Vegan Mapo Tofu is a vegan version of the signature Sichuan dish. It has a numbing, spicy flavor that is perfectly balanced with sauteéd mushrooms and soft tofu cubes. The ultimate comfort food for chilly winter days.
What is Mapo Tofu?
Mapo Tofu is an iconic Chinese dish from the Sichuan province. The traditional recipe uses soft tofu and ground pork, mixed with spicy, numbing flavors of the spicy bean sauce (Doubanjiang) and Sichuan peppercorns.
This recipe attempts to make a plant-based version of Mapo Tofu, while still maintaining the authentic flavors of the dish.
Why you'll love Vegan Mapo Tofu recipe
This recipe uses mushrooms in place of traditional ground pork. I use cremini mushrooms, but shiitake would also work well.
For the numbing flavors, I use Doubanjiang (spicy bean sauce) and ground Sichuan peppercorns. It features spicy, iconic Sichuan flavors yet not overly spicy.
- To make the ground Sichuan peppercorns, you can buy the pre-ground peppercorns or grind the peppercorns with a mortar and pestle.
To balance out the spicy flavors, I also use soy sauce, mirin (or Shaoxing cooking wine), and a little bit of sugar.
With this adaptation, this recipe is:
- Plant-based yet flavorful and scrumptious
- Easy to make
- Can be made in 30 minutes, making it the perfect weekday meal!
- Warm and comforting: this is one of my ultimate comfort meals for winter days.
Vegan Mapo Tofu
- Total Time: 30 minutes
- Yield: 4 people 1x
Vegan Mapo Tofu is a vegan version of the signature Sichuan dish. It has a numbing, spicy flavor that is perfectly balanced with sauteéd mushrooms and soft tofu cubes.
- 1 block (400g) soft tofu
- 150g mushroom
- 3 stalks scallions (green onions)
- 3 cloves garlic
- 1 tbsp cooking oil
- 2 tbsp doubanjiang (spicy bean paste)
- 1 tbsp soy sauce
- 1 tbsp mirin (or Shaoxing cooking wine)
- 1 tsp sugar
- 1 tsp ground Sichuan peppercorns
- 200 ml water
- Corn starch slurry: 1 tablespoon corn starch + 3 tablespoon water
- Warm bowl of rice
- Cut a block of soft tofu into cubes.
- Thinly slice the scallion, and separate them into white and green parts. Finely mince the garlic. Cut the mushrooms into small pieces.
- If using whole peppercorns: Grind the peppercorns mortar and pestle.
- In a pot, blanch the tofu in salted boiling water for 3 minutes, then use a strainer to strain out the tofu.
- In a pan, add the cooking oil, mushroom pieces and stir fry until lightly golden. Add in the minced garlic and the white part of the scallions. Stir fry for a few minutes.
- Add in the doubanjiang, soy sauce, sugar, Sichuan peppercorns, mirin and water. Mix together, then bring to a boil and add in the tofu cubes.
- In a separate bowl, combine the corn starch and water to make the corn starch slurry. Add the slurry to the pan, and simmer on low heat until thickened.
- Garnish with the green part of the scallions.
- Lightly mix and transfer to a plate, enjoy with a bowl of warm rice.
- Prep Time: 10 minutes
- Cook Time: 20 minutes
- Category: Main Dish
- Method: stovetop
- Cuisine: Chinese
Keywords: sichuan peppercorn, spicy, silken tofu, mapo tofu, sichuan dish, chinese recipe, vegan