Vietnamese cuisine is one of my favorites because it’s full of complex flavors and textures. As a chef specializing in Asian cuisine, I always look for new ways to present traditional Vietnamese dishes. Today, I’m excited to share with you a simple tofu with peanut butter recipe that will surely elevate your taste buds.
This Vietnamese-inspired recipe is perfect for anyone looking for a quick and easy-to-make meal that’s vegan, healthy, and packed with protein. Whether you’re a meat-eater or a vegan, this recipe ticks off all the boxes for a delicious and satisfying meal that can be served at any time of the day.
The silky smooth texture of the firm tofu combined with the richness of peanut butter makes this dish irresistible. This recipe is versatile and can be used as a dipping sauce or used as an ingredient in other dishes such as spring rolls, satay, summer rolls, tofu lettuce wraps or even Vietnamese noodle salad.
With just a handful of staple ingredients such as peanut butter, soy sauce, garlic clove, and firm tofu, you can create a flavorful dish in no time. So, follow me to the kitchen and let’s whip up some Vietnamese magic together!
Why You’ll Love This Recipe
Picture this, you’re in the mood for a Vietnamese-inspired meal but don’t feel like putting in a lot of effort. Well, look no further because this simple tofu with peanut butter recipe is perfect for you! Trust me; you’ll love it.
Firstly, this recipe is incredibly easy to make, taking less than 30 minutes to prepare and cook. With just a few ingredients and straightforward steps, even those who aren’t kitchen-savvy will be able to whip up something delicious.
Secondly, the dish offers a unique flavor profile that your taste buds will absolutely adore! The creamy peanut butter paired with savory soy sauce and tangy rice vinegar creates an explosion of flavors in your mouth. What’s more? You get to enjoy crispy tofu coated in a tasty peanut sauce that enhances its natural flavors and makes it more enjoyable.
Lastly, this recipe offers versatility that allows you to customize it according to your preferences. You can easily substitute the firm tofu with extra firm or fried tofu if you want it crispier or use vegetables instead. Plus, you can pair it with a range of dishes like rice paper rolls, satay, vegan rice noodles salad, summer rolls, and so much more.
In short, this recipe is an excellent option for anyone looking for quick, easy-to-make yet filling meals on busy days that don’t sacrifice flavor. So what are you waiting for? Grab the ingredients and give this recipe a try! Trust me; your taste buds will thank you.
- 1 package (14-16 ounces) firm tofu or extra firm tofu
- 3 tbsp soy sauce
- 1 tablespoon sesame oil
- 1 tablespoon rice vinegar
- 1 tablespoon brown sugar
- 2 tablespoons creamy peanut butter
- 1/2 cup water
- 2 cloves garlic, grated
- 1 teaspoon grated ginger
- Juice of 1 lime (about 1 tablespoon)
Other recipe ingredients:
- Vegetable oil
- 4 rice paper rolls
- Optional toppings to serve it with: lime wedges, sliced cucumber, cilantro leaves, and chopped peanuts
In this simple Vietnamese inspired recipe, we will be using tofu as the main ingredient to create a satisfying and healthy protein-packed dish. Look for firm or extra firm tofu at your local grocery store. These types of tofu hold their shape well during the cooking process which makes them a great choice for this recipe. Additionally, you will need sesame oil, soy sauce, rice vinegar, brown sugar, peanut butter creamy or crunchy according to your preference, water, garlic cloves grated, grated ginger and the juice of one lime. These ingredients create a flavorful sauce with spicy and nutty undertones. For serving variations use optional toppings such as fresh lime wedges or sliced cucumbers to complement the flavors of your delicious Vietnamese-inspired tofu dish.
The Recipe How-To
To start, gather the ingredients for this simple tofu with peanut butter recipe: 1 block of firm tofu, 2 tbsp sesame oil, 3 cloves garlic grated or minced, 1 teaspoon grated ginger, 4 tbsp soy sauce (use gluten-free if you need), 2 tbsp rice vinegar, 1 tbsp brown sugar, and a peanut butter sauce mixture made from combining 1/2 cup peanut butter and 1/4 cup water.
Heat the sesame oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the tofu and fry until crispy and golden brown on all sides.
While waiting for the tofu to cook, make your quick and easy peanut sauce by mixing all ingredients in a small or medium-sized bowl — soy sauce, rice vinegar, brown sugar, grated garlic and grated ginger. Set aside half of it for later use.
In a small saucepan over low heat, warm the peanut butter sauce mixture. Stir occasionally until heated through and smooth.
Add remaining peanut sauce to the fried tofu in the skillet. Stir everything together until coated well.
Transfer the tofu to serving dishes and drizzle the peanut butter sauce on top.
Garnish with some sliced green onions or cilantro.
Enjoy your simple yet delicious tofu with peanut butter recipe!
Substitutions and Variations
As a chef, I often experiment with ingredient substitutions to add more variety and freshness to my recipes. Here are some ideas for substitutions and variations you can try with this simple Tofu Peanut Butter Vietnamese recipe.
– Tofu: You can use different types of tofu to suit your taste and preference. Firm or extra-firm tofu is the best option for this recipe as it won’t fall apart while cooking. If you prefer a crispy texture, you can lightly fry the tofu cubes or bake them in the oven until golden brown.
– Peanut butter: If you don’t have peanut butter, almond or cashew butter can be used instead. You can also make your own homemade nut butter with roasted nuts and a high-powered blender or food processor.
– Soy sauce: Tamari is a good substitute for soy sauce as it’s gluten-free and has a milder taste. Coconut aminos is another alternative if you’re looking for a soy-free option.
– Vegetables: This recipe pairs well with fresh vegetables like cucumber, carrot, bell pepper, and lettuce. You can also add other veggies like bean sprouts, shredded cabbage, or bok choy to create a more colorful and nutritious bowl.
– Peanut sauce: The peanut sauce can be adjusted to your preference by adding more or less water or soy sauce. For a spicy kick, you can mix in some chili flakes or sriracha sauce. You can also use the peanut sauce as a dipping sauce for spring rolls or satay skewers.
– Serving options: This dish is versatile and can be served in different ways. Try making a vegan rice paper roll by wrapping the tofu cubes and veggies in soft rice paper sheets. Alternatively, you can serve the Tofu Peanut Butter Vietnamese with steamed rice or noodles for a hearty meal.
Remember that cooking should be fun and creative, so feel free to experiment with new ingredients and flavor combinations. By making small changes to this recipe, you can take it from a simple tofu bowl to a Vietnamese-inspired feast.
Serving and Pairing
Once you’ve prepared your simple tofu with peanut butter dish, there are numerous ways to serve and pair it. With its nutty and tangy flavor, tofu peanut sauce makes a perfect accompaniment to many Vietnamese dishes exuding tanginess and freshness, which are balancing flavors to the rich taste of tofu in peanut sauce.
One way to serve it is by wrapping the tofu in rice paper or lettuce leaves, filling with fresh or pickled vegetables such as carrots or cucumbers, herbs like basil or cilantro, and serving it as a traditional Vietnamese spring roll. Alternatively, you can also toss crispy tofu cubes in the peanut sauce and sprinkle them on top of a Vietnamese noodle salad or mix it with vermicelli noodles.
For those who love spicy dishes, pairing with a spicy peanut dipping sauce will provide an extra kick that amplifies this appetizer into a whole new level. If you prefer a more savory approach, try using crunchy fried tofu paired with vegetables like bok choy or snap peas.
Simple tofu with peanut butter is a versatile dish that can be enjoyed as an appetizer or as part of a main meal. It’s great for vegans too! The dish pairs well with other Vietnamese-inspired dishes such as sate chicken skewers, summer rolls and peanut noodles. Experiment to find other combinations that work best for you; let your imagination run wild!
Make-Ahead, Storing and Reheating
Now that you’ve made this delicious Vietnamese-inspired tofu peanut sauce recipe, you may wonder if it can be prepped ahead of time or reheated. Fear not! This dish is easy to make-ahead, stores well, and reheats beautifully.
To make-ahead, cook the tofu peanut sauce according to the recipe instructions and let it cool before storing it in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3-4 days. You can also prep the tofu and vegetables ahead of time and store them separately in airtight containers in the refrigerator until you’re ready to serve.
To reheat, simply transfer the desired amount of the tofu peanut sauce into a small saucepan, add a splash of water (about 1-2 tablespoons per cup of sauce), and warm over medium-low heat, stirring occasionally until heated through. You can also reheat the sauce in the microwave or using a double boiler setup.
If you want to reheat the crispy tofu, I recommend doing so in a toaster oven or conventional oven at 350 degrees F until warm, about 5-7 minutes.
When it comes time to assemble your tofu spring rolls or add the tofu peanut sauce to your rice bowls, you can use the cold tofu straight from the refrigerator as it does not require reheating. The vegetables can also be used cold or lightly sauteed for added warmth.
With these simple tips, you can enjoy this flavorful dish as leftovers without sacrificing quality or convenience.
Tips for Perfect Results
To make sure you make the best out of this Simple Tofu with Peanut Butter Vietnamese recipe, here are some tips to make it perfect every time.
First is to use firm or extra-firm tofu. Press the tofu well before using it in the recipe to remove any excess water. This will also help the tofu hold its shape when cooking.
In addition, using high-quality peanut butter is essential in making a rich and flavorful sauce. You can use creamy or chunky peanut butter depending on your preference, but try to stick with natural peanut butter without added sugar for a healthier option.
Cooking the tofu properly is also important. Make sure it is cooked until crispy on both sides before adding the peanut sauce. This will give an extra texture and crunch to your dish. You can do this by pan-frying the tofu in vegetable oil or baking it in the oven.
For additional flavor, you can add some grated ginger or minced garlic to your peanut sauce. It will give a nice kick and add depth of flavor without overpowering the dish.
If you want some spice, add more chili flakes or sriracha sauce to your peanut sauce. Adjust it according to your preference or go mild if you’re not into spicy foods.
Finally, don’t be afraid to experiment with different vegetables or herbs that you like. Some good options are bok choy, bell peppers, carrots, cilantro, and basil. The possibilities are endless with this recipe!
By keeping these tips in mind, you’ll be able to create a deliciously flavorful and texturally satisfying Simple Tofu with Peanut Butter Vietnamese dish that’s guaranteed to impress anyone who tastes it.
In conclusion, I urge you to give this Simple Tofu with Peanut Butter recipe a try. It is easy to make and requires only a few ingredients, yet it delivers an explosion of flavor that will make your taste buds dance with joy. Whether you are a vegan looking for a protein powerhouse or simply someone who enjoys Vietnamese cuisine, this recipe is sure to satisfy.
With variations that allow for customization and serving options that make it versatile, this recipe will become a reliable go-to for quick weeknight dinners or entertaining guests. Plus, with tips for perfect results and make-ahead options, it’s perfect for meal prepping.
So next time you’re craving something satisfying and delicious, give this Simple Tofu with Peanut Butter recipe a try. You won’t be disappointed!
Simple Tofu With Peanut Butter (Vietnamese) Recipe
- 5 ounces firm tofu, sliced into bite-size pieces
- 1 tablespoon peanut butter (creamy or crunch, you choose)
- 1 tablespoon soy sauce
- Place slice tofu, soy sauce and peanut butter in a small sauce pan.
- Add enough water to cover the tofu nearly fully.
- Let simmer over low heat until the sauce thickens.
- Serve hot with steamed rice.