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How to Reheat Fried Tofu (Plus 4 Ideas for Eating It)

Kristie Leong M.D. is a family practitioner who believes in the power of nutrition and a healthy lifestyle to prevent and fight illness.

Three Ways to Reheat Fried Tofu

Frying tofu is one of the most delicious ways to enjoy this plant-based source of protein. Fried tofu is a popular vegetarian protein option you can make at home or order at some restaurants. It has a crispy exterior and a soft, chewy interior.

Some people compare it to fried chicken without the meat. It’s a popular option for vegans and vegetarians.

But what if you make too much, and you can't eat it all in one sitting? You don't want to toss it out, so you save it. You might wonder how to reheat it so you can enjoy it the next day. There are some ways to do that.

1. In the Oven

The easiest way to reheat leftover fried tofu is in the oven. To do this, preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Dry the tofu by pressing a towel onto the surface to remove moisture and place the tofu on a foil-lined baking sheet.

Lightly spray the underside of the tofu with olive oil spray to keep it from sticking. Then, bake the tofu for up to 10 minutes until hot and crisp.

Check it frequently to ensure you‘re not overcooking it. You can also use parchment paper as an alternative to aluminum foil for lining the pan.

You can also increase the temperature of the oven and reduce the baking time to lessen moisture loss but watch the oven closely to ensure you don’t burn it.

2. On the Stovetop

Another option is to reheat it in a pan on the stove. This method will preserve more of the tofu's crispiness. To do this, add 1-2 tablespoons of olive oil to a non-stick skillet and place it over medium heat. Once the pan is warm, place each piece of fried tofu in the pan and cook until golden brown on each side.

3. In the Microwave

Microwaving works well for small or thin slices of fried tofu. Place them on a plate covered with a paper towel and microwave on high for 30 seconds. Check the tofu and repeat if it’s not warm enough.

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Use two paper towels if they seem particularly wet. This will help absorb moisture without splattering when you take them out of the microwave. After microwaving the top side, flip it over and microwave the underside for 30 seconds.

Don’t expect fried tofu to be crispy after microwaving. It won't be as crisp, but it will be chewy.

Why Not Spice It When You Reheat It?

One way to add more flavor to reheated tofu is to sprinkle on some spices. For example, sprinkle on spices like paprika or garlic powder before reheating fried tofu in the oven.

You can also add soy sauce, chili pepper flakes, or chopped herbs like parsley or basil to fried tofu before reheating it.

Spices not only add flavor but health benefits as well. For example, spices by weight contain more antioxidants than fruits and vegetables.

What to Do With Reheated Fried Tofu

Reheat fried tofu and serve it as part of an Asian-inspired meal. It's a versatile food that takes on the taste of the sauce or seasonings you cook it with. You can use it as a substitute for meat in almost any dish. It's high in protein and contains vitamins, minerals, and phytonutrients linked with heart health.

Here are ways to use reheated fried tofu for meals and snacks:

  • Add it to salads: Fried tofu is packed with protein, so it's ideal for adding substance to a salad or grain bowl. You can chop it into smaller pieces or leave it as is for a heartier texture.
  • Use it in stir-fries: You can add fried tofu cubes to any stir-fry recipe for extra protein and flavor. Just cut the tofu into 1/2-inch cubes before frying it. Then add the cubes to whatever veggies you're using in your recipe (think carrots, broccoli, bell peppers).
  • Make sandwiches: If you want an easy lunch option with minimal prep required, slice leftover fried tofu into 1/2-inch cubes and place them on your favorite sandwich or wrap. Fried tofu has a unique texture that makes it especially good for sandwiches, tacos, and salads.
  • Add it as a topping for noodles or rice: It makes an excellent addition to noodle soups and stir-fried rice dishes. You could even use it as the main ingredient in fried rice if you want something heartier than just eggs and vegetables.

Enjoy!

As you can see, it's simple to reheat fried tofu and you have several options for doing so. With a few easy steps, you'll have tasty leftovers you can enjoy as part of any meal. Why not make some delicious tacos or stir fry with leftover fried tofu? Enjoy!

Reference

Yashin A, Yashin Y, Xia X, Nemzer B. Antioxidant Activity of Spices and Their Impact on Human Health: A Review. Antioxidants (Basel). 2017 Sep 15;6(3):70. doi: 10.3390/antiox6030070. PMID: 28914764; PMCID: PMC5618098.

This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.

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