The Best Grilled Tofu

July 10th 117

Tofu gets such a bad rap. And you know what? It kind of deserves it. Just eaten plain, tofu is bland and a little disgusting.

But like any girl wearing glasses and overalls in a cliché 90s movie, tofu can get dressed up and steal the show. It takes on any flavor added to it, and when cooked properly has a “meaty” texture.

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There’s no reason for tofu-eaters to be left behind during grilling season. With the right marinade tofu makes a tasty grilled entrée. And this is the best(and simplest!) marinade I’ve ever tried. All it takes is time and patience for the flavors to be absorbed. It works well baked, too, but in the Summer there’s no other way to go than grilled.

The Best Grilled Tofu


  • 1 block firm tofu, sliced 3/4 inch thick
  • 1/3 cup soy sauce
  • 1/3 cup maple syrup
  • 2 Tablespoons lemon juice
  • 1 Tablespoon toasted sesame oil

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Combine all of the liquid ingredients and marinate the sliced tofu in the mixture for at least 3 hours, preferably overnight.

Heat a grill to high and lay the strips of tofu out. Flip after 3-5 minutes once the bottom side has grill marks and cook for another 3-5 minutes. Serve hot or refrigerate and serve cold.

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You can reuse the marinating liquid again and again since there’s a very low risk of spreading bacteria with tofu. Either add more tofu to the marinade immediately or freeze it until using again.

I can’t get enough of this. I could easily eat a block of tofu in one sitting. That’s what makes it the best.

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22 Responses to The Best Grilled Tofu
  1. Gina @ Running to the Kitchen
    July 11, 2011 | 9:06 am

    Do you grease the grill slats? I’ve only grilled tofu once and it stuck to the grill horribly!

    • Wannabe Chef
      July 11, 2011 | 10:15 am

      Nope! I think the sesame oil in the marinade helps to keep it greased.

  2. Anna @ Newlywed, Newly Veg
    July 11, 2011 | 9:08 am

    You know, I actually really like tofu plain and uncooked. Strange I know. But this looks better 🙂

  3. Meghan @ StruggleMuffins
    July 11, 2011 | 9:15 am

    Love this! I like my tofu simple. And grilled. And flanked by many many veggies. Well played, I’ll be making this soon ahhhthankyou!

  4. Amy
    July 11, 2011 | 9:43 am

    Looks delicious! Now I wish I had a grill so I could try this out!

  5. Caroline @ chocolate and carrots
    July 11, 2011 | 10:31 am

    It certainly looks like the best grilled tofu ever…now I just need to persuade my husband! Wish me luck! 😉

  6. Averie @ Love Veggies and Yoga
    July 11, 2011 | 12:47 pm

    Evan it looks PERFECT.

    The grill marks, the texture, the marinade.

    This is my kinda ‘fu!

  7. Hilary
    July 11, 2011 | 4:33 pm

    Mmmm…I’ve been wanting to try tofu more lately…this looks like a great place to start!

  8. Hannah
    July 11, 2011 | 7:16 pm

    Is it weird that I’m currently obsessed with eating plain cold tofu simply mixed with mustard and hot chilli sauce? That said, I reckon I’d like this even more, if I’d stop being lazy…

  9. Laura @ Family Spice
    July 12, 2011 | 12:26 am

    Okay, if I were to ever eat tofu, I would definitely try this. I suppose I had too many bad experiences with the stuff to become a fan of it! Looks delicious!

  10. holly
    July 12, 2011 | 2:19 pm

    i have never ever been able to make good tofu at home, so if this works, i will forever bow down to you and serenade you with backstreet boy songs forever.

  11. Kristina @ spabettie
    July 13, 2011 | 7:23 pm

    sesame oil makes everything better. so so good.

    girl in glasses and overalls – LOVE it! 😀

  12. Kelly
    July 14, 2011 | 3:54 pm

    Yummy looks so delicious!! 🙂

  13. Skylar
    July 16, 2011 | 11:33 am

    Wow, that looks delicious! Color me surprised

  14. Lori Lynn
    July 18, 2011 | 3:04 am

    It looks great.
    I need to get my grill as clean as yours to keep from sticking!

  15. Victor
    March 7, 2013 | 11:03 am

    Could this be done on a George Foreman grill? How would you modify the grilling time?

    • Wannabe Chef
      March 7, 2013 | 11:40 am

      I have not used a George Foreman grill before for these but since you don’t need to worry about the tofu reaching a certain temperature I’m sure that it would work.

  16. Anita Mac
    July 16, 2013 | 6:39 pm

    This sounds awesome! Picked up tofu and was looking for a flavour…love the maple addition. Have not tried that before.

    • Anita Mac
      July 16, 2013 | 8:38 pm

      Just finished – bbq was amazing! This one is a real winner. Added a few sesame seeds to the marinade and loved it. No wonder you can eat the entire packet. Lunch tomorrow will be awesome! Having the rest of the tofu package for lunch.

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