If you’re looking to add more protein into your meals without meat, then tofu might be perfect for you.
It comes from soybeans and has many similar properties to animal meats, such as being high in iron.
What Is The Difference Between Orange Tofu And Regular Tofu?
Tofu can come in several different colors, including white, yellow, green, red, blue, purple, and even black!
Orange tofu is made by adding turmeric powder, which gives it its color.
You may have seen this used in curries, but it can also make an appearance in other dishes like salads, soups, stir fries, and smoothies.
There are two main types of tofu: firm and silken.
Firm tofu is often what people think of when they hear “tofu” – it doesn’t have much flavor on its own, so it needs to be prepared before eating.
Silken tofu has a softer texture than firmer tofu, and therefore won’t need any prepping.
Both varieties can be found at most grocery stores, though some places only sell one type.
Firm tofu is usually sold in blocks that are cut up into cubes, while silken tofu will be found in tubs or jars with water inside them.
The water helps keep the tofu soft until needed.
When buying either variety of tofu, check the expiration date to avoid getting old tofu.
If the tofu hasn’t been opened, there should be no sign of mold growing on the surface.
However, if the tofu has been open for awhile, check the inside for spoilage signs – discoloration, sliminess, or anything else unusual.
For cooking purposes, both tofu varieties work well together.
They don’t require soaking or draining beforehand, making them very simple recipes.
Tofu absorbs flavors easily, so feel free to experiment with whatever spices you have on hand.
Why Is Tofu A Good Choice For A Vegan Or Vegetarian Diet?
Tofu can make an excellent substitute when it comes to replacing animal products like beef, chicken, pork, fish, eggs, dairy, and cheese.
It’s also one of the most versatile foods on Earth because it can be used in so many different ways.
Tofu can easily replace ground beef, ground turkey, bacon, and even pizza toppings!
Many people have tried this out and they love how much healthier it makes their diets.
But what about those who want to keep their diet 100% plant-based but still eat some protein? That’s where tofu shines.
How does tofu compare with other sources of protein?
To understand why tofu may not be the best option for everyone, we need to take a look at its nutritional value.
According to The Vegetarian Resource Group, tofu contains around 12 grams of protein per cup.
That’s less than half that found in egg whites (27 g), which means that tofu isn’t going to give you enough protein to meet daily requirements.
However, a serving size of tofu could provide over 50 percent of your daily requirement.
This is compared to 1/4 of a cup of milk (8 g) and 2 ounces of lean ground beef (22 g).
So it would seem that if you were trying to get all of your protein from foods, you should avoid both milk and beef.
However, there are plenty of reasons to include these two ingredients in your diet.
For example, milk is very useful in making sauces, desserts, and drinks.
Also, it provides calcium and vitamin D, which will help prevent osteoporosis in older adults.
In addition, if you are lactose intolerant, you don’t have to worry about consuming cow’s milk anymore.
You can choose to consume non-dairy milks instead, including almond milk, rice milk, hemp milk, oat milk, cashew milk, and coconut milk.
As long as you’re careful with how much of each type of milk you drink per day, you shouldn’t experience any adverse effects.
Similarly, eating red meat doesn’t mean you have to miss out on essential nutrients.
There are lots of healthy alternatives for vegetarians and vegans, including soy burgers, tempeh, seitan, and beans.
So although tofu is low in protein, it can still offer a great source of nutrition when combined with other types of food.
What Are The Health Benefits Of Eating Tofu?
Tofu isn’t just a source of protein but also contains important nutrients like calcium, vitamin K, folate, fiber, magnesium, zinc, potassium, etc., which makes it an excellent food for healthy living.
It may seem strange how tofu can have so many health benefits when it doesn’t contain any fat, cholesterol, or sodium.
However, there are ways to prepare tofu to maximize its nutritional value while minimizing the risk of consuming harmful chemicals.
- Highly porous structure – Tofu absorbs water easily, making it soft and creamy in texture when cooked. The process of soaking tofu in water allows it to absorb all those beneficial nutrients mentioned above.
- Low cooking temperature – You won’t need much heat to cook tofu because it cooks quickly on low heat.
- No added salt or sugar – There’s no need to season tofu with salt or sweeteners because it already tastes quite salty due to the soybean content.
- Easy digestion – Since tofu is made entirely out of plant proteins, it does not require enzymes from animals to break down or digest. So if you eat it raw or undercooked, you will get most of the benefits of tofu without worrying about getting sick.
What Are Some Easy Tofu Recipes That I Can Make At Home?
When it comes to making tofu at home, there are plenty of options! You could try this Orange Tofu Recipe which uses orange juice and other spices to create an incredibly tasty alternative to regular tofu.
Or if you prefer savory dishes, check out these easy vegetarian tacos or these simple Italian pasta salad recipes.
But what about desserts?
Well, here are three simple dessert recipes that will help you get creative with tofu.
- Tofu Ice Cream – If you love ice cream but don’t want dairy milk, then you should try using tofu instead! Here’s how to make it yourself and why you should do it.
- Easy Chocolate Truffles – These truffles are made with chocolate chips and silken tofu, plus they have no eggs or butter needed!
- Vegan Macarons – The macaron is one of my favorite sweets because it is light and airy, yet still satisfying enough. But now you can take advantage of tofu to make them even better!
What Are Some Tips For Cooking Tofu So That It Is Flavorful And Delicious?
To get the most out of your tofu dishes, try these simple suggestions:
- Make sure your ingredients are fresh. If they’re not, toss them out and start over with new ones.
- Use low sodium vegetable broth or water when preparing foods like soups, stews, and sauces.
- Do not stir-fry tofu. Instead, marinate it first to allow flavors to penetrate the block before pan frying.
- Toss any extra liquid off your cooked tofu after draining it on paper towels.
- When baking tofu, use parchment paper instead of foil.
- Keep an eye on how much oil gets absorbed by the tofu during cooking.
- Be careful when using hot pans since tofu will stick together easily.
- Bake tofu on top rack of oven if possible.
What Are Some Common Ways To Prepare Tofu?
There are several different types of tofu available on the market, ranging from very soft to firm or extra firm.
Soft tofu can be used in place of ground beef when making tacos, while extra firm tofu works well for stir fry dishes.
You may also find silken tofu (or bean curd) which has a smooth texture and is often used in desserts and beverages.
Tofu also makes an excellent base for vegetarian burgers!
What Are Some Of My Favorite Tofu Recipes?
So, how do I get started with making tofu at home?
Well, it really depends on what kind of tofu you want to make.
Some people enjoy using silken or soft tofu while others love firm tofu (also known as extra-firm).
The latter one usually takes longer to cook but can also be used for stir fries, salads, curries, etc.
This classic breakfast scramble uses both silken and firm tofu and is quick and easy to put together.
- 1 block medium firm tofu – cubed
- 4 eggs – beaten
- ¼ cup milk
- ½ teaspoon salt
- Dash black pepper
- 1 tablespoon butter
- Optional ingredients: 1 slice onion, 2 slices tomato, ½ cup shredded cheese, 1 green pepper, 1/8 cup chopped fresh herbs
To make this recipe even better, try adding mushrooms or bell peppers!
Fried Tofu With Peanut Sauce
A simple and tasty fried tofu dish that goes well with rice, noodles, or veggies.
Topped with peanut sauce, this recipe tastes like something out of an Asian restaurant.
- 1 package extra-firm tofu – cubed
- Peanut oil cooking spray
- Salt & Pepper to taste
- ½ pound ground beef
- ⅓ cup brown sugar
- ⅔ cup chicken stock
- ¾ cup ketchup
- 1 egg yolk
- 1 teaspoon minced garlic
- 1 teaspoon chili powder
- 1 teaspoon cornstarch
- ¼ cup water
- 1 teaspoon sesame oil
- Chopped peanuts
Heat up a skillet over medium heat and coat with cooking spray.
Add the ground beef and season with salt and pepper.
Cook until cooked through, about 10 minutes.
While the meat cooks, combine all other ingredients except the peanuts in a small bowl.
After the meat is done, pour half of the mixture into the pan and use a spatula to fold everything around so that it forms a nice, thick pancake.
Repeat process with remaining mixture.
Top each piece with chopped peanuts before serving.
Spicy Sautéed Tofu
For those who don’t like spicy food, this version of sautéed tofu will definitely satisfy their cravings for a bit of spice.
You can adjust the amount of red pepper flakes according to your preference.
- 1 package firm tofu – cut into cubes
- ½ teaspoon salt
- Pepper to taste
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- Red pepper flakes to taste
- 1 clove garlic
- 1 bay leaf
- Water to cover
Place the cubes of tofu in a colander and let them drain for 30 minutes.
Heat up the oil in a large pot over medium heat.
When hot enough, add the drained tofu and fry until golden brown.
Season with salt and pepper.
Remove the tofu pieces and set aside.
Add the rest of the ingredients to the same pot along with enough water to cover the bottom of the pan.
Bring to a boil and reduce the heat to low.
Simmer for 20-30 minutes, stirring occasionally.
Once the liquid reduces by half, remove the bay leaf and serve immediately.
Pork Tenderloin Stuffed with Tofu Cheese
You may have heard about stuffed pork tenderloins, but did you know they can also be made with tofu instead?
If you’ve never had any type of tofu cheesecake before, this is a great way to start experimenting with different flavors and textures.
- 1 package extra-firm tofu – cubed
- 1 small zucchini – sliced lengthwise
- ¼ cup breadcrumbs
- ⅛ teaspoon salt
- Black pepper to taste
- ⅓ cup cream cheese
- 1/3 cup Parmesan cheese
- ¼ cup mozzarella cheese
- 2 teaspoons melted butter
- 2 tablespoons flour
- 1/4 cup sour cream
- Cooking spray
Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
Place the tofu cubes between two sheets of parchment paper and press down firmly with a flat object.
Combine all ingredients except the sour cream in a mixing bowl.
Transfer the mixture to a loaf pan lined with foil.
Bake for 25 minutes.
Take off the lid and bake another 5 minutes.
Allow the pan to cool completely before removing the tofu cheese cake from its pan and slicing.
What Are Some Of The Best Tofu Restaurants In Town?
Tofu can come in many different varieties, so let’s take a look at what all these types of tofu actually consist of.
- Silken Tofu – This type of tofu has a soft texture that melts easily. It also contains less water than other kinds of tofu and therefore doesn’t have a strong taste or smell when cooked with oil. Silken tofu is great for making smoothies and desserts.
- Firm Tofu – Firm tofu has a dense consistency and isn’t usually sold in small packages like silken tofu. You can use firm tofu in place of ground beef in any number of dishes, including tacos, burgers, meatloaf, lasagna, stir fry, and even pizza!
- Extra firm Tofu – Extra firm tofu is firmer than regular tofu but softer than hard tofu. Because it holds its shape better when cut up, extra firm tofu is often used in salads, sandwiches, and wraps.
- Soft Tofu – Soft tofu has a jelly-like consistency and is made using a process called ‘hydrolysis’ which means breaking down proteins by soaking them in water. It takes on the flavor of whatever liquid it’s soaked in (so if you soak it in stock, it will taste like chicken broth). Soft tofu is typically eaten raw, although it can be fried too.
- Miso Tofu – Miso tofu is prepared by adding miso paste to fresh tofu, then simmering it until it breaks apart. The result is a rich tasting, creamy food that goes well with both sweet and savory foods.
- Honey Tofu – Like miso, honey tofu is traditionally served cold, but can also be heated up in rice bowls, casseroles, soups, stews, and stir fries.
- Tempeh – Tempeh is fermented whole soy beans that are pressed flat and then steamed before they’re sliced thinly. They can be marinated and grilled just like any piece of meat. If you want to try tempeh out, check out this list of 10 amazing ways to eat tempeh.
- Seitan – Seitan is an alternative to meat made from wheat gluten. If you haven’t tried seitan yet, I highly recommend checking out our guide about how to make seitan.
- Edamame – Edamame is immature green soy bean pods that contain a healthy dose of plant based protein. These pods are very popular in Japan where they are sometimes added to noodle dishes, salads, or cooked together with vegetables or grains.
- Chickpeas – Chickpeas are simply dried garbanzo beans that are available in cans or bags. In addition to having fiber, vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants, chickpeas are a good source of calcium and magnesium, two essential elements needed for bone health.
What Are Some Of The Best Tofu Cookbooks?
There are plenty of different types of tofu available on store shelves these days, so it can get confusing when deciding which one is right for your family. Most people tend to use extra firm or firm tofu when cooking because they feel that they have enough chewiness to hold their shape but still offer a nice texture when eaten.
The following list includes some of the best books on tofu out there.
If you want to learn how to prepare it properly, then this book will help you with all of those details.
For example, if you want to make sure that you don’t overcook your tofu, this book explains everything about it step by step.
- Tofu Cookery by Mark Miller – This is an excellent resource for anyone who wants to know how to prepare great dishes using tofu. The author provides detailed instructions, along with helpful photos and illustrations, to show exactly what steps to take and how long each stage should last before adding them to the pan.
- Vegan Tofu Cooking by Ann Esselstyn – There are quite a few vegetarian and vegan cookbooks on the market today, and this is one of the most popular ones. With over 1 million copies sold worldwide, it clearly proves its popularity as well.
- Vegetarian & Vegan Recipes From Around the World (Volume 2) by David Lebovitz – This second volume contains over 200 recipes, including dishes like “Soybean Cakes” and “Chili Lime Rice.”
What Are Some Of The Best Websites For Tofu Recipes
Tofu can taste different depending on how it is prepared, so we recommend using this website if you want an idea of what a particular preparation will taste like before making it yourself.
There are lots of ways to prepare tofu, including stir frying with vegetables or other ingredients, baking it, marinating it, and even mixing it with sauces or spices.
You can find tons of ideas here that range from simple to complex.
Some people also use tofu in soups or stews, but be careful not to overcook it because it can become tough.
If you don’t know where to start when preparing tofu, check out our guide to the five most common types of tofu.
- The Pan
- 1 pack extra-firm tofu
- 3 tbsp cornstarch
- 3 tbsp sunflower oil
- 4 garlic cloves finely chopped
- 2- inch cube ginger finely chopped
- 1 cup fresh-squeezed orange juice
- 4 tsp orange zest
- 4 tbsp tamari
- 3 tbsp rice vinegar
- 4 tbsp coconut sugar
- 2 tbsp cornstarch
- Tofu should be coated with cornstarch before being fried for a few minutes on each side in sunflower oil over medium-high heat.
- In a bowl, blend all the sauce ingredients thoroughly.
- When the tofu is done cooking, take it out of the pan and set it onto a plate covered in paper towels. Any extra oil in the pan should be poured out.
- On medium heat, add the sauce and let it reduce just a little before adding the tofu and tossing everything together until thoroughly coated.
- Over rice, please.