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A dish of kung pao tofu is served over rice. There is a bowl with more rice in the background.

Kung Pao Tofu

You'll love this deliciously easy vegan kung pao tofu. Serve it over brown rice, cauliflower rice, or even zucchini noodles.
Course Main Course
Cuisine Asian
Diet Vegan, Vegetarian
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Resting time 10 minutes
Total Time 40 minutes
Servings 4
Calories 282kcal



Fried Tofu

  • 15 ounces extra-firm tofu
  • 3 tablespoons cornstarch
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 2 tablespoons sesame oil

Kung Pao Sauce

  • ¼ cup tamari
  • 1 tablespoon hoisin sauce
  • 1 tablespoon rice vinegar
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • 2 inch piece fresh ginger, peeled
  • 2 tablespoons sesame oil
  • 1 tablespoon maple syrup
  • 1 cup chopped onion

Stir Fry

  • 3 small dried red chilies
  • 1 medium red bell pepper
  • 3 stalks green onion


For the Fried Tofu:

  • Remove the tofu from the package and press the tofu to remove excess liquid. 
  • Cut pressed tofu into ½-inch cubes. Pat cubes dry with paper towels. Mix together the cornstarch and salt. Add tofu and stir to make sure each piece is coated.
  • Heat oil over medium-high heat. Then reduce heat to medium and use tongs to add tofu. Cook for 5 to 6 minutes on each side until browned. Transfer to a plate lined with a paper towel.
  • To bake tofu: When the tofu is ready, preheat the oven to 400°F/200°C. Cover a baking dish with parchment paper or spray with cooking spray. Place the tofu in a single layer in the baking dish. Bake for 25 to 30 minutes, until golden brown.

For the Kung Pao Sauce:

  • Add the sauce ingredients to a food processor. Pulse in short bursts until the sauce is combined and the onions are broken down into smaller bits. There should be some texture left.

For the Stir Fry:

  • Using the same pan from frying the tofu, add the dried red peppers, bell peppers, and green onions. Cook for 2 to 3 minutes over medium heat. Add a teaspoon of the kung pao sauce if necessary.
  • Pour in the sauce and stir while cooking until it thickens, 2 to 3 minutes.
  • Stir in the tofu and serve over brown rice with steamed broccoli.


Use a tofu press like the one in the post above to press tofu. Or if you don't have a tofu press, wrap tofu in a kitchen towel and place it on a plate. Top it with something heavy and let it sit for a while to press the moisture out.
If you don't have issues with gluten, feel free to sub soy sauce for the tamari.


Calories: 282kcal | Carbohydrates: 23g | Protein: 11g | Fat: 16g | Saturated Fat: 2g | Cholesterol: 1mg | Sodium: 1241mg | Potassium: 476mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 10g | Vitamin A: 1344IU | Vitamin C: 92mg | Calcium: 70mg | Iron: 2mg