This recipe for air fryer tofu is so crazy easy that you won’t ever go back to pan-frying or baking tofu again! The air fryer cooks the tofu so quickly and uses so little oil, and this is perfect for days when you want some quick protein in your meals. Gluten-free and vegan too.
- 1 16-oz block extra-firm tofu
- 2 tablespoons sesame oil
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1 teaspoon onion powder
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- Sesame seeds, for sprinkling (optional)
- Sliced spring onions, for sprinkling (optional)
- Gluten-free soy sauce (tamari), for dipping (optional)
- Cut the tofu into small even cubes.
- Place the tofu cubes on a paper-towel lined plate and cover with more papel towels to press out as much water as possible (don’t skip this step)!
- Once tofu is pressed, toss the tofu cubes together with the sesame oil, garlic powder, onion powder, and salt. Let it marinate for at least 15 minutes.
- Preheat the air fryer to 375F.
- Place the tofu cubes in one single layer in your air fryer basket so the cubes don’t touch each other. (Do not overcrowd your air fryer basket as the tofu needs the space for the hot air crisp it up on all sides. Depending on the size of your air fryer basket, you may need to do this in 2 batches.)
- For tofu that’s lightly golden outside but still soft inside, cook for 10 to 12 minutes and toss halfway through. For crispy tofu, cook for 14 to 15 minutes and toss halfway through (this will result in a slightly chewier inside).
Why Press Tofu: Pressing tofu helps to remove some of the moisture and makes it easier to cook with, as too much moisture may result in a bland mushy texture. In particular, where you want tofu to keep its shape while cooking, pressing the tofu before cooking helps the tofu absorb more of the marinate later on, and to crisp up better on the outside.
Do Not Overcrowd The Air Fryer Basket: Make sure you leave space between each tofu cube so they are not touching. This will ensure that they cook evenly on all sides, and that they crisp well and turn a nice golden brown on every side. Depending on the size of your air fryer, you may need to cook the tofu in 2 different batches, but it’s totally worth the effort.
Marinade Ideas: The tofu in this recipe is meant to be a very basic and simple tofu that you can later add sauces over (such as Teriyaki sauce) or for dipping in sauces like gluten-free soy sauce or tamari, or homemade sriracha. If you prefer to eat the tofu directly without any additional sauces (such as in a salad or in a poke bowl), you can try marinating it in gluten-free soy sauce (tamari), garlic powder, and ginger powder for at least 15 minutes or even overnight. Cooking method is the same.
- Category: Appetizers
- Method: Air Fryer
- Cuisine: Asian
Keywords: air fryer tofu