Can You Microwave Tofu? How to Do It Right

Categorized as Microwave Cooking
A wooden plate with raw tofu and a knife. The tofu is cut into cubes and ready to be microwaved.

Tofu is a versatile and nutritious plant-based protein that can be cooked in many ways. But can you microwave tofu? The answer is yes, you can! Microwaving tofu is a quick and easy way to prepare it for salads, stir-fries, soups, sandwiches, and more.

In this blog post, we will show you how to microwave tofu in three simple steps, and share some tips and tricks to make it even more delicious.

How to Microwave Tofu in 3 Steps

1. Drain and press the tofu. Tofu comes in a package with water to keep it fresh and moist. Before microwaving it, you need to drain the water and press the tofu to remove excess moisture. This will make the tofu firmer and more absorbent of flavors. To drain the tofu, simply cut open the package and pour out the water. To press the tofu, place it on a cutting board or a plate lined with paper towels. Cover it with more paper towels and place something heavy on top, such as a skillet or a book. Let it sit for 15 to 30 minutes, or until most of the liquid is squeezed out.

2. Cut and season the tofu. Once the tofu is drained and pressed, you can cut it into any shape and size you like. You can make cubes, slices, triangles, or even crumble it for a scrambled tofu effect. Next, you need to season the tofu to give it some flavor. You can use any spices, herbs, sauces, or marinades you prefer. Some popular options are soy sauce, teriyaki sauce, barbecue sauce, curry paste, garlic powder, onion powder, paprika, cumin, salt, and pepper. You can either toss the tofu with the seasonings in a bowl or a ziplock bag, or brush them on each piece individually.

3. Microwave the tofu. Now comes the fun part: microwaving the tofu! Arrange the tofu pieces in a single layer on a microwave-safe plate or dish. Make sure they are not touching each other or overlapping. Microwave the tofu on high for 5 to 10 minutes, depending on how crispy you want it. Check on it every few minutes and flip the pieces over halfway through for even cooking. Be careful not to overcook the tofu as it can become dry and rubbery.

Tips and Tricks for Microwaving Tofu

  • If you want your tofu to be extra crispy, you can coat it with some cornstarch or flour before seasoning it. This will create a crunchy crust on the outside while keeping the inside moist and tender.
  • If you don’t have time to press the tofu, you can skip this step and microwave it for a longer time to evaporate the moisture. However, this may result in a less firm and flavorful tofu.
  • If you want to infuse more flavor into your tofu, you can marinate it overnight in the fridge before microwaving it. This will allow the seasonings to penetrate deeper into the tofu and make it more tasty.
  • If you want to add some texture and color to your tofu, you can sprinkle some sesame seeds, chopped nuts, or fresh herbs on top after microwaving it. These will add some crunch and freshness to your dish.

The Benefits of Microwaving Tofu vs. Other Cooking Methods

Microwaving tofu has several advantages over other cooking methods, such as frying, baking, or grilling.

First of all, microwaving tofu is much faster and easier than other methods. You don’t need to preheat the oven, heat up oil, or watch over the stove. You just need to cut and season the tofu and pop it in the microwave for a few minutes.

Second, microwaving tofu is healthier than other methods. You don’t need to use any oil or fat to cook the tofu, which reduces the calories and fat content. Microwaving also preserves more of the nutrients and moisture in the tofu than other methods that can dry it out or burn it.

Third, microwaving tofu is more eco-friendly than other methods. You don’t need to use any pots, pans, or baking sheets to cook the tofu, which saves water and energy. You also don’t produce any smoke or fumes that can pollute the air or trigger your smoke alarm. Microwaving tofu is a simple and smart way to enjoy this delicious protein.

How to Store Leftover Microwaved Tofu

The first thing you need to do is to let your tofu cool down completely before storing it. This will prevent bacteria growth and spoilage. Then, transfer your tofu to an airtight container or a ziplock bag and squeeze out as much air as possible. You can also add some marinade or sauce to keep your tofu moist and flavorful.

You can store your leftover microwaved tofu in the refrigerator for up to 3 days or in the freezer for up to 3 months. Make sure to label your container or bag with the date and contents so you don’t forget what’s inside.

How to Reheat Leftover Microwaved Tofu

When you’re ready to reheat your leftover microwaved tofu, you have a few options depending on how you want to use it. Here are some suggestions:

  • If you want to eat your tofu cold or at room temperature, you can simply take it out of the fridge or freezer and let it thaw if needed. You can enjoy it as a snack, salad topping, sandwich filling, or in a wrap.
  • If you want to warm up your tofu in the microwave, you can place it in a microwave-safe dish and cover it with a damp paper towel. This will help prevent your tofu from drying out or getting rubbery. Microwave for about 30 seconds or until hot, flipping halfway through. You can also add some more marinade or sauce if you like.
  • If you want to crisp up your tofu in the oven, you can preheat your oven to 375°F (190°C) and line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Cut your tofu into bite-sized pieces and toss them with some oil and seasonings of your choice. Spread them evenly on the prepared baking sheet and bake for 15 to 20 minutes or until golden and crispy, flipping halfway through.
  • If you want to pan-fry your tofu on the stovetop, you can heat some oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Cut your tofu into bite-sized pieces and season them with salt, pepper, and any other spices you like. Fry them for about 10 minutes or until browned and crisp on all sides, turning occasionally. You can also add some more marinade or sauce if you want.


Microwaving tofu is a fast and easy way to cook this versatile protein. You can enjoy it as a main course or a side dish, or add it to your favorite recipes. Microwaving tofu is also a great way to use up any leftover tofu you have in your fridge. Just remember to drain and press the tofu first, cut and season it as you like, and microwave it until crispy. You can also experiment with different seasonings and toppings to make your own unique creations.

We hope this blog post has answered your question: can you microwave tofu? If you have any other questions or comments about microwaving tofu, feel free to leave them below. We would love to hear from you!

By Rosie Elliott

I’m Rosie. I’m a professional chef with experience in Western, Mediterranean, and Italian cuisine. I’ve been cooking for over 15 years, and I have two daughters that keep me busy!

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