Oven-Baked Tofu Parmigiana
This recipe features lightly breaded tofu "steaks" coated with mozzarella and Italian-style tomato sauce. Even meat-eaters will love this recipe, and they don't have to know it's tofu (unless you tell them!)
What's fabulous about this particular recipe is that you can either bake it in the oven or finish it in a skillet.
This recipe serves 4 people.Ingredients
- One package firm or extra-firm tofu (14 ounces)
- 1/4 cup dry breadcrumbs
- 1 teaspoon dried Italian spice mix (oregano, basil, rosemary, etc.)
- 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1/4 teaspoon sea salt
- Approximately 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 medium onion, diced
- 2 cups fresh mushrooms, sliced thinly
- 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese, grated
- 3/4 cup of your favorite marinara-style tomato sauce
- 1/2 cup mozzarella cheese (about 2 ounces), shredded
- 2 tablespoons fresh basil, chopped
- First, take the tofu out of its packaging and drain the excess water.
- Next, you'll want to press your tofu so that it can more easily soak up the flavors of the breading and sauce. You can press it in 5 minutes with a tofu press, or in about 15 minutes if you wrap the tofu in a towel and putting it in a colander with a weight on top.
- While you're pressing your tofu, combine the breadcrumbs and Italian seasoning in a shallow bowl or dish. Get a large non-stick skillet and pour in about 2 teaspoons of olive oil (don't turn it on yet).
- Now get your pressed tofu and slice it lengthwise into 4 slices. Pat the slices dry and sprinkle them with the garlic powder and salt. Then cover them with the breadcrumb mixture.
- Heat the skillet with the oil, add the onion, and cook for about 3 minutes. Add in the mushrooms and cook for 4 minutes more (the mushrooms should release their juice). Remove the veggies from heat and put them in a bowl.
- Pour another bit of oil in the pan - about 1 tablespoon. Brown the tofu steaks on one side for 3 minutes, then turn them over and sprinkle them with the Parmesan.
You now have two choices: either finish cooking in the skillet or transfer the tofu slices to a baking dish.
- To finish cooking in the skillet, spoon the veggie mixture over the tofu steaks and sprinkle the mozzarella on top. Cover the skillet and cook till the cheese melts (about 3 minutes).
- Alternatively, preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Put the tofu slices in the bottom of a baking dish, then cover with the veggie mixture. Spread the shredded mozzarella cheese on top, and bake for 20 minutes or till the cheese is melted and golden brown.
- Serve your tofu parmigiana topped with the chopped fresh basil leaves.
Oven Baked Tofu Parmigiana FAQs
What can I serve with Tofu Parmigiana?
Tofu Parmigiana is delicious served with:
- Angel hair pasta or another light type of pasta or noodles
- Cooked rice
- A leafy side salad
- Garlic bread
- A veggie salad such as cabbage and endive
- Sautéed green beans, eggplant, carrots, or another favorite veggie combo
- Oven-roasted veggies like broccoli, Brussels sprouts, or zucchini
What kinds of breadcrumbs can I use?
You could use:
- Panko breadcrumbs
- Italian-seasoned breadcrumbs (and skip the Italian seasoning)
- Finely milled oats
- Crushed cereal (a neutral cereal, preferably without added sugar)
How do I make my own Parmigiana sauce?
Parmigiana sauce is easy to make. Here's a quick recipe:
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 2 medium onions, diced
- 2 cloves garlic, chopped
- 2 cans diced tomatoes
- 2 tablespoons tomato paste
- 1 tablespoon sugar
- 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
- 1/2 teaspoon dried Italian seasoning
- Salt and pepper, to taste
Brown the onion in the oil in a pan for about 2 minutes. Add the diced tomatoes and garlic and half a can of water (use a can from the tomatoes). Add the rest of the ingredients, cooking till the sauce thickens.
Should I freeze the tofu first?
If you have time, freezing the tofu and thawing it before cooking will give you a chewier texture that resembles meat more closely.
To freeze your tofu:
- Remove it from the package, draining the liquid.
- Slice the tofu lengthwise into your four thick slices.
- Store the slices in a plastic bag or airtight container and put it in the freezer for at least 12 hours (it will keep for up to 3 months).
- Thaw the tofu in the refrigerator for 24 hours or in the microwave for a few minutes.
- Press the tofu to remove excess liquid, then use it in the recipe as above.