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close up photo of lemongrass tofu in a pan

Easy Lemongrass Tofu Recipe

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5 from 3 reviews

  • Author: Jasmine @ Sweet Simple Vegan
  • Total Time: 43 minutes
  • Yield: 4 servings
  • Diet: Vegan


This Lemongrass tofu is jam-packed with flavor, yet made with simple ingredients. Even the biggest tofu skeptics go back for seconds of this flavorful Vietnamese-inspired dish! 


  • 1 block firm tofu, pressed and cut into 1-inch cubes
  • Pinch of salt
  • 2 tablespoons cooking oil (we used avocado oil)
  • 4 cloves garlic, finely minced
  • 2 stalk green onions, sliced and divided
  • 1 teaspoon finely grated fresh ginger
  • 1 red chili pepper, seeds removed and finely diced
  • 2 lemongrass stalks, bottom white part, thinly sliced* (see notes)
  • 2 tablespoons tamari
  • 1 tablespoon maple syrup
  • 1 teaspoon toasted sesame oil
  • Black pepper, to taste


  1. In a medium nonstick pan over medium heat, add in 1 tablespoon of avocado oil. Once heated, add in the diced tofu along with a pinch of salt and cook, flipping often, until golden brown, about 8 minutes. Remove the tofu from the pan and set aside.
  2. Add another tablespoon of oil to the pan. Once heated, add in the garlic, green onions, ginger, red chili, and lemongrass, and cook until the garlic is fragrant and everything has softened, about 3-4 minutes.
  3. Reduce the heat to low and add in the soy sauce, maple syrup, and sesame oil. Mix to combine. Add in the cooked tofu and gently toss the tofu until it is well coated in the lemongrass mixture. Cook for 1 more minute just to heat the tofu through. Season with black pepper to taste.
  4. Remove the pan from heat and serve as desired. Enjoy!


  • Tofu: We like to use firm tofu instead of extra-firm in this recipe as it is less dense and it absorbs the flavors more. If you only have access to extra-firm, that will work in its place. Check out this post for full directions on how to press tofu (without a tofu press).
  • Red chili pepper: We used a cayenne pepper or this since it is what we had on hand, but feel free to use any pepper of your choice, according to your spice preference.
  • Lemongrass stalks: Remove the outer dry layers as these can be too tough to eat. You can use them for tea so that they don’t go to waste! Learn how to properly cut lemongrass here
  • Tamari: Feel free to use soy sauce in its place if that’s what you have on hand.
  • Maple Syrup: Agave works as well.
  • Nonstick Pan: We recommend using a nonstick pan for the best results. This will ensure that the tofu does not stick and gets as golden and crispy as possible.
  • Prep Time: 30 minutes
  • Cook Time: 13 minutes
  • Category: Entree
  • Method: Stovetop