This flavor-packed baked BBQ tofu is first marinated in a mixture of vegan barbecue sauce, tamari, apple cider vinegar, olive oil, nutritional yeast, garlic powder, onion powder and smoked paprika before being oven-baked and then smothered in more barbecue sauce. Perfect alone, over rice or quinoa, on a salad or grain bowl or in a wrap. Delicious hot or cold and great for meal-prepping! Super satisfying and easy to make with less than 10 ingredients!Jump to Recipe
I have a confession to make.
I think I am addicted to tofu.
I am constantly being caught popping some of these leftover Buffalo tofu bites in my mouth right from the fridge.
And now I find myself doing the same thing with this BBQ tofu.
I suppose there are worse things than eating too much tofu, right?
Anyway, what do you expect when it just tastes so darn yummy? 😉
So, get out your tofu press (or a large pot or heavy book) and a sheet pan and let's make some tofu!
Why you'll love this barbecue tofu recipe
- Deliciously addictive BBQ flavor, hard not to eat the whole batch
- Great recipe for parties, potlucks, and get-togethers
- Goes with just about any game day main dish
- Easy to serve either hot or cold
- Only requires 10 ingredients
- Easy to scale to make more servings or to use with other things for meal prepping
Ingredients you'll need
- organic extra firm tofu
- store-bought barbecue sauce (check label to ensure ingredients are vegan and also gluten-free if needed; use homemade bbq sauce if preferred)
- gluten-free, reduced sodium tamari (can substitute with soy sauce if you are not gluten-free)
- apple cider vinegar
- olive oil
- nutritional yeast
- garlic powder
- onion powder
- smoked paprika
How to make baked BBQ tofu
Step 1 - Press the tofu
Open the package of tofu and drain any excess water. If you have a tofu press, press the tofu for 20 minutes.
If you do not have a tofu press, place the block of tofu in the center of a clean, absorbent kitchen towel on a sturdy plate or baking sheet. Wrap the tofu with the towel.
Place a heavy object, such as a large pot, heavy pan, or some books on top of the tofu and press for 30 minutes.
Step 2 - Make the marinade
While the tofu block is pressing, whisk together barbecue sauce, tamari, apple cider vinegar, olive oil, nutritional yeast, garlic powder, onion powder and smoked paprika in a mixing bowl.
Step 3 - Marinate the tofu
Cut the tofu into cubes, approximately ¾"-1" thick.
Add the tofu pieces to the marinade.
Carefully use a silicone spatula to evenly coat.
Cover and refrigerate for 30 minutes.
While the tofu is marinating, preheat your oven to 400° F.
Step 4 - Bake the tofu
Place the marinated tofu on a parchment-lined sheet pan in a single layer.
Rinse out the mixing bowl and set it aside for future use.
Bake for 30 minutes at 400° F, carefully flipping once halfway through. I used tongs to flip each piece of tofu individually.
Step 5 - Coat the tofu
Add barbecue sauce to the mixing bowl.
Carefully use tongs to place each piece of hot tofu into the sauce.
Use the silicone spatula to coat the cooked tofu with the sauce.
What's the best tofu to use?
Extra firm tofu works best for this recipe. Some of my favorite brands of extra-firm tofu are Nasoya, 365 Everyday Value and Greenwise.
What's the best BBQ sauce to use?
You can use your favorite BBQ sauce from the store, but be sure to check the label to ensure the ingredients are vegan as well as gluten-free, if needed.
Some of my favorites are Annie's Original, Annie's Sweet & Spicy, Primal Kitchen Classic, Tessemae's Matty's style and Tessemae's Diggy's Sweet and Spicy style.
If you prefer, you can opt for a homemade barbecue sauce instead. Here are some options for basic vegan barbecue sauces from some of my favorite bloggers:
- Healthy BBQ Sauce from My Quiet Kitchen
- The Best Vegan BBQ Sauce from MOON and spoon and yum
- Easy Homemade Vegan BBQ Sauce by Veganosity
- Maple Chipotle BBQ Sauce from Thyme & Love.
And if you'd like to change up the flavor, try this Blueberry BBQ Sauce from Make it Dairy Free or this Strawberry BBQ Sauce from Vegan Yack Attack.
Primal Kitchen also has a mango jalapeno as well as a Hawaiian style.
Can I omit the oil?
Yes, you can leave out the oil, but please note that it does help to balance out the flavor of the marinade and to crisp up the edges of the tofu during the baking process.
Ideas for serving BBQ tofu
A few of our favorite ways to enjoy this crispy baked tofu is over rice or quinoa with some steamed veggies on the side, as part of a salad or grain bowl, on a sandwich with some vegan coleslaw or in a wrap like this one I made with hummus, spring mix greens and tomatoes.
You can also enjoy these by themselves or with some cut up raw veggies and some vegan ranch dressing.
It's also great as a main dish with our:
- Vegan Cream Cheese Mashed Potatoes
- Air Fryer Asparagus
- Air Fryer Carrots
- Easy Frozen Broccoli on the Stove
- Roasted Broccoli with Garlic
- Vegan Potato Salad
- Hummus Pasta Salad
- Cucumber and Tomato Salad
- Three-Bean Salad
Storing and reheating
You can store the tofu in the refrigerator in an airtight container for up to 5 days.
It's important to remember that these BBQ tofu bites are delicious both cold and warm. You don't have to reheat them.
But if you want to, reheat the oven baked BBQ tofu in the oven for a few minutes, in the microwave, or transfer tofu to an air fryer to reheat for a few minutes until warmed through again. You may need to toss in bbq sauce again if desired.
Baked BBQ Tofu
- 1 (14 oz.) block organic extra firm tofu
- ¼ cup plus 2 tbsp. store-bought barbecue sauce, divided (*check label to ensure ingredients are vegan and also gluten-free if needed; use homemade if preferred)
- 1 tablespoon gluten-free, reduced sodium tamari (can substitute with soy sauce if you are not gluten-free)
- 2 teaspoon apple cider vinegar
- 2 teaspoon olive oil
- 1 teaspoon nutritional yeast
- ½ teaspoon garlic powder
- ½ teaspoon onion powder
- ½ teaspoon smoked paprika
- Open the package of tofu and drain any excess water. Press the tofu using a tofu press or the kitchen towel/heavy object method as described in the **notes below. Depending on the method used, the tofu will need to press for 20-30 minutes.
- While the tofu is pressing, add 2 tablespoons of the barbecue sauce, tamari, apple cider vinegar, olive oil, nutritional yeast, garlic powder, onion powder and smoked paprika to a mixing bowl. Whisk to combine.
- Cut the tofu into cubes, approximately ¾"-1" thick. Add the tofu to the marinade and carefully use a silicone spatula to evenly coat. Cover and refrigerate for 30 minutes.
- While the tofu is marinating, preheat the oven to 400° F and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
- Spread the tofu out on the baking sheet in a single layer. Rinse out the mixing bowl and set it aside for future use. Bake the tofu for 30 minutes at 400° F, carefully flipping once halfway through (I used tongs to flip each piece individually).
- Add the remaining ¼ cup of barbecue sauce to the mixing bowl and carefully use tongs to place each piece of hot tofu into the sauce. Use the silicone spatula to coat the cooked tofu with the sauce. Serve as desired.
(Please refer to the post above for instructional photographs and other helpful information for this recipe)
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Heidi | The Frugal Girls
Oh wow... what a great recipe, and this marinade looks incredible!!
Thank you so much, Heidi! It's one of our favorite ways to eat tofu in our house! 🙂
It looks so good and saucy Sherri! I really love that you adding more seasoning with the paprika to truly elevate the flavour profile of this dish. Thanks for sharing this yummy recipe!
Thank you so much, Christie! 🙂
Healthy World Cuisine
We are also huge tofu fans. Still do not have a proper tofu press but do the pan on top method and that works great too. Love how how crispy and saucy your delicious baked bbq tofu are. Need to make these soon. Pinned to all of our favorite boards.
Thank you so much! I hope you enjoy it! 🙂