This orange tofu, caramelized by rich, tangy citrus is packed with flavour. Quick and easy, mouth-watering orange glazed tofu looks and tastes amazing. Perfect for busy weeknights!
Orange tofu is rich, fresh and super tasty. It’s a veganised version of the signature dish from Panda Express, orange chicken.
This is one of the easy and quick tofu recipes that helped me so many times on busy weeknights when I have little time or energy. And it’s always a crowd pleaser! Just ask my partner, Andy! No need for take out anymore!
All you need for this is orange and tofu are a few basic ingredients from your pantry. That’s it! Serve up this mouthwatering glazed tofu in less than 30 minutes!
This orange tofu recipe uses Japanese cooking techniques that my mother showed me when I was growing up. It’s all about developing the umami of the ingredients!
How to make orange tofu
It can be easy to get caught in a rut with tofu. I love tofu but find you need a rich flavour to bring it to life. Having a few simple and easy flavour options to fall back on can ensure you never tire of this protein rich super food. And with this recipe, there’s no need to hustle. It’s so easy you can relax and enjoy cooking!
How to prepare tofu
There are two key things to make this orange tofu recipe successful:
- Add seasonings to the tofu before it’s cooked
- Cover the marinated tofu with wrapping film and leave to marinade
This will ensure you pack the umami of Japanese ingredients into the tofu. You then coat the tofu with corn starch. That’s it!
Make sure the tofu is wrapped tightly with wrapping film so that it’s touching the tofu. This way the umami of the Japanese ingredients penetrates the tofu. You can replace corn starch with tapioca starch. This makes the tofu crispier.
How to make an orange sauce
The golden orange colour is the star of this sauce! To maintain it you need to add the soy sauce to the tofu before coating it with corn starch.
Two more things to be noted for the sauce:
- Mix up corn starch and water before you prepare tofu. When corn starch is soaked in the water for little longer, the stickiness increases when the heat is added.
- Add orange zest when cooking is all done and you turned off the heat. Citrus zest becomes bitter when heated too much.
How to cook the tofu
Preheat the skillet and add oil. Then place the umami packed tofu pieces on it but ‘No need to touch or roll over immediately’.
Cook the tofu on each side for at least 1 minute. Once the surface is cooked, turn them over one by one. This way you can prevent the tofu being broken. The perfect golden brown cooked tofu is ready just in 10 minute! It’s so easy.
What equipment do you use?
I use a skillet because it prevents tofu from getting stuck to the pan or broken. A stainless frying pan is not recommended. I’ve found it’s difficult to cook the tofu without it sticking to the bottom of the pan.
When the orange sauce is ready, add the cooked tofu into the skillet. Caramelize the tofu with the shiny golden orange sauce and make a mouth-watering juicy dish!
Serve immediately and enjoy!
Tips for the Best Orange Tofu
Can you keep it?
Not really. This orange tofu is best enjoyed when served immediately. I do not recommend leaving it for the next day. If you want to pre-prepare and store it, you need to keep the sauce, marinade and tofu separately stored in the fridge for up to two days.
The ideas for Variations
- Orange sesame tofu
- Orange liquor tofu
- Spicy orange tofu by adding more chili
- Orange tofu with broccoli
More Collection for Vegan Tofu Recipes
Orange Tofu Recipe
- 14 oz drained extra firm tofu (400g)
- 2 teaspoon ginger
- ½ teaspoon garlic
- 1 teaspoon soy sauce
- 1 teaspoon sake
- ¼ cup granulated beet sugar (50g or brown sugar)
- ¼ cup rice vinegar (60ml)
- 3 tablespoon sake
- ⅛ tablespoon salt
- ⅛ tablespoon chili flakes (optional & depends on how spicy you want)
- ½ cup orange juice (120 ml)
- 2 tablespoon orange zest
- 1 tablespoon corn starch soaked by 1 tbsp water
- 2 tablespoon corn starch
- 2 tablespoon vegetable oil
- ½ tablespoon sesame oil
- Remove water from an extra firm tofu and cut it into 1 inch pieces. Transfer them onto a flat plate and remove the moisture of the tofu completely with kitchen paper.
- Add all the ingredients to the diced tofu. Cover with wrapping film tightly over the marinated tofu and allow to marinade. Set aside.
- While marinading the tofu, combine sugar, rice vinegar, sake, salt and chill flakes for the sauce. Set aside.
- Mix 1 tbsp cornstarch with 1 tbsp water and set aside for the sauce.
- Make orange zest, and squeeze the orange for juice. Set aside.
- Add 2 tbsp corn starch into the flat plate and roll out the tofu. Make sure that corn starch sticks to the tofu.
- Preheat the skillet at the middle heat, and then add vegetable oil. Add the tofu pieces. Cook them for 1 minute on each side, and avoid turning them more than once per side. This stops them from breaking apart or being damaged. Then start rolling over one by one after each is cooked properly. It takes about 10 minutes in all. Remove the tofu from the pan and place on a plate. Set aside
- Once the sauce is boiled, add orange juice. As soon as the sauce and the orange juice are boiled, turn off the heat.
- Gradually add the cornstarch into the pan while you stir the sauce (check that the corn starch is mixed well with water before adding).
- Turn on the heat again, and bring to the boil,cooking it until it thickens.
- Add the tofu pieces into the sauce. Caramelize the tofu with the sauce by slowly reducing it further. Turn off the heat and add orange zest.Serve immediately! Top sesame seeds and spring onion.