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Tofu Chicken Nuggets on a Plate with a dish of barbecue sauce and lemon wedges on the side.
Crispy Tofu Chicken Nuggets
Prep Time
40 mins
Cook Time
16 mins
Freeze Time
6 hrs

Get ready for the most delicious, most irresistible tofu you've ever tasted! These tofu chicken nuggets are the packed with juicy flavor and covered in crispy breading. They'll make a tofu lover out of anyone!

Course: Entree
Cuisine: American
Servings: 4
Calories: 431 kcal
Author: Alissa Saenz
  • 1 (14 ounce or 400 gram) package extra-firm or super-firm tofu, frozen then thawed, then cut into 16 cubes
For the Marinade
  • ¾ cup vegetable broth
  • 2 tablespoons nutritional yeast flakes
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce
  • ½ teaspoon ground cumin
  • ½ teaspoon onion powder
  • ¼ teaspoon garlic powder
For the Batter
  • 1 cup unsweetened and unflavored non-dairy milk
  • 1 teaspoon white vinegar
  • ¼ cup all-purpose flour
  • 2 tablespoons ground flaxseed
  • ½ teaspoon salt
For the Breading
  • ½ cup all-purpose flour
  • ½ cup cornstarch
  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • ½ teaspoon onion powder
  • ½ teaspoon garlic powder
  • ¾ teaspoon salt
For Frying
  • cup canola oil, or more, as needed
For Serving
  1. Place the tofu cubes on a kitchen towel and gently press them to squeeze out any excess water, then transfer them to a shallow dish.

  2. Stir the marinade ingredients together in a small container, then pour the marinade over the tofu. Let the tofu marinate for 30 minutes at room temperature, turning the pieces occasionally.

  3. Whisk the batter ingredients together in a small bowl, until smooth. Let the mixture sit for 5 to 10 minutes.

  4. While the batter sits, whisk the breading ingredients together in a separate bowl.

  5. Pour at least ⅛ inch of oil into the bottom of a medium nonstick skillet and set the skillet over medium heat.

  6. Once the oil begins to shimmer, remove a tofu cube from the marinade (I like to give it one final roll in the marinade just before doing this, in order to soak up as much as possible). Place the tofu into the breading mixture and roll to get it evenly coated.

  7. Transfer the tofu cube to the batter and roll it around until coated.

  8. Remove the tofu from the batter and place it back into the breading mixture. Roll it around to cover it with a second coating of breading.

  9. Place the tofu cube into the hot oil.

  10. Repeat the battering and breading steps for as many tofu pieces as you can fit into the skillet without crowding. Cook them for about 4 minutes on each side, until golden brown and crispy.

  11. Place the cooked tofu pieces on a paper towel-lined plate to drain, and continue cooking the remaining tofu pieces in batches, adding oil to the skillet as needed.

  12. Serve the tofu chicken nuggets with vegan barbecue sauce, or your favorite dipping sauce.

Recipe Notes
  • For the pan-fried variation (no breading), prepare and marinate the tofu according to the recipe. Heat about 1 tablespoon of oil in a nonstick skillet, then pan-fry the tofu pieces for about 5 minutes on each side, drizzling them with a bit of excess marinade as they cook.
  • For the baked variation (also without breading), bake the tofu cubes on a parchment paper-lined baking sheet at 400°F for about 25 minutes, turning and basting them with some excess marinade about halfway through.
  • This recipe is adapted from my chicken fried tofu sandwich recipe.
Nutrition Facts
Crispy Tofu Chicken Nuggets
Amount Per Serving (4 nuggets (¼ of batch))
Calories 431 Calories from Fat 222
% Daily Value*
Fat 24.7g38%
Saturated Fat 2.4g12%
Sodium 1123mg47%
Potassium 361mg10%
Carbohydrates 38.8g13%
Fiber 4.4g18%
Sugar 1.7g2%
Protein 14.2g28%
Calcium 327mg33%
Iron 5mg28%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.