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So, I know, I’m probably a little late to the air fryer party. However, recently I have been air frying my tofu and man is it a game changer. It really felt necessary now to share this vegan chili garlic sesame air fried tofu with you. This is something I have been making a ton! It takes 15 minutes to get crazy crispy tofu without frying in oil. The sauce takes just a few minutes and you can serve everything with rice and veggies. This whole meal is done in the time it takes you to make the rice. If you just want to serve it with veggies it takes less than that. The sauce is delicious, the tofu crispy, there is extra sauce to drizzle on the rice and veggies. It is all so, so, so good.
What You Need For This Sticky Takeout Inspired Tofu:
- Tofu: That was probably pretty obvious.
- Sesame Oil: To toss the tofu in and to start the sauce.
- Soy Sauce or Tamari: Also to toss the tofu in and it gets added to the sauce.
- Vegetable Broth: This makes up the bulk of the sauce and I find the sauce has way more flavor than if you use water.
- Corn Starch: This helps thicken the sauce.
- Rice Wine Vinegar: I love this hit of much needed acid in the sauce.
- Agave Syrup: Most traditional take out-inspired sauces like this one use a LOT of sugar. I opted to use agave and take the amount way down.
- Garlic and Ginger: Make the sauce super tasty and fragrant.
- Chili Garlic Sauce: I love to use an Asian chili garlic sauce in this recipe, but sriracha would work well for this recipe too.
- Sesame Seeds: The perfect way to finish this sauce!
My daughter is totally obsessed with me air frying tofu and she loves this vegan chili garlic sesame air fried tofu. She asks for seconds every time. She also likes to snack on the tofu right out of the air fryer that only has sesame oil and soy sauce on it. With easy air fried tofu, the sauce and seasonings possibilities are endless. I bet you’ll absolutely love this option though! If you need an air fryer, this is the one I have: Ninja AF101 Air Fryer that Cooks, Crisps and Dehydrates, with 4 Quart Capacity, Black/gray
Why Should You Make This Air Fried Meal?
- So fast, you won’t believe it.
- SUPER crispy tofu with out a lot of oil.
- This sauce is to die for.
- Can easily be made totally gluten-free.
Vegan Chili Garlic Sesame Air Fried Tofu
- 1 Block(15oz.) Extra firm tofu, drained and pressed*
- 1 Tablespoon Sesame oil or Olive oil
- 2 Tablespoons Soy sauce or Tamari for GF option
Chili Garlic Sesame Sauce
- 2 Tablespoons Sesame oil
- 4 Cloves Garlic, finely chopped
- 1 teaspoon Fresh ginger, grated
- 1 1/2 Cup Vegetable broth
- 1/4 Cup Corn starch
- 2 Tablespoons Rice wine vinegar
- 1/2 Cup Agave syrup
- 3 Tablespoons Soy sauce or Tamari
- 2-3 teaspoons Chili sauce, I used Asian Chili Garlic sauce**
- 2 Tablespoons Sesame seeds, I used half black, and half white
- After draining and pressing the tofu, cut the block of tofu into cubes.
- Put the tofu in a medium sized mixing bowl and drizzle the sesame oil and soy sauce over the tofu. Toss to coat and let sit for about 5 minutes.
- Now remove the tofu from the bowl, shake off any excess liquid. Put the tofu in the basket of your air fryer, don't over crowd, if you have one of the smaller air fryers, I recommend doing the tofu in 2 batches.
- Air fry the tofu at 400 degrees(F) for 15 minutes. It should be nice and crispy at that point.
- While the tofu air fries, make the sauce. Heat the sesame oil for the sauce in a medium sized sauce pan on medium high.
- Add the garlic and ginger. Sauté, reducing heat as needed for 1-2 minutes.
- Then, whisk together the vegetable broth and the corn starch. Make sure the corn starch has completely dissolved in the broth.
- Add the broth/corn starch mixture to the sauce pan. Then add the vinegar, agave, soy sauce, and chili sauce. Whisk to fully combine. Bring to a simmer, reduce heat to low.
- Continuing whisking constantly until the sauce is nice and thick. It may take a few minutes.
- Stir the sesame seeds into the sauce. I do recommend toasting the sesame seeds, but that is optional.
- Once the tofu is done, add it to a large bowl and pour as much sauce over the top as you want to, toss to coat. There should be extra sauce for serving with rice and/or veggies! Serve immediately.