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A bowl of tofu stir fried with cashews over white rice

Easy Kung Pao Tofu

Kung pao tofu is a vegetarian take on a Chinese takeout classic that's super simple to make at home. I've replaced the usual chicken with tofu for a plant-based version that can easily be made vegan and is every bit as tasty as the meat version!
Course Main Dish
Cuisine Chinese
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Servings 4 servings
Calories 381kcal
Author Ann Otis



  • 1 lb firm tofu cut into ½ inch cubes
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce
  • cup cornstarch

Sauce and vegetables

  • 1 cup vegetable broth
  • 1 tablespoon rice vinegar
  • 2 teaspoons sesame oil
  • 1 tablespoon oyster sauce
  • 2 tablespoon hoisin sauce
  • 2 teaspoons cornstarch
  • 3 tablespoons vegetable or peanut oil
  • 1 large red pepper cut into ½ inch pieces
  • 3 cloves garlic minced
  • 2 teaspoons fresh ginger minced
  • 4 medium scallions (green onions) cut into 1 inch pieces
  • ½ cup roasted cashews or peanuts
  • red pepper flakes to taste


  • Preheat the oven to 300 F. In a medium bowl, combine the tofu cubes and soy sauce and marinate for about 10 minutes. Drain and toss the tofu with the cornstarch until evenly coated.
  • In a bowl or measuring cup, combine the broth, rice vinegar, sesame oil, oyster sauce, hoisin, and cornstarch.
  • Heat the vegetable or peanut oil in a large non stick pan over medium heat. Add the tofu and cook until golden on all sides, about 10 minutes. Remove to a sheet pan and transfer to the oven to keep warm and crispy.
  • Increase the heat to medium high. Add the red pepper and cook, stirring, until slightly softened, about 1 minute.
  • Add the garlic, ginger, and scallions, and cook until fragrant, a few seconds. Add the cashews and red pepper flakes and cook about 30 seconds more.
  • Add the broth mixture to the pan and stir until it starts to thicken, about 20 seconds. Add the tofu back to the pan and stir to coat.
  • Serve over white rice.


*nutrition information does not include rice.


Calories: 381kcal | Carbohydrates: 27g | Protein: 15g | Fat: 25g | Saturated Fat: 11g | Cholesterol: 1mg | Sodium: 750mg | Potassium: 230mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 6g | Vitamin A: 1176IU | Vitamin C: 41mg | Calcium: 163mg | Iron: 3mg