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Tofu/Tempeh Chunks & Cutlets


Tempeh and Tofu Chunks or Cutlets are two of our favorite dishes for a quick, easy lunch or dinner that’s delicious and filling. Chunks can be tossed with rice, quinoa or potatoes; added to a vegetable sauté; or just added to a fresh garden salad or served as a side dish.

These two soy-based foods can be used interchangeably for any of these recipes, so feel free to mix, match and generally experiment until you learn how you like these the best… Once you get the basic technique down, you’ll find that these are incredibly quick and simple to make, and easy to add variations to.

Feel free to add some of your favorite seasonings – try making them in Indian, Italian or Chinese style!

These recipes have been reproduced from Incredibly Delicious: Recipes for a New Paradigm, which includes all sorts of tips to help make the transition to veganism easy and delicious.

Tofu Cutlets – Quick and Easy
yields 7 cutlets

1 lb. organic tofu, rinsed & drained
2 Tbsp. tamari or substitute
tahini dressing: 2–3 Tbsp. tahini, 2 Tbsp. water, excess marinade (see below)
3 Tbsp. nutritional yeast
2 Tbsp. bran (optional)
garlic powder, to taste
onion powder, to taste
2 tsp. salt-free herb seasoning such as Spike
favorite seasonings (optional)

1.  Cut tofu into six slices and marinate in tamari for 10 minutes.
2.  Make tahini dressing, using excess tamari from marinade. Spread on one side of each cutlet. Add half the nutritional yeast, bran and seasonings.
3.  Place each cutlet, coated side down, in an oiled frying pan on medium heat.
4.  While frying, coat the exposed cutlet sides with the remaining dressing, yeast, bran and seasonings. Cook until browned. Flip; cook 5 more minutes.

(You can skip the frying and make an equally delicious version by simply baking the cutlets on a baking sheet lined with paper. Bake in a pre-heated oven at 350º for about 25–30 minutes, but make sure you coat both sides of the cutlets.)

• Variation ~ Dip tofu slices in thick tahini dressing. Dip in breading. Pan fry.


Curried Tempeh Cutlets
yields 12

3 cakes organic tempeh, steamed
1/3 cup water
2 Tbsp. tamari or substitute
1 tsp. mild curry powder
2 Tbsp. oil
1/3 cup water
1 Tbsp. cashew butter
1 cup organic tofu, rinsed, drained, mashed
1/2 tsp. garlic powder
2–3 Tbsp. oil
3 Tbsp. nutritional yeast
1 Tbsp. tamari
1 tsp. mild curry powder

1.  With a sharp knife, cut each cooled tempeh cake in half, making two squares. Slice each square in half through the middle, like a burger bun, creating 12 pieces.
2.  Put Marinade ingredients in a bowl and whisk with a fork. Add tempeh cutlets, allowing them to marinate, for approximately an hour.
3.  In a blender, blend Coating ingredients. Pour mixture into a bowl and dip each cutlet into the coating. Get a good, thick coat on each piece and place on an oiled baking sheet. Bake at 350° until coating turns golden-brown, about 30 minutes.

Tempeh/Tofu Chunks
yields 1 skillet

3 (8 oz.) cakes organic tempeh or tofu
4 Tbsp. tamari
4 Tbsp. nutritional yeast
3 Tbsp. oil or tahini
1/4 tsp. garlic powder

If using tofu, rinse, drain and cut into bite-sized cubes, then go to step 2.
1.  Steam the tempeh, allow to cool then cut into bite-sized cubes.
2.  Marinate in a mixture of the remaining ingredients. Stir periodically.
3.  Oil a skillet and pan fry the chunks. Add a little more tamari and oil (optional) while frying.

(You can skip the frying and make an equally delicious version by simply baking the chunks on a baking sheet lined with paper. Bake in a pre-heated oven at 350º for about 25–30 minutes.)

Curried Tofu Chunks
serves 3

1 3/4 lb. firm organic tofu
1 Tbsp. tamari
1/2 Tbsp. liquid vegetable bouillon
1 tsp. curry powder
1 Tbsp. tahini (thin) or oil
2–3 Tbsp. nutritional yeast
1/4 tsp. onion powder
a dash of sea salt (optional)

1.  Rinse and drain tofu, cut into 1/2” cubes and place in a bowl. Marinate in the tamari and bouillon for several minutes. Add the remaining ingredients and stir.
2.  In a lightly oiled (or non-stick) frying pan, brown the chunks on both sides, approximately 10 minutes.

• Serve as an appetizer on a serving platter, with a toothpick through each one, or add the completed chunks to two cups of curried cooked grain of choice.

• Variation ~ Add different seasonings other than curry, such as basil, oregano, chives, or dill weed. In addition, add a small amount of wheat germ or oat bran.

Image: Silvi Burden


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