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How to Make Kung Pao Tofu

Steps, Recipes, and Everything About How to Make Kung Pao Tofu

Are you wondering what is Kung Pao tofu and how many calories are there in it? Then here is an article that provides brief information on this traditional Chinese dish, along with some recipes for preparing it.
Mayuri Kulkarni
Last Updated: Sep 25, 2017
Kung Pao chicken is a part of Szechuan cuisine, that is named after a Qing dynasty official, Ding Baozhen. This recipe is one of a kind and is prepared using roasted peanuts, soy sauce, peppers and cubed chicken pieces. Kung Pao tofu, Kung Pao shrimp, Kung Pao scallops, etc., are the Westernized versions of Kung Pao chicken. Kung Pao tofu is a vegetarian version of Kung Pao chicken and has become very popular among vegans. Given below are two such recipes that provide steps to prepare this dish.
Recipe #1
  • Balsamic vinegar - 3 tablespoons
  • Cornstarch - 1 teaspoon
  • Crushed red pepper - 1 teaspoon
  • Firm tofu (drained, cut into 1-inch cubes) - 1 package
  • Minced garlic cloves - 2
  • Minced ginger - 2 teaspoons
  • Roasted unsalted peanuts - ½ cup
  • Small green bell pepper seeded - 1
  • Small red bell pepper seeded - 1
  • Small onion - 1
  • Whole dried chili peppers (cut into pieces) - 2 teaspoons
  • Soy sauce - 3 tablespoons
  • Sugar - ½ teaspoon
  • Sesame oil - 2 teaspoon
  • Vegetable broth - ½ cup
To prepare this, first cut the bell peppers and onions into small pieces. Then, take a saucepan and combine vinegar, cornstarch, sugar, vegetable broth, sesame oil and soy sauce. Place the saucepan over medium-low heat and stir the mixture to combine the ingredients thoroughly. Meanwhile, take a wok and heat two tablespoons of cooking oil in it.
Then, add ginger, chili peppers, red peppers and garlic to the heated oil and cook the mixture for about 10 minutes. Now, add the prepared sauce and the tofu to the wok and cook the mixture until the sauce boils and becomes thick. After that, add peanuts and toss the tofu so that it absorbs all the ingredients properly. If you like the crispy texture of tofu, you can fry the tofu in little oil before adding it to sauce. Serve this yummy dish with cooked rice and enjoy the taste.
Recipe #2
  • Crushed red pepper flakes - 1 teaspoon
  • Cornstarch - 1 tablespoon
  • Diced onion - ½ cup
  • Firm tofu (drained, patted dry) - 12 ounces
  • Diced celery - ½ cup
  • Diced zucchini - 1 cup
  • Dry sherry - 2 tablespoons
  • Diced carrot - ½ cup
  • Halved sugar snap peas - 1 cup
  • Minced garlic cloves - 4
  • Vegetable oil - 4 tablespoons
  • Quartered water chestnuts - ½ cup
  • Rice vinegar - 2 tablespoons
  • Sesame oil - 2 tablespoons
  • Sugar - 1 tablespoon
  • Soy sauce - ¼ cup
  • Scallions (white and light green parts only, cut into ½ inch pieces) - 6
  • Roasted peanuts - ½ cup
Add two tablespoons of vegetable oil to a skillet and heat it over medium-high heat. Cut the tofu into small cubes and add the pieces to the heated oil. Fry the tofu cubes until they turn brown and then drain them over paper towels. Now, take a small bowl and combine rice vinegar, sugar, sherry, sesame oil, crushed red pepper, cornstarch and soy sauce in it.
In a wok, add remaining vegetable oil and place it over medium-high heat. Once the oil gets heated add diced onion, carrot and celery to it, and keep stirring the mixture for about 5 minutes. Then, add zucchini, water chestnuts, scallions, snap peas and garlic and cook the mixture for 3 more minutes. Now, add the fried tofu pieces, roasted peanuts and sauce and cook the mixture until the sauce thickens. Serve it with steamed rice or noodles.
Kung Pao tofu is a healthy meal since the calories in it are less as compared to the original version that uses chicken. So, if you are a vegan, then you should surely try making this luscious Chinese food for your meal. Happy Cooking!