Crispy vegan "chicken" tenders, baked or fried, tossed in Frank's Red Hot Sauce, and served with a trio of tasty dips. Need we say more? Didn't think so.

Crispy “Chicken” Tenders [Vegan]

Serves

20

Cooking Time

40

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Ingredients

For the Tofu:

  • 2 bricks extra-firm tofu

For the Breading:

  • 1/3 cup cornstarch
  • 1/2 cup plant milk
  • 1/2 cup panko bread crumbs
  • 1/4 cup plain crispy rice cereal, crushed
  • 1 tablespoon avocado oil
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • 1 tablespoon nutritional yeast
  • 1/2 teaspoon parsley flakes
  • A pinch of sea salt & pepper

For the Coating:

  • 1/2 cup vegan hot sauce
  • 1 tablespoon neutral oil
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Preparation

For the Baked Tofu:

  1. Preheat your oven to 400°F, and line a baking pan with parchment paper.
  2. Wrap the tofu in a towel or paper towel, and put some weights over top. Press it for 15-20 minutes, then cut into sticks.
  3. Place the cornstarch in one bowl, the plant milk in a second bowl, and mix together panko crumbs, rice crispies, avocado oil, garlic powder, onion powder, paprika, nutritional yeast, salt, pepper and dried parsley in a third bowl.
  4. Coat the tofu sticks in cornstarch first, then dip them in milk, and then roll in crumb mixture. Place each tofu stick on the parchment-lined pan, and bake for 25 minutes on 400°F, flipping halfway.
  5. In the meantime, mix together Franks and oil in a bowl.
  6. Next, remove tofu from oven, brush with hot sauce & oil mixture, and place back in the oven. Bake on 400°F for 10-15 more minutes, or until tofu is crispy on each side.

For the Fried Tofu:

  1. For the fried tofu, heat a layer of neutral oil in saucepan on medium. You'll know the oil is hot enough when you stick a wooden spoon in and you see bubbling.
  2. Fry the tofu for approximately 1 minute per side, checking throughout to make sure it isn't burning.
  3. When tofu sticks are brown on each side, transfer to a paper towel-lined plate until all tofu is done frying.
  4. Toss tofu sticks in the hot sauce and oil mixture, then place on a cooling rack over a baking sheet.
  5. Bake on 400°F for 5-7 minutes to crisp up the outside again.
  6. Serve tofu sticks with creamy vegan ranch, zesty jalapeño nacho sauce, or spicy chili garlic aioli.
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