Balsamic tofu is an easy to make recipe that is perfect for dinner any night of the week!
You will not believe how crispy and flavorful this marinated tofu gets in the oven! This balsamic italian tofu is high in protein, vegan, gluten free, and very budget friendly.
Why this is the best tofu marinade recipe
- Balsamic marinated tofu is full of protein and low in fat! This recipe is a great way to get in more protein and is perfect for both meat eaters or vegans and vegetarians!
- You can easily prepare this recipe ahead of time for a quick and easy weeknight meal.
- Great for meal prep too! This easy baked tofu is perfect on salads, sandwiches, pizza or even as croutons to add to your favorite soup.
- This flavorful recipe for this simple tofu recipe is naturally vegan, gluten free, dairy free and easy to make!
- Extra firm tofu
- Balsamic vinegar
- Italian seasoning
- Black pepper
How to make balsamic tofu
Step 1: Drain the excess water from the tofu. Cut the block into 4 thin layers (making 4 large rectangular pieces) for pressing.
Step 2: Place paper towels or tea towels between the tofu layers and on the bottom and top of the tofu. Be sure to put the tofu on a rimmed baking sheet or large plate to collect excess water.
Place a heavy weight (like a few cans of tomatoes or a cast iron skillet) on top of the tofu to press out the water. Let the water press out at least 15 minutes, but ideally for about 2 hours.
Step 3: Make the balsamic marinade. While tofu is pressing, combine the marinade ingredients in a small bowl.
Step 4: Once tofu is done pressing (at least 15 minutes) remove the towels. Cut tofu into small bite size cubes, place the cubes in a shallow baking dish and cover with the marinade.
Marinate 30 minutes – 2 hours depending on how much time you have.
Step 5: Bake the tofu in a 400F oven for 30-35 minutes and add additional balsamic vinegar once the tofu is removed from the oven.
Tips for preparing crispy tofu
There are a few things you need to know about making the best marinated tofu.
- Use extra-firm tofu for marinated tofu recipes. The softer the tofu, the more water it contains.
For this recipe you want tofu with as little water as possible, so it will get extra crispy when cooking. You can find extra firm tofu in the refrigerated section of your grocery store, the package will indicate “extra firm”.
- Press out excess liquid. By pressing out excess liquid, it allows for the tofu to easily absorb the marinade. This process is very easy to do.
Simply cut the tofu into large blocks, put paper towels or tea towels between the layers and place something heavy on top to press out the liquid.
Be sure the tofu is on a baking sheet or large plate to catch the excess liquid. If you eat tofu often, you may want to invest in a tofu press!
Tip: You can skip this step buy purchasing super firm tofu that is vacuum packed, not in water.
Balsamic tofu common questions
Why should you eat tofu
- Tofu is high in protein, calcium, and iron
- It’s relatively inexpensive
- Easy to find at any grocery store!
The best way to cook crispy baked tofu
Get the best results with the least work by baking the tofu in the oven!
Simply bake the tofu in a 400F oven for 30-35 minutes! This is great if you are going to double or triple the recipe! Just be sure you have a big enough baking sheet! I love the extra large baking sheet for this!
Other uses for oven baked tofu
- Great as croutons to add protein and flavor to your favorite soup (especially tomato soup) or salad
- Add to your favorite pizza! It pairs great with arugula cashew pesto on vegan pizza!
Can you make balsamic tofu ahead of time?
Yes! You can press out the tofu and put it in the balsamic marinade. That can sit in the fridge for 1-2 days ahead of time.
You can also cook the balsamic tofu, allow it to cool, and store it in the fridge for up to 4 days. Simply reheat in a hot skillet to ensure it stays crispy.
How long does marinated tofu last in the fridge?
You can keep cooked marinated tofu in the fridge for 4-5 days.
Can you freeze this recipe?
Because of the water content of the tofu, it doesn’t freeze well.
What to serve with balsamic tofu
- Vegan garlic mashed cauliflower
- Artichoke Pesto Pasta
- Sundried tomato broccoli
- Italian Zucchini Pasta Salad
- Creamy Garlic Butternut Squash Noodles
Guided Recipe Video
- After 2 hours in the fridge, the tofu will be pressed thoroughly. Cut tofu into long match sticks then into small cubes. The tofu is now ready for the marinade.
- Add 3 tbs. balsamic, 1 tsp. Italian seasoning and 1/2 tsp. salt to a bowl with a cover.
- Add tofu cubes. Cover and shake. Marinade 30 minutes – 2 hours.
- Preheat the oven to 400F. Take tofu out of refrigerator to come to room temperature, Shake container again.
- Once oven is preheated, place parchment paper on a baking sheet. Spray with nonstick spray.
- Add tofu to the parchment paper. Bake 30-35 minutes.
- Once crispy, take out of oven and add 1-2 additional tablespoons of balsamic vinegar and a pinch of salt. Stir.
- Allow to cool at least 5 minutes before eating! Enjoy
- You can press the tofu and put it in the balsamic marinade. That can sit in the fridge for 1-2 days ahead of time.
- You can also cook the balsamic tofu, allow it to cool, and store it in the fridge for up to 4 days. Simply reheat in a hot skillet to ensure it stays crispy!
- Because of the water content, freezing the tofu is not advised.