Looking for a healthy or vegan option for your Superbowl party? These tofu bites taste eerily like Buffalo Wild Wings minus the grease, bones, and guilt.
This is a carnivore’s tofu. Manatee can’t get enough of them and I know we will never need to even consider making “real” buffalo wings again. Heck, if you are worried your guests won’t like it because it’s tofu, just leave that part out of the name. Call them Buffalo Wing Bites and let them ask you what they are made out of. I promise if that if they try it first, they will not hesitate to clean the plate.
When we made these the first time, we had the pleasure of having our oven go into lock-down mode and start self-cleaning. Not that I recommend anyone repeating that type of thing, I have to say that it did make some tasty (and toasty) bites.
I re-did the recipe last week to get a more realistic recipe so you wouldn’t have to deal with pulling the oven out from the wall, disconnecting the power source, kicking the oven, wringing your hands, pulling our your hair, etc. But, hey, if your oven does go into lock-down mode, don’t give up on the tofu!
There are two important steps in this recipe: pressing the tofu and marinating the tofu.
Pressing the Tofu
If you eat tofu on a regular basis, then I highly recommend investing in a tofu press.
We ordered ours from Tofu Xpress. It makes pressing tofu so much easier. Throw it in the press and then in the fridge. In a few hours, it will be pressed and ready to go, but it pays to be patient. The longer you let it press, the better the tofu will soak in your marinade. If you think about it this way, the more water you can press out of the tofu, the more marinade that can go in to the tofu.
If you don’t have a tofu press and don’t want to spend the money, you need to try to get as much water out of the tofu as possible. At the very least, wrap the tofu in some paper towels and squeeze out as much excess water as you can. You can also wrap the tofu in a clean towel and the place under a cookie sheet. Add books or heavy (unbreakable) objects on top of the cookie sheet. In short, do whatever you can do to get the water out of the tofu.
For this best version of this recipe, I pressed the tofu for 2 days.
Marinating the Tofu
Tofu is not made to stand on its own. It’s made to act like a sponge, soaking in whatever marinade or sauce you are using. After you have pressed the tofu, cut the tofu into bite-size rectangles. Mix together your marinade and combine the tofu with the marinade in an airtight container.You want to cover as much tofu as possible with the marinade. I like to use wide flat containers. Shake the container occasionally to make sure all of the tofu is evenly coated.
At the very least, marinate for 2-3 hours. At most, marinate for 8-12 hours.
For the best version of this recipe, I marinated the tofu for 10 hours.
Buffalo Wing Tofu Bites
1 cup Frank’s Hot Sauce
juice from 1[1/2] limes
[1/2] teaspoon garlic powder
1 tablespoon agave nectar
1 (14-ounce) package of extra firm tofu
1. Press the tofu. See notes above. For best results, press the tofu for 1-2 days. If that’s not possible, just get as much excess water out as possible.
2. In a medium-sized airtight container, whisk together the marinade ingredients. Add the tofu and toss to coat. Marinate for 2 -12 hours.
3. Preheat the oven to 500 (dgF). Line a rimmed baking sheet with aluminum foil.
4. Place the tofu on the prepared baking sheet. Using a pastry brush, brush the marinade on the tofu. Bake for 8 minutes. Remove tofu from oven and brush with marinade. Bake for an additional 5 minutes. Remove the tofu from oven and brush with marinade. Bake for an additional 3-4 minutes. I should warn you: this makes them very spicy! To dial down the spice, don’t keep brushing on more sauce. For medium spice, just brush them once and bake them for 15-20 minutes.
Some of the excess marinade may burn, but the tofu will not burn and will still be good.
5. You can enjoy these bites on a salad (described below) or you can eat them on their own as a snack. Let them cool to room temperature. Serve with blue cheese or ranch dressing, celery sticks, and radishes.
We enjoyed our tofu bites on a salad.
We tossed the tofu with blue cheese crumbles, celery, green onions, steamed broccoli, butter lettuce, diced avocado, and spinach. For a dressing, we mixed together 1-2 tablespoons of mayo with the remaining marinade.
It was pretty darn amazing.
This will definitely be a staple in our football party repertoire.
What will you be cooking (or eating) for the Superbowl?