This light and flavorful miso tofu stir-fry is made with tender-crisp red bell pepper slices and sugar snap peas, with crispy pan-fried tofu in a light and savory miso sauce.
Miso is some interesting stuff. The first time I tried miso soup, I freaked out a little bit. I was convinced it was made from some kind of meat broth. Fermented food can do that to you if you're not used to it. I later heard the term described as umami. It's hard to describe or put your finger on essentially what umami is, but a savory flavor that most of us associate with meat is a good place to start.
Anyhow, I've been throwing more and more fermented ingredients into my food lately, and miso has made a regular appearance. When I taste test some savory dish and it seems to be missing something, it's often that hard to pin down umami.
I decided it was time to go and make a miso-centric recipe that isn't soup. (If you are looking for a good soup recipe, try my soba noodle miso soup.) With stir-fries, I have a tendency to go heavy on sweet and spicy flavors. This stir-fry was a bit of a change from that. The sauce is much lighter than my norm. I guess with the lightness of stir-fried veggies I normally feel the urge to compensate, hence the sweet and spicy. In this case I was totally satisfied with a light, savory sauce. Maybe it's my appetite getting ready for spring. I start to crave lighter foods as the weather warms up, which is apparently happening -- I can count at least two nights over the past week that I slept with the window open, and I've been a bit sneezy, which always happens around the time the trees start budding. In any event, this dish made a happy little early springtime dinner. It more than made up for the sneezing and the daylight savings lag I've been feeling all week.
Veggie and Miso Tofu Stir-Fry
For the Sauce
- 3 tbsp. white miso paste
- 2 tbsp. rice vinegar
- 2 tbsp. water
- 1 tbsp. soy sauce
- 1 tbsp. maple syrup
- 1 tbsp. sesame oil
- 2 tsp. sriracha or other hot sauce
For the Crispy Tofu
- 1 lb. extra firm tofu drained, pressed for at least 20 minutes, and cut into 1 inch cubes
- 2 tsp. vegetable oil
For the Veggie Stir-Fry
- 2 tbsp. vegetable oil
- 2 garlic cloves minced
- 2 tsp. fresh grated ginger
- 4 cups sugar snap peas
- 1 red bell pepper sliced into strips
- 2 scallions chopped
- 1-2 tsp. sesame seeds
- cooked rice
Make the Sauce
Whisk all ingredients together in small bowl. Set aside.
Make the Crispy Tofu
Coat the bottom of a large skillet with oil and place over medium heat. Add tofu cubes in a single layer. Cook until browned on bottoms, about 5 minutes, flip and cook another 5 minutes. Remove from skillet and transfer to a plate.
Make the Veggie Stir-Fry
Add oil to skillet and raise heat to high. Add garlic, ginger, sugar snap peas and bell pepper strips. Stir-fry until veggies are tender-crisp, about 3 minutes. Lower heat to medium-high and add tofu and sauce. Cook 1 minute more, flipping frequently to distribute ingredients.
Serve with rice and top with scallions and sesame seeds.
It is so true that its hard to pin down that 5th flavor! I know what you mean about miso though...it can totally take on that "meaty" flavor. But it is soooo delicious. Love this pretty stir fry dish and the sweet and spicy combo! Yum!
Ana @ Ana's RocketShip says
I love miso! Thanks for such a brilliant recipe!
janet @ the taste space says
Lovely and simple, just the way I like it. Totally on a miso kick right now, too. :)
Miso is my life. I wish I could use it in everything. I love using it in stir fry! :)
Just had to say thank you for this recipe! Made it tonight and it was delicious. Next time I'll double the sauce and use half to marinate the tofu overnight.
Alissa Saenz says
I'm so glad you enjoyed it! Thanks Kate!
Made this today for the family (so no tofu, they wouldn't eat it) and they allllll loved the sauce! thank you so much.
becky b says
I just used the sauce which was perfect for what I wanted -I was craving something savory for a stirfry but not the plain old soy. I had tofu, red cabbage and some mushrooms that needed to get used up. Added some onion as well. I stir fried the tofu, removed from the pan then stir fried the onion and cabbage, added the mushrooms for a quick minute, then added back the tofu and then the miso sauce. The whole meal must have taken 10 minutes to make. Thanks! That recipe is a keeper. Nice to know something that works with red cabbage and I can imagine it would taste good with lots of different combinations of vegys. THANKS!
Making this recipe again tonight. I can't back to read the comments. You have some great ideas!
hi, am i the only one not clear whether you mean 3 tbsp miso SOUP or PASTE?
Alissa Saenz says
It's paste - I've updated the recipe to clarify.
Patricia A Reich says
Made this for my family. It is excellent. We love the sauce.
Such a brilliant, quick and easy recipe, thank you! I’m now using the miso sauce recipe in a mid-week stir fry weekly! I tend to add tempeh instead of tofu, but both work brilliantly. Thank you so much 👌
Thank you for sharing this lovely recipe. You made a difference in my lunch today. =^.^=