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Air Fryer Tofu. This crispy tofu is cooked in the air fryer without oil and without corn starch. Perfect for pairing with sweet potato cubes for a healthy lunch or dinner.
This flavoursome healthy air fryer tofu recipe is vegan, gluten free and ideal for the plant based diet, weight watchers and slimming world too.
Air Fryer Tofu
I remember the first time I tried tofu and liked it. I was at this vegetarian buffet at a café in Portugal.
I found it funny, because you had this vegetarian buffet that was loved by the locals that liked to eat healthy, yet its location was inside a bakery, that was everything but healthy.
They sold cream cakes, every type of Portuguese pastry and you could order a homecooked pizza and have it delivered to your diner table.
Yet in one corner of the room was this amazing vegetarian buffet that made me want to binge on it, even though your brain was telling you that you had eaten too much.
My highlight of the buffet was the marinated tofu that was served in a delicious dressing. It was the first time I had ever enjoyed tofu.
I learnt later that the tofu I had tried elsewhere hadn’t been pressed properly and that’s the reason why the tofu I had tried in other places was bland and tasteless.
It started a journey of looking for new ways to enjoy tofu and led me to cooking tofu in the air fryer. Today I wanted to share with you, a quick and simple way to prepare and air fry tofu and how to press your tofu properly.
Plus, as well as our free newsletter, we also have a free air fryer mini course. It is ideal for air fryer beginners or those that want to get more confident with their air fryer. The free course runs for 5 days with a new lesson delivered each day to your inbox.
Can You Air Fry Tofu?
Yes, you can. Tofu in the air fryer is amazing. I am not a vegan, but I could certainly eat air fryer tofu several times a week with just how good it is!
Cooking tofu in the air fryer is no more difficult than air frying potatoes or air frying a vegetable.
It is also easy to mix and match with your favourite seasonings and to pair with your dinner mains.
Can You Air Fry Tofu Without Oil?
Yes, you can. In fact, the air fryer crispy tofu that we are showing you how to cook today is 100% oil free.
If I can avoid oil in the air fryer and the food still tastes just as good I will.
Just like with our air fryer chickpeas, I have tried it both without and with oil and found that without is better.
If you are wondering, how do you cook air fryer tofu without oil, then note that we are swapping the oil for lemon juice and garlic puree. This will give the air fryer tofu cubes moisture and allow the marinade to stick to them.
Is Tofu Good In The Air Fryer?
Yes, it is. Tofu is amazing in the air fryer and reminds me of cubed chicken for its texture and appearance and for how well it cooks in the air fryer.
Just like air fryer chicken, you can toss the tofu in seasonings and then air fry and come back when the air fryer beeps and tells you it is done.
How To Make Crispy Tofu Without Corn Starch?
Many of you that are long term readers of Recipe This know that I am not a fan of corn starch. I don’t like paying for it and would rather find other alternatives in my kitchen to use instead.
So, no surprise that I am making air fryer tofu without corn starch.
We make it crispy but adding a wet coating first, followed by a dry rub. The combination of the two help you avoid any corn starch, and you will love how amazing it is.
How To Press Tofu For The Air Fryer?
But before we jump into the air fried tofu recipe ingredients and how to air fry tofu, lets talk about the part of the recipe that scares most people.
That is how to press the tofu prior to air frying it.
You press tofu because the tofu holds a lot of water and if you don’t you end up with flavourless tofu.
It is very simple of press tofu though. You place a plate on a worktop, add a tea towel, then your tofu, like this:
Then you add another tea towel over the tofu and then a heavy casserole dish on top:
Then let it sit for two hours and then come back, remove the casserole dish and the tea towels, and then pat dry your tofu.
Then chop up the tofu into cubes and you are ready for the air fryer.
Air Fried Tofu Recipe Ingredients
Tofu – You are looking for any natural tofu. Usually, it will come in a packet similar to the one above. You can also use a favourite brand if you have one.
Liquid – You want to have something you can toss your tofu in instead of extra virgin olive oil. I am using a combo of lemon juice and garlic puree.
Seasoning – You can mix and match seasonings depending on what you are eating with your tofu. We used parsley, harissa, basil, salt, and pepper. This gave a wonderful Mediterranean flavour.
Then for the kitchen gadgets that we have used in this tofu air fryer recipe, it has just been our Philips Air Fryer. We have this one and its wonderful for air fryer sides, as well as for other air fryer classics.
How To Cook Tofu In Air Fryer?
- Pressing. Tofu in air fryer starts with pressing the tofu and getting rid of any extra moisture as there is nothing worse than bland tofu.
- Flavours – Before air frying tofu its all about the air fryer tofu marinade. Firstly, we toss the tofu in lemon juice and garlic. Then we make a bowl with the dried marinade ingredients and toss the tofu in it. You are now ready for cooking tofu in the air fryer.
- Air Fry. Load the tofu into the air fryer and cook for 10 minutes increasing the temperature for the last 4 minutes. You now have crispy air fried tofu.
How Long To Cook Tofu In Air Fryer?
The air fryer tofu time and temp is 10 minutes at 180c/360f. Though for the last 4 minutes we recommend that you shake the air fryer basket, increase the temperature to 200c/400f and then allow your tofu to finish cooking.
What To Serve With Air Fryer Tofu?
My favourite thing ever to serve with my air fried tofu is sweet potato chunks. I will turn your air fryer tofu into air fryer tofu and sweet potato hash.
I will give the sweet potato chunks a 5 minute head start at 180c/360f (it takes longer to cook than tofu) and then air fry both the tofu and sweet potatoes together.
Then when the air fryer beeps it makes a fantastic side for breakfast or brunch or just enjoy it with a green salad.
More Easy Air Fryer Favourites
Air Fryer Crispy Tofu
- Remove your tofu from its packaging and cut into long slices. Place a tea towel on a large tea towel, add the tofu, add another tea towel on top and then place a heavy casserole dish over it. Put the tofu to one side for two hours while the tofu moisture is pressed out of the tofu.
- In one bowl add the lemon juice and the garlic puree and mix.
- In another bowl add the rest of your seasonings and mix well.
- When the two hours are up discard the tea towels and the casserole dish and place your tofu on a chopping board. Cut into cubes and then toss in the lemon and garlic.
- Then toss in the dried rub until every piece of tofu is well coated.
- Place in the air fryer basket and air fry for 6 minutes at 180c/360f.
- Shake the air fryer and cook for a further 4 minutes at 200c/400f and then serve.