Tofu is an amazing protein that can be served raw or cooked, in recipes perfect for lunch, dinner or even a snack in between. Great when used in dessert too, tofu is a terrific addition to any vegan or vegetarian diet.
Using this versatile ingredient, you could actually prepare healthier versions of all your favorite dishes, such as lasagna, burgers, wings and even chili. Did you know that it’s one of the best sources of protein for a plant-based diet?
Here’s a quick guide to the different varieties of tofu and tips on how to use them to create innovative dishes in your vegan kitchen.
- Soft Tofu: This kind can be battered and deep-fried before being added to savory dishes. It can also be puréed into desserts like puddings.
- Medium Tofu: While this type is firmer than the soft variety, it is still pretty delicate so beware of crumbling it with rough handling. It’s best when baked or grilled, which ensures it doesn’t fall apart.
- Firm Or Extra-Firm Tofu: Perfect for stir fries, this kind of tofu keeps its shape even under pressure. Unlike meat, tofu needs to be dried before its cooked, so as to achieve that crisp, golden-brown texture. Place sliced tofu on a baking sheet lined with a kitchen towel to soak up the excess moisture.
- Soft Silken Tofu: Creamy with a pudding-like consistency, this type of tofu is best used for blending into dishes like salad dressings, creamy desserts, and is an excellent dairy-free substitute to provide a smooth texture to almost any recipe.
- Firm Silken Tofu: Prepared from a denser variety of soy, this kind of tofu has a creamy consistency yet holds its shape better than soft silken tofu. Good for dishes like Mapo Tofu or even chunkier soups, the best use for it would be to scramble it like you would whip up eggs.
- Yuba: These are actually soy noodles made from the skins of freshly-made tofu. Use them as a healthy and tasty substitute for rice noodles in dishes like stir-fries.