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Tofu Recipes and Cooking Tips

New to tofu? Here's everything you need to know to prepare and enjoy this versatile food.

Tofu Cooking Tips

The most notable thing about the taste of tofu is that it doesn’t have any particular taste. Instead, it takes on the flavors of whatever it’s cooked with. Here are some ways you can use tofu in your favorite recipes and with your favorite foods:

  • Marinate slices of tofu and bake, grill or broil it.
  • Use diced tofu in soups, stews, casseroles, and chili.
  • Pan-fry slices or strips of tofu. You can coat the tofu pieces in cornstarch and brown them with a little canola oil in a nonstick skillet or wok over high heat.
  • Silken tofu adds creaminess when blended in with salad dressings and creamy sauces, puddings, cream soups, cheese fillings, and more. One package of silken tofu is equal to 1 1/2 cups pureed tofu.
  • Tofu can add volume to scrambled eggs or egg salad when used half-and-half with real eggs.
  • Soft tofu can work as a meat extender when added to ground sirloin or ground turkey to make meatballs, meatloaf, or meat filling.
  • Silken tofu is enjoyed in the raw in Japanese cuisine, topped with soy sauce or another flavorful sauce. Many in the West prefer it cooked unless it’s being pureed into something.
  • Tofu can replace half of the fat ingredient called for in cake recipes without compromising flavor and texture, according to a study that tested a 25% to 75% substitution of silken tofu for fat in shortened cakes (cakes that contain fat and a high ratio of eggs to flour).
  • Previously frozen tofu works well as a meat replacement for chicken, pork, and beef in all sorts of recipes, from stews and stroganoff to fried rice and tacos.
  • To use less oil when stir-frying or pan-frying tofu, and use a quality nonstick wok, skillet or frying pan. You'll need a lot less oil to keep the tofu from sticking to the pan.

4 Healthy Tofu Recipes

To help you get started cooking and enjoying tofu, here are four easy-to-prepare tofu recipes to try.

Tofu Teriyaki

Ingredients:

14 ounces firm tofu

6 tablespoons light soy sauce

1 teaspoon sesame oil

2 teaspoons sesame seeds

2 tablespoons sugar

1/2 cup + 2 tablespoons apple juice

1 teaspoon minced or crushed garlic

1 teaspoon fresh ginger, finely minced (or 1/4 teaspoon ground ginger) 

Preparation

  1. Cut block of tofu vertically into about 10 rectangular slices.
  2. In large measuring cup, blend remaining ingredients to make teriyaki sauce. Pour sauce into 9x9-inch baking dish.
  3. Arrange tofu slices in sauce. Turn slices over to coat. Broil 10-15 minutes, then flip tofu slices over and broil 8-10 minutes longer.

Yield: 4 servings 

WebMD Weight Loss Clinic members: Journal as: 1 serving tofu without added fat OR 1 vegetarian patty without added fat OR 1/2 cup hearty stews, chili, bean soup OR 1/4 cup starchy foods and legumes with 1 tablespoon fat maximum 

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