Umami Tofu Bites

May 8, 2019

Have you ever had the craving for something earthy, savoury and flavourful but can't quite put your finger on what to eat to satisfy that urge? Umami foods give that grounding, savoury aspect which was just what I was looking for when I created this tofu recipe. It's easy and delicious and my husband seems to think the crispy bits are a little like KFC crumbs (it's been over 12 years since he has eaten any meat so it may not be a real comparison. LOL) In any case, they definitely hit the spot!


It's important when eating tofu to look for the best quality you can find because most soy is genetically modified. I buy organic which means by default it is also non GMO.There's a debate on whether soya is good or harmful for your hormones. For me personally, a small quantity of organic tofu and tempeh (even better) seem to work well. 


These umami tofu bites are vegan, gluten free and sugar free.

Please note that this recipe is a guideline and I like to adjust it by taste each time. 

Prep time: 10 minutes

Cooking time: 10 minutes



* 1 block of organic firm tofu (it will fall apart if it's not firm)

* a drizzle of Bragg's Liquid Aminos (or coconut aminos, tamari, soy sauce etc)

* 4 tablespoons tahini (I use Antonia's Raw Tahini)

* 1 - 2 Tablespoons miso paste (I use Clearsprings organic Japanese Hatcho unpasturised miso which I  bought at Farm Table)

* 1 teaspoon onion flakes

* 1 teaspoon garlic flakes

* pinch of chilli flakes (more if you want them a little spicy)

* 3-6 tablespoons of nutritional yeast (I think more is better)

* pure water (up to half a cup)

* 1 tablespoon coconut oil for frying

* sea salt to sprinkle at the end if it needs it


Totally optional extras that can be yummy and that I add to many dishes, but not usually this one. 

* liquid smoke 

* smoked paprika 


Start by draining and cubing the tofu. Place in a bowl and drizzle with a little liquid aminos so that the tofu itself has some flavour. 



















To make the sauce, mix the tahini and miso paste together in a bowl or mug. Add the onion, garlic and chilli flakes. It will be very thick, so start to add water, about 2 tablespoons at a time and mix thoroughly. It should be thick, but you must be able to coat the tofu in it. 


















Add the coconut oil to a medium to hot pan. Pour the tofu with sauce into the pan. The trick is to not mix it too often. The sauce needs to cook and almost caramelise on the pan. Gently turn with a spatula every so often until about half done. Then sprinkle the nutritional yeast and combine gently. The nutritional yeast absorbs most the oil and liquid allowing bits of it to form crumbs (of sorts) If you want a smokey taste, then now is the time to use your liquid smoke or sprinkle smoked paprika, or both. I rarely use these for this recipe but they do make a nice change when I feel like something smokey.

 Picture: 3/4 cooked with nutritional yeast just added. 


Your umami tofu bites should now be ready to enjoy. I like to serve them with a light avo salad or veggies. They also make a delicious side order to a warm bowl of soup.