Szechuan-Style Tofu


Szechuan-Style Tofu

Szechuan sauce is a sweet, spicy, tangy sauce from the Szechuan region of China made with peppercorns, ginger, garlic, soy sauce, and rice wine vinegar. Combining this sauce with tofu and vegetables makes it the perfect weeknight stir-fry dinner. I like to add bell peppers, mushrooms, carrots, and asparagus, but go ahead and experiment with other vegetables!

  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 10 minutes
  • Allergens: Soy
  • Servings: 4


Stir Fry

  • 14 ounces tofu (patted dry, cubed)
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 pinch salt and pepper (generous)
  • 1/2 cup onion (thinly sliced)
  • 4 ounces mushrooms (sliced)
  • 2 cups cabbage (shredded)
  • 1 cup carrots (matchstick)
  • 1/2 red bell pepper (thinly sliced)
  • 1 cup asparagus, snow peas, or green beans

Szechuan Sauce

  • 1/2-1 teaspoon Szechuan peppercorns (dry roasted, ground)
  • 1/4 cup soy sauce or gluten-free soy sauce
  • 3 tablespoons coconut sugar
  • 1 tablespoon sesame oil
  • 1 tablespoon rice wine vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon mirin
  • 3 cloves garlic (finely minced)
  • 2 teaspoons fresh ginger (finely minced)
  • 1 teaspoon garlic chili paste
  • 1/2 teaspoon Chinese five spice
  • 2 teaspoons cornstarch


  1. In a skillet, heat oil and season generously with salt and pepper.  

  2. Swirl seasoned oil around until it spreads out uniformly.  

  3. Add tofu and sear on at least two sides until crispy and golden. Set aside.

  4. In the same pan, add a little more oil if needed, then onion and mushrooms, and sauté over medium-high heat, stirring constantly until tender (about 3 minutes).

  5. Add remaining veggies and sauté, tossing and stirring until just tender or al dente (about 3-5 minutes).

  6. In a bowl, combine all Szechuan sauce ingredients (peppercorns, soy sauce, coconut sugar, sesame oil, rice wine vinegar, mirin, garlic, ginger, garlic chili paste, Chinese five spice, and cornstarch).

  7. Add sauce to the pan, starting with ¼ cup and adding more to taste.

  8. Cook until sauce it gets thick (about 2 minutes), tossing to warm up.

  9. Serve with steamed jasmine rice.