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Replace Meat with Tofu: 5 of Your Favorite Dishes Go Vegan - Rivertea Blog

Replace Meat with Tofu: 5 of Your Favorite Dishes Go Vegan

| On 16, Jun 2013


Have you decided to give up meat or just want a break from it for a while? We’re here to help you make this transition as easy as possible because, thanks to a special ingredient, you can still have your favorite dishes and feel like nothing has changed.

The chameleon ingredient we’re talking about is tofu.  Tofu is made from soybeans, water and a coagulant, or curdling agent. It is high in protein and calcium and well known for its ability to absorb new flavors through spices and marinades.


Here are 5 recipes of your favorite meat recipes made with tofu:


1. Tofu Steak



  • 1 small block (250g) plain firm tofu
  • 50ml soy sauce
  • 1 teaspoon sesame oil
  • 1/2 chilli, seeded and finely chopped (or use chilli paste)
  • 2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
  • 1cm fresh ginger, grated or finely chopped



Slice the tofu into even sized slices across the block-you should get 6. Drain the slices on paper towels for 5-10 minutes.

Meanwhile, mix all the rest of the ingredients together and marinate the tofu slices in this for 30 minutes – or however long you have.

Cook on the barbecue plate on a medium heat, spooning the marinade over the tofu steaks when you turn them, for 3-5 minutes each side.


2. TLT (Tofu, Lettuce & Tomato Sandwich)tlt


  • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
  • 1 tablespoon reduced-sodium soy sauce
  • 1 teaspoon adobo sauce from canned chipotle peppers, (see Ingredient note), divided
  • 14 ounces water-packed extra-firm tofu, drained and rinsed
  • 4 tablespoons reduced-fat mayonnaise
  • 8 slices crusty whole-wheat bread, toasted
  • 4 pieces green-leaf lettuce
  • 2 medium tomatoes, sliced



Preheat oven to 475°F. Coat a baking sheet with cooking spray.

Combine mustard, soy sauce and 1/2 teaspoon adobo sauce in a small bowl. Slice tofu crosswise into eight 1/2-inch-thick pieces. Pat dry with a paper towel and place on the prepared baking sheet. Using a spoon, spread half the mustard mixture on one side of the tofu. Turn the slices over and spread the remaining mixture on the other side.

Bake the tofu for 20 minutes.

Combine mayonnaise with the remaining 1/2 teaspoon adobo sauce in a small bowl. Spread the mixture on toasted bread. Divide the tofu, lettuce and tomato among 4 slices of toast and top with the remaining toast to make 4 sandwiches. Cut in half to serve.


3 Tofu Lasagna



  • Natural cooking spray oil
  • 1 (14 ounce) package firm tofu, drained
  • 2 tablespoons nutritional yeast
  • 1 teaspoon garlic granules
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 2 (25 ounce) jars vegan marinara sauce
  • 3 bell peppers, cored, seeded and chopped
  • 12 no-boil dried lasagna noodles



Wrap tofu in 3 or 4 layers of paper towels and gently press out as much water as possible, changing the paper towels once or twice as needed. Transfer tofu to a large bowl and add yeast, garlic, salt and pepper and mash with a fork. Set tofu mixture aside. Put marinara sauce into a medium pot and bring to a simmer. Add peppers and continue simmering until tender, about 10 minutes. Spoon enough marinara sauce into prepared dish to cover the bottom and then arrange 4 noodles on top.

Spread one-third of the tofu mixture over the noodles and then spoon more sauce over the tofu. Repeat the process 2 more times, ending with sauce. Cover with foil and bake until noodles are tender, 45 to 60 minutes. Set aside to let rest for 10 minutes and then serve.


4. Vegan Quiche



  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 small onion, chopped
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • ½ bag fresh spinach (or ½ package of frozen spinach, thawed and drained)
  • ½ cup cashews, soaked in water for an hour and drained
  • ½ block firm tofu
  • ¼ cup nutritional yeast
  • 4 tbsp soy milk
  • ½ tsp tumeric
  • salt & pepper
  • 1 sheet defrosted puff pastry dough, or 1 vegan pie crust
  • ¼ tsp paprika
  • 1-2 tomatoes, sliced (optional)



Preheat oven to 375F/190C. Heat olive oil over medium heat, and saute onions and garlic until translucent, about 2 minutes. Add spinach and cook until wilted. Season with salt and pepper.

Grind the cashews in food processor until very fine. Add tofu, nutritional yeast, soymilk and tumeric. Blend until you have a creamy, even consistency (add more soymilk if needed). In a mixing bowl, combine the onion mixture with the tofu mixture. Season with salt & pepper.

If using puff pastry dough, lay it in a pie plate or other oven-safe dish, creating a border around the edges. Pour the tofu mixture into the dish and spread it evenly. Sprinkle with paprika and top with tomato slices. Bake in oven for 30 minutes, or until mixture is set and crust has browned.


5. Tofu Burger



  • 2 eggs
  • 2 (16 ounce) packages firm tofu
  • 2 stalks celery, minced
  • 1 small onion, minced
  • 1 tablespoon chili powder
  • 1 tablespoon ground cumin
  • 1 tablespoon red curry paste
  • 1 tablespoon minced garlic
  • 2 cups rolled oats 1 tablespoon vegetable oil



Beat the eggs in a mixing bowl until smooth. Mix in the tofu, celery, onion, chili powder, cumin, curry paste, garlic, and oats with your hands until the tofu has broken into fine pieces, and the mixture is evenly blended. Form into 8 patties.

Heat the vegetable oil in a large, nonstick skillet over medium heat. Cook the patties until crispy and golden brown on each side, about 5 minutes per side.


Becoming a vegetarian must seem a lot easier now. You can replace meat in almost any recipe with a little imagination and finding the right food and tofu is one of the best choices. Bon apetit!



We’ll soon launch our new incredibly tasty tea blends. Join us, there are lots of special gifts waiting for you.


  1. Bonnie

    I was vegan and at age 57, developed food allergies to nightshade family foods including beans. Out went tofu, all beans, potatoes, eggplant,bell peppers, eggplant, tomatoes and a list of other foods.
    What to do?
    Vegans sometimes don’t realize that our first choice in what we eat is survival, what’s available and affordable and what won’t make us sick. Then, we can choose to be vegan or ovo,lacto etc.
    Now I include dairy and some fish/ chicken in my diet.

    My point, when vegans encounter non-vegans…don’t judge without knowing Why! (You shouldn’t judge anyway)