Asian Recipes/ Entrees / Appetisers/ Recipes/ Roundup/ Side Dish

13 Easy Tofu Recipes and Amazing Tofu Marinades

09/01/2023 (Last Updated: 06/01/2022)

Do you love silken, firm or fried tofu? Want to learn to cook more with them? These amazingly easy tofu recipes are delicious, healthy and FAST. We’ve also included our best tofu marinade ideas for even more epic flavour.

A pair of wooden chopsticks hold up a piece of silken tofu topped with bonito and spring onion.

Why We Love This

These easy tofu recipes are deliciously filling and satisfying with the added benefit of being vegan and vegetarian friendly!

Learn how to choose the best style of tofu to suit your dish. Silken tofu, fried tofu or firm tofu all have different textures and flavours that suit different styles of cooking. 

Unlike meat, there’s no need to worry about ensuring it’s fully cooked, tofu can be enjoyed raw as long as it’s been properly stored. Use it as a healthy protein alternative to chicken, beef, seafood or pork in a huge range of recipes.

Click here to jump to recipes!

A colourful sushi bowl with tofu and vegetables, next to a bowl of sauce.
Fried teriyaki tofu is amazing as part of a homemade sushi bowl.

What is Tofu? 

Tofu or bean curd (豆腐, sometimes written in English as Dòu Fu or dofu) is made from fresh soy milk that is curdled with a coagulant, then condensed and pressed into blocks. The process is actually quite similar to making cheese! 

Different coagulants will lead to different firmness and texture in the finished tofu. For example store bought tofu often uses calcium sulphate, magnesium chloride or calcium chloride as the coagulant to curdle the soy milk.

At home, you can use lemon juice or rice vinegar to make your own homemade tofu.

Tofu is said to have originated in China and has spread over thousands of years to become popular across many Asian cuisines, such as Japanese, Korean, Indonesian, Thai and Vietnamese to name a few.

Chopped pieces of firm tofu on a plate.
Firm tofu is easy to slice and soaks up lots of flavour from marinades and sauces!

3 Common Types of Tofu

While there are lots of different varieties of tofu out there depending on the region or country of origin, they generally fall into three main categories: soft or silken tofu, firm tofu and fried tofu

These tend to be readily available where we live and all are great for cooking. You might find other varieties at your local supermarket or grocery depending on where you live, such as medium firm, extra firm etc. 

  • Silken Tofu / Soft Tofu – Very smooth and quite fragile, this is one of the softest tofu types. Take care when slicing into blocks to make sure it holds its shape. It works great in dishes like miso soup and yudofu (hot simmered tofu). We also love it with a Vietnamese style sweet ginger syrup as a light and refreshing dessert. 
  • Firm Tofu – This holds its shape much more easily than silken tofu, making it perfect for stir fry recipes like dubu jorim (braised spicy tofu), teriyaki tofu or Korean army stew (so you can easily lift it out of the soup with chopsticks). 
  • Fried Tofu – This style of tofu comes pre-fried and, depending on the brand, can be lighter, puffier and spongier in texture than the other types of tofu. It soaks up flavour really well, so we love it in Indonesian gado gado salad with peanut satay sauce.

More Tofu Resources

How to Press Tofu

YouTube video

How to Make Tofu

YouTube video

How to Slice Tofu

YouTube video

Click here to jump to recipes!

Fresh plate of Indonesian gado gado salad topped with peanut satay sauce.
Fried tofu is perfect in Gado Gado salad.


Does tofu need to be refrigerated? How should I store it?

Fresh tofu (homemade or purchased from the fridge section of a supermarket) should always be stored in the fridge in its original packaging or in an airtight container, covered with fresh cold water to last another 2-3 days. Change the water daily to keep it at its freshest. 

Shelf stable tofu can usually be stored in the pantry until opened, then stored in the fridge for 3-5 days max.

Can I freeze tofu?

Yes you can! Drain it first, then slice into portions or cubes. Freeze in an airtight container and it will maintain its flavour and texture for around 2-3 months.

What does tofu taste like?

Tofu doesn’t have much flavour on its own, meaning it can easily be served with savoury and sweet dishes alike. Many recipes often marinate or season the tofu first to give it extra flavour.

What can I serve it with?

Just about anything! You can cook it in one of our simple tofu recipes below, serve it alongside a main meal as an entree, add it on top of sushi bowls, or mash it and fry it up into a tofu scramble serve with lettuce wraps.

What else can I do with tofu?

Fermented tofu (tempeh or chao)
Scrambled tofu or tofu mince – why not try in a spaghetti bolognese?
Pop tofu in a salad in small bites like you would cheese.
Fry in a saucepan or throw them in your air fryer.
Make Tofu Sesame Toasts!

Teriyaki tofu chunks in a bowl sprinkled with sesame seeds and spring onion.
Firm Tofu marinated in Teriyaki Sauce.

13 Easy Tofu Recipes for Lunch or Dinner

Hiyayakko in a white dish in a shallow pool of soy sauce.
Hiyayakko – Japanese Cold Tofu Recipe
Get ready for the easiest 5 minute meal – Hiyayakko. This Japanese cold tofu recipe is ideal for a quick and healthy lunch you can have at work or home, with loads of topping ideas to get you started.
Hiyayakko – Japanese Cold Tofu Recipe
Bowl of Japanese miso soup with pumpkin and tofu.
Quick Japanese Miso Soup
Make this quick and easy miso soup recipe in just 10 minutes! Filled with the rich umami flavours of dashi and miso paste, enjoy this classic Japanese soup as a main or side for breakfast, lunch or dinner.
Quick Japanese Miso Soup
Close up shot of sauce drizzling over the top of hot simmered tofu.
Yudofu – Japanese Boiled Tofu Recipe
Yudofu is the easiest Japanese hot pot ever. In just 5 minutes, you’ll enjoy delicious boiled tofu that’s healthy, light and full of satisfying flavour. Perfect as a tasty side dish or snack.
Yudofu – Japanese Boiled Tofu Recipe
Crispy fried teriyaki tofu chunks sprinkled with sesame seeds.
Super Quick Teriyaki Tofu
Whip up this easy teriyaki tofu recipe as a super fast weeknight dinner or delicious snack. It’s full of flavour and ready in just 5 minutes! Try these delicious teriyaki tofu bites on your next sushi bowl or as a filling for hand rolled sushi.
Super Quick Teriyaki Tofu
Close up shot of sushi bowl with teriyaki tofu and vegetables.
Quick Teriyaki Tofu Sushi Bowls
Sushi bowls are the ultimate meal after a busy day – healthy, flavour-packed and FAST to bring together. Try them with teriyaki tofu, teriyaki chicken, or simple tuna and mayo, and use pre-cooked sushi rice for even faster prep!
Quick Teriyaki Tofu Sushi Bowls
Agedashi tofu in tsuyu sauce in a white bowl.
Easy 20 Minute Agedashi Tofu (Air Fryer Recipe)
For a delicious appetiser that’s crispy on the outside and fluffy on the inside, look no further than Agedashi Tofu! This simple air fryer version of the traditional Japanese deep fried tofu recipe is paired with a tsuyu sauce of dashi, mirin and soy sauce.
Easy 20 Minute Agedashi Tofu (Air Fryer Recipe)
Pieces of tofu cooked Korean style, known as dubu jorim.
Dubu Jorim – Korean Braised Tofu
Everyone will love this sweet, savoury and spicy Korean braised tofu! Dubu jorim is vegan and vegetarian friendly AND ready in less than 20 minutes! Serve it as a side dish or all on its own for a quick and healthy meal. 
Dubu Jorim – Korean Braised Tofu
A close up image of Japanese mapo tofu udon noodles.
Japanese Mapo Tofu Udon Noodles
These spicy Japanese Mapo Tofu Udon Noodles are totally delicious, packed with flavour and ready in 10 minutes! A lighter take on the traditional Chinese version, it's a super satisfying dish perfect for lunch or dinner.
Japanese Mapo Tofu Udon Noodles
Pork, udon and vegetables all cut up and ready to eat in a shabu shabu hot pot.
Quick Shabu Shabu Recipe
You're just a few tasty ingredients away from this simmering Japanese hot pot. Think thinly sliced pork, udon, tofu, vegetables and delicious homemade dipping sauces. Ready to get cooking? Let's learn how to make this 10 minute Shabu Shabu recipe at home.
Quick Shabu Shabu Recipe
Japanese tofu patties in a white bowl with dipping sauce.
Japanese Fried Tofu Patties – Ganmodoki
Crispy fried, golden brown and delicious, Ganmodoki are a great make-ahead entree or satisfying main. These Japanese tofu patties are naturally vegan and vegetarian friendly, serve them with your favourite dipping sauces for a quick, easy and nutritious meal!
Japanese Fried Tofu Patties – Ganmodoki
Close up shot of Korean army stew showing the various ingredients cooking in the broth.
Easy Korean Army Stew – Budae Jjigae
Spice things up with this quick and easy Korean Army Stew, on the table in less than 30 minutes! Filled with noodles, kimchi and veggies, this mouthwatering budae jjigae recipe is perfect for sharing and cooking with friends!
Easy Korean Army Stew – Budae Jjigae
Plate of Indonesian gado gado salad.
Indonesian Gado Gado Salad with Peanut Sauce
Take your taste buds on a Southeast Asian adventure with this crispy, crunchy, and oh-so-satisfying, Indonesian Gado Gado Salad with Spicy Peanut Sauce. It’s a deliciously cooling salad for a hot summer’s day, packed with healthy nutrients, protein and incredible spicy peanut flavour.
Indonesian Gado Gado Salad with Peanut Sauce
Close up shot of miso udon soup.
Miso Nikomi Udon – Miso Udon Soup
When it’s cold outside, make miso nikomi udon! This warm and comforting miso udon soup is filled with chicken, mushrooms and fried tofu to fill you up. The dashi and miso infused broth is full of umami flavour and will warm you up from the inside out.
Miso Nikomi Udon – Miso Udon Soup
A fish cake on a skewer is taken out of the oden pot.
Japanese Oden – Simmered Hot Pot Recipe
Warm up with a steaming bowl of Japanese oden! This easy nabemono (one pot) stew is so filling and tasty, featuring a simple oden broth and lots of delicious ingredient ideas from daikon to fish cakes to enjoy.
Japanese Oden – Simmered Hot Pot Recipe

Best Dipping Sauces for Crispy Fried Tofu

Check out these amazing recipe ideas next:

13 Easy Tofu Recipes and Amazing Tofu Marinades

Browse all our most popular Japanese recipes

Japanese mochi, matcha green tea ice-cream. okonomiyaki, gyoza and chicken katsu dishes, with the words "Click here for Japanese recipes" overlayed.


  • Reply
    Lucretia Borgia
    17/08/2022 at 8:39 am

    Just love Tofu and make my own now and again!
    I’ve used Calcium Sulfate (available from home-brew suppliers) as the coagulant but lemon juice is easier and works just as well.
    My inexpensive wooden tofu press was boght online from China.
    Making Paneer exactly the same way is also fun, curdling milk instead of soybeans!

    • Reply
      19/08/2022 at 3:33 pm

      Oh that’s cool to know that the lemon juice is easier than the calcium sulfate! We haven’t given homemade tofu a go yet, only soy milk. What brand was the tofu press if you don’t mind sharing? Also, great work with the paneer too! 😀

    Leave a Reply

    This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.