Tofu Chicharrones

Chicharrones are bits of deep-fried pork belly much beloved in Latin America. This adaptation offers veg*ns the same greasy, chewy goodness.

Yield: about 2 cups

Time: 45 minutes


  • medium bowl or container with lid
  • plate
  • paper towels
  • heavy frying pan
  • metal, heat-safe tongs
  • metal, heat-safe slotted spoon


  • 1 pound firm or extra firm tofu, frozen and thawed, then pressed, and then torn into small, irregular pieces
  • 3 T soy sauce
  • 1 T liquid smoke
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1 T red wine vinegar
  • about ⅓ c peanut or sesame oil


Combine soy sauce, liquid smoke, garlic, and vinegar, then stir in the tofu pieces. Let marinate for about 15 minutes, stirring or shaking occasionally.*

Line plate with paper towels and set next to the stove.

Heat oil and test its readiness by dropping in a tiny piece of tofu. When it sizzles and quickly browns, add about ½ cup of tofu pieces and fry until brown, about 4-5 minutes. Turn each piece and brown the other side. Transfer to paper towels and repeat with remaining tofu.

Serve hot as a snack, mix into rice, roll up in a tortilla along with some beans… the sky’s the limit!


* My tofu was so spongy that it immediately soaked up every bit of the marinade, so I didn’t need to stir it.

Viva-VeganRecipe from Viva Vegan! (read my review).

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Tofu chicharrones