Crispy oven baked tofu is so easy to make that even meat-eaters will love this recipe! All you need is 6 ingredients and no pressing is required.
Baked tofu is the perfect plant-based meal starter. Simply toss tofu with a bit of oil and cornstarch, then bake it in the oven. The result? Crispy, golden perfection on the outside and a soft inside.
Why this recipe works
Just six ingredients: You only need a handful of ingredients that you probably already have on hand.
No pressing required: The best part about this recipe is that the tofu doesn’t even need to be pressed. Patting the tofu firmly with a paper towel is enough to remove excess moisture.
Easy to make: This is a great recipe if you’re new to tofu. It is easy to mix up, and because its marinated in a simple marinade for 10 minutes, it has a great flavor.
- Tofu: Use extra firm or super firm tofu. This kind of tofu holds its shape best and offers better texture than silken or firm.
- Corn starch: This is what makes the tofu so crispy. Arrowroot flour can be substituted in the same amount.
- Oil: Oil plays an important role in the crispy outer layer. You can try canola, vegetable, sunflower or peanut oil (do note that peanut oil has a strong flavor). Extra virgin olive oil’s smoke point 320-374 degrees F, so it is best not to use in this recipe.
- Marinade: A simple 10-minute marinade of vegetable broth and soy sauce really brings the tofu to the next level.
- Seasonings: Try different flavors like Cajun or Italian seasoning, or keep it simple with salt and pepper.
Step by step instructions
Start by preheating the oven to 420 degrees F. Line a large sheet pan with parchment paper.
1. Slice tofu into cubes. I like to do inch sized cubes, the size of the tofu you get in a take-out dish. Tofu this size shakes up easily and is less likely to fall apart than thinly sliced tofu.
2. Marinate the tofu. Use a mixture of vegetable broth and soy sauce to make a simple marinade or try this tofu marinade. You can skip this step if you’re short on time, but I think that it’s worth marinating the tofu for just 10 minutes for the flavor it adds.
3. Drain the tofu and pat to dry. Remove excess liquid by gently patting with a paper towel.
4. Toss the tofu in oil and corn starch. Add the cut tofu to a plastic bag or container, then add the corn starch and oil. Gently shake to combine, or move the tofu around with your hands on the outside of the bag.
5. Bake for 20-25 minutes, until crispy and golden brown. Layer the tofu evenly on a parchment-paper-lined baking sheet. Bake until crispy and golden brown.
Recipe FAQ and Expert Tips
You can half, double or triple this recipe based on this “formula”:
1 block (14 ounces) of tofu + 1 tablespoon oil + 1 tablespoon corn starch
- Pat the tofu dry with a paper towel remove excess water from the tofu before tossing in corn starch. If you put wet tofu into the corn starch mixture it will get clumpy and not end up as evenly coated.
- Tear the tofu. For something different than usual, try slicing into 4 rectangles, then tearing into bite-sized chunks. This gives a “meatier” texture that is a nice spin on classic cubed tofu.
- Check out my guide to tofu for more cooking tips.
You need some kind of starch to make the tofu crispy. Arrowroot starch can be used in place of cornstarch.
No. I like to use parchment paper for easier clean up but it does not have to be used. Parchment paper is usually safe in the oven (as in it doesn’t start burning) until 420 degrees F. You can use a silicone baking mat for a waste-free baking solution.
Keeps for 3-4 days in the fridge. To keep crispy when reheating, bake in a 425 degree oven for 5 minutes, or until warmed through.
No. This recipe does not require the tofu to be pressed. Instead, pat the tofu dry with a paper towel.
- For a simple iron-rich vegan meal, pair tofu with steamed broccoli or green beans and 1 cup of rice or quinoa.
- Make baked peanut tofu, General Tso’s tofu, or sesame tofu using this recipe as the base.
- Add to vegan fried rice for a quick meal.
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How to Make Baked Tofu
- 1 block (14 ounces) extra firm tofu note #1
- 1/2 cup vegetable broth
- 1 tablespoon soy sauce
- 1 tablespoon corn starch note #2
- 1 tablespoon canola oil note #3
- 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper (or to taste)
- Preheat oven to 420 degrees F. Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper.
- Slice tofu into 1" cubes. In a medium mixing bowl or shallow baking dish, mix together the vegetable broth and soy sauce. Add the sliced tofu cubes, tossing to cover with the marinade. Let marinate for at least 10 minutes.
- Remove the tofu from the marinade. Press firmly with a paper towel to remove excess moisture.
- Add tofu to a large plastic bag or container. Sprinkle with cooking oil, corn starch, pepper and extra seasonings if using. Gently toss to coat the tofu. You can also move your hands on the outside of the plastic bag to coat the tofu.
- Place the tofu in a single layer on the parchment paper-lined baking sheet. The tofu cubes should not be touching each other. Bake in 420 degree oven for 25-30 minutes, or until golden brown. Be careful not to overcook as they will crisp up a little after removing from the oven.
- Tofu: Extra firm or super firm tofu are the best options but firm will also work.
- Corn starch: Arrowroot starch can be used in place of corn starch as needed.
- Oil: Choose canola, vegetable, peanut, or sunflower oil. Olive oil has a low smoke point, so it is best not to use for roasting.
- Keeps for 3-4 days in the fridge. To keep crispy when reheating, bake in a 425 degree oven for 5 minutes, or until warmed through.