I’m adding “spice shop” to my list of Dream Businesses To Own, somewhere between “bakery with the best scones in town,” “vineyard in Sonoma,” and “Nordstrom.”  In the meantime, I’m content with my plate of Tofu Curry.

Easy Tofu Curry

Maybe I sniffed one too many seasonings at Penzys last week, but owning a spice shop sounds irresistibly exotic and romantic. I would wear boldly patterned silk dresses that flatter my figure and refer to myself as a “merchant.” My hair would smell like cinnamon, and I would have a mysterious ability to select the perfect spice for each customer. My every dinner would involve exotic spices that I first roast whole over an open flame, then grind with a mortar and pestle.

In reality, seasoning my dinners involves standing on a stepstool (best-case scenario) or hoisting myself on the counter (actual-case scenario) to rummage through an overcrowded, obnoxiously high cabinet/spice pit.  I am habitually out of basics like dried thyme, yet own three separate containers of smoked paprika. (Am I the only one who chronically believes that I am out of a certain spice?) Though I am intrinsically drawn to spices that smell like far away places I would like to visit—saffron, curry leaves, peri peri—and like the idea of grinding my own, I rely on my local grocery store for most of my spices, and my overworked cabinet doesn’t have room for a mortar and pestle.

This easy Tofu Curry has the wonderful flavor and richness of a traditional curry, but is healthier, prepared entirely with ingredients you can find at an average grocery store, and cooks up in a single pot. [One dish wonder alert!]

One Pot Tofu Curry. Healthy and perfect for weeknight dinner!

The tomato curry sauce is a vibrant blend of spicier ingredients (curry and cumin) and warm flavors (coriander and cloves.) In place of the heavy cream typically used to thicken and enrich curry, we’re calling in Greek yogurt. The Greek yogurt calms the spices and gives the sauce a lovely creaminess, without the excess. (Looking for a dairy free recipe that’s still vegetarian? Check out this Coconut Curry recipe and this Slow Cooker Red Lentil Cauliflower Curry! Or try this Thai-inspired Chickpea Curry!)

The final zip of freshness in Tofu Curry is ginger. Ginger is an acrobat in the spice circus. It majestically walks the tightrope between “hot” spices such as cayenne and “warming” spices such as cloves, making it the ideal flavor to incorporate in Tofu Curry.

The ginger in this recipe arrives in two forms: fresh (I like to zest it right into the pot with one of my favorite kitchen toys) and via Asian Cuisine Cooking Oil from STAR Fine Foods. By sautéing the tofu in the STAR Asian Cuisine Cooking Oil (an olive oil that is infused with traditional Asian flavors, including ginger) I was able to add extra ginger flavor with zero additional effort. More flavor for the same amount of work? Sign me up!

If you are not a fan tofu (as I shared in my post for Ultra Crispy Unfried Tofu, I’m aware the subject is divisive), feel free to swap in chicken or try chickpeas for a hearty vegetarian twist. (Another delicious recipe to try would be this Thai-inspired Chickpea Curry!)

Yummy Easy Tofu Curry

I may not be a spice merchant (yet), but I’m considering investing in a few boldly patterned silk dresses, just so that I can eat my Tofu Curry in style…with a mammoth napkin (and possibly a side of this Homemade Naan). I hear silk is dry-clean only. Memo to self: open future spice shop directly beside a dry cleaner’s. Ensure owner is cool with being paid in cinnamon.

Yummy Easy Tofu Curry

Tofu Curry with Tomatoes and Peas

4 from 2 votes
A healthy, easy tofu curry recipe that’s loaded with warm flavors. This one-pot meal uses simple ingredients and is perfect for weeknight dinner. Want to make super tasty tofu that tastes deep fried but isn’t? Do you think all tofu is mushy? Be sure to check out my post all about Ultra Crispy Unfried Tofu. You can apply the same method to this recipe, and I highly recommend it!

Prep: 10 mins
Cook: 35 mins
Total: 45 mins

Servings: 4 – 6 servings

Ingredients
  

  • 6 tablespoons STAR Asian Soy & Ginger Cuisine Cooking Oil, divided
  • 1 block extra firm tofu (14 ounces) pressed dry and cut into 1-inch cubes
  • 1 yellow onion, chopped (about 2 cups)
  • 1 tablespoon minced fresh ginger
  • 1 tablespoon tomato paste
  • 1 tablespoon minced garlic
  • 1 tablespoon  curry powder
  • 1 bay leaf
  • ½ teaspoon kosher salt
  • ½ teaspoon ground cumin
  • ½ teaspoon ground coriander
  • ¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • ¼ teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1 can diced tomatoes with their juices
  • ¾ cup low-fat plain Greek yogurt at room temperature
  • ¼ cup water
  • 2 cups frozen green peas thawed
  • Cooked brown rice for serving
  • Chopped fresh cilantro for serving

Instructions
 

  • Heat 4 tablespoons STAR Asian (Soy & Ginger) Cuisine Cooking Oil in a large non-stick skillet or wok over medium-high. Once the oil is hot, add tofu in a single layer and let cook undisturbed for a few minutes, until the tofu is brown on one side. With a spatula, carefully turn the tofu so that all sides brown, cooking for a few minutes on each side. Once tofu is lightly browned and crispy (about 10 minutes), remove tofu from pan and set aside.
  • Add remaining 2 tablespoons STAR Asian (Soy & Ginger) Cuisine Cooking Oil to the skillet, along with onion and ginger. Cook until onion softens and begins to turn translucent, about 5 minutes. Add tomato paste, garlic, curry powder, bayleaf, salt, cumin, coriander, cloves, and cayenne and cook for 3 minutes.
  • Remove pan from heat. Add tomatoes, yogurt, and water, return to medium heat and let cook 10 minutes. Add reserved tofu and peas, cover, and turn off the heat. Let sit 5 minutes. Remove bayleaf and discard. Serve warm with brown rice and garnish with cilantro.

Notes

STAR Asian Cuisine Cooking Oils are available at the Kroger Family of Stores (Bakers, City Market, Dillons, Ralphs, Fry’s Food Stores, Fred Meyer, Gerbes, Owens, Pay-Less, Smith’s Food and Drug Stores, QFC and King Soopers) and online here. Greek yogurt made curdle if added to the curry directly from the refrigerator (this will not affect the taste.) To help avoid curdling, ensure the yogurt is at room temperature and remove the pan from the heat prior to adding it.

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Star Fine Foods compensated me for my time to develop this recipe. As always, all opinions are my own.

Want to make tofu that tastes deep fried but isn’t? Check out this recipe for Ultra Crispy Unfried Tofu. I’m spilling my secrets for restaurant-style tofu that’s simple to make and healthy too!

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Erin Clarke

Hi, I'm Erin Clarke, and I'm fearlessly dedicated to making healthy food that's affordable, easy-to-make, and best of all DELISH. I'm the author and recipe developer here at wellplated.com and of The Well Plated Cookbook. I adore both sweets and veggies, and I am on a mission to save you time and dishes. WELCOME!

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50 Comments

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  1. This looks amazing Erin! I love curry especially curry lentils but I would love to try tofu! I’ve never dreamt of owning a spice shop but Nordstrom’s and a bakery have been on the top of my list since forever! I’ve also teetered more times then not up the counter to grab stuff on the top shelf even when I was about 7 months pregnant. I think the last 7 months has been the first time I haven’t climbed the counters in my whole life.

  2. I love curry – and I love tofu – so this recipe is vavavoom for me! Love the double dose of ginger in it too!

  3. This looks awesome, can’t wait to try it! I’m confused about the times listed in the recipe though — looking through your steps it looks like its about 25 minutes. Where dose the extra 30 minutes cook time come in??

    1. Hi there! Great question. Here is how I broke it down:
      -Cutting the tofu and onion + measuring spices throughout: 10 minutes
      -Cook the tofu: 10 minutes
      -Saute ginger, onions, and garlic: 10 minutes (I added 2 extra minutes as a buffer in this step–the directions actually add up to 8)
      -Add tomatoes and yogurt and let simmer: 10 minutes
      -Cover and let rest: 5 minutes
      TOTAL: 45 minutes

      I tend to be more generous with the cook times, just because it always takes a little longer to make a recipe the first time. I think if you are determined to plow through it, you could certainly shave some minutes off of the clock!

  4. I’d love to own a spice shop too. Just imagine all those fancy spices we’d get to try. It sounds so so so cool! This dish looks fabulous and that sauce sounds like a winner! : )

  5. I always think I’m out of cumin because for a time I was and now I have multiple jars of it all the time.
    This curry looks amazing!!

  6. The yogurt made mine curdle. Still tastes great, it just looks a little less appealing. What did I do wrong?

    1. Hi Becca! The curry was probably just a little hot when you added the yogurt. As you noted though, the good news is it doesn’t affect the taste :-) if you’d like to avoid curdling next time, measure and set out the yogurt right when you start cooking so that it gets closer to room temperature and make sure that you add it to the curry off the heat.
      Thank you so, so much for trying this recipe, and for letting me know how it turned out for you! I will add a note to the directions, based on your feedback. Bon appetite and have a great weekend too!

  7. I’ve made this twice now (and several others from your site) and it’s soooooo good and easy to make. I love the contrast of the texture of the peas, the strong ginger taste and the warmth the cayenne adds. It gets a big thumbs up from my husband as well, although my 2-year-old is yet to be convinced – but he’s getting there :-)5 stars

    1. Sarah, I am so SO happy to hear this! I also can’t say enough how much I appreciate the kind review and 5-star rating. They are incredibly helpful, especially to those considering a recipe but who might not try it if they don’t see enough 5-star reviews. Thank you!

  8. Since this was my first time making the recipe, I followed the recipe. It’s not that bad, but it’s also nothing to rave about. I think that the cloves were a little too dominant for my taste. I also think that a little coconut milk would have added another layer of flavor–the tomato base alone is very acidic and needs to be cut with something resembling lactic acid. Sorry I’m not fist-pumping, but this just isn’t what I had in mind.
    Note: I will add that I didn’t find your STAR cooking oil, but I did sub a ginger garlic cooking oil with a touch of teriyaki sauce that also added ginger into the mix. Still, the cloves and the acid were too strong.3 stars

    1. Hi Matt, thanks for reporting back! I’m sorry to hear the curry wasn’t quite to your taste, but it sounds like you’ve identified the tweaks you’d make if you try it again!

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