Enjoy the comfort of takeout food at home with this Takeout-Style Tofu and Broccoli made completely in a pressure cooker! Serve it alone as a tasty side or over rice for a hearty vegan meal.
Takeout Inspired Tofu and Broccoli
I have a confession: I’m absolutely terrified of our pressure cooker. I’ve been known to run out of the apartment any time it makes any noise at all. I know, it’s pretty irrational, and modern pressure cookers are waaaaay safer than old-time pressure cookers… but still. I can’t help but panic a little every time I press a button.
I am really trying to face this fear head on with exposure therapy. Which is not hard, because there are SO.MANY.THINGS. you can make in a pressure cooker. Like beans (dry! unsoaked!) in 45 minutes or less. Jasmine rice in 10 minutes. Entire meals and desserts and dips and casseroles. A pressure cooker truly is one of those kitchen appliances that you will use all the time, especially if you are busy and don’t have a ton of time to cook (hello, that’s all of us).
I usually stick to cooking basic staples in the pressure cooker, but I recently received The Vegan Instant Pot Cookbook by Nisha Vora and am floored by how many types of complete dishes you can make in the pressure cooker. Like this Takeout-Style Tofu and Broccoli! You have to try it the next time you’re in the mood to bust out your Instant Pot. Let’s dig in!
Ingredients for Chili Garlic Tofu and Broccoli
This Tofu and Broccoli recipe is inspired by Asian flavors, particularly those you might find from your favorite takeout spot. It’s a take on a tofu and broccoli stir fry, but instead of making it on the stove, it all comes together in the pressure cooker!
The whole recipe comes together with just 9 ingredients! Most of the ingredients are pantry staples that I always keep on hand, so if you don’t already have them in your cabinet, go pick them up and I guarantee you’ll find so many ways to use these ingredients! Soy sauce, rice vinegar and sesame oil are in regular rotation in my kitchen.
Here’s everything you’ll need to make this instant pot tofu and broccoli:
- Tofu. I recommend extra-firm anytime you’re making something like this instant pot tofu as it will hold up the best.
- Soy sauce. I would go for low-sodium. If you buy regular soy-sauce, you can always dilute it with water to cut the sodium and get double the amount for the same price!
- Sriracha. You could also use a similar chili-garlic sauce like sambal.
- Sesame oil. This adds a delicious depth of flavor that you will really miss if you leave it out!
- Rice vinegar. I use unseasoned as it makes it easier to decide how sweet or salty you want the final dish to be.
- Agave nectar. Coconut nectar would also work. In a pinch, you could use maple syrup, but that will have a more robust, less neutral flavor.
- Grapeseed oil. Or you can use any other neutral, high-heat cooking oil.
- Broccoli. Fresh will hold up best, but frozen will also work!
- Cornstarch. This will help thicken up the sauce.
How to Make Instant Pot Tofu and Broccoli
The very first step is to drain and press your tofu to release as much moisture as possible. Then, the tofu is marinated before browning it using the sauté function of the pressure cooker. Once everything is browned, you toss in the ginger chili sauce ingredients, pop on the lid to set it and forget it while you prep the other ingredients.
While the Instant Pot tofu is cooking, you can chop up the broccoli and prepare your rice. Once the tofu is done cooking, you toss in the broccoli to steam for a minute.
Finally, with the addition of a cornstarch slurry, the sauce gets all sticky and gooey and absolutely everything you would want in takeout food. It’s slightly sweet, but the sweetness isn’t overpowering! (Trust me, because I really don’t like sickly sweet sauces for savory dishes.)
You could serve this takeout tofu and broccoli as a side dish in a takeout-inspired feast, or over jasmine rice for a hearty vegan meal.
More Vegan Pressure Cooker Recipes
If you’re looking for more simple vegan Instant Pot meals, I highly recommend you pick up a copy of The Vegan Instant Pot Cookbook by Nisha Vora. Every recipe in this cookbook uses a pressure cooker, which is great for me since I’m trying to face my fear of this versatile appliance. There are breakfasts, dinners, desserts… so many incredible recipes. There is a recipe for Miso Mushroom Risotto which is loudly calling my name.
The Vegan Instant Pot Cookbook is truly one of the most beautiful cookbooks I own, which makes me want to pull out the pressure cooker even more. Thanks, Nisha, for encouraging me to actually use this thing!
Takeout Inspired Tofu and Broccoli
Enjoy the comfort of carry out at home with this take on Tofu and Broccoli stir fry. Made in a pressure cooker for an easy, mess-free meal!
For the marinated tofu:
- 1 (14-ounce) block extra-firm tofu
- 3 tablespoons reduced-sodium tamari or soy sauce
- 2 teaspoons Sriracha or similar chili-garlic sauce
- 1 teaspoon toasted sesame oil
- 2 teaspoons rice vinegar
For the ginger-chili sauce:
- ¼ cup reduced-sodium tamari or soy sauce
- ¼ cup agave nectar or coconut nectar (or maple syrup, but that will have a more robust, less neutral flavor)
- 2 tablespoons water
- 1½ tablespoons Sriracha or similar chili-garlic sauce
- 1 tablespoon toasted sesame oil
- 1 tablespoon rice vinegar 1½-inch piece fresh ginger, grated or finely minced
- 1½ tablespoons grapeseed oil or other neutral, high-heat cooking oil
- 2 medium heads broccoli, cut into small florets (about 4 cups)
- 2 tablespoons cornstarch
- White rice or brown rice
- Prep the tofu: Drain the tofu and cut into 4 slabs. Place the tofu on a cutting board lined with paper towels. Place more paper towels on top of the tofu and weight them down with a few heavy cookbooks or a heavy skillet filled with a few cans of beans. Let sit for at least 30 minutes or ideally 1 hour, changing the paper towels in between to drain all of the moisture. Cut the tofu into ¾-inch cubes.
- Marinate the tofu: Place the tofu in a gallon-size zip-top bag and add the tamari, Sriracha, sesame oil, and vinegar. Toss to combine and let the tofu rest in the marinade for 5 minutes, massaging occasionally.
- Meanwhile, make the ginger-chili sauce: In a medium bowl, whisk together the tamari, agave nectar, water, the Sriracha, sesame oil, vinegar, and ginger until well combined.
- Finish the dish: Select the Sauté setting on the Instant Pot and let the pot heat up for a few minutes before adding the grapeseed oil. Once the display reads “HOT,” use a slotted spoon or fork to carefully transfer the marinated tofu to the pot. Cook the tofu for 1½ minutes undisturbed. Use a spatula to flip and cook the tofu until it starts to brown on all sides, 3 to 4 minutes total. Add the ginger-chili sauce and stir to combine. Select the Cancel setting.
- Secure the lid and set the Pressure Release to Sealing. Select the Pressure Cook setting at high pressure and set the cook time to 3 minutes.
- Release the pressure. Once the 3-minute timer has completed and beeps, perform a quick pressure release by carefully switching the Pressure Release knob from Sealing to Venting.
- Open the pot. Add the broccoli florets to the tofu and stir with the sauce to combine. Secure the lid and set the Pressure Release to Sealing. Select the Pressure Cook setting to low pressure and set the cook time to 1 minute. Once the 1-minute timer has completed and beeps, carefully perform another quick pressure release.
- In a small bowl, stir together the cornstarch with ¼ cup water, whisking until combined without any lumps. Select the Sauté setting and press the Sauté button again until you reach less heat. Add the cornstarch slurry to the Instant Pot and gently stir to combine. Cook, stirring gently, until the sauce thickens, 2 to 3 minutes.
- Serve the tofu and broccoli over rice.
Reprinted from The Vegan Instant Pot Cookbook by arrangement with Avery, a member of Penguin Group (USA) LLC, A Penguin Random House Company. Copyright © 2019, Nisha Vora