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Learn how to smoke tofu in a stovetop smoker! Slowly smoked over hickory wood chips, this tofu has warming and woodsy notes and packs a ton of umami. Use it in curries, sandwiches, salads, stir-fries, and more!

Block of smoked tofu on a small plate.

Smoked tofu cannot be found everywhere, and when it’s available, it’s usually too expensive compared to a regular loaf of tofu. I have been making smoked tofu for many years, and it’s still a favorite that I like to make regularly.

The process is quite simple – just marinate the tofu overnight, smoke it in a stovetop smoker for 25 minutes, and let it rest for a few hours.

It’s a fun and rewarding process, and the best part is that you don’t need any liquid smoke or other flavorings. The natural smoky flavor comes solely from the smoking process. So, if you are in for a fun experiment, you will love this recipe!

⭐️ Why You Should Try It

  • A rich and natural smoke flavor. Smoking tofu in a smoker gives it an aroma and flavor far superior to anything that can be achieved with liquid smoke. It’s woodsy, comforting, and has a distinct scent that will remind you of bacon!
  • Easy to make with 4 ingredients. You won’t need any hard-to-find ingredients to prepare this recipe. Just tofu and a few pantry staples!
  • Versatile. Smoked tofu is just as versatile as regular tofu and can be used in various dishes. Whether you’re making curries, stir-fries, soups, sandwiches, or wraps, smoked tofu is a great option to impart a comforting and smoky flavor.

📘 What is Smoked Tofu

Smoked tofu consists of firm tofu smoked through either a hot or cold smoking process. The process involves exposing the tofu to wood smoke for a few minutes, which infuses the tofu with a savory and smoky flavor.

Ingredients like tofu, soy sauce, maple syrup, and sesame oil.

📗 Equipment Needed

Before starting, ensure you own a stovetop smoker or at least a regular outdoor smoker. I have owned a Gourmet Mini Stovetop Smoker from Camerons for 9 years, and I love it! It’s sturdy, easy to clean (you can put it in the dishwasher), and super simple to use.

The main advantage of this smoker is that it can be used indoors, on the stove. The downside is that it cannot cold-smoke foods. In the case of this recipe, it doesn’t really matter anyway.

🍁 Ingredient Notes

Here are the ingredients that you will need:

  • Tofu – Use firm or extra-firm tofu.
  • Soy sauce – It adds saltiness and umami and gives the tofu a golden brown color. Use coconut aminos if you want to keep this recipe gluten-free.
  • Maple syrup – To balance the saltiness. Agave or brown rice syrup will also work if you don’t have maple syrup.
  • Sesame oilToasted sesame oil gives the tofu a hint of nuttiness.

🥣 How to Make It

1. Pat the tofu dry

  1. Press the tofu. Line a plate with a few sheets of kitchen paper towels or a clean kitchen towel. Top with more kitchen paper towels and press the tofu to remove as much moisture as possible. Repeat this step 2-3 times. This will allow the tofu to absorb the marinade better.
Patting dry a block of tofu.

2. Marinate it

  1. Transfer the tofu to a dish. At this point, you can keep the block of tofu whole or cut it in half. Transfer the tofu to a deep dish or a freezer-safe bag.
  2. Add the marinade. Add the soy sauce, maple syrup, and sesame oil to the dish or freezer bag.
  3. Let it marinade. Cover with plastic wrap and let the tofu marinade in the refrigerator for at least 8 hours, preferably 24 hours. Flip the tofu once halfway through marinating.

3. Smoke it

  1. Add the wood chips. Remove the lid, rack, and drip tray of the stovetop smoker. Spread 3 tablespoons of wood chips in the bottom of the smoker. Place the rack and drip tray back on top.
  2. Add the tofu. Place the tofu on the rack and close the smoker with the lid.
  3. Smoke. Finally, heat the smoker on the stove over medium heat. It will take 10-15 seconds before some smoke starts to appear. Let the tofu smoke for about 25 minutes, flipping it once halfway through smoking. After that, turn off the heat and keep the smoker closed for another 15 minutes. This will allow the remaining smoke to infuse the tofu even more.
  1. Let it rest. To allow the flavors to merge and mellow down, let the tofu rest for at least 8 hours before using.
Smoked tofu in a stovetop smoker.

📔 Tips

  • Press the tofu. If you own a tofu press, use it to remove as much moisture as possible. It will help the tofu absorb more marinade, resulting in a superior taste.
  • Marinade for at least 8 hours. To allow the tofu to absorb the marinade, I highly recommend letting it marinade for a minimum of 8 hours. I personally prepare the tofu in the afternoon and smoke it the next day.
  • Let the tofu rest after smoking. This step is essential to allow the smoky flavor to mellow down and flavors to merge.

🪵 Variations

  • Use different wood chips: Don’t hesitate to play with different types of wood chips. Each one will impart a slightly different aroma to the tofu. If you prefer a stronger, bacon-like flavor, use Hickory wood. On the other hand, if you prefer a more delicate smokiness, Oak or Maple wood might be a better choice.
  • Add other seasonings: Feel free to add chopped garlic, shallots, ginger, or other aromatics to the marinade.

🍚 Where to Use It

There are countless ways to incorporate this smoked tofu into your dishes! Here are some ideas:

  • Make bolognese: Crumble it and add it to tomato sauce to make a smoky bolognese sauce.
  • Add to curries: Dice it into cubes and add it to your favorite curry recipes! It is particularly delicious in Thai green curry or Vietnamese curry.
  • Add to stir-fries: Sauté the tofu in oil until slightly crispy and mix it with vegetable stir-fries.
  • Incorporate into soups: Deep-fry the tofu for a few minutes or until golden brown before adding it to noodle soups or ramen.
  • Use in sandwiches: Thinly sliced, this smoked tofu is delicious in sandwiches, wraps, or banh mi!
  • Add on top of pizza: Crumble or dice it and use it as a topping for homemade pizza.
Close-up of a block of smoked tofu.

❄️ Storing

  • To store: This smoked tofu will last for up to 5 days in the refrigerator.
  • To freeze: Wrap the tofu in plastic wrap and transfer to a freezer-safe bag. Freeze for up to 2 months. Note: Freezing will alter the texture of the tofu, giving it a spongier and meatier texture that is great for making nuggets!

💬 FAQ

Can I use an outdoor smoker?

Yes, you can smoke the tofu in a cold smoker for 45-90 minutes, depending on how smoky you want the tofu to be.

Which wood chips work best for smoking tofu?

Any wood chip will work. I have a preference for Hickory or Maple, but Oak works great, too.

If you have never tried using a stovetop smoker, I highly suggest trying this recipe! It’s a fantastic introduction to the process of smoking foods. Plus, you end up with an irresistibly smoky tofu that will bring a ton of flavor to your dishes!

⭐️ Did you like this recipe? Let us know in the comments below, and tag us on Facebook, Instagram, or Pinterest!

Block of smoked tofu on a plate.
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Recipe

Smoked Tofu

5 from 3 votes
Author: Thomas Pagot
Learn how to smoke tofu in a stovetop smoker! Slowly smoked over hickory wood chips, this tofu has warming and woodsy notes and packs a ton of umami. Use it in curries, sandwiches, salads, stir-fries, and more!
Prep Time : 15 minutes
Cook Time : 25 minutes
Resting Time : 8 hours
Total Time : 8 hours 40 minutes
Servings 1 block of tofu
Calories 177 kcal

Ingredients
 

Instructions
 

  • Press the tofu. Line a plate with a few sheets of kitchen paper towels or a clean kitchen towel. Top with more kitchen paper towels and press the tofu to remove as much moisture as possible. Repeat this step 2-3 times. This will allow the tofu to absorb the marinade better.

Marinate the tofu

  • Transfer the tofu to a dish. At this point, you can keep the block of tofu whole or cut it in half. Transfer the tofu to a deep dish or a freezer-safe bag.
  • Add the marinade. Add the soy sauce, maple syrup, and sesame oil to the dish or freezer bag.
  • Let it marinade. Cover with plastic wrap and let the tofu marinade in the refrigerator for at least 8 hours, preferably 24 hours. Flip the tofu once halfway through marinating.

Smoke the tofu

  • Add the wood chips. Remove the lid, rack, and drip tray of the stovetop smoker. Spread 3 tablespoons of wood chips in the bottom of the smoker. Place the rack and drip tray back on top.
  • Add the tofu. Place the tofu on the rack and close the smoker with the lid.
  • Smoke. Finally, heat the smoker on the stove over medium heat. It will take 10-15 seconds before some smoke starts to appear. Let the tofu smoke for about 25 minutes, flipping it once halfway through smoking.
  • After that, turn off the heat and keep the smoker closed for another 15 minutes. This will allow the remaining smoke to infuse the tofu even more.
  • This smoked tofu will last for up to 5 days in the refrigerator.

Notes

  • Press the tofu. If you own a tofu press, use it to remove as much moisture as possible. It will help the tofu absorb more marinade, resulting in a superior taste.
  • Marinade for at least 8 hours. To allow the tofu to absorb the marinade, I highly recommend letting it marinade for a minimum of 8 hours. I personally prepare the tofu in the afternoon and smoke it the next day.
  • Let the tofu rest after smoking. This step is essential to allow the smoky flavor to mellow down and flavors to merge.

Nutrition

Serving: 4 ounces (113g) | Calories: 177 kcal | Carbohydrates: 5.4 g | Protein: 18 g | Fat: 10.9 g | Saturated Fat: 1.6 g | Sodium: 241 mg | Potassium: 276 mg | Fiber: 2.6 g | Sugar: 0.4 g | Calcium: 769 mg | Iron: 3 mg
Course : Main Course
Cuisine : Asian
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About the Author

Thomas Pagot is the founder, photographer, and recipe developer behind Full of Plants. He created the blog in 2016 as a personal cookbook for vegan recipes. Through years of recipe development, Thomas has successfully grown Full of Plants into a trusted resource for plant-based recipes.

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5 stars
You just read my mind! I bought a smoker to make the smoked cheese, and was wondering if I could smoke tofu too. Thanks!

5 stars
A completely new taste for tofu. I loved it. Thank you Thomas.

5 stars
Excellent recipe! I never imagined tofu could be this addictive. Good job Thomas!