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Vegan Kung Pao Tofu
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Vegan Kung Pao Tofu

Prep Time: 15 Minutes

Cook Time: 10 Minutes

I was always a fan of Chinese foods and especially Kung Pao Chicken. In the original Kung Pao recipe it calls for oyster sauce and Chinese sweet chili sauce. Being vegan, I have tried to find a substitute for oyster sauce. I have found a vegetarian variety to replace oyster sauce, but when reading the label it contains sugar. The Chinese sweet chili sauce also contains sugar. I have been experimenting Kung Pao Tofu for some time. I finally created the perfect marinade for the tofu. Understanding the ingredients in the Chinese sweet chili sauce I have found a combination of ingredients to replace in my recipe. If you loved Kung Pao Chicken before you will love this new Kung Pao Tofu. Please try this recipe at home and enjoy.

Ingredients: Tofu Marinate:

  • 3 Tablespoon gluten free soy sauce
  • 1 Tablespoon rice vinegar
  • 1 Tablespoon vegan light brown sugar
  • 1 Tablespoon cornstarch
  • 1 Package extra firm Tofu, pressed and cut into 1-inch squares

Ingredients: Sweet Chili Sauce:

  • 3 Fresh hot red chilies, cleaned, steamed, and diced fine
  • 1/8 Teaspoon sea salt
  • 2 Garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 Teaspoon vegan dark brown sugar
  • 3 Tablespoon brown rice vinegar 

Ingredients: Kung Pao Sauce

  • ¼ Cup Chinese Black Vinegar
  • ¼ Cup Vegetable broth
  • 3 Tablespoon Chinese rice wine
  • 1 Teaspoon peanut butter
  • 1 Teaspoon molasses
  • ½ Teaspoon seasoned rice vinegar
  • 2 Tablespoon gluten free soy sauce
  • 2 Teaspoon sesame oil
  • 2 Teaspoon vegan sugar 


  • 2 ½ Tablespoon Vegetable cooking oil
  • 8 Small dried red chilies
  • 4 Teaspoon minced garlic
  • 2 Stalks celery, diced
  • 1 Red bell pepper, cut into 1-inch squares
  • 1 Cup snow peas
  • 1 Cup Mushrooms, sliced
  • 1 Can sliced bamboo shoots, drained
  • 1 Can water chestnuts, slicked and drained
  • 2 Teaspoon cornstarch dissolved in 1 tablespoon water
  • 1/3 Cup roasted peanuts 

Prepare Tofu Marinate:

  1. In mixing bowl, add soy sauce, rice vinegar, vegan light brown sugar, and cornstarch.
  2. Mix well
  3. Add 1-inch cut square tofu in the marinate sauce
  4. Mix well coating all pieces
  5. Let stand for 10 minutes 

Prepare Sweet Chili Sauce:

  1. In small bowl add diced chilies, sea salt, minced garlic, vegan dark brown sugar, and brown rice vinegar
  2. Mix well
  3. Set aside 

Prepare Kung Pao Sauce:

  1. In large bowl, mix all the sauce ingredients
  2. Add the sweet chili sauce to bowl
  3. Mix well
  4. Set aside 


  • Heat wok on high heat
  • Add 2 tablespoon vegetable oil to wok and coat all sides
  • Add chilies to wok and cook until fragrant, about 10 seconds.
  • Add marinated tofu to wok and stir-fry 4 minutes
  • Remove tofu and chilies from wok and set aside
  • Add ½ tablespoon vegetable oil to wok, coating all sides
  • Add garlic and cook for 10 seconds until fragrant
  • Add celery, bell peppers, bamboo shoots, Chinese sweet peas, mushroom, and water chestnuts to wok
  • Stir-fry for 2 minutes
  • Return tofu and chilies to wok
  • Stir-fry for 2 minutes
  • Add sauce mixture to wok
  • Bring to boil
  • Add cornstarch solution and cook, stirring until sauce boils and thickens
  • Add peanuts and stir to coat
  • Serve over rice


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  1. Sarah Johnston
    Sarah Johnston
    Amazing Kung Pao Tofu. I have to try this one soon. It sounds delicious and I use to love Kung Pao Chicken.
    1. Ann
      Yes it is really amazing and I am sure you will enjoy this.
  2. Julie Sinclair
    Julie Sinclair
    Oh how wonderful Tofu instead of chicken.
    1. Ann
      Please give it a try it is wonderful
  3. Granny Smith
    Granny Smith
    Oh my dear this does sound delicious.
    1. Ann
      Thank you and yes it is delicious
  4. Julie Davis
    This recipe is fantastic. I like how you have changed the oyster sauce and Chinese sweet chili sauce in your recipe. I never thought of making Kung Pao Tofu before but now you have given me this recipe. I have to make a batch for myself.
    1. Ann
      It took a little time to get the right flavors but after trying 4 times I had it down and it was simply delicious
  5. Scott Desmond
    Looks amazing
    1. Ann
  6. Cassidy Johnston
    Kung Pao tofu what an amazing idea. Sounds delicious
    1. Ann
      I have made this with vegan chicken strips but for some reason I like it best with tofu
  7. Eve Sherrill York
    Eve Sherrill York
    This looks very good.
    1. Ann
      Thank you so much and I hope you will try this soon.
  8. David Brian
    This looks Excellent. Another option if you would like a meatless alternative is Vegetarian Plus Kung Pao Chicken as the protein. give it a whirl...
  9. Anshu00
    What's molasses?
  10. Raul
    Do you have a link to original Kung Pao Chicken recipe?
  11. PandaMike
    Kung Pao Tofu is the best chicken recipe I've ever had in my entire life. I went to Pandaexpress and orger Kung Pao Tofu, 10 minutes later, the food had arrived. I literally got water in my mouth once I saw the fried chicken in front of me and I started eating it like a baby. Oh my god, Kung Pao Tofu was the perfect chinese food at Pandaexpress. Later I went to my place and did some survey for them to let them know how the recipe tasted. I googled their survey site and found to take Panda free entree item survey. I'm thankful to for reminding me the old times of Vegan Kung Pao Tofu. Keep it up guys.
  12. samanthaeve
    This is very educational content and well for a change. It's nice to see that some people still understand how to write a quality post!


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