepared: broiling or grilling. It is commonly used as a marinade or a glaze, but in the U.S. it is also means a sauce that is served with meat, seafood, vegetables or meat alternatives.
How many calories are in this recipe?
For a serving size of 1 cup with 2 tablespoons of sauce, the calories are 467 with 30.4 g of carbs and 25.4 g of protein. For more nutritional information, scroll to the end of the recipe card.
What can I serve this with?
- Rice, cauliflower rice, Asian noodles, zoodles or quinoa
- Spring rolls
- Steamed vegetables
- Need this gluten free? Use tamari and arrowroot.
- Want this spicy? Use sambul oelek.
- Want to use the teriyaki as a marinade? Omit the cornstarch slurry.
- Want a flavor twist? Use orange zest and juice or fresh pineapple juice.
- Don't want rice? Serve with cauliflower rice, zoodles, or quinoa.
- Want meat? Use cubed chicken, pork or salmon instead of the tofu.
- Want Authentic teriyaki? Use a ratio of 2/2/2/1 - soy sauce, sake, mirin and sugar (to taste)
- Use fresh ginger and garlic in the teriyaki; it will take it to the next level.
- Use super firm tofu; you'll save time.
- Serve as dipping sauce for each guest.
- Eat the teriyaki tofu while it is still warm for the best taste.
- Extra sauce can be stored in the fridge for up to 5 days.
Other Asian Dinner Ideas
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Crispy Baked Teriyaki Tofu
For the Tofu
For the Teriyaki Sauce
- ½ cup reduced sodium soy sauce or tamari
- ⅓ cup maple syrup
- 2 tablespoons rice vinegar
- 1 tablespoon sesame oil
- 1 tablespoon garlic, minced
- 2 teaspoons freshly grated ginger
- 2 tablespoons cold water
- 1 tablespoon cornstarch or arrowroot
- 2 teaspoons sesame seeds, for garnish
- ¼ cup sliced green onion, for garnish
- If using extra firm tofu, make sure to press it for 30 minutes. If using super firm, skip the pressing and blot the outside of the tofu with paper towel.
- Cut the tofu into small, bite-sized cubes and toss with the cornstarch in a bowl, then spread it out on the baking tray.
- Drizzle the tofu with the olive oil and tamari. Bake for 15 minutes, then flip the cubes over and bake for another 15 minutes.
- While the tofu is baking, make the teriyaki sauce. Put the next six ingredients in a small saucepan and whisk over medium heat.
- Make a slurry of water and cornstarch (or arrowroot), then slowly add it to the saucepan. Bring the sauce to a low boil, then reduce heat and whisk until thickened, roughly 3 to 4 minutes. Remove the from heat. It will thicken as it cools. Makes 1 cup.
- When the tofu cubes are done, pour ¼ cup of the sauce over the cubes and toss to coat. Keep extra for dipping the tofu cubes.
- Serve while still warm over top of a bed of fluffy rice or warm Asian noodles. Garnish with a sprinkle of sesame seeds and sliced green onion.
- Take it to the next level by using freshly grated ginger and minced garlic.
- Skip the pressing time by using super firm tofu.
- Put out the extra as a dipping sauce for the tofu cubes.
- For best results, eat the teriyaki tofu while it is fresh from the oven.
- Store extra sauce in the fridge for up to 5 days.
Serving sizes and nutritional information are only an estimate and may vary from your results.