Crispy vegan tofu tacos recipe! Easy, pan-fried tofu tacos topped with a creamy, spicy, cilantro sauce.
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Oh, hey Rhubarbarians! Today, we are pan frying up some tofu and stuffing it into tortillas with an awesome spicy sauce!
Yep, we're doing this.
But these vegan tofu tacos are by far our favorite of the bunch. Mega crispy, pan-fried and Mexican spiced tofu, all the taco toppings we love, AND a killer, creamy cilantro sauce. Oh yes.
Have you tried homemade corn tortillas?
Crispy pan-fried tofu
The tofu in these tacos are the STAR of the show. You'll want to eat each little cube with your fingers, they're that good.
- Always buy extra firm tofu. Extra firm tofu will hold it's shape and soak up a lot of flavor after it is pressed.
- Press your tofu to get the excess moisture out. This takes a bit of planning, as you will need to press it for at least 30 minutes before getting started on cooking. (this time is included in the total time for this recipe)
- Cut it into small cubes. The smaller the cube, the more crispy outer coating you will get.
- Marinate the tofu after it is pressed. The tofu will soak up flavors very well after it is pressed. Let the tofu absorb flavor before you begin cooking.
- Cook the tofu over high to medium-high heat. This will blacken the tofu a bit, making it as crispy as it can get.
Need another dinner idea? Give these vegetarian sour cream enchiladas a try!
Spicy cilantro sauce
These vegan tacos just aren't as good without some creamy, spicy sauce! It's made by blending tofu, lime juice, jalapeno, cilantro, and water.
Tip: If you're not into spicy, leave out the jalapeno and toss in some mild green chiles instead. OR just leave out the chiles!
- Can I make this not spicy? The tofu itself is not spicy, but the sauce is everything a spicy food lover dreams of. To tone down the spice, remove the seeds from the jalapeno or try mild green chiles. For NO heat level, just leave the jalapeno out of the sauce!
- Can I use a food processor for the sauce? We tested the sauce in a food processor and it didn't puree the tofu enough to be the creamy sauce of your dreams. A high speed blender or smoothie maker is best.
- What are pepitas? They are pumpkin seeds! The pepitas are our favorite topping. You definitely don't want to skip them! To put these tacos over the edge, toast the pepitas before topping your taco. YUM!
- Corn or flour tortillas? We like corn tortillas, but any tortilla will work! It's best to heat up your tortillas before serving. We like to char ours just a bit on our stove top.
Crispy vegan tofu tacos with spicy cilantro sauce
- 32 oz extra firm tofu
- 1 tablespoon chile powder
- ½ teaspoon smoked paprika
- ½ tablespoon ancho chile powder
- ½ teaspoon dried oregano
- 4 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil, divided
- 3 tablespoon freshly squeezed lime juice
- 1 half fresh jalapeno. sliced lengthwise.*
- 1 small handful fresh cilantro, leaves and stems
- ⅓ cup water
- salt and pepper
- 8 small tortillas
- For serving: lime wedges, fresh cabbage, pepitas, sliced radish, cilantro, avocado, green onion
- Set aside 8oz of the tofu. This will probably be half of one of your 16oz blocks. Wrap the remaining 24oz in a paper towel and set on a plate. Put something heavy like a cast iron skillet on top to press the tofu. Let sit for 30 minutes. When pressed, pat dry and cut the tofu into ½" cubes.
- In a medium mixing bowl, combine the chile powder, paprika, ancho, oregano, and 2 tablespoon of the olive oil. Add the tofu and toss to evenly coat. Let sit 10 minutes.
- Meanwhile, make your sauce. In a high speed blender or smoothie maker, combine the remaining tofu, lime juice, jalapeno, cilantro, and water.** Blend until fully pureed and season with salt and pepper to taste.
- Heat the remaining 2 tablespoon olive oil in a skillet over medium high heat. Add the tofu and saute for about 15 minutes, stirring every couple of minutes. You want to get some nice crispness on the tofu, but want to keep stirring to cook it evenly. When the tofu is nice and crispy, remove from heat and stir in ¾ teaspoon sea salt, or salt to taste.
- Divide the tofu among 8 small tortillas and top with as much sauce as you'd like. Top with your favorite toppings like cabbage, pepitas, sliced radish, cilantro, avocado, and green onion. Squeeze some lime juice onto your taco and enjoy!
If you make this recipe, please let me know on social media or in the comments below! Leave a star rating in your comment or tag me on Instagram with #Rhubarbarians.
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