If you’re trying out more plant-based foods, tofu is one I recommend you put on your shopping list regularly. I’m going to explain why and then I’ll offer you three tasty ways to liven up tofu so your meals can be nutritious as well as delicious! When you have tofu as part of your meal, it would form the protein section of your VVPC plate.
What’s so good about tofu?
- Tofu contains all nine essential amino acids (the building blocks of protein) which means that it’s a high quality protein.
- The protein is of a high digestibility too. Protein from other plant foods like beans and lentils tends to be of a lower digestibility. (That’s not to say beans and lentils are not great foods!).
- You only need to eat 20grams of stir-fried tofu to give you 5grams of protein. This is a tiny portion, so it’s better if you have about 80grams of tofu in a meal.
- Tofu is a significant source of calcium, which (together with vitamin D) contributes to the normal function of the digestive enzymes in your gut.
- Tofu naturally contains zinc, choline and selenium which are essential micronutrients. (More on this in my latest book Vegan Savvy).
3 simple ways to make tofu tasty
Some people struggle with tofu as they find it tasteless. Check out my simple ideas to bring tofu to life:
- CREAMY PASTA SAUCE: Sauté garlic and onion in a little olive oil. Blitz silken tofu with the cooked garlic and onion, lemon juice, vegan stock and B12-enriched nutritional yeast. Cook to a creamy consistency, adding some milk or plant-based drink if you prefer a thinner sauce. Flavour with fresh thyme, oregano and seasoning and smother over your favourite wholegrain pasta.
- TANDOORI TOFU: Marinate firm tofu chunks in a mix of tandoori powder or paste, tomato purée and a little regular yogurt or dairy-free yogurt alternative. Grill until charred and top with coriander leaves. Delicious stuffed into wholewheat pitta bread with shredded crispy lettuce.
- FAJITA FILLER: Lightly toss firm tofu strips in fajita seasoning and grill or shallow-fry until cooked. Lay onto warmed tortilla wraps with stir-fried onion, thinly sliced peppers and guacamole. Roll into wraps and serve with tomato salsa.