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Buffalo Tofu: Crispy Vegan Buffalo Wings

There's nothing quite like the fiery taste of buffalo hot sauce, and with our crispy buffalo tofu wings, you can make this into a 'chickenless' dish that's perfect for veggies and vegans.

Our buffalo tofu bites are seared, then baked in the oven before being smothered in delicious, homemade vegan buffalo sauce that can be as spicy as you desire. Buffalo tofu is perfect for snacking, it's great for enjoying on the weekend with a few vegan ales, and it's excellent for sharing with your friends.

You'll need extra firm tofu, a tofu press, and the taste buds to handle the fiery kick of the buffalo hot sauce. Keep reading, and learn how to prepare our crispy buffalo tofu wings! 

How to make buffalo tofu 

Makes 4 servings

Ingredients

  • 14 ounces of extra firm tofu
  • 3 tbsp of cornstarch
  • ¼ tsp of garlic powder
  • ⅛ tsp of cayenne pepper powder
  • 2 tbsp of coconut oil
  • 2 tbsp of melted coconut oil 
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 4 tbsp of red hot sauce*

*You can pick your favorite red hot sauce, but just double check it's vegan. We suggest Frank's Red Hot sauce, which is definitely vegan. 

Directions

  1. Start preparing your tofu buffalo wings by pressing and draining your block of extra firm tofu. You'll need to remove as much of the excess water as you can, so it's best to use a tofu press if you have one. If not, wrap your block in paper towels and press down firmly using a heavy object. For the best results, leave your tofu to press and drain for at least 20 mins. The longer you leave it, the firmer the tofu will be and the more spice it's going to absorb!
  2. Once the tofu is pressed and drained, you can preheat your oven to 400°F while you start preparing the next stage of the recipe.
  3. Take a sharp knife and slice your tofu in half. Next, slice each half into 8 cubes, leaving you with a grand total of 16 buffalo bites. 
  4. Measure out cornstarch, garlic powder, and cayenne pepper powder into a large mixing bowl. Add salt and pepper to taste, then add your buffalo tofu bites to the bowl. Give the tofu a good and even coating of seasoning. 
  5. Place a skillet onto the stovetop, and turn the heat to medium-high. When the skillet is hot (and not before!), add in 2 tbsp of coconut oil and allow the oil to warm up. 
  6. Now place your seasoned tofu bites into the oil and let them fry for up to 6 minutes on each side. It's important that none of the pieces of tofu are touching, as you're looking for a golden, crispy coating to form on the outside. When you're happy, remove the tofu from the skillet and place them on paper towels to soak up any excess oil. 
  7. At the same time, as you're searing your tofu in the skillet, you can also prepare your buffalo sauce. You'll be coating your tofu 'chicken' wings in this sauce before you oven bake them. Melt a further 2 tbsp of coconut oil (or use the excess oil from the skillet) and mix it together with 4 tbsp of red hot sauce. You can add a few more tablespoons of red hot sauce if you're looking for more heat. 
  8. Place your tofu bites into the buffalo sauce, and make sure they have a good coating.
  9. Line a large baking tray with parchment paper, and arrange your seasoned and buffalo sauce coated tofu wings for baking.
  10. By now, your oven will have preheated, so place the baking tray on the middle shelf and allow the bites to cook through for at least 15 mins. Remember to turn them halfway through. For crispier buffalo wings, leave them to bake for up to 20 mins. 
  11. Serve your vegan buffalo wings with the rest of your hot sauce and the rest of your favorite vegan dips!

Buffalo tofu wings FAQ and preparation tips

Making buffalo 'chicken' tofu wings is surprisingly straightforward, but they make for an unbeatable addition to your weekend snacking routine. To help you improve your buffalo tofu cooking skills, here's a short FAQ and our top preparation tips.

How do I serve buffalo tofu wings?

Okay, so this is perhaps the most important question you could ask. This is ultimately up to you because everyone likes their wings a little differently. We can, however, offer a few suggestions!

Alongside your buffalo tofu dip, you can add a whole bunch of other great sauces too. You can mix up some vegan mayonnaise and garlic (for a vegan garlic mayo), you can have some BBQ sauce ready on the side, or you could make smooth guacamole.

As well as sauces, though, you can also put your baked tofu bites to good use in many other dishes. You could sprinkle them over a green salad for a fantastic tofu appetizer, wrap them up in tortillas for a buffalo burrito, or turn them into spicy tacos with added salsa and even more spicy sauce. 

Is buffalo sauce vegan?

Our recipe is totally vegan; you just need to make sure that the hot sauce you pick is also vegan (or make your own from scratch). As we mentioned in the recipe, Frank's Hot Red Hot sauce is a popular choice, as this is vegan-friendly. 

We also use coconut oil instead of butter (many recipes call for melted butter rather than melted coconut oil), and of course, the tofu is the replacement for the chicken. It should be noted, too, that cornstarch is also vegan, but you can also try swapping this for arrowroot starch, which has the same effect.

How can I make my buffalo tofu crispier?

Tofu hot wings are outrageously delicious, but if there's one thing that beats a good tofu bite smothered in buffalo sauce, it's a crispy tofu bite smothered in buffalo sauce!

The crispiness comes from the cornstarch, so don't be afraid to add more of this to the recipe, and to double dip your tofu bites for a double coating. The oil helps, so make sure you sear your bites before baking, and if needed, simply leave your tofu wings in the oven for longer for that golden-brown, crispy finish.

Can I scale the recipe up to make more buffalo tofu wings?

Okay, so if you've got a long weekend ahead of you and you need to be prepared with plenty of snacks, 16 tofu bites might not cut it for you.

Luckily, it's easy to scale this recipe up and to prepare many more tofu bites. If you're doing this, however, then you need to make sure you give each tofu bite the space it needs in the skillet, as they can't be touching. The same goes for when you're baking, so you might need to cook up in batches rather than crowding your pans and baking trays. 

What's the best tofu to use?

You need your buffalo tofu bites to be firm and to hold their shape through the cooking process. For this reason, it's only extra-firm tofu that really cuts it. Extra-firm tofu holds its texture well under high heat, but it also has a slightly chewy texture that makes it a great substitute for chicken. 

Other types of tofu, particularly soft or silken tofu, are simply not firm enough to hold their shape. They also have much higher water content and aren't going to absorb as much of the seasoning (they end up tasting much blander than if you're using extra-firm tofu). 

You can get away with using firm tofu rather than extra firm tofu, but be delicate when you're frying!

Why do I need to press tofu?

Pressing and draining removes the excess liquid from the block of tofu and is an incredibly important step in the process. 

If the liquid isn't drained, then the tofu is going to taste watery and bland. It won't have the chance to absorb the flavors of the buffalo seasoning. Removing the water helps to make for tastier tofu bites, while also helping the tofu to keep its shape when being fried then baked. 

Can I reheat buffalo tofu wings?

Buffalo tofu wings are best served when they are hot, but you can reheat them too. That's perfect if you've made up a large batch for the whole weekend. 

You can throw them in the microwave for a quick reheating, but it's best to use the oven again if you have time. Preheat your oven to a lower heat this time (350°F does it), and place them on a baking tray for another 15 minutes until they've warmed through again. 

Alternatively, you can also make up large batches of tofu bites by seasoning them, then frying them in coconut oil. Rather than baking them straight away, you can simply leave them in the refrigerator until you're ready to cook them. They'll keep all through the weekend, and you can then have hot buffalo wings on demand!

Buffalo tofu wings: a fiery weekend favorite!

Our buffalo tofu wings are always a hit, especially on lazy weekends when you need plenty of easy snacks ready to go. You can make this recipe as spicy as you like, and you can make enough to see you through from Friday to Monday!

Why not save our crispy buffalo tofu wings recipe for next weekend?

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