This Crispy Breaded Tofu recipe is quick, easy, and the perfect dipper for your favorite sauces! Perfect for busy weeknights when you need something healthy and nutritious, yet filling and satisfying.
These breaded tofu dippers were such a popular recipe on my blog that I had to include them in my cookbook. (If you haven’t checked out my cookbook yet, click here!)
Why You’ll Love This Recipe
- Gluten-free option – I’ve added notes for simple ingredient swaps to make these breaded tofu dippers gluten-free. Everyone can enjoy these!
- No deep frying – Although deep fried foods are delicious, sometimes were in the mood for something a bit lighter. These breaded tofu nuggets are sprays with a little oil then oven-baked until nice and crispy.
- Faster alternative to seitan chicken nuggets – Our Easy Vegan Chicken recipe is a staple base recipe we use in tons of our vegan chicken recipes, but it does require a bit more prep time. This tofu recipe is much faster so if you’re short on time, make these tofu dippers!
Key Ingredients and Substitutions
- Tofu – I recommend using firm tofu, extra-firm tofu, or super firm tofu. Any softer and the block of tofu will have too much excess liquid.
- Breadcrumbs – Both regular breadcrumbs and panko bread crumbs work well here. If you’re gluten-free, use store-bought gluten-free bread crumbs or make your own!
- Nutritional yeast – Adds cheesiness and a nice crispy exterior. It also adds a nice boost of B vitamins.
- Nondairy milk – Any plant-based milk will work, just make sure it is plain and unsweetened. I typically use almond milk, but you can also use milks like soy milk or oat milk.
- Flour – Either all-purpose flour or gluten-free all-purpose flour will work well here. Avoid using flours like coconut flour – they do not work!
How to Make Breaded Tofu Dippers
- Press your tofu. You can do this using a tofu press or by removing the tofu from it’s packaging and place it on a flat surface like a cutting board or large plate. Then, wrap the tofu in paper towels or a clean tea towel and place a heavy object on top of the tofu. Allow the tofu to press for about 30 minutes, or until a majority of the excess water has drained out of the tofu.
- Slice the tofu. Once pressed, cut the tofu into any shapes you’d like. Try tofu cutlets, tofu sticks, tofu fingers, small ripped tofu bites or triangles (like pictured!).
- Prepare your breading. Grab 3 shallow bowls, then mix the breadcrumbs, nutritional yeast, sea salt, and black pepper in the first one. In the second bowl, place the flour. And in the last bowl, pour the almond milk.
- Dredge the tofu. Dip each piece of tofu in the flour, then the milk, then the breadcrumb mixture. Make sure each side is coated as you go and tap off any excess. Place the coated tofu pieces on the baking sheet lined with parchment paper and repeat until all tofu is breaded.
- Bake. Place the tofu in the oven for 10 minutes, then flip and bake for another 8-10 minutes. To make the tofu extra crispy, spray each side with cooking spray.
- Prepare the honey mustard sauce. While the tofu bakes, whisk together the honey mustard ingredients until well combined and set aside.
- Serve. Allow the breaded tofu dippers to cool for a few minutes, then serve with the vegan honey mustard and other desired sides. Enjoy!
Ideas for Serving
Crispy breaded tofu is incredibly versatile and can be served as a main dish, as an snack with your favorite dipping sauce, or even chopped and added it to your favorite salads and pastas. Here are a few of our favorite ways to enjoy them:
- With a dipping sauce – We love these with our vegan honey mustard (recipe below!), but you can really pair them with any of your favorite dipping sauces. Try our Vegan Big Mac Sauce, Bang Bang Sauce, Spicy Almond Sauce, Vegan Queso, barbecue sauce, or Vegan Chick-Fil-A Sauce.
- Paired with a side dish – Try it with classic veggies like steamed broccoli, or delicious sides like Air Fryer Potatoes, Glazed Spiced Carrots, Garlic Parmesan Fluffy Mashed Potatoes, or White Cheddar Macaroni Pasta Salad.
- Added to a wrap or sandwich – Take lunch up a notch and add this crispy breaded tofu to a wrap with Pesto Avocado Cream. You can also turn this crispy tofu into a delicious sandwich like a grilled cheese, Oven-Roasted Veggie Sandwiches, or even these delicious Tofu Parm Sandwiches.
- Serve it over a salad – Make any veggie salad heartier and more satisfying by topping your salad with crispy tofu! Try it with our Strawberry, Feta & Balsamic Greens Salad or this Thai Almond Salad.
How to Store
When stored in an airtight container, this breaded tofu will last for 3-4 days in the refrigerator.
Leftovers reheat best in the toaster oven or air fryer, but can be microwaved if you don’t mind the outside breading a little soft.
These breaded tofu dippers can also be frozen. To freeze, spread the cooked tofu out on a baking sheet in a single layer and place in the freezer until frozen solid, a few hours. Once frozen, transfer to a freezer safe container or bag and store for up to 3 months. Reheat directly from frozen on 350F (180C) for about 10 minutes, or until warmed through and crispy again.
Why do I need to press tofu?
Pressing tofu removes the excess water stored inside the block. Pressing it will prevent your baked tofu from being soggy and creates a firmer texture that is more chewy and chicken-like. If you don’t have time to press tofu, purchase super firm tofu in a vacuum seal bag. This variety of tofu is pre-pressed and is very, very firm.
Can I press tofu ahead of time and store it in the refrigerator?
Yes! Tofu can be pressed ahead and stored in the refrigerator as long as you use it within about 3-4 days. This is a great way to do a simple meal prep at the start of the week and press a few blocks of tofu at once to save time. Once pressed, I recommend wrapping the tofu block in a few paper towels or a clean tea towel to absorb any excess liquid and place it in an airtight container in the refrigerator.
Why isn’t my tofu getting crispy in the oven?
If your tofu isn’t getting crispy, it’s possible the tofu wasn’t dry enough before breading. Make sure to press the tofu, pat it dry, and then dredge it in the coating. Another possible reason your tofu isn’t crispy is you didn’t spray it with cooking oil. This can really help the breadcrumbs toast up and become golden brown and extra crispy. If you’ve done both these things and your tofu still isn’t crispy, they may be too crowded on the baking sheet or the oven isn’t hot enough.
Similar Vegan Tofu Recipes to Try Next:
- Crispy Sesame Tofu
- Protein Pesto Crispy Tofu & Roasted Veggie Sandwiches
- Hot “Honey” Dijon BBQ Crispy Tofu Bites
- Crispy Tofu Skewers
- Crispy Balsamic Tofu & Quinoa Bowls