This sweet almond tofu stir-fry ticks all the boxes for a quick and wholesome weekday dinner. Coming together in under 30 minutes, it is vegan, gluten free and lunchbox-friendly.
Disclosure: some of the links in this post are affiliate links. This does not result in any extra cost for you, but it does mean that I make a commission if you click through and make a purchase.
Why do I love cooking so much? The answer to this question varies from person to person. For me, there are several reasons. Firstly, I find it incredibly therapeutic. Whenever I encounter stress or overwhelm, I head straight to either the gym, or the kitchen. Writing down new ideas, preparing the ingredients and putting a delicious meal together brings a sense of calmness and stability into my day. It’s a creative outlet that also has a positive impact on my mental health. Aka, a win-win situation. When I was younger, I used sketching and drawing to find balance in turbulent times. Now, cooking (and sometimes photographing) new and long-time favourite dishes takes up that role.
My history with an eating disorder bring even more value to the process. I used to fear food, and stuck to a handful of ‘safe’, bland meals, every single day. I didn’t dare venture out of my comfort zone. Years later, I’ve learnt to see that food is both fuel and something that brings us together, something to enjoy for the sake of enjoyment. Whenever I’m in the kitchen, either testing out a dish from scratch or adding a new twist to a staple dinner, and recognise how much my relationship with food has changed, I can’t help but smile – metaphorically, because how I feel doesn’t often reflect what I look like, lol. Oh, and there’s always so much more to learn! I’m far from an expert, but love watching my skills incrementally improve.
And since we’re on the subject of staple recipes (or types of recipes), a good stir-fry is something I’ll never get bored with. There just isn’t a right or wrong way to do them. Bring together a protein source of your choice, whatever vegetables you have in the fridge, a simple sauce, and you’ve got yourself a delicious, wholesome meal. The vast majority take under thirty minutes, making them perfect for people who typically find themselves too busy to cook. Trust me, I’ve been there myself. But it’s important to recognise that there are always ways to save time in the kitchen. One of them is compiling a list of go-to recipes you can cook up on autopilot while listening to your favourite audiobooks or podcasts and not have to worry about missing out on fuelling yourself with nourishing foods. You’ll find that a range of stir-fries, including this one, take up a lot of room on mine.
A few facts about this vegan almond tofu stir-fry, and what you can expect.
Coming together in under thirty minutes, it is:
- A great way to eat more plants
- Super flavourful and cosy
In other words, many of the things I look for in quick and simple dinners. If you don’t have time to go grocery shopping or simply want to make the dish your own, use whatever vegetables you have in the fridge instead of the ones I’ve included. The star of the show is definitely the tofu and the subtly sweet almond sauce. As I’ve mentioned in my previous recipe post, tofu definitely doesn’t have to be boring! It’s all about how you prepare it. And although I’ve only tested the recipe with almond butter myself, I’m sure it would work wonderfully with other nut/seed butters of your choice.
This is the almond butter I used for this recipes (and eat pretty much every day because ‘yummy’ is a massive understatement):
Let me know in the comments: are you as much of a fan of stir-fries as I am? If you end up giving this recipe a go, be sure to tag me on Instagram (@earthofmariaa), so I can see your creation!
Sweet Almond Tofu Stir-fry - Vegan and Gluten Free
In under 30 minutes, you've got yourself a healthy, vibrant meal to eat straight away or store in a lunchbox for later. This recipe is vegan, gluten-free and naturally high in protein. Feel free to adapt by using whatever veggies you have on hand!
- 1 cup uncooked rice of choice I used a wholegrain rice/quinoa mix
- 400 g firm tofu
- 1/2 medium red onion
- 1 cm piece ginger, peeled
- 2 medium carrots
- 150 g baby sweetcorn
- 1 large handful fresh spinach
- 1/2 tsp garlic powder
- 1 tbsp gluten-free soy sauce optional
- spring onion, to garnish
For the sauce
- 2 tbsp almond butter
- 1 tbsp agave nectar
- 1 tbsp gluten-free soy sauce
Start by leaving your rice to cook according to instructions on packaging - this usually takes 15-20 minutes.
Meanwhile, cut your tofu into bite-sized cubes and squeeze out as much liquid as possible. Place something heavy on top and leave to stand while you prepare the sauce and the vegetables.
To prepare the sauce, simply stir together the ingredients and stand aside. Finely dice the ginger and the red onion and chop the carrots into matchsticks. Cut each sweetcorn in half.
Heat up a non-stick frying pan. Add the tofu and cook on a medium-high until lightly browned - make sure to rotate the cubes every 2 or so minutes. This should take 7-8 minutes in total. Once done, combine with the sauce in a medium bowl and set aside.
Add the ginger, red onion and carrot to the frying pan with 2 tbsp water. Cook for around 3 minutes, until soft. Add the sweetcorn, the garlic powder and optional soy sauce, stirring for a further 3. Finally, add the cooked rice and the spinach and cook for a minute more, until thoroughly combined. Transfer to serving bowls/plates.
Add the tofu and the sauce to the frying pan and heat for around 2 minutes. Once the sauce has thickened slightly, serve on top of the rice/vegetable mixture and garnish with fresh spring onion.
If I use a non-stick frying pan, I find that this recipe works well without any oil, but you can add some if you prefer.