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Vegan chicken piccata topped with lemon caper sauce and next to pasta on a plate

Vegan "Chicken" Piccata | Tofu Piccata Recipe

This Vegan Chicken Piccata is made from pan-seared crispy tofu and served in a creamy vegan butter lemon caper sauce for a cozy main dish.
Course Main
Cuisine American
Diet Vegan
Method Stovetop
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Author Caitlin Shoemaker


  • 1 16- ounce block super-firm tofu OR 10 ounces Vegan chicken cutlets see note
  • Salt and black pepper to taste
  • 1/3 cup 45 g all purpose flour (or gluten-free blend)
  • 4 tablespoons vegan butter divided
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 shallot minced
  • 2 cloves garlic minced
  • 1 tablespoon capers drained
  • 1 cup imitation “chicken” broth
  • 1 tablespoon arrowroot powder or 2 teaspoons cornstarch*
  • Juice of 1 lemon about 2 teaspoons tablespoon
  • ½-1 Lemon sliced (or up to 1 tsp lemon zest)
  • Chopped parsley for garnish


  • Prep: Place the flour on a wide plate.
  • Tofu: carefully cut the tofu block into four pieces; I prefer to cut it in 4 thin layers. Sprinkle salt (I used 1 teaspoon) and pepper over both sides of each tofu piece, then dredge in flour and shake off any excess. Discard any remaining flour. 
  • “Chicken”: Cutlets should be thawed completely. I opted not to season the Gardein cutlets because they are pre-seasoned. Dredge in flour, then shake off any excess. Discard any remaining flour.
  • Fry the “Chicken”: Heat Add 2 tablespoons butter and 2 tablespoons olive oil to a large skillet or pan over medium-high heat and swirl together. Once the butter has melted and begins to bubble, add the tofu or “chicken” and fry for 2 1/2 to 3 minutes per side, or until golden. Remove from the pan and set aside on a paper towel-lined plate.
  • Aromatics:Reduce to medium heat and add the shallot. Sauté for 1 minute, then add the garlic and capers and sauté for an additional minute.
  • Make the Pan Sauce: Add the broth to the pan and simmer for 2 to 3 minutes. Dissolve the arrowroot powder in water, then add the slurry and simmer for an additional 1 to 2 minutes, until thick and glossy. 
  • Final Touches: Reduce the heat to low and stir in the remaining 1 tablespoon of butter, lemon juice, lemon wedges, and salt to taste. Add the tofu or “chicken” back to the pan and let sit until warmed. Turn off the heat and sprinkle with parsley. 
  • Serve: serve warm, topped with the remaining pan sauce. This recipe is best served fresh; if you plan to have leftovers, do not add those cutlets back into the sauce and reheat both the tofu/“chicken” and sauce separately to prevent it from getting soggy. Enjoy leftovers within 3 days of making and store in the refrigerator.


  • Wine: if you'd like to add even more flavor to this dish, replace 1/2 cup of the broth with a dry white wine
  • "Chicken" Broth: I like to use this bouillon, but a garlic broth or vegetable broth will also work in a pinch.
  • Tofu: make sure you use super firm or high protein tofu, not extra firm. This tofu holds up well to frying and won't fall apart. You can try to make this dish with extra firm tofu, but i would press it very well first.