Sweet and Spicy Tofu Recipe by The Cheap Gourmet

Posted on August 11, 2010


Woman to Woman Wednesday Guest Blogger - The Cheap Gourmet

Today, I’d like to share my sweet and spicy tofu recipe. When you invited me as a guest blogger for Vegan in the Kitchen, I wanted to provide your readers with a dish they would enjoy, but could also convince their carnivore friends and family to try.

After all, sweet and spicy tofu is grilled or pan fried in spicy sesame oil and who can resist that? This recipe originated at Georgetown Market; a health food store in Indianapolis where I was employed as a cook and in the beginning phases of converting to a vegetarian diet.

The first time I saw sweet and spicy tofu prepared, I was beyond hesitant to try it. I was a tofu-virgin and when I saw the wiggly white mass my “I’m not eating that!” radar went off. However, as the ingredients began to cook, the smell outweighed my aversion to trying new foods.

One bite was all it took to convert me to a tofu lover. Sweet and spicy tofu quickly became my favorite entrée and I often make it at home. When I served it to die-hard meat-and-potato lovers they liked it. Some even loved it!

At Georgetown Market, we made sweet and spicy tofu once a week and always ran out within two hours; regardless of how many pans we made. Not only is it delicious, it’s easy to make and affordable. I hope it becomes one of your favorite recipes as well!

Sweet and Spicy Tofu

Serves: 2

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 10 to 12 minutes


2 Tablespoons Hot Sesame Oil

1 pound firm Tofu

1/2 red bell pepper, seeds removed, thinly sliced

3-4 Scallions, sliced diagonally

2 Tablespoons Honey

2 Tablespoons Tamari (or Soy Sauce)

1 teaspoon fresh Lemon Juice

1 Tablespoon freshly grated ginger root


1. In large skillet, preheat hot sesame oil to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.

2. Drain and rinse tofu and lightly pat dry with paper towel. Dip knife into warm water and slice tofu into 1/2-inch slices.

3. When oil begins to smoke, reduce heat to medium and carefully place tofu slices into skillet. If desired, toss tofu with sesame oil and grill.

4. Cook 3 to 4 minutes or until tofu is light golden brown.

5. Flip tofu slices and cook 3 to 4 minutes.

6. Remove tofu and place on paper towel lined plate to absorb excess oil. Cut in half diagonally and cut in half diagonally again to create 4 triangles from each slice.

7. Sauté bell pepper and scallions in remaining sesame oil. Combine honey, tamari and lemon juice. Add to vegetables and bring to a mild boil. Reduce heat and return tofu to skillet. Toss to coat; transfer to serving dish; and serve immediately.

While this dish is great on its own, it also pairs well with Jasmine and Basmati rice. Please accept my gift of vegetarian and vegan recipes offered “Fruit and Veggie Day: Recipes to Celebrate Your Body; Simple Solutions for Eating Well” available in PDF format at www.TheCheapGourmet.com

Kathy at The Cheap Gourmet is a Featured Food and Wine contributor and Associated Content Community Guide.   The Cheap Gourmet provides informative articles and budget-friendly recipes.