How to make crisp tofu in the air fryer

Air fried tofu with Thai yellow curry

This is a basic recipe using minimal ingredients. No flour and just a simple soy and garlic seasoning. Be sure to use extra firm tofu.

  1. Cut tofu block into two thinner blocks
  2. Layer with kitchen towel and gently press to release and absorb water
  3. Fli, repeat, flip, repeat – until excess water has been removed from tofu
  4. Chop the two tofu slabs into uniform cubes
  5. Add tofu to bowl and season with a teaspoon of soy sauce, teaspoon of sesame oil, salt and garlic powder
  6. Toss to cover evenly, spray liberally with cooking oil, ensure evenly coated
  7. Preheat air fryer
  8. When ready, set temperature to 400F
  9. Cook for 10 minutes, shake every 3 minutes to ensure even frying

This recipe is based of using the COSORI Air Fryer (5.8QT model, affiliate link).

A few notes on this one. While you do need to remove as much excess water from the tofu as you can, I soak it up with kitchen towels directly – do be mindful about how far you take the process. If you dry the tofu too much you will find it cracks and crumbles. That makes it difficult to cook with. You need cubes with smooth flat edges to take on a crisp – a crumbly pile just won’t work.

Next up, I like to gently season my tofu with soy, sesame oil and garlic powder. I find this is a fairly appealing mix that goes well on many dishes. I’m not a massive fan of plain tofu. Again be careful here. We just spent all that time drying out the tofu, so we don’t want to add too much moisture back. Remember, moisture is the enemy when trying to get a crisp finish.

This recipe uses no flour or otherwise, just cooking spray, so don’t expect a tremendously crisp finish like the deep fryer. The crisp is gentle but enjoyable. Don’t let the tofu sit too long after cooking as it will lose the texture quickly as it cools.

This guide is presented as a reference only. Please ensure your food is thorughly cooked before consuming. Many variables may influence your own cooking times. If in doubt contact your air fryer or product manufacturer.

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