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chili garlic tofu with brussels sprouts in a bowl
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4.50 from 4 votes

Chili Garlic Tofu with Brussels Sprouts

This easy vegan chili garlic tofu is made with extra-firm tofu, seared brussels sprouts and a sweet and spicy sauce. Serve with rice or cauliflower rice!
Prep Time15 minutes
Cook Time15 minutes
Total Time30 minutes
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Chinese
Diet: Gluten Free, Vegan, Vegetarian
Servings: 4 people
Calories: 209kcal


  • large heavy skillet (12-inch minimum)


Seared Tofu + Brussels Sprouts:

  • 15 ounce block extra-firm tofu Use certified gluten-free if needed
  • cup cornstarch, plus more if needed
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil, divided
  • ½ pound Brussels sprouts
  • jasmine rice or cauliflower rice (to serve, optional)

Chili Garlic Sauce:

  • ¼ cup rice vinegar
  • 3 garlic cloves, finely minced
  • 2 teaspoons grated ginger
  • 1 tablespoon sambal oelek (red chili paste) Use 2 tablespoons for more heat
  • 1 tablespoon maple syrup
  • 2 tablespoons soy sauce Use certified gluten-free if needed, or swap gluten-free tamari or coconut aminos
  • 2 teaspoons sesame oil
  • ½ teaspoon red chili flakes (optional, for heat)


Prepare Ingredients:

  • If serving with rice, begin preparing rice according to package directions.
    Wrap the tofu in a towel, set on a plate, and press for at least 10 minutes. (Use a tofu press or place a heavy dish or pan over the tofu.) If pressing the tofu longer than 10 minutes, press in the refrigerator.
    Thinly slice the Brussels sprouts, discarding the woody ends.
    Add all the sauce ingredients to a bowl and whisk together.
    Thinly Slice Brussels Sprouts

Cook the Tofu:

  • Cube the tofu into ½-inch cubes.
    Add to a bowl with the cornstarch and toss to coat. If your tofu is still slightly wet, you may need more cornstarch.
    Toss Tofu in Cornstarch
  • Add 1 tablespoon olive oil to a large, heavy pan. (Use 12" or larger.)
    Heat oil over medium heat. When the oil begins to shimmer, add the tofu in a single layer. Cook 3-4 minutes without touching the tofu, and then cook 3-4 minutes more, tossing occasionally, until the tofu is toasted on all sides.
    Remove the tofu from the pan and set aside for later.
    Cook Tofu Until Toasted

Finish with Brussels Sprouts + Sauce:

  • Add the remaining 1 tablespoon of oil to the pan.
    Add the brussels sprouts and cook, tossing occasionally, until the sprouts begin to blacken (about 3 minutes).
    Sear Brussels Sprouts
  • Add the tofu and the sauce to the pan. Toss about 2 more minutes, until the tofu is golden.
    Serve immediately. If desired, serve with rice (or cauliflower rice).
    Add Tofu + Sauce to Pan


Serves 4, or serves 2 generously.
Nutrition information does not include optional rice.


Calories: 209kcal | Carbohydrates: 17g | Protein: 11g | Fat: 11g | Saturated Fat: 2g | Sodium: 591mg | Potassium: 444mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 6g | Vitamin A: 510IU | Vitamin C: 50mg | Calcium: 71mg | Iron: 2mg