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These are the BEST vegan tofu nuggets you’ll ever make, trust me! They're crunchy, flavorful and absolutely irresistible! The recipe is also super easy and fast to make, in about 30 minutes the nuggets will be ready to serve: Big YAY!
What's more, this recipe only requires "normal" ingredients like panko, breadcrumbs, tofu and spices. So you'll find everything you need in any supermarket.
The sriracha mayo is the cherry on top, I just LOVE it! It gives an extra touch to the nuggets and is absolutely delicious!
To make these vegan nuggets you'll only need few ingredients. For the batter: flour, cornstarch and water. For the coating: breadcrumbs, panko, onion powder, garlic powder and salt. For the nuggets: 1 block of firm-tofu.
For the nuggets, it's important to use extra firm tofu, which is a tofu with a very compact and meaty consistency. If the tofu you have is not extra firm, I suggest you put it in the freezer overnight, defrost it and squeeze it gently to remove any excess water. This will change the consistency, making it more compact.
To form the nuggets, we first dip a piece of tofu into the batter and then coat it with the breadcrumbs-panko mixture.
The cornstarch in the batter is the key to making crispy nuggets. This is because the cornstarch contains a higher percentage of amylose, a carbohydrate that makes the batter extra crunchy when deep-fried. So don't skip it or you might end up with soggy nuggets!
In order for the nuggets to maintain their shape it's important to form them and then let them rest for 10-15 minutes. You can start heating the oil while you wait 🙂
For the coating, I like to use both traditional breadcrumbs and panko (Japanese breadcrumbs). This is because panko is made of larger bread granules than traditional breadcrumbs and makes for a crispier fry. I like to mix them because together they make an absolutely amazing and extra crunchy coating!
If you can't find one or the other, that's okay. The nuggets will be just as delicious, but I recommend using both if you can.
Spices are also important for the coating. I like to add garlic and onion powder and salt. If you want, you can also add sesame seeds, parsley, paprika, pepper, cayenne pepper etc. It's a matter of taste.
After you have formed the nuggets, let them rest for 10-15 minutes. In this way the coating will become firm and won't brake while deep-frying.
To best fry the tofu nuggets use vegetable oil and add the nuggets only when the oil is hot. I always test this by tossing a piece of panko into the oil, if the oil starts to bubble it means it's ready for frying.
Fry the nuggets for 3-4 minutes on each side, or until golden brown like the one in the photo below.
You can also bake the nuggets if you prefer. In this case, however, before you coat the nuggets you'll need to toast the breadcrumb-panko mixture. This step will make sure that the nuggets will become super crispy and delish in the oven.
To do so, just toast the breadcrumbs and panko in the oven for 5 minutes at 200° C (392 °F). Then add the spices to the bread-mixture and form the nuggets.
Once the nuggets are formed you can start preheating the oven to 200 °C (392 °F). Place the nuggets on a baking tray lined with baking paper and top them with a drizzle of oil. Once the oven is hot, bake them for 20 minutes and flip them halfway through.
How to store leftover tofu nuggets
In the fridge: store leftover tofu nuggets in an airtight container in the fridge for 3-4 days. To reheat, place them on a baking sheet lined with baking paper and bake them for a couple of minutes at 200 °C (392 °C).
How to freeze and reheat tofu nuggets
If you want to, you can make the nuggets ahead of time and freeze them after cooking. To do so just:
- Let the them cool completely.
- Transfer them to a freezer zipper-lock bag and seal. Freeze up to 1 month. Do no thaw before reheating.
- Reheat the nuggets in the oven. Place them on a baking sheet lined with baking paper and bake them at 200 °C (392 °C) until golden and crispy (15-20 minutes).
Vegan Sriracha Mayo Dip
My favorite sauce to serve with these nuggets is sriracha mayonnaise. To make it, simply mix 4 parts vegan mayonnaise with 1 part sriracha. If you're not familiar with sriracha, it's a spicy sauce that you'll easily find in the Asian section of supermarkets.
That being said you can also serve them with plain ketchup or tartar sauce!
More Recipes You Might Like:
- Seitan Kabobs with Sweet Curry Marinade
- How to Make The Best Vegan Shredded Chicken
- Super Crispy Chickpea Cutlets
If you try this recipe...
If you try this recipe let me know! Leave a comment, rate it, and don’t forget to tag a photo #carlocao or #vegaliciously on Instagram. Cheers, friends!
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