An easy recipe for tasty vegan Tofu Satay Skewers marinated with a flavorful Thai curry peanut marinade, then baked to perfection and served with a creamy Satay sauce! This super simple dish is 100% vegan, protein-rich and can be made gluten-free too!
Enjoy restaurant-quality vegan Satay Skewers with rich, savory, and umami flavors plus a touch of sweetness, tanginess, and fieriness. You can enjoy them as a tasty appetizer, or serve them over a bed of steamed white rice as an entrée.
What is Satay?
Satay (or sate in Indonesian and Malay) is a popular Southeast Asian street food traditionally made of meat that it flavorfully marinated, then skewered and grilled. It is usually served with a special sauce locally called bumbu kacang, or simply referred to as peanut sauce. It is typically made of ground roasted peanuts, coconut milk, soy sauce, a souring agent, and some spices.
Homemade Restaurant-Quality Tofu Satay Skewers
Though known as Asian street food, these delicious skewers are also often seen on restaurant menus worldwide! Unfortunately, not a lot of them offer a plant-based version of this dish to this day and age. But not to worry, this homemade recipe is definitely one of the best vegan Tofu Satay you will ever taste. Plus, it is so easy to make! All you need to do is marinate the pressed tofu bites, and then bake them. While waiting you can cook the rice and make the Satay sauce so you should have everything ready in less than 40 minutes.
- Tofu: use extra-firm tofu and make sure that it is pressed before marinating.
- Peanut butter: used for both the marinade and satay sauce. This gives the dish its distinct taste and sets it apart from other skewers.
- Red Thai curry paste: this seasoning has an amazing depth of flavors that gives the dish a wonderful oriental taste and an extra kick!
- Soy sauce: for a savory and umami taste. You can use tamari sauce as a low-sodium gluten-free alternative.
- Agave syrup: Aside from giving the tofu a bit of sweetness, it also brings a caramelized smoky flavor. As an alternative, you can use maple syrup.
- Rice vinegar: a hint of tanginess to brighten the marinade and sauce! You can also use white vinegar or lemon or lime juice if that is what you have.
- Coconut milk: you can use any type of coconut milk, but using full-fat makes the sauce creamier and tastier.
- Ginger and garlic: gives the marinade and sauce a sharp, warm and aromatic flavor.
- Sriracha or chili powder: for those who like the peanut sauce extra fiery!
- Water: to thin out the marinade.
How to make Tofu Satay Skewers
As always, I recommend checking out this step-by-step instruction first. Then you can find the full recipe with exact measurements in the recipe card below!
Step 1: Press and marinate the Tofu
First, press the tofu dry to get rid of any excess liquid. Then cut into cubes of about 0.4-Inch (1 cm) and place in a bowl. Now mix together all ingredients for the marinade and pour it over the tofu cubes. Mix well and set aside for 5-10 minutes.
Step 2: Skewer and bake
After that, skewer the marinated tofu cubes onto wooden skewers and place them on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper, leaving enough space between each other. Bake the skewers in the oven at 392 ° F (200 °C) for 20-25 minutes (or grill them for 8-10 minutes), turning halfway through.
Step 3: Cook rice and make the sauce, garnish and enjoy!
Meanwhile, cook the rice according to package directions and make the satay sauce by blending all ingredients until creamy.
Step 4: Garnish and enjoy!
Serve your vegan tofu skewers over rice with the satay sauce and limes on the side. Garnish with sesame, herbs and spring onions to taste. Enjoy!
Tips when making Tofu Satay Skewers
- Press the tofu well before marinating. Use a tofu press if you have one. If not, you can simply place the tofu between two layers of paper towels. Then place a flat heavy object on top of it like a cast-iron skillet or simply push it down with your hands or use some books. Let the moisture seep out until the tofu is dry enough. This is important to make sure that the tofu cubes absorb as much of the marinade as possible and will result in crunchy tofu satay skewers.
- Soak the bamboo skewers in water. Doing this ensures that they do not burn while they are in the oven. Soak them for at least 10 minutes before using them.
- Grill the Tofu. Aside from baking the tofu skewers in the oven, you can also cook them using your outdoor charcoal grill, indoor grill or grill pan for 8-10 minutes.
- Add some veggies to your skewers. Make them even healthier and more colorful by adding some vegetables like green and red bell peppers, red onions, mushrooms, and zucchinis.
How to make it gluten-free?
Simply swap the soy sauce with tamari sauce. The rest of the ingredients are naturally gluten-free.
Can I make it kid-friendly?
Absolutely! You can reduce the amount of Thai curry paste, or use a less spicy yellow curry paste instead. Omit the Sriracha in the sauce too.
Can I make it ahead of time?
You can marinate the tofu cubes overnight in the fridge. This will make them even more flavorful. Furthermore, you can make the peanut sauce in advance and refrigerate it for future use. I also love to use it as a dip, salad dressing, or as a sauce for other dishes like my Vegan Summer Rolls, Thai Crunch Salad and Veggie Noodles.
How to store leftovers?
Left-over Tofu Satay Skewers can be refrigerated for 3 to 5 days. Simply place them in a ziplock bag or an airtight container to keep them fresh. Fill the peanut sauce in a sealed jar and refrigerate it for up to a week. It will firm up as it cools, but you can gently reheat it using the microwave. If it is still too thick after reheating, add some coconut milk or water to thin it out. You can also freeze the sauce for a month.
This recipe for Tofu Satay Skewers is:
- Gluten-free possible
- Easy to make
- Amazingly flavorful
- Super tasty!
More delicious Tofu Recipes to try
- Vegan Pad Thai
- Vegan Paella
- Crispy Baked Tofu Nuggets
- General Tso’s Tofu
- Japanese Tofu Katsu
- Crispy Sesame Tofu with Tahini Peanut Sauce
- Thai Peanut Ramen Noodle Soup
- Asian Peanut Noodles
- Vietnamese Noodle Salad
- Vegan Fish Nuggets
- Tofu Scramble
If you try this easy recipe for Vegan Tofu Satay Skewers, feel free to leave me a comment and a star rating! And if you take a photo of your delicious dish and share it on Instagram, please tag me @biancazapatka and use the hashtag #biancazapatka because I love seeing your remakes! Happy cooking! 🙂
Vegan Tofu Satay SkewersAuthor:
- sesame or peanuts
- herbs e.g. coriander, mint, parsley, spring onions
*Note: Check out the recipe video + step-by-step photos above!
- Press the tofu dry. Then cut into cubes of about 0.4-Inch (1 cm) and place in a bowl.
- For the marinade, mix together peanut butter, red Thai curry paste, soy sauce, agave syrup, rice vinegar, water and garlic in a bowl. Then pour over the tofu cubes, mix well and set aside for 5-10 minutes.
- Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 392 ° F (200 °C) fan mode and line a baking sheet with parchment paper. (Alternatively, cook the skewers on the grill).
- Skewer the marinated tofu cubes onto wooden skewers and place them on the prepared baking sheet, leaving enough space between each other.
- Bake the skewers in the oven for 20-25 minutes (or grill them for 8-10 minutes), turning halfway through.
- Meanwhile, cook the rice according to package directions and make the satay sauce by blending coconut milk, peanut butter, red Thai curry paste, soy sauce, agave syrup, rice vinegar, garlic, ginger and Sriracha to taste until creamy.
- Serve the tofu skewers as desired over rice with the satay sauce and lime wedges on the side. Garnish with sesame, herbs and spring onions to taste.
- Find more information on make-ahead, storing and other helpful tips in the blog post above!
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