Kalyn's Kitchen

Baked Sesame Tofu Sticks with Peanut Butter and Tahini Sauce (Video)

Baked Sesame Tofu Sticks with Peanut Butter and Tahini Sauce are so delicious readers tell me that even the kids will gobble them up! The recipe is vegan and low-carb and can be gluten-free with approved soy sauce.

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Baked Sesame Tofu Sticks with Peanut Butter and Tahini Sauce close-up photo

Even in families who are committed to plant-based meals, I’m guessing tofu can be a tough sell sometimes. And the idea of convincing people who think they don’t like tofu to try it as a snack might be even harder! 

But don’t give up on getting your family to enjoy tofu unless you’ve tried pressed and  baked tofu, because pressing out the water and baking the tofu makes it firmer and more chewy, and that should make it more appealing to people who don’t like the texture of softer tofu. And if you have a delicious peanut buttery sauce to dip those tofu sticks into, I think that makes it even better.

I tried three versions of these Baked Sesame Tofu Sticks with Peanut Butter and Tahini Sauce to get one I thought was just right.  The tofu sticks were delicious warm, and I even liked the leftovers that had been in the fridge for a few days!

What ingredients do you need for this recipe?

Baked Sesame Tofu Sticks with Peanut Butter and Tahini Sauce process shots collage

How to Make Baked Sesame Tofu Sticks with Peanut Butter and Tahini Sauce:

(Scroll down for complete recipe with nutritional information.)

  1. I used this tofu from Costco, but be sure to get firm or extra firm tofu.
  2. Put one 14 oz. package into a colander placed in the sink and let it drain for a few minutes.
  3. Then cut the tofu in half to make two thinner pieces.
  4. You need to press out most of the water if you want the tofu to get crisper and chewier. Lay the two pieces on a double layer of paper towels.
  5. Put another double layer of paper towels on top of the tofu pieces, and put something heavy (like a big cast iron pan) on top of the towel.
  6. Let tofu press about ten minutes (you can see how much water was pressed out.)  Then replace with fresh towels and press again for about 10 minutes more. (Or longer is even better if you’re not in a hurry!)
  7. While tofu is pressing, whisk together sesame oil, soy sauce, rice vinegar,Golden Monkfruit Sweetener (affiliate link) or sweetener of your choice, Sriracha Sauce (affiliate link), and ground ginger (affiliate link) to make the marinade.
  8. Cut each piece of tofu into ten strips, about 1/2 inch wide and lay them cut side down in a large baking dish.
  9. Pour marinade over the tofu, brushing so all sides are coated, and let it sit 10-20 minutes to absorb the flavors.
  10. When tofu has marinated, sprinkle 2 tsp. toasted sesame seeds over the first side, turn pieces over, and sprinkle 2 tsp. more over the second side.
  11. Brush a small baking dish with peanut oil (or another high smoke-point oil) and lay out the tofu strips so they aren’t touching. Bake 20 minutes in preheated 400F/200C oven.
  12. While the tofu is baking, use a food processor (affiliate link) or the bowl attachment of your Immersion Blender (affiliate link) to mix together the ground ginger, peanut butter, Tahini sauce (or more peanut butter), soy sauce or Gluten-Free Soy Sauce (affiliate link), Golden Monkfruit Sweetener (affiliate link) or other sweetener of your choice, rice vinegar, and water to make the sauce.
  13. After 20 minutes the tofu will be getting lightly browned like this. Turn each piece over and put back in the oven to cook the other side, 10-20 minutes depending on how firm and browned you’d like it.
  14. I cooked mine about 20 minutes more, and here’s how it looked when it came out. 
  15. Serve hot or room temperature, with Peanut Butter and Tahini Sauce for dipping.

Baked Sesame Tofu Sticks square thumbnail image of finished dish

More Tasty Tofu You Might Enjoy:

Spicy Vegan Peanut Butter Tofu with Sriracha ~ Kalyn’s Kitchen
Sesame-Crusted Tofu ~ Love and Olive Oil
Stir-Fried Tofu with Scallions, Garlic, Ginger, and Soy Sauce ~ Kalyn’s Kitchen

Baked Sesame Tofu Sticks with Peanut Butter and Tahini Sauce

Baked Sesame Tofu Sticks with Peanut Butter and Tahini Sauce

Yield 4 servings
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 40 minutes
Additional Time 20 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 30 minutes

Baked Sesame Tofu Sticks with Peanut Butter and Tahini Sauce are a great idea for a plant-based snack.

Ingredients

Ingredients:

  • 14 oz. firm or extra firm tofu, pressed to remove water
  • 4 tsp. toasted sesame seeds
  • 1 tsp. peanut oil or other high smoke-point oil

Marinade Ingredients:

  • 1 T sesame oil
  • 1 1/2 T soy sauce
  • 1 tsp. rice vinegar
  • 1 T Golden Monkfruit Sweetener (or other sweetener of your choice)
  • 1 tsp. Sriracha Sauce (or more)
  • 1/2 tsp. ground ginger (or grated fresh ginger root)

Sauce Ingredients:

  • 1 T ground ginger (or grated fresh ginger root)
  • 2 T smooth natural peanut butter (see notes)
  • 2 T Tahini Sauce (see notes)
  • 3 T soy sauce (I used reduced-sodium.)
  • 2  T Golden Monkfruit Sweetener (or other sweetener of your choice)
  • 2 tsp. rice vinegar (not seasoned rice vinegar, which contains sugar)
  • 3 T water

Instructions

  1. Take tofu out of the package and put in a colander placed in a sink.
  2. Let drain for a few minutes.
  3. Then cut tofu in half lengthwise to make two thinner pieces.
  4. Put a double layer of paper towel on a cutting board, put the two tofu pieces on the towel, and top with another double layer of paper towels.
  5. Put a heavy object (that’s big enough to cover the tofu) on top of the paper towel and let it press water out for 10 minutes.  (I used a big cast-iron frying pan.)
  6. After 10 minutes remove the heavy object, discard the wet towels, and press again with new double-layer paper towels on top and bottom of the tofu.
  7. Press about 10 minutes more, or longer is even better if you’re not in a hurry!
  8. While tofu is pressing, whisk together the sesame oil, soy sauce, rice vinegar, Golden Monkfruit Sweetener (affiliate link), Sriracha Sauce (affiliate link), and ground ginger (affiliate link) to make the marinade.
  9. Preheat oven to 400F/200C.
  10. Cut each pressed tofu piece into about 10 strips, each about 1/2 inch wide.
  11. Lay the tofu strips larger cut side down in a flat baking dish.
  12. Pour the marinade over tofu, brushing and turning if needed to make sure all sides are covered.
  13. Let tofu marinate 20 minutes.
  14. Then sprinkle 2 tsp. toasted sesame seeds over the tofu pieces; turn and sprinkle the other 2 tsp. sesame seeds over the other side.
  15. Spray or brush a small baking sheet with peanut oil (or other high smoke-point oil.)
  16. Lay tofu strips on the baking sheet, taking care not to knock off the sesame seeds.
  17. Bake tofu 20 minutes on first side.
  18. Turn carefully and bake 10-20 minutes more, depending on how browned and crisp you’d like it.
  19. While tofu bakes use a food processor (affiliate link) or the bowl attachment of your Immersion Blender (affiliate link) to mix together the ground ginger, peanut butter, Tahini Sauce (affiliate link), soy sauce, Golden Monkfruit Sweetener (affiliate link), rice vinegar, and water to make the sauce.  (I’d start with the smaller amount of sweetener and taste to see if you’d like it a little sweeter.)
  20. Serve tofu hot, with sauce for dipping.
  21. I was surprised that this was still pretty tasty after it has been in the fridge for a couple of days, although it’s better when it’s freshly made and still hot.

Notes

Use peanut butter without added sugar, such as Adams 100% Natural Peanut Butter (affiliate link) for South Beach Diet. If you don’t have Tahini, use 2 T more peanut butter. I used to make this with agave nectar, but now I'd use Golden Monkfruit Sweetener (affiliate link). Use any sweetener you prefer.

This recipe combines ideas from several recipes spotted in cookbooks, but the original idea came from a sesame tofu recipe in Power Foods.

Nutrition Information:

Yield:

4

Serving Size:

1

Amount Per Serving: Calories: 283Total Fat: 23gSaturated Fat: 3gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 18gCholesterol: 0mgSodium: 1063mgCarbohydrates: 9gFiber: 3gSugar: 2gProtein: 15g

Nutrition information is automatically calculated by the Recipe Plug-In I am using. I am not a nutritionist and cannot guarantee 100% accuracy, since many variables affect those calculations.

If you make this recipe I'd love to hear how it turns out. Leave a star rating or share on social media with the hashtag #KALYNSKITCHEN, thanks!

Low-Carb Diet / Low-Glycemic Diet / South Beach Diet Suggestions:
Tofu is a good low-glycemic choice for any phase of the South Beach Diet, but for Phase One limit to 1/2 cup serving size. With approved sweetener, this should also work for most low-carb diet plans.

Find More Recipes Like This One:
Use the Recipes by Diet Type photo index pages to find more recipes suitable for a specific eating plan. You might also like to Follow Kalyn’s Kitchen on Pinterest to see all the good recipes I’m sharing there.

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    35 Comments on “Baked Sesame Tofu Sticks with Peanut Butter and Tahini Sauce (Video)”

  1. Laura, so glad you like it!

  2. This sauce is so so good. I love tofu but frankly, I'd eat toilet paper tubes if they were dipped in this sauce! 😉

  3. Kimberly, so great to hear you enjoyed it so much!

  4. Tried this recipe last night and I can't rave enough about it. So delicious! We're vegan and always looking for new sauces/marinades for tofu or tempeh. I didn't have rice vinegar so I used apple cider vinegar and it still tasted great, This is by far the best tofu marinade & sauce I've tried at home. Thanks for the recipe! -Kim

  5. Lauren, so glad you liked it!

  6. Just made this for dinner and it was absolutely delicious. I used half the amount of tofu, so halfed the marinade and it came out perfect. I also stir fried a load of veggies and added the sauce to that, can't wait to make this again!

  7. Catherine, so glad you enjoyed it!

  8. Thanks Kalyn, this was amazing! I always thought of tofu as an “alternative” ingredient in food, something to be tolerated if it showed up in identifiable form in a recipe. This changed my mind to the point where I intend to put it into the regular snack rotation. YUM!

  9. Thanks Cheri! I don't make it to Whole Foods too often, but I will have to check it out.

  10. Whole Foods has a tofu dish kind of like this that I love. This looks very similar. Great presentation!

  11. Amy, hope you like it.

    TW, I agree about the texture. No problem for me. But I keep hearing people don't like it. This might help if that's the case.

    Doren, hope you enjoy.

    Mimi, me too!

  12. I run in cycles with food, and I can feel a cycle for this sort of thing coming on! Great idea for spring.

  13. Perfect recipe for me, can't wait to try it. With those delicious ingredients in the marinade, I could see throwing this tofu into a salad, too. I never used to like tofu, but it has grown on me and even the tofu-adverse might like this.

  14. I've never had an issue with the texture of tofu – this looks like a lot of fun to make, and a really interesting option for appetizers that would win over anyone!

  15. Thanks for this recipe! I have been looking for something like this to serve to my daughter who is a vegetarian. And the sauce looks delicious for uses in many dishes.

  16. Thanks Dara, glad you like it. And I could eat this sauce on almost anything!

  17. Years ago I took a Chinese cooking class and we made a tofu dish very similar to this. Beforehand, the thought of tofu made me cringe. But there's something about baking it and pairing it with a great sauce that makes it irresistible.

  18. Joanne, the sauce is really good and the texture is definite not like tofu!

    Lydia, great idea!

  19. I was thinking you could dice up any leftovers and add them to an Asian slaw or salad, and it would be delicious!

  20. I'm a big tofu fan but the.boy isn't crazy about it. I think I could win him over with the peanut butter sauce though!