Tofu is one of my go-to affordable protein sources, and after serving it to my kids enough times, they finally like it and I can never seem to make enough. This easy Sesame Tofu recipe is one of our favorite ways to enjoy it!

sesame tofu on plate.

Sesame Tofu

Tofu seems to be one of those divisive foods that people either love or hate, but I’m firmly in the love camp—and this easy method of preparing it has made my kids fans, too. It’s packed with plant-based protein, super inexpensive, and a perfect texture for babies and toddlers to easily eat.

Oh and: You can flavor it in so many ways!

Knowing how to cook tofu can seem daunting if you’re new to it, but this easy way of cooking Sesame Tofu is both easy and delicious. This method of making pan-fried tofu is how my family loves it best (well in addition to Tofu Nuggets!) and I make it a few times a month.

The toasted sesame oil adds really nice flavor to this recipe, but you can also use olive oil or butter for a more neutral flavor if you prefer.

(You may also like my Salmon Nuggets and Fish Nuggets.)

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ingredients in sesame tofu on counter.

Ingredients You Need

To make this simple family dinner, you’ll just need tofu and toasted sesame oil. You can also use sesame seeds to garnish, if you want. (And whatever else you plan to serve it with for dinner.)

Extra-firm tofu works best in this recipe, or at least it’s the texture that I prefer. It holds its shape nicely and doesn’t break much when cooking. “Firm” and “soft” tofu will be less firm than “extra-firm” and may break up a bit as you turn each piece over.

You can also try using “super firm” tofu, which is much firmer (and has more protein since more water has been removed.) It’s denser and therefore has a more solid texture.

In addition to the tofu, the only other ingredient is toasted sesame oil, which adds the sesame flavor.

Step-by-Step Process

Here’s a look at the easy process involved in making this tofu recipe so you know what to expect. Scroll down to the end of the post for the full information, including the amounts and the timing.

how to make sesame tofu step by step
  1. Remove the tofu from the package and drain off the liquid. Place on a towel-lined plate, and top with another clean towel and plate. Let sit. Draining the liquid and letting the tofu sit between towels helps remove some of the moisture from the tofu so it crisps up nicely.
  2. Chop tofu.
  3. Pan-fry in warm oil.
  4. Flip to finish cooking.
sesame tofu in pan.

Serving Suggestions

We like this healthy tofu with rice and sauteed veggies in a Stir Fry, a Noodle Stir Fry, or in my Green Curry recipe. You can saute any mix of chopped veggies like carrots, bell peppers, broccoli, or snap peas, in a little additional toasted sesame oil. We also make it regularly with olive oil or butter to serve with Pesto Pasta.

TIP: If you want to add extra flavor to a rice bowl with Sesame Tofu, you can drizzle with a little soy sauce and honey for an easy riff on teriyaki sauce.

sesame-tofu-with-veggies-and-rice-in-bowl

Best Tips for Success

  • Store any leftovers in an airtight container. Warm to serve.
  • To do this in a cast-iron or stainless steel-skillet, rather than in a nonstick pan, use 2 tablespoons oil to ensure it doesn’t stick.  Let the oil warm for at least 30 seconds in the pan before adding the tofu to ensure it doesn’t stick.
  • Drain the tofu on towels stacked with plates for the best texture.
  • Use olive oil or butter for a more neutral flavor.
  • Use “extra-firm” tofu for the best texture.
  • Add a little reduced-sodium soy sauce (or gluten-free tamari), Peanut Sauce, or teriyaki sauce for additional flavor.

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sesame tofu on plate.

Quick and Easy Sesame Tofu

This simple pan-fried Sesame Tofu is a perfect match for sauteed veggies and rice, or pasta, or even potatoes and roasted veggies!
5 from 1 vote
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 12 minutes
Total Time 42 minutes
Cuisine American
Course Dinner
Calories 93kcal
Servings 4

Ingredients

  • 16 ounce container extra-firm tofu
  • 1 tablespoon toasted sesame oil
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Instructions

  • Open the tofu and remove it from the package. Discard the liquid.
  • Place it on top of a towel-lined plate. Top with another towel and plate. Let sit for at least 30 minutes and up to 8 hours. (You can do this in the morning and stick it into the fridge to wait for dinner.)
  • Dice the tofu.
  • Warm the oil in a large nonstick skillet. Add the tofu and let cook for about 6 minutes.
  • Flip over and cook for an additional 6 minutes or until golden brown.
  • Serve warm with rice, veggies, or eggs.

Notes

  • Store any leftovers in an airtight container. Warm to serve.
  • To do this in a cast-iron or stainless-steel skillet, use 2 tablespoons oil to ensure it doesn’t stick.  Let the oil warm for at least 30 seconds in the pan before adding the tofu to ensure it doesn’t stick.
  • Drain the tofu on towels stacked with plates for the best texture.
  • Use olive oil or butter for a more neutral flavor.
  • Use “extra-firm” tofu for the best texture.
  • Add a little reduced-sodium soy sauce (or gluten-free tamari), Peanut Sauce, or teriyaki sauce for additional flavor.

Nutrition

Calories: 93kcal, Carbohydrates: 2g, Protein: 8g, Fat: 6g, Saturated Fat: 1g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 3g, Monounsaturated Fat: 2g, Sodium: 71mg, Potassium: 175mg, Fiber: 1g, Sugar: 1g, Calcium: 35mg, Iron: 1mg
Tried this recipe?Rate in the comments and tag @yummytoddlerfood on IG!

This post was first published January 2020.

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