Blackened Crispy Tofu

If you’ve ever met someone who declared they didn’t like tofu (or if you yourself think you don’t), you’ve got to try this recipe.  The blackening and crispiness make it so desirable, we crave this!  The secret is the smoky spices and cooking the tofu at high heat.  Served with a fresh salad, over quinoa or other grain, or even in a sandwich, this is one of those meals that pleases even the pickiest eater (including my four year old), omnivores and herbivores alike.  I’m always wishing I made more….

We had ours with a fresh green salad, with beautifully striking purple bell peppers from the garden.  Their colour is so vibrant, we had to eat them raw.  I almost felt bad slicing through these beauties.  The vinaigrette was a creamy dijon, which consisted of 1 tablespoon dijon mustard, juice of 1/2 a lemon, 1/4 cup olive oil, 1 tablespoon maple syrup, 2 tablespoons sherry vinegar, a pinch of sea salt and pepper.  Whisk all ingredients, and voila, you’ve got a classic homemade vinaigrette.


Blackened Crispy Tofu Recipe

Serves 2-4


  • 1 block firm tofu
  • 2 tablespoons tamari or soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons paprika
  • 1 tablespoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher sea salt


  • Lay a few layers of paper towel onto a cutting board, place tofu on them, then cover with more paper towel.  Place a plate overtop, with something heavy over the plate to drain out as much water as possible.


  • In the meanwhile, prepare your spice mix by combining all dry seasonings in a shallow bowl.  Whisk to combine.


  • Once the tofu has drained, cut it into 4 pieces lengthwise.
  • Pour the tamari into a shallow bowl, and let the tofu sit in this for a few minutes, turning to coat both sides.
  • Dip each piece into the spice mix, making sure to get it well covered on each side.


  • In a skillet over medium-high heat, heat the oil.  Once hot, place all tofu pieces into the pan.
  • Cook for 2-3 minutes, you will see it darken on one side.
  • Turn all pieces over, and cook for another 2-3 minutes.
  • Repeat, turning over the tofu on each side once more.  It will be crispy, blackened and delicious looking!


  • Remove from heat, and serve on a bed of greens.  Alternatively, you can serve it on a bed of quinoa or other grains with a side of greens.
  • Enjoy!

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  1. Looks beautiful & yummy, Sophia! Thanks for the trick on how to get excess water out from tofu. ๐Ÿ™‚

  2. My family is a big time tofu fan and I am always looking for more and more ways to cook it:). Thanks for this wonderfully delicious and heathy post :). Have to try it.

  3. This tofu looks so great! I have never made it before,but would love to try. Those purple bell peppers also look stunning, I’ve never seen them before, do they taste difference?

    • Aren’t they pretty? I had also never seen a purple bell pepper before we started growing them this year. They are similar to green pepper, slightly bitter. I’ve heard they lose their vibrant colour when cooked, so we eat them raw ๐Ÿ™‚

  4. Such amazing photos (as usual). Hey, maybe you should take a California vacation and you can stop by my house and give me some photography lessons – haha. Celeste ๐Ÿ™‚

    • Awe, Celeste! Thanks so much, that means a lot. I am so embarrassed about my earlies photos on my blog. Sometimes, I am tempted to delete them! How I’d LOVE to come to California and take photos with you ๐Ÿ™‚
      Sophia ๐Ÿ™‚

      • Please don’t delete your early photos chica! I like seeing progression in a blog and besides it gives me hope that I’ll be able to improve. And you’re always welcome to come visit me in SoCal – that would be so much fun!! Celeste ๐Ÿ™‚

      • Hehe, I won’t ๐Ÿ˜‰
        Your last photo of your pasta dish was great – you’ll get there!

  5. I have never seen a purple pepper, amazing! This looks incredible, your photos are stunning. Poppy ๐Ÿ˜€

  6. Wow. This is gorgeous. I like the way you spiced it up. you really can’t go wrong. That purple pepper is stunning. I’ve never seen one before. Beautiful.

    • Thanks so much! My first time seeing purple peppers as well! I love the way they look (and taste).
      Thanks for stopping by!
      Sophia ๐Ÿ™‚

  7. In Louisiana, blackened = dry pan + something coated in a dry spice rub + highly aggravated smoke detectors. Not a good sight. Curious about the atmosphere, though – did this produce a lot of smoke? (I’d really like to avoid creating angry neighbors)

    Also – what type of pan did you use? I only have non-stick, but I’d really like to try to make this.

    • Hi there!
      It did get smoky, nothing over the top. I don’t have cast iron, but I have a thick bottom pan that is meant for high heat. Non-stick is not the best idea for high heat, that’s the only problem. It can damage the coating and warp your pan ๐Ÿ™
      I love your description of blackening food in Louisiana! I guess it wasn’t as authentic as what you would do there. I used a bit of oil, it wasn’t a dry pan ๐Ÿ™‚

  8. these are beautiful! ppfff on your recent post about not being comparable to your favourite bloggers – you’re a wonderful cook and a great photographer!

  9. How pretty!

  10. That purple bell pepper looks amazing! As does that tofu! I don’t eat much of it either, but I think I should give this a try!

    • I love the purple peppers! They are so pretty (and tasty).
      Yes, do let me know if you try out the tofu this way!

      Sophia ๐Ÿ™‚

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