Learn how to turn tofu into the crispiest, most flavor-packed vegan fried chicken you’ve ever had. This Vegan KFC Fried Chicken recipe will blow the minds of anyone who tries it.
As a kid, fried chicken was always one of my favorite foods to have. Whether it was homemade, KFC, Popeye’s, or otherwise, I was all about it. I am not joking when I say that this tofu fried chicken is SPOT ON to the real thing. Crispy and flaky on the outside, and tender and juicy on the inside—absolute perfection.
When creating this recipe, I did a bunch of research on KFC’s famous seasoning blend. While their method is technically “top secret,” I did find some base recipes for the blend that I was able to tweak and make my own. There are quite a few components to the seasoning blend, but chances are, you already have most of the spices at home. Here’s what you’ll need:
In addition to this seasoning blend, all you need for this recipe is some medium-firm tofu, all-purpose flour, unsweetened plant-based milk, apple cider vinegar, and corn flakes. We like to use medium-firm tofu because it has the perfect consistency when prepared properly.
The method of preparing the tofu is quite time consuming, but with a little planning, it is well worth doing. We are using a method from Mary’s Test Kitchen. Essentially, we will freeze the package of tofu and allow it to completely defrost twice. Once it has defrosted for the second time, we will open the package, drain the liquid out, and press the tofu until it is as dry as you can get it. The full method can be found below on the recipe card.
This recipe uses a similar breading technique to our vegan mozzarellasticks and veggie chicken nuggets if you’ve ever made those. There are some differences, but it is relatively similar. If you are looking for some other tasty recipes, these are a must-try!
Freeze entire package of medium-firm tofu. Once it is frozen, remove it from the freezer and allow it to defrost. Repeat this step twice.
Once the tofu is fully thawed for the second time, open the package and fully drain out all of the liquid. Press the tofu between two cutting boards to remove the liquid as best as you can. Once drained, use a towel to absorb any additional liquid.
Break up the tofu into medium sized pieces. A block of tofu should yield about 8-10 pieces and maybe some smaller pieces. The tofu should naturally tear apart as well.
Place the tofu pieces in casserole dish and pour in 2 cups of vegan chicken broth. If you’re using no-chicken bullion cubes, mix with 2 cups of hot water prior to pouring over the tofu. Once the tofu is fully submerged in the broth, set the container aside to marinate while you set up the breading station.
In a medium bowl, add in unsweetened plant milk and apple cider vinegar. Mix together and set aside. This will create a vegan buttermilk.
In another medium bowl, mix together the all purpose flour with all of the spices listed in the ingredients.
Now we are going to arrange our breading area. In a line we will arrange the marinated tofu, buttermilk, and seasoned flour mixture. Grab an additional large plate and place it on the side to use once the tofu has been breaded.
One by one, take a piece of marinated tofu and gently squeeze any excess broth from it. Dunk it in the buttermilk and then dredge it in the seasoned flour, coating it on all sides. Set on a plate, and repeated process with all of the tofu pieces. Place the breaded tofu pieces onto the plate that you set aside.
After the first round of breading, take one cup of corn flakes and use your hands to crumble them into the seasoned flour mixture. Mix through to evenly distribute the corn flakes and the flour.
Repeat the process of coating the tofu by dipping each piece again in the buttermilk and then dredge in the flour and corn flake mixture. Repeat until all of the tofu is coated.
Heat frying oil in large and deep pan to 350-375 degrees F. Line a plate with paper towels and set it aside.
Place tofu pieces into the hot oil and deep fry until golden brown on all sides. Should take between 4-7 minutes, flipping as needed. Place finished pieces on a paper towel lined plate to cool.
Serve with vegan ranch or a dipping sauce of your choice. Enjoy!
Once fried, the pieces can be frozen and reheated in a toaster oven or air fryer.
Baking instructions: Preheat oven to to 425 degrees F, lightly coat the outside of each breaded piece of tofu with oil, place on a lined baking sheet and bake for 20-30 minutes, flipping halfway through.
Air fry instructions: lightly coat the outside of each breaded piece of tofu with oil and air fry at 400 degrees F for 8-10 minutes.
Disclaimer: The nutritional information shown is an estimate provided by an online calculator. It should not be considered a substitute for a professional’s advice. This page may contain affiliate links, which simply means that we earn a commission if you purchase through those links, but your price remains the same. Thank you for supporting Sweet Simple Vegan!
Hi, we’re Jasmine and Chris! We share fresh and fun recipes to show you that vegan cooking is easy, approachable and delicious. When we’re not blogging, you will probably find us enjoying live music, tending to our backyard garden or playing with our dogs Berry and Louie