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Looking For A Go-To Way To Cook Tofu? Try This Satisfying Dish

Image by Jeeca Uy / Contributor
September 3, 2021
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Big tofu fan? You'll love this simple, garlicky dish—and so will any tofu skeptics. Pan-frying the protein gives it extra texture, and the gingery, slightly sweet sauce that coats the tofu is a total crowd-pleaser. A whopping six cloves of garlic and a spoonful of ginger also lend some immune-supporting properties to this dish, but that's just a happy bonus.

"This is inspired by the broccoli dishes I love to get at our local Chinese restaurants," writes Jeeca Uy in Vegan Asian, "that are often cooked with a lot of aromatic garlic, ginger and scallion. This dish is also packed with protein and a delicious way to get in some green veggies."

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While her original recipe calls for broccoli, this is the type of dish that would work well with lots of different greens—from kale to green beans, just be sure you adjust the cooking process accordingly depending on what veggie you choose.

Garlic, Tofu & Broccoli Stir-Fry 

Serves 4


  • 14 ounces extra-firm tofu 
  • 3 tbsp. soy sauce, plus more to taste if needed 
  • 1 tbsp. coconut sugar, or to taste 
  • ¼ cup vegetable broth 
  • 1½ tsp. cornstarch (or consider substituting arrowroot powder)
  • Neutral oil, for frying 
  • 1 tsp. grated ginger 
  • 6 cloves garlic, minced 
  • 1 scallion, chopped 
  • 4 cups raw broccoli florets (from 1 head) 
  • Pinch of salt 
  • ¼ cup vegetable broth or water 
  • Steamed rice, to serve


  1. Prepare the tofu: Press the tofu for at least 10 minutes to drain any excess liquid. Afterward, slice into 1-inch (2.5-cm)-thick squares. 
  2. Prepare the sauce: In a small bowl, mix together all the soy sauce, coconut sugar, vegetable broth, and cornstarch. Set aside. 
  3. Heat a large skillet (choose one with a lid) over medium-high heat. Add just enough oil to cover the surface of the pan. Once the oil is hot and bubbles, carefully add each piece of tofu. Pan-fry the tofu until golden brown, about 4 minutes on each side. Remove from the oil and transfer to a strainer or a paper-towel-lined plate to drain any excess oil. Feel free to remove some of the oil in the pan, as this will be the same pan for stir-frying. 
  4. In the same pan over medium-high heat, sauté the ginger, garlic, and scallion until aromatic, about 2 minutes. Add the broccoli florets. Add a pinch of salt and the vegetable broth or water. Cover the pan with its lid, lower the heat to medium, and let the broccoli cook for 3 minutes, or until cooked to your desired doneness. Remove the lid and add the fried tofu back to the pan. 
  5. Give the sauce a good mix to make sure the starch doesn't stick to the bottom. Pour the sauce into the pan. Mix the tofu and broccoli well with the sauce. Over medium heat, cook for 3 to 4 more minutes, or until the sauce thickens. Taste the tofu and broccoli and add more soy sauce, to taste, if needed. Turn off the heat. Serve with steamed rice and enjoy while it's hot. 

Reprinted with permission from Vegan Asian by Jeeca Uy, Page Street Publishing Co. © 2021.

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