This Tofu Stir Fry with Bell Peppers has a balance of sweet, savory, and spicy flavors. It is an easy healthy meal.
This Tofu Stir Fry with Bell Peppers is sweet, savory, and spicy. It is packed with veggies and flavor!
Eat it by itself or over rice, rice noodles or quinoa.
Serve some Vegan Cream Cheese Puffs or Vegetable Spring Rolls as an appetizer.
Another stir fry recipe that is packed with veggies is my Frozen Vegetable Stir Fry With Zucchini Noodles. It is done in about 15 minutes.
This is an overview of the ingredients. You'll find a complete list with measurements at the bottom of this post in the recipe card.
- Firm or extra firm tofu: I used firm tofu, but you could also use extra firm, which has less water. Whichever you choose, I suggest draining and pressing it to get the moisture out and so it gets crispy.
- Bell peppers: Red bell pepper and yellow bell pepper both add a sweet, crunchy bite. Green bell pepper adds a bitter note.
- Mushrooms: Add an umami flavor and meaty texture.
- Carrots: Add a sweet flavor and crunchy texture.
- Onion: Adds a pungent flavor.
- Serrano pepper: Adds a spicy note. You could use jalapeño pepper for less spice or habanero for more spice.
- Garlic: Adds a pungent flavor.
- Ginger: Adds spicy sweet flavor.
- Tamari: Since I'm gluten intolerant, I like to use tamari in place of soy sauce. The low sodium kind is my go-to. Tamari adds a salty umami flavor.
- Maple syrup: Balances out the salty umami flavors in this dish. Adds sweetness. You can also use brown rice syrup or agave syrup.
- Brown rice vinegar: For its acidity. It balances out the other flavors. You could also use lime juice.
- Olive oil: To cook the tofu and veggies in. You could also use avocado oil, coconut oil or sesame oil for a nutty flavor.
- Salt and pepper: Watch how much salt and pepper you add. The tamari has a lot of sodium and the serrano pepper already adds a punch of spice.
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- Mix together maple syrup, brown rice vinegar, and tamari. Set aside.
- Drain and press tofu. You can do this by putting the tofu in between a towel on a cutting board. Then, place a cast iron skillet or other heavy object on top. Let sit 15 minutes like this. The towel will soak up the excess moisture.
- Heat olive oil in a skillet on medium-high heat. Add onions and cook until translucent.
- Add tofu and cook until slightly browned.
- Add ginger and garlic. Cook for a minute.
- Add carrots and peppers. Cook until slightly tender.
- Add mushrooms and sauce. Cook a few more minutes.
- Serve over white rice, brown rice, or rice noodles.
This vegan stir fry recipe will last up to 5 days in an airtight container in the fridge.
📖 Variations / Additions
- Bamboo shoots
- Snow peas
- Baby corn
- Bean sprouts
- Water chestnuts
- Red chili flakes for more spice
- You can use your favorite veggies, just make sure to cook the hard vegetables first. They will take longer. Then, add soft vegetables.
- If you are using a wok, cooking goes a lot faster than a frying pan. You will need less oil than I listed here.
- Have all the vegetables cut ahead of time. It makes things a lot easier.
- As is - which is how I like it
- Rice (my latest favorite is rice made from chickpeas)
- Rice noodles
Firm tofu or extra firm tofu is best for a vegan stir fry. It gets crispy when drained, pressed and fried.
You're either not draining and pressing it first or you're not cooking it long enough or at the right temperature.
If you want it crispy, you'll need to drain and press it.
This easy vegan stir fry can be eaten by itself or served over noodles or rice.
I originally posted this recipe February 14, 2015. I added new photos, text and a video when I republished it.
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Tofu Stir Fry with Bell Peppers
- ¼ cup low sodium gluten free tamari
- 2 tablespoons maple syrup
- 2 tablespoons brown rice vinegar
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 cup chopped onion
- 14 oz. firm tofu drained and pressed
- 5 cups julienned red, green, and yellow peppers (3 peppers)
- 1 cup julienned carrots
- 1 ½ teaspoons finely diced serrano pepper
- 1 cup sliced baby bella mushrooms (crimini)
- 1 clove garlic minced
- 1 tablespoon minced ginger
- Salt and pepper
- Mix together tamari, brown rice syrup, and brown rice vinegar. Set aside.
- Heat olive oil in pan or wok on high heat, add onions and cook until translucent.
- Slice drained and pressed tofu into cubes. Add cubed tofu to the pan with onions and cook until slightly browned.
- Add minced garlic and ginger and cook about a minute.
- Add carrots, and red, yellow and green peppers, and chopped serrano. Cook until almost tender.
- Add mushrooms and sauce and cook a few more minutes. Season with salt and pepper.
- Serve over rice or brown rice noodles.
*Note: Nutrition information should be considered an estimate only. Different nutrition calculators give you different results.
Jared Kovacs (thehesitantchef) says
This looks really tasty! Thanks for sharing.
This recipe sounds and looks super yummy! I will keep this idea in mind when I want something new to feed my family.
This sounds delicious! Pinning this for later.
Looks really delicious and I love how you included the meaning of each ingredient! So cool.
Willow Moon says
Thanks! I love reading about other cultures, and found it interesting, so thought I would share.
Looks good I must try it out
This sounds delicous! Love all the symbolism!
Willow Moon says
It's interesting, isn't it!
That looks so good! I am pinning so I can make it later.
This looks delicious! I have never tried tofu but I am willing to try this!
Willow Moon says
I could eat tofu daily!
Yum! What a great way to bring savory taste to tofu.