Chicken Fried Tofu

Chicken Fried Tofu

One of my favorite vegan restaurants in the Triangle is Souly Vegan. I recently had one of their delicious plates (BBQ chick’n, cornbread, rice, and greens) and after finishing, I wanted more! The problem is, at $13 a plate it’s not so easy to do!

Instead of giving in, I decided to put together my own “soul food” dinner and whipped up some chicken fried tofu, which is something I’ve been wanted to do for quite some time. I found this recipe on Pinterest and decided to give it a go.

I was a little taken aback by what seems to be an extensive list of ingredients, but after reviewing, I realized that the majority of them were seasonings. A lot of which I already had. #WIN!

So how was it? SO GOOD! I ate this chicken fried tofu for three straight days in a row and didn’t get tired of them. The first night I overcooked them (the tofu part kinda disappeared and it was majority “crunch” from the breading), but I tried it again the next night because I could taste the potential!

This time, instead of being concerned with the perfect “golden brown color” I focused more on making sure that each side of the tofu was crispy or hardened from cooking in the grease. This worked to my advantage, as the second batch came out perfectly!

On a medium-low temperature I let the chicken fried tofu cook for probably 15-20 minutes. Slow and steady wins the race! I didn’t want to turn the heat up too high and have grease flying everywhere!

Also, it’s important to note, that these do NOT taste like chicken! Tofu is a much softer texture, so don’t cook these with chicken in mind. You’ll be disappointed.  Remember that it’s tofu and you’ll be good 🙂

On that note, I do plan to try this with a textured vegetable protein soon (much firmer texture), so stay tuned! Next time I’m going to try it without the “Brine” step… wondering if it’s necessary??

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Chicken Fried Tofu
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5 from 7 votes

Chicken Fried Tofu

Delicious crispy vegan chicken fried tofu recipe that's that perfect meat alternative!
Course Appetizer, Side Dish, Snack
Cuisine American

Ingredients

  • 2 lbs Extra firm tofu cut into 12 pieces

Brine

  • 3 tbsp Salt
  • 1/2 cup Pineapple juice
  • 2 tbsp Tamari or soy sauce
  • 10 cups Water to completely cover the tofu

Buttermilk Mixture

  • 2 tbsp Boxed egg replacer + 3/4 cups water mixed well
  • 2 cups Unsweetened non-dairy milk
  • 2 tbsp Apple cider vinegar

Breading Mixture

  • 2 cups All purpose flour
  • 2 tbsp Nutritional yeast
  • 2 1/2 tsp Black Pepper
  • 2 tsp Salt
  • 1 tsp Sugar
  • 3/4 tsp Paprika
  • 1/2 tsp Rosemary
  • 1/2 tsp Ground ginger
  • 1/2 tsp Savoury
  • 1/2 tsp Thyme
  • 1/2 tsp Sage
  • 1/2 tsp Dill
  • 1/2 tsp Marjoram
  • 1/2 tsp Onion powder
  • 1/2 tsp Coriander
  • 1 Pinch of cayenne pepper or more to taste
  • 1 Pinch of red pepper flakes or more to taste
  • Oil enough for deep frying

Instructions

  • Dice the tofu to your desired size. 
  • In a large bowl, mix together the 3 tbsp of salt, 1/2 cup of pineapple juice, 2 tbsp of soy sauce, and 1 tsp of apple cider vinegar.
    Fill the rest of the bowl with water and let sit for 2-4 hours refrigerated.
  • Gather the buttermilk mixture and mix them in a large bowl. Place the marinated tofu in the mixture and let sit while you prepare the breading mix.
    *Note: At the last minute I realized that I was all out of Almond Milk and decided to try subbing for water. Worked great!
  • Gather up all of your seasonings along with the flour and nutritional yeast. Whisk together.
    *Note- I did not have the following seasonings: savoury, sage, dill, marjoram, or coriander. Still turned out great!
  • In a pan that’s appropriate for frying, fill with enough oil to cover most of the tofu. Set the stove a bit under medium, but not too low. If you have a cooking thermometer, it should stay between 350 and 375.
    Once the oil is hot (should sizzle when splashed with water), begin frying the tofu by dipping each piece of tofu in the buttermilk mixture, then in the breading, then BACK in the buttermilk and AGAIN in the breading.
    Cook until golden brown and edges are crispy. Rotate as needed.
  • Once finished cooking, remove them from the grease and transfer to a plate covered with paper towels in order to absorb some of the grease.
    Enjoy! These are so good! You’ll love them!
    Note: These pair very well with BBQ sauce!

21 Comments

  1. Thank you, Desiree! I replicated my favorite food truck chicken fried tofu tacos with this recipe, nearly perfect! (Chicken fried tofu, mango salsa, lettuce, crema (I think there are vegan versions of it) and a white corn wrap). I think you’re right, leaving out the brining step would make the tofu less wet (so it should fry up with less splatter).

  2. Renee Holmes

    I read on another recipe (I didn’t save it, so can’t find it again!!) they froze and thawed the tofu and it changed the texture to be more fibrous. Wonder if it works?

  3. 5 stars
    When you bite into it is it white or does it have its own texture? Just curious. I’m trying it and will repost on my story. 🤗

  4. 5 stars
    Ok. Thx. Looking forward to it.

  5. 5 stars
    It took a while to make but absolutely worth it!!

  6. Hi. Cant wait to try this. Is there a substitute for the “2 tbsp Boxed egg replacer”. Maybe chickpea flour. Take care.

  7. Hey Desiree – Any tips on how to make this recipes with an air fryer??? Thanks!

    • Hey Beth! Unfortunately I haven’t been able to try it myself, but I would imagine you would need to spray each piece with a decent amount of oil before air frying to create the crispy outside texture. You might also consider trying the method used with the Buffalo Tofu Bites (https://www.icanyoucanvegan.com/buffalo-tofu-bites/) and rely on the breadcrumbs for the crunchiness. If you try the air frying method, let me know how it goes!

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  10. Beverly Moss

    Hello Do you have a. You tube video with the recipe

  11. 5 stars
    These were fantastic. Even my husband who thinks everything I cook is just okay said these were “real good”. I’m looking forward to trying it with cauliflower instead of tofu as well!

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