Sunday, February 22, 2009

Sesame Tofu Bowl with Peanut Dressing

As a vegetarian, I used to skip the tofu chapters of cookbooks entirely, ignoring the various recipes and never preparing it at home. Who knew that during my first year of being vegan, I'd end up finding tofu absolutely addictive? This dish is inspired by the Thai Noodle Bowl I sometimes carry out from Whole Foods. I baked tofu cubes after marinating them in a sesame oil-based sauce, and could hardly stop eating them right from the baking dish. Served over jasmine rice with raw vegetables and a peanutty dressing, this makes a refreshing and flavorful meal. The only problem with this recipe is that I ran out of leftovers way to soon.

Sesame Tofu Bowl with Peanut Dressing
Serves 2

Marinated Tofu:
1 container extra firm tofu, pressed for 30-45 minutes then cubed
1 teaspoon minced fresh ginger
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 Tablespoons sesame oil
2 Tablespoons Bragg liquid aminos or soy sauce
1 heaping teaspoon Thai garlic chili pepper sauce

Peanut Dressing:
5 Tablespoons crunchy organic peanut butter (or non-crunchy)
1/4 cup water
2 Tablespoons rice vinegar
1 Tablespoon maple syrup
1 Tablespoon Bragg liquid aminos or soy sauce
1/2 teaspoon Sriracha or hot sauce
salt to taste

Other Bowl ingredients:
raw vegetables such as purple cabbage, scallions, and orange bell pepper, thinly sliced, and baby spinach
jasmine rice
fresh cilantro, chopped
lime zest

Prepare the marinated tofu by whisking the marinade ingredients (ginger through Thai garlic chili pepper sauce). Place the tofu cubes in a shallow baking dish and pour marinade over them. Gently stir and place in the refrigerator for a couple of hours. Stir occasionally if you get the chance. Then preheat the oven to 450 degrees. Bake the tofu for about 25 minutes, stirring occasionally.

Prepare the peanut dressing by whisking the peanut butter through salt. Set aside.

Prepare the rice, chop the vegetables, and zest some lime peel. Combine everything in a couple of bowls and drizzle with preferred amount of dressing.


  1. looks delicious! I love tofu too and I'm not afraid to say it! ;)

  2. Tofu and peanut sauce... Meant to be together! Those tofu cubes look delicious. I love the Teriyaki Tofu Bowl from the Asian station at Whole Foods!!

  3. my mom loves peanut sauce + tofu.. along with some noodles! :)

  4. I love that photo - all of those colors, wow!

  5. This bowl looks divine. I think I'll try doing raw veg with my tofu and rice next time. Thanks!

  6. Tofu and peanut sauce go together so well! This is a gorgeous meal - love the colors, and all the raw veggies look delicious.

  7. This looks just perfect! I think I should have made this for dinner yesterday instead! Peanut sauce makes me so happy!

  8. what a beautiful bowl full of deliciousness, Lisa! sesame tofu + peanut dressing = the best ever! thanks a bunch for your recipe! mmmmmmmmmm!

  9. I love tofu and peanut sauce so much! Beautiful presentation.

  10. This sounds like a very satisfying meal! I loooove peanut sauce and tofu together. I have to agree about the Asian station at WF, it's so good!

  11. That sounds so good right now!

  12. Tofu is the bestest! I can't get enough either. Sometimes my friend and I go to this Vietnamese buffet for lunch (they have 4-5 tofu dishes on the buffet everyday), and pile our plates so high with tofu. I swear I've eaten an entire pound or more in one setting there.

    If that bowl was featured on that buffet, I'd so be all over that. I'll have to look for it at Whole Foods ...or make my own!

  13. So many colors! This might be my favorite dish out of all the amazing dishes you have shared with us. The tofu looks as perfect as it gets, and all the colors just make this meal beyond gorgeous!

  14. Goodness me that looks delicious!
    I'm a Tofu addict too - LOVE the stuff.

  15. This looks really good and i have everything on hand... dinner tonight!

  16. This sounds delicious! I am trying this recipe ASAP. The picture looks very pretty too.

    It's funny, I did the same thing with tofu. As a vegetarian I tried it a few times and didn't care for it much (with the exception of tofu ricotta), but now as a vegan I am eating it a lot more.

  17. That's so pretty! And it sounds delicious.

  18. I just made this today and it was delicious! Added some roasted carrots to it because for some reason I can't get enough of those right now. MMMMM.

    P.S. Just found your blog -- thanks for sharing all the great recipes!

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  20. That sounds so good - I love peanut sauce and tofu together. YUM.

  21. This looks SO good- I cannot wait to try it!

  22. I just made this tonight with a couple minor changes (added a quarter cup water to the marinade, soaked tofu overnight in it, then basted the tofu as I baked it -- used half a block of tofu [I just can't eat that much in one sitting!] added a teaspoon of grated ginger to the peanut dressing, coz I LOVE ginger, and skipped the salt) but everything else, down to the purple cabbage was the same. ABSOLUTE DELISH!!! I'll be keeping an eye on this blog . . . thanks for the recipe!

  23. Hi,
    I was just browsing the web for some recipe (I can't even remembering what I was looking for) and happened upon this post... I am not a vegan or a vegetarian but I do like to eat vegetarian/vegan meals sometimes.

    I made this yesterday and today for lunch. I ate half the block of tofu at lunch yesterday and munched away the rest of the tofu cubes throughout the day so I had to make another block of sesame tofu again today.

    I did make this more healthy by just putting a few dashes of sesame oil instead of the 2Tbs called for in the marinade. the flavor is still great! for the sauce, I only used 2 Tbs peanut butter and the sauce was DELICIOUS!! I actually thought the sauce was perfect like that.

    The sauce is actually enough for 3-4 servings for me since a little goes a long way :D

    thanks so much for this delicious recipe :D

  24. This is one of the best tofu dishes I've had! Even my non-vegan husband loved it. Delicious!!


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