This protein rich Kung Pao Tofu is a comforting Chinese dish. Its easy, quick and requires simple ingredients. It’s a great work week dinner idea.
We have been recently indulging quite a bit on this cuisine. Therefore, I decided to try it out at home. I was a bit surprised that the outcome of my experiment was better than a take out. Not to forget a lot healthier as well.
This kung Pao recipe originated in China which has been pretty well adapted by the Americans with the inclusion of various types of protein so as to make it palatable to every taste.
Ingredients for Kung Pao Tofu
For the sauce
Dry red chilies
Extra firm tofu
Red bell pepper
Freshly ground black pepper (optional)
How to make Kung Pao Tofu
Firstly, I whisked the sauce ingredients in a bowl and kept it aside.
Secondly, I heated oil in a nonstick pan and added broken red chilies. Immediately, I tossed in tofu pieces and let it cook until golden in color and slightly crispy.
Next, I added scallion and red bell pepper to it and sauteed.
Thereafter, I added peanuts and mixed. I cooked it covered for 2-3 minutes or until peanuts were cooked.
Afterwards, I folded in the sauce and cooked for only 2 minutes at low-medium flame.
Lastly, I garnished it with green onions and served it with brown rice.
My family simply loved this dish and demanded for more. So therefore, its quite regular in my home now.
- Most importantly, press tofu for at least 20 minutes so that while sauteing it acquires firmness.
- To save on time, you may whisk the sauce while pressing tofu. Alongside you may prepare the veggies and then later start heating the oil.
- Please check the ingredients while buying hoisin sauce to make sure that its vegan and suits your palate.
Frequently asked question:
How long does this last?
This recipe taste best when served immediately. However, the leftover may be refrigerated to be used the next day.
Can I use salted peanuts?
Yes, of course. I use raw peanuts to reduce the sodium content of the recipe.
How does this kung pao tofu taste like?
Its mildly sweet and spicy along with being slightly tangy in taste. The sauce plays an important role. I made it without any added sugar and salt. I have tried making it as healthy and nutritious as possible so we can enjoy this dish guilt free.
Can I add more vegetables to it?
Yes, green bell pepper goes very well in this recipe. You may add some broccoli as well to make it even more wholesome.
Did you make it?
If you get a chance to make this recipe then please leave your feedback in the comments below along with the ratings. In addition, you may tag @kiipfit on Instagram because we would love to see what you cooked.
Kung Pao Tofu
For the sauce
- 2 tbsp sesame oil
- 4-5 whole dry red chilies (broken)
- 1 14 oz pack of extra firm tofu (pressed and chopped)
- 1 tbsp scallions
- 1/2 cup sliced red bell pepper
- 1/4 cup raw peanuts
- Freshly ground black pepper (optional)
- In a bowl combine all the ingredients for the sauce and whisk it nicely until well dissolved. Keep it aside.
- Heat oil in a wok/non stick pan and add dry red chilies.
- Then, toss in tofu and let it cook until golden brown in color (about 5 minutes). Gently flip all the tofu pieces and cook again until nicely golden in color (another 3-4 minutes).
- Then, add scallions and red bell pepper. Gently mix and add peanuts to it. Mix again and cook for 2-3 minutes or until peanuts are cooked well.
- Now pour in the sauce and mix. Cook covered for only 2 minutes on low-medium heat or until the first boil.
- Turn it off and garnish with black pepper and green onions.
- Serve hot with brown rice or quinoa.
- It is important to nicely press tofu before sauteing.
- For pressing tofu you may either use tofu press or simply place the tofu block on a flat surface between two paper towels and put some weight on it. Let it rest for at least 20 minutes and then drain and chop them.
- Black pepper is absolutely optional. If you like extra spice to your food then the addition of black pepper is heavenly. Or else this recipe would still have that spicy tinge of taste to it.
- I used raw peanuts with skin for this recipe so as to reduce the sodium content of this recipe. You may use salted peanuts as well.
- I have provided step wise images in the post above for your reference.