This crispy sticky tofu will make EVERYONE love tofu! It's exactly that, crispy pieces of tofu with a sweet sticky glaze…..yum!
Tofu is one of those ingredients that people either love or hate. I personally love tofu as it's a great vegan plant based protein that you can eat in so many ways! It doesn't have much flavor, so you can season and elevate it in any flavour direction you like.
This sweet sticky tofu takes less than 15 minutes to make and is packed with flavour! Serve with rice and vegetables to make it a complete meal, with noodles, or grab some chopsticks and enjoy them on their own.
This recipe is also perfect to serve as a fun delicious appetizer to share.
Trust me, it's going to be your new favourite way to eat tofu!
Table of Contents
Ingredients and Substitutions
- Tofu is a great plant based vegan protein high in nutrients. It's always best to use extra firm tofu when making crispy sticky tofu. Firm tofu is also great too
- Sweet soy sauce is a mixture of sweet and salty in one and is usually a thicker consistency than regular soy sauce. You can also use regular soy sauce mixed with honey or maple syrup as a substitute or even sugar. If you are gluten-free, use the same concept with tamari
- Rice vinegar balances out the sweetness and saltiness. Apple cider vinegar or white wine vinegar can also be used
- Garlic cloves for all my fellow garlic lovers! Use as much or as little as you like! Garlic powder can be used if you don't have fresh garlic. Fresh ginger would also be yum too
- Chilli flakes / Red pepper flakes are added for spice! Fresh chilli, sriracha sauce or even chilli powder will work. If you don't like spice or serving to kids, feel free to omit altogether
- Corn starch is added in the marinade with water to make a cornstarch slurry. It thickens the sauce into a sticky glaze like in a teriyaki sauce. It's also used to coat the tofu before its fried for an extra crispy layer
- Oil is used for frying the tofu. It's best to use a neutral oil such as avocado oil, vegetable oil or even grapeseed oil
- Garnish, in this recipe I've used sesame seeds but sliced green onions would be a great garnish too! Serve with rice and vegetables such as broccoli or Asian greens for the perfect dinner
How to make Crispy Sticky Tofu
This recipe is about bringing all the flavour to the tofu and creating a sticky crispy outside layer, and the best part is you can make this within 15 minutes in a few simple steps.
- To start, press the tofu so all the excess water comes out. I like to simply place the tofu in between a tea towel then place a heavy item on top and wait at least 20mintues. Then cut the tofu as you wish to eat it, in this recipe I've made diagonal cuts to get triangle shapes but you can cut into cubes as well
- Whilst the tofu is being pressed, prepare the marinade in a small bowl by adding sweet soy sauce, vinegar, grated garlic, and chili. Then add 1 tablespoon of cornstarch and 3 tbs of water. Give it a stir to combine
- At least 20 minutes have passed, coat the pressed tofu pieces in corn starch. Use your fingers to get a good coat on all the edges
- It's time to cook! In a non-stick pan, heat some oil over medium-high heat and add the tofu pieces in a single layer, making sure they don’t touch. Cook for a few minutes on both sides until you have golden and crispy tofu
- To finish, pour the marinade into the pan which will become very bubbly immediately. Quickly turn all the tofu pieces over so they are coated on both sides and serve on a dish straight away.
- To serve, I like to garnish with some sesame seeds. For a complete meal, I will serve alongside rice and broccoli or Asian greens. Or just grab some chopsticks and dig in!
Tips & Tricks
- Press the tofu to remove the excess water which will help it get extra crispy. If you don't have a tofu press, place tofu in a clean tea towel with something heavy on top like a heavy pot
- Fry the tofu pieces in a single layer without touching so they don't stick together and for all sides to become crispy
- Be quick when you pour over the marinade. Move around the pan and flip them over. Due to the sweet soy sauce and corn starch, it will bubble very quickly and become extra sticky
- Ensure to use a non stick saucepan or the glaze will stick to the pan
- There's no need to add any salt as the sweet soy sauce has sufficient seasoning
- To make it oil free, cook the tofu in an air fryer or oven. If you are airfrying, add sufficient cooking spray to the tofu. You can then add the glaze in a pan
Tofu is quite plain and bland on its own, however, it draws in any seasonings and marinades so you can season it how you like! It has a soft sponge-like texture
Seasoning and texture! I love making tofu crispy with either cornstarch or breaded coating. Marinade your tofu to give it tonnes of flavor to make it taste amazing
More Tofu Recipes
More Vegan Dinners
I love seeing your creations and remakes, so be sure to rate the recipe, comment and share your Crispy Sticky Tofu photo on Instagram so I can share the love!
Crispy Sticky Tofu
- 300 g extra firm tofu
- 3 tablespoon sweet soy sauce
- 1 tablespoon rice vinegar
- 1-2 garlic cloves
- ½ tablespoon red pepper flakes - or more of you like it spicy
- 4 tablespoon corn starch
- 3-4 tablespoon water
- 3 tablespoon oil
- Garnish sesame seeds or chopped green onions
- Drain and press tofu with either a tofu press or in between a clean tea towel with something heavy on top to remove the excess water
- In a small bowl or ramekin add the sweet soy sauce, vinegar, grated garlic and red pepper flakes. Add 1 tablespoon of cornstarch and 3 tablespoon water, stir or whisk to combine
- Slice tofu into triangles or tofu cubes and coat in the remaining corn starch
- Heat the oil in a non-stick pan over medium-high heat and add the tofu pieces in a single layer, making sure they don’t touch. Pan fry for a few minutes on both sides until you have golden and crispy tofu
- Pour the marinade into the pan which will become very bubbly instantly. Quickly turn all the tofu pieces over so they are coated on both sides and serve on a dish straight awayGarnish with the sesame seeds and enjoy your Crispy Sticky Tofu!