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Kung Pao Tofu stir fry in bowl

Vegan Kung Pao Tofu

Crispy Tofu gets tossed with peanuts, veggies, chiles, and a sweet spicy and savory sauce for a plant-based twist on a classic takeout dish!
Course Main
Cuisine American, Chinese
Diet Gluten Free, Vegan, Vegetarian
Method Oven, Stovetop
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 40 minutes
Servings 4 People
Calories 315kcal
Author Caitlin Shoemaker


For the Tofu:

For the Stir Fry and Sauce:


  • Prep: Preheat the oven to 425F and line a baking sheet with a silicone mat or parchment paper. Tear the tofu into bite-sized chunks for a more meat-like shape and texture, or cut into small cubes. 
  • Tofu: Add the tofu to a medium bowl and add in the oil and tamari. Toss with a spatula until evenly coated, then sprinkle the cornstarch on top and toss again. Transfer to a baking sheet and spread out the tofu pieces so they aren’t touching. Bake on the top rack of the oven for 30 minutes, flipping the tofu halfway through.
  • Toast the Peppercorns (Optional): Bring a large sauté pan or wok to medium heat. Add the whole peppercorns and toast for 1 to 2 minutes, until fragrant. Remove from the pan, crush using a mortar and pestle, and set aside.
  • Stir-Fry Sauce: In a large glass measuring cup or jar add the soy sauce, rice vinegar, hoisin sauce, dark soy sauce (if using), water, and cornstarch. Whisk until the cornstarch is dissolved, then set aside.
  • Aromatics & Veggies: Add the avocado oil to the same pan over medium heat. Once warm, add the white parts of the green onion, garlic, and ginger; sauté for 1 to 2 minutes. Toss in the green and red bell peppers, peanuts, chiles, and crushed peppercorns. Mix well and sauté for 3 to 5 minutes.
  • Make it Saucy: Give the stir fry sauce a final whisk, then add to the pan with the veggies. Bring the sauce to a simmer and cook for an additional 2 to 3 minutes, until the sauce has thickened to your liking.
  • Serve & Store: Turn the heat to low, then stir in the baked tofu and sesame oil. Serve the Kung Pao Tofu and vegetables over rice (or as desired), then top with the reserved green onions and serve warm. Leftovers will keep in the fridge for up to 5 days.


  • Pressed Tofu: use a tofu press to remove the excess liquid from your tofu, or wrap the tofu in a clean towel or paper towels, place a heavy object on top, and let sit for at least 30 minutes
  • Peanut Free: use cashews for a fun twist!
  • Gluten-Free: use gluten-free hoisin sauce and gf soy sauce or tamari


Calories: 315kcal | Carbohydrates: 22g | Protein: 15g | Fat: 20g | Saturated Fat: 3g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 4g | Monounsaturated Fat: 11g | Cholesterol: 0.2mg | Sodium: 958mg | Potassium: 474mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 7g | Vitamin A: 1132IU | Vitamin C: 65mg | Calcium: 66mg | Iron: 2mg