Tofu And Bok Choy Stir-Fry With Peanut Sauce Recipe

Tofu is commonly used as a protein in vegan stir-fries, but it can have a spongy texture that not everyone cares for. Recipe developer Annabelle Randles takes care of this issue with her tofu and bok choy stir-fry recipe by pressing the tofu before cooking in order to remove as much water as possible. "This step not only helps create a better texture," she explains, "but also helps tofu absorb flavors more effectively." Plus, while the tofu presses for 20 minutes, you can use the time efficiently to prep the rest of the ingredients.

Randles calls this stir-fry "a delicious and nutritious meal" and praises the bok choy, noting its "mild, slightly sweet flavor and crisp texture." While she herself makes this recipe using cooked brown rice, she says that white rice would also work if you prefer its taste or appreciate its shorter cook time and longer shelf life.

Gather the ingredients for this tofu and bok choy stir-fry with peanut sauce

The stir-fry itself is made of tofu, bok choy, carrot, and bell pepper, plus some cornstarch, a chili pepper, ginger, garlic, and vegetable oil. Additional ingredients for the sauce include chunky peanut butter, lime juice, sesame oil, brown sugar, and tamari. (Randles tells us, "I use tamari because it has a lower sodium content than soy sauce.") Add some brown or white rice, and you'll have a complete meal.

Press the tofu

The first step in cooking the tofu is to press it for at least 20 minutes to get the water out. Should you own a dedicated tofu press, then this, of course, would be the perfect time to use it. If not, there's no need to purchase such a gadget just for this recipe. Instead, wrap your tofu in a towel (a clean one, of course), put it on a plate, then put another plate on top and weigh it down with something heavy, Randles instructs.

After you're done pressing the tofu, drain off any water that has accumulated. Cut the block into ¾-inch cubes and toss it with the cornstarch to coat.

Prep the vegetables and sauce

While the tofu drains, you can use this time to prep the produce. Slice the chili thinly, then peel the ginger and chop it into matchsticks. Peel and mince the garlic, then take the leaves off the bok choy and wash them. Peel the carrots and cut them into thin strips, then core and seed the pepper and cut it into strips, as well.

Next, stir the peanut butter together with the water, lime juice, tamari, sesame oil, sugar, and garlic. This combination makes the creamy, hearty peanut sauce.

Cook the tofu and vegetables

Heat 2 tablespoons of vegetable oil over medium-high heat, then use the hot oil to stir-fry the tofu until golden in color. Take the tofu out of the pan, pour in the rest of the oil, and stir-fry the garlic, ginger, and chili for 30 seconds. Add the vegetables to the pan and stir-fry those for 3-5 minutes or until they become soft. At this point, put the tofu back in the pan and toss everything with ¾ of the peanut sauce.

Assemble and serve the stir-fry bowls

Divide the rice among dishes and top with heaps of the tofu and vegetable mixture, along with the remaining peanut sauce. If you prefer a more drizzly consistency, feel free to use a little water to thin out the sauce, or simply pass around the tamari bottle and sprinkle it over your stir-fry. Finally, if you'd like a garnish, go to town with the optional sesame seeds, scallions, and lime wedges.

Tofu And Bok Choy Stir-Fry With Peanut Sauce Recipe
5 from 51 ratings
Packed with crispy tofu, colorful veggies, and creamy peanut sauce, these stir-fry bowls have it all!
Prep Time
Cook Time
rice with vegetables and tofu
Total time: 30 minutes
  • 14 ounces extra-firm tofu
  • 1 small fresh red chili (or ½, depending on heat preference)
  • 1 (2-inch) piece fresh ginger root
  • 2 large garlic cloves, divided
  • ¾ pound small-sized bok choy
  • 5 ounces carrots
  • 1 medium red bell pepper
  • ⅓ cup chunky natural peanut butter
  • ⅓ cup water
  • 3 tablespoons fresh lime juice
  • 3 tablespoons tamari, plus extra for serving (if desired)
  • 1 ½ tablespoon toasted sesame oil
  • 1 tablespoon dark brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch
  • 3 tablespoons vegetable oil, divided
  • 3 cups cooked long-grain brown rice
Optional Ingredients
  • 2 tablespoons sesame seeds, for serving
  • 3 scallions, sliced, for serving
  • 1 lime, cut into wedges, for serving
  1. Press the tofu for at least 20 minutes to extract as much water as possible. You can use a tofu press for this or wrap the tofu in a clean towel and press it between 2 plates by securely placing something heavy on top.
  2. Meanwhile, prepare the rest of the ingredients: Thinly slice the chili, peel and cut the ginger into matchsticks, mince 1 clove of garlic, and grate the other clove of garlic. Set aside.
  3. Continue prepping the stir-fry ingredients: Detach the leaves of the bok choy and wash them thoroughly, peel and cut the carrots into matchsticks, and de-seed the bell pepper and cut it into strips. Set these items aside.
  4. Make the peanut sauce by whisking together the peanut butter, water, lime juice, tamari, sesame oil, sugar, and grated garlic until well combined. Set the sauce aside.
  5. When the tofu is done draining, discard any excess water, cut the tofu into ¾-inch cubes, and toss in cornstarch until coated all over.
  6. Cook the tofu by heating 2 tablespoons of vegetable oil in a large frying pan or wok over medium-high heat, then adding the cubes once the oil is hot. Sauté the tofu, stirring often, until golden all over, then remove it from the pan and set aside.
  7. Heat the remaining vegetable oil over medium-high heat in the same pan, then add the minced garlic, ginger, and chili and stir-fry for 30 seconds.
  8. Add the bok choy, carrot, and bell pepper and stir-fry on high heat for 3-5 minutes or until the vegetables start to soften.
  9. Return the tofu to the pan with the vegetables and add ¾ of the peanut sauce, tossing everything until combined.
  10. To serve, divide the rice among plates and top with tofu, vegetables, and the remaining peanut sauce (which can be thinned out with a bit of water if a drizzly consistency is desired). Garnish the dish with optional sesame seeds, scallions, lime wedges, and extra tamari.
Calories per Serving 933
Total Fat 35.1 g
Saturated Fat 5.3 g
Trans Fat 0.1 g
Cholesterol 0.0 mg
Total Carbohydrates 132.2 g
Dietary Fiber 9.9 g
Total Sugars 10.1 g
Sodium 812.7 mg
Protein 27.9 g
The information shown is Edamam’s estimate based on available ingredients and preparation. It should not be considered a substitute for a professional nutritionist’s advice.
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