Air Fryer Sesame Tofu

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If you are looking for an easy, delicious tofu recipe you are in the right place. This air fryer sesame tofu is crispy on the outside and covered in a sweet, flavorful sesame sauce. This recipe pairs great with some rice and a vegetable side dish. 

sesame tofu

Ingredients for Air Fryer Sesame Tofu

Before you make this recipe, make sure you have the following ingredients to make the tofu and the sesame sauce:

  • Extra firm tofu: you can also use firm tofu, just make sure to press it before using it in this recipe.
  • Cornstarch: this will act as the crispy outer coat of the tofu and a thickener in the sesame sauce.
  • Soy sauce: I use low sodium but regular soy sauce works fine and will probably lead to a more flavorful sauce if we’re being honest.
  • Minced garlic: the jarred stuff is fine, but extra points if you chop up your own garlic.
  • Honey: maple syrup or sugar can be used as a substitute in this recipe.
  • Rice vinegar: in a pinch you can use white vinegar, just add half the amount.
  • Sesame oil: this is what gives the tofu that sesame flavor in the sauce.
  • Salt and pepper: to taste
  • Sesame seeds: to garnish
  • Green onion: to garnish, optional but recommended

How to make Air Fryer Sesame Tofu

To start, press your tofu for 30 minutes to an hour if using firm. Once pressed, cut into one inch cubes. Use a paper towel to press any leftover liquid out of the tofu. Tofu cubes should be dry on the outside.

Transfer the tofu to the bowl and toss with cornstarch, salt and pepper until evenly coated. Spray with a light layer of cooking spray and add to the air fryer. Cook at 400 degrees Fahrenheit for 12 minutes. 

While tofu is cooking, in a small bowl combine soy sauce, minced garlic, honey, rice vinegar and sesame oil. In a very small bowl, combine cornstarch and water. Whisk until well combined, then add to the rest of the sauce.

Transfer the sauce to a small saucepan or skillet over medium heat. Stir intermittently until the sauce is thick and bubbling. Add tofu and toss in the sauce. Top with sesame seeds and chopped green onions. Serve with rice and vegetables.

sesame tofu

Is tofu healthy for you?

Yes! While a rather controversial food, tofu has been consumed for ages in places like Asia and has been shown to have a beneficial or neutral effect on health for most. Soy foods like tofu have been shown to reduce risk of certain cancers, type II diabetes and cardiovascular disease.

One big concern about soy foods is that they contain phytoestrogens. Many believe that these phytoestrogens increase estrogen levels in the body, but this actually isn’t accurate. Research has shown that consumption of soy at any level does not affect estrogen levels. 

There is also research to suggest soy can be beneficial for menopausal symptoms such as hot flashes. So if you are going through that time of your life and will soon, it may be a good idea to add some tofu into your diet. 

How to store the leftovers

Ideally, keep the sauce and the crispy tofu separate until you are ready to eat. This is the best way to store your leftovers because when you are ready to eat, you can reheat the crispy tofu in the air fryer or oven and heat up your sauce in the microwave. This will help ensure your tofu doesn’t get soft and mushy. Store both the sauce and the tofu in an airtight container.

But, if you don’t feel like separating the two, that is completely fine. Simply store the tofu with the sauce in an airtight container and reheat in the microwave or air fryer once you are ready to eat. It will still taste great I promise you. 

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sesame tofu

Air Fryer Sesame Tofu

This sesame tofu is crispy on the outside with a sweet, flavorful sauce.
Prep Time 10 mins
Cook Time 18 mins
Total Time 28 mins
Course Main Course
Servings 2 servings

Ingredients
  

Crispy Tofu

  • 1 block extra firm tofu
  • 1 tbsp cornstarch
  • salt and pepper to taste

Sesame Sauce

  • 1/4 cup soy sauce
  • 2 tsp garlic minced
  • 2 tbsp honey
  • 1 tbsp rice vinegar
  • 1 tbsp sesame oil
  • 1 tbsp cornstarch
  • 2 tbsp water
  • sesame seeds to garnish
  • green onions to garnish

Instructions
 

  • To start, press your tofu for 30 minutes to an hour if using firm. Once pressed, cut into one inch cubes. Use a paper towel to press any leftover liquid out of the tofu. Tofu cubes should be dry on the outside.
  • To start, press your tofu for 30 minutes to an hour if using firm. Once pressed, cut into one inch cubes. Use a paper towel to press any leftover liquid out of the tofu. Tofu cubes should be dry on the outside.
  • While tofu is cooking, in a small bowl combine soy sauce, minced garlic, honey, rice vinegar and sesame oil. In a very small bowl, combine cornstarch and water. Whisk until well combined, then add to the rest of the sauce.
  • Transfer the sauce to a small saucepan or skillet over medium heat. Stir intermittently until the sauce is thick and bubbling. Add tofu and toss in the sauce. Top with sesame seeds and chopped green onions. Serve with rice and vegetables.

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