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SOMETHING SIMPLE: Spicy Braised Tofu

This protein-rich, vegetarian main dish is ready in less than 15 minutes.
easy spicy tofu
  • Makes 3 servings
  • Prep Time 5 minutes
  • Cook Time 10 minutes


  • 1 12-oz. block firm tofu, drained
  • 1 tsp. sea salt, plus more to taste
  • 1 green onion, sliced and divided by color
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1 tbs. honey
  • 1 tbs. soy sauce
  • ½ tbs. chili-garlic paste or sauce
  • ½ tsp. minced fresh ginger
  • ½ tsp. sesame oil or chili-sesame oil
  • 2 tbs. avocado or peanut oil


Slice the tofu into ½-inch slabs and sprinkle the cut sides with sea salt. Set aside to prep the remaining ingredients.
In a small bowl, place the whites of the green onion, garlic, honey, soy sauce, chili-garlic paste or sauce, ginger, and sesame oil. Whisk until combined.
Preheat a wok or nonstick skillet with the avocado oil to medium-high heat. Pat the tofu dry with a clean kitchen towel and place in a single layer in the preheated pan. Sear on both sides until golden brown, three to four minutes.
Reduce the heat to medium-low, add the sauce, and simmer until the onions are tender and the sauce thickens slightly, about three to four minutes.
Remove the tofu to a plate, pour the sauce over it, and top with the remaining sliced green onion. Serve with rice and steamed vegetables if desired.

No-Press Protein

Because it’s made from soybeans, tofu is a plant-based complete protein. Here, you’ll salt the surface to draw out moisture so you can get crispy tofu without the need to press it.

This recipe is part of our Something Simple department, which features one-pot, 30-minutes-or-less, or 10-ingredients-or-less recipes that make it easier to eat healthy in a pinch.

Photography by: Terry Brennan; Food Styling: Betsy Nelson

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Maddie Augustin

Maddie Augustin is a Minneapolis-based recipe developer.


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