A tofu game changer. Freezer friendly and flavor packed Tofu Tacos may just change your mind about tofu if not already a fan! Easy to meal prep and have on the ready for tacos or bowls for those pressed for time weeknights. This recipe is vegetarian, vegan and easily gluten free. | This post was updated 5/20 with new pictures and recipe notes.
An Easy Way to Love Tofu
Homemade Mexican food is on the regular around here. Growing up in Texas I was practically bottle fed chili-spiced cumin-scented milk. Mom made tacos at least every week, and Mexican stack, now known as a burrito bowl, was a weeknight staple.
Having warmed up to tofu over the past 15 years, I realize there are tofu-haters and those who just haven’t gone there. But you’d hardly know these tacos are made with tofu. When preparing tofu to make it delicious, it’s all about texture and flavor, so proper preparation is key. If you’ve had tofu once and thought you were going to hurl, I encourage you to give it another chance!
Mexican Inspired Tofu Tacos are loved by vegetarians, vegans and omnivores alike! Whip up a batch and freeze for later, this recipe can be doubled so you’ll have a stash on hand for those nights when an easy dinner is a must.
Packed with spices, onions, pepper, smoky adobo and tomatoes, these tofu tacos are full of flavor. Adjust the spicy up or down depending on taste, they’re easy to whip up and a perfect accompaniment to all your favorite Mexican food sides.
How to Make Tofu Tacos
So simple to make and with the most delicious ingredients, here’s how to pull this recipe together:
- First, press your tofu (more on this in a minute), then bake it to dry it out further.
- Meanwhile, saute the onions and bell pepper.
- Next, add the seasonings and either masa flour or crushed tortilla chips to the pan, then the tomatoes, broth and baked tofu. Lid and simmer.
- Last, process the tofu mixture in a food processor and transfer the ingredients back to the pan.
Prep your toppings and sides and you’re ready for a Mexican food feast!
Masa Flour or Crushed Tortilla Chips
Masa flour gives Mexican and Southwestern recipes an authentic flavor. I use it in my chili recipes as a thickener, and Southwestern inspired recipes where I want that flavor boost. Several makers noted that they couldn’t find masa flour or didn’t have any on hand, so I tested this recipe using crushed tortilla chips and although the flavor is different, the crushed tortilla chips work!
To substitute masa flour in this recipe with tortilla chips, simply run a small handful tortilla chips (be sure to get yellow) in a food processor for about two minutes until they’re as fine as possible. They won’t turn to flour, but they’ll be small enough to use in the recipe where they’ll soften and thicken the sauce.
Freezing and Pressing Tofu
Freezing tofu improves its texture by making it chewier and creates more space to later soak up sauce or marinade. So, if not using your tofu right away, toss it in the freezer when you bring it home from the store. There’s no need to remove the packaging. Before using the tofu in a recipe, thaw it in the refrigerator overnight.
After thawing the tofu and since tofu is packaged in water, we need press the water out of it to make room for the spices and the sauce!
To press thawed tofu, use a tea towel and place it under and on top of the tofu. Place something heavy on top, like a cutting board, another plate or a not-so-full box of wine to press the water out. We don’t want it too heavy or it will squash the tofu. Move the tea towel a few times to a dryer area of the towel so it can absorb more water. Press for about 20-30 minutes, up to an hour if you have time.
While this sounds like extra work, it only requires a bit of planning and most of it is hands off time anyway. You’ll be rewarded with delightful texture and flavorful tofu.
A Few Recipe Notes
- Vegan or Vegetarian? This recipe is vegan as written, but you can add just about any toppings you like. Sour cream, or pepper jack cheese is quite nice with these.
- Pumpkin Seed Cream: one of my favorite condiments for this recipe is chili-lime pepita cream which tastes almost like a creamy cheese. Not kidding. But, you’ll need a high powered blender – I use VitaMix – to make it happen.
- Go Old School: Share the tofu filling in crunchy corn tortillas and top with chopped romaine, shredded cheddar and diced tomatoes.
- How Spicy? I include adobo sauce in this recipe for a delicious smoky flavor and, it bumps up the spicy. If you prefer a little less spicy, you can omit it or reduce the amount added. If you love spicy, take it up!
- Freezer Friendly? One of the best things about this recipe is that the tofu freezes beautifully making it perfect for meal prep. Making a double batch stretches this recipe even further.
- SO Versatile! The taco filling is delicious in burritos, enchaladas, tostadas, nachos… oh the possibilities!
Share Tofu Tacos With
- Chili Lime Pepeita Cream (Pumpkin Seed Cream)
- Mexican Black Beans
- Easy Chipotle Mexican Salsa
- Spanish Brown Rice
- Mexican Corn Salsa
Mexican-Inspired Tofu Tacos recipe uses some of the top GMO ingredients grown in the U.S. As always, I recommend organic ingredients whenever possible.
More Vegetarian Taco Recipes to Love
- Roasted Cauliflower Tinga Tacos
- Creamy Corn, Zucchini and Poblano Tacos
- Rancheros Tofu Scramble
- Sweet Potato Pinto Bean Open Face Breakfast Tacos
Mexican-Inspired Tofu Tacos with Chili-Lime Slaw
For the Tofu:
- 10 oz (283g) Firm Tofu , sprouted if you can find it, pressed and drained for at least 20 minutes (see note)*
- 1 Tbs Coconut Oil unrefined, virgin or olive oil
- 1 C (110g) Purple Onion large dice (about 1/2 a medium onion)
- 3/4 C (90g) Green Bell Pepper large dice (about 1/2 a medium pepper)
- 1 Tbs Cumin
- 1 Tbs Chili Powder
- 1/2 tsp Smokey Paprika
- 1 Tbs Masa Harina Flour or sub 2 Tbs ground tortilla chips **see note
- 3/4 tsp Fine Sea Salt
- 2 tsp Adobo Sauce from a can of chipotle chilis in adobo sauce (1 tsp for medium, 2-3 tsp for spicy!) - look for gluten free if needed
- 3/4 C (200g) Fire Roasted Tomatoes with its juice
- 1 C (220g) Vegetable Broth
For the Slaw:
- 3 C (150g) Shredded Mix of Red and Green Cabbage loosely packed
- 1 Tbs Seeded Jalapeño minced (or to taste. Take this up if you like spicy!)
- 1/2 C (20g) Cilantro rough chopped
- Juice of 1 -2 Limes to taste and depending on the size of the lime
- 1/2 tsp Fine Sea Salt
- Chili-Lime Pepita Crema
- Warm Tortillas, and Cilantro
For the Tofu:
- Preheat the oven to 350F (180C). Slice the tofu into about 1/2" - 1" (1.3 - 2.5 cm) cubes and place on a parchment or silpat lined sheet pan. Bake for 20 minutes or until slightly golden and dryer to the touch. Baking dries the tofu out.
- In a large saute pan, add the coconut oil and heat until shimmering. Add the onion and bell pepper. Saute for about five minutes on medium heat or until soft, a little charring is good! Add the cumin, chili powder, paprika, masa flour, and sea salt all at once, then add the adobo sauce. Stir for about 2 minutes until fragrant and the seasonings are incorporated around the veggies. Stir in the tomatoes, vegetable broth and tofu, then turn the heat to low and place a lid on the pan. Simmer for 10 minutes. Place mixture in a food processor and pulse 8-9 times, making sure the tofu is still somewhat chunky, but ground down. Place back in the pan, give it a little squeeze of lime and taste for salt adjustment. Put a lid on it to keep it warm (off the heat).
Make the Slaw:
- In a medium bowl, mix the red and green cabbage, jalapeño, cilantro, lime juice and sea salt. Set in the refrigerator until ready to top tacos.
- I like to warm my tortillas on a low open flame on the stove top turning with tongs a few times to lightly char the tortillas. To hold them warm, place the tortillas in foil and into a warmed oven on low heat.
- On the warm tortilla, spoon a good smear of pepita crema, guacamole or sour cream down the center of the tortilla. Spoon the tofu evenly over the top, then add the slaw and any other condiments you prefer.
- Store the leftover tofu taco filling in the fridge in a lidded container for up to three days or the freezer for up to a month. Thaw in the refrigerator overnight, then gently rewarm on the stovetop.
- Crock Pot Vegetarian Chili
- Vegetarian Tater Tot Hot Dish
- Kabocha Two Bean Chili
- Slow Cooker Vegetarian Taco Soup
- Roasted Corn Zucchini Fritters