Air Fryer Tofu
Published Dec 29, 2021, Updated Feb 22, 2023
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Learn how to make air fryer tofu that’s crispy on the outside and chewy and soft on the inside. It cooks up in just 10 minutes and is perfect for meal prep. Serve it on its own, on a salad, in a stir-fry or in a sandwich!
While veggies don’t hold up as well for meal prep in the air fryer, proteins really do. This air fryer tofu recipe is so easy and perfect for making ahead and having ready to eat throughout the week!
Why You’ll Love Air Fryer Tofu
- It cooks up in 10 minutes!
- It’s a perfect protein option to add to different dishes.
- It’s great for meal prep.
- The tofu comes out crispy outside and chewy inside – perfection!
Here’s What You Need
- extra firm tofu – make sure you get extra firm, as it will hold up the best. Drain and press the tofu before you chop it.
- arrowroot powder – combined with the olive oil, this will help you achieve the perfect crispy outside texture. You can also use cornstarch!
- olive oil – tossing the tofu in olive oil helps it achieve the perfect crispy outside texture, as well as helping the seasonings to adhere to the tofu. You can use avocado oil if you prefer.
- seasonings – garlic powder, paprika, sea salt and pepper. Super simple but extra delicious.
How to Prep Tofu
You’ll want to drain and press your tofu before cooking. Pressing the tofu takes out the extra moisture so it will crisp nicely and absorb the flavors in the dish. To start, cut a slit in the tofu package and drain all of the water out. You can use a tofu press for this, but if you don’t have one there are some other easy ways to press tofu! Simply wrap the tofu block in paper towels or a clean dish towel and set it on a flat surface. Stack a few heavy items on top to press the moisture out – I typically use a cast iron skillet, canned food or cookbooks. This process can take 30-90 minutes depending on how heavy your items are.
How to Make Air Fryer Tofu
Once your tofu is pressed, chop the block into 1/4-1/2 inch cubes, keeping them as uniform as possible. Place the cubes into a large mixing bowl.
Measure out your oil, arrowroot powder and seasonings and sprinkle them over the tofu blocks. Toss well to coat.
If necessary, preheat your air fryer to 400ºF. Add your tofu to the basket in a single layer and cook for 10 minutes. Make sure you flip the tofu halfway through. Your tofu is done when it is golden brown and looks crispy! It really is that simple!
This tofu recipe is perfectly delicious and seasoned to be useful in a variety of different ways, but that doesn’t mean you can’t mix things up!
Curried tofu – use curry powder to make curried tofu! It would be great for giving sandwiches or wraps that extra boost of flavor.
Spicy tofu – add some cayenne pepper to make a spicy variation!
Mexican spices – another way to change up the flavors would be to add a Mexican seasoning blend. You could try using a packet of taco seasoning or just add your own seasonings to create your own blend. Traditional flavors would include cumin, chili powder, paprika, dried oregano, garlic powder and onion powder.
Italian seasoning – perfect to top salads with, you can use an Italian seasoning blend to change up the flavors!
Air Fryer FAQ
That depends on your air fryer! Some recommend preheating and others do not require it. Check your owners’ manual to see what they recommend. If you don’t have a preheat setting, just set your air fryer to the required temperature about 3 minutes before adding your food.
It depends on the size of your basket. You’ll want to make sure you don’t overcrowd the basket or your food will not get crispy. You may need to cook in batches.
I do not recommend using aerosol spray on your air fryer! Like most non-stick items, it’s best to avoid sprays like Pam as it can mess with the finish.
How to Serve Air Fryer Tofu
This tofu recipe is super versatile and can be used in so many ways – that’s what makes it perfect for meal prep!
You can serve this tofu over a salad for added protein, stuff it into a sandwich for an easy lunch or add it to a stir fry. You can even enjoy this air fryer tofu on its own, like nuggets, dipped into honey mustard or your favorite dipping sauce! Here are some recipe ideas:
- Top a salad with this tofu to amp up the protein! Try it with my farro salad, greek chickpea salad or even my simple garlicky kale salad.
- Use this tofu in place of shrimp in my shrimp stir fry salad or use it in my vegan ‘chicken’ salad. It would also be great to use in my tofu cabbage noodle bowl!
- Whip up my healthy chick-fil-a sauce, healthy honey mustard or dip into your favorite brand of ketchup (I love Primal Kitchen organic unsweetened ketchup!)
How to Store For Meal Prep
Make a batch of this air fryer tofu and use it during the week for easy meal options! I recommend letting the tofu cool slightly before storing it in an airtight container in the fridge for 4-5 days.
More Air Fryer Recipes
- Air Fryer Sweet Potato Fries
- Air Fryer Salmon
- Pasta Chips
- Air Fryer Brussels Sprouts
- Air Fryer Cauliflower
- Air Fryer Breakfast Potatoes
- Air Fryer Broccoli
- Air Fryer Chicken Breast
- Air Fryer Coconut Shrimp
More Recipes with Tofu
- Kung Pao Tofu
- Tofu Pumpkin Curry
- Mattar Tofu
- Asian Tofu Tacos
- Orange Tofu with Fennel and Basil
- Grilled Lemon Basil Tofu
Be sure to check out all of my tofu recipes and the full collection of the air fryer recipes here on EBF!
Air Fryer Tofu
- 16 oz extra firm tofu, drained and pressed
- 2 Tablespoons arrowroot powder or cornstarch
- 2 teaspoons olive oil
- ½ teaspoon garlic powder
- 1 teaspoon paprika
- 1 teaspoon sea salt
- ¼ teaspoon pepper
- Once tofu has been pressed, chop into 1/4-1/2 inch cubes and add to a large bowl.
- Sprinkle arrowroot powder, oil, garlic powder, paprika, salt and pepper on tofu. Toss well to coat the tofu.
- Preheat air fryer if required. Place tofu in air fryer basket in a single layer and and cook on 400°F for 10 minutes, flipping halfway, until golden brown and crispy.
- Serve tofu over salad, stuffed into a sandwich, in a stir-fry or on its own like nuggets. I love these dipped in honey mustard or ketchup.
Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.
So happy to see Airfryer recipes!!
I can’t wait to try, thanks for this recipe! Is the dipping sauce in the photo with the tofu available on your site?
This is great – super easy and so tasty. I love how crispy it gets in the air fryer. This was my first time cooking tofu and I am sold. Thanks for sharing the air fryer recipes.
Woo! Happy to hear you enjoyed this air fryer tofu, Melissa. Thanks for trying it out and I appreciate the review!
Will try using shrimp
Glad you enjoyed it, Rebecca! Thanks for the review :).
Does this work without the oil? Maybe with aquafaba?
Hi – You could use avocado oil instead of olive oil if you prefer, bit I recommend some sort of oil to help it get crispy. Hope you enjoy!