This vegan tofu fried rice recipe is loaded with vegetables and far better than take-out! It’s truly one of my family’s favorite recipes and I love how easy it is to make for them.
Tofu fried rice is a great vegan alternative to egg fried rice and is perfect to make at the end of the week to use up whatever veggies you have around!
Skill: Easy | Time: 40 min | Servings: 4
Get the Veg Out newsletter for new vegan recipes + nutrition content!
This post contains affiliate links (including Amazon Associates) and I earn from qualifying purchases.
Is Fried Rice Vegan?
Many fried rice recipes (or take-out options) are not vegan as they often contain a combination of meat, seafood and/ or eggs. Vegetable fried rice dishes may be vegan, depending on how they’re cooked and if they contain eggs.
Fortunately, it’s quick, easy and delicious to make fried rice at home. This way you can create a customized recipe based on your taste preferences. I love making tofu fried rice because crumbled tofu can be a great replacement for eggs, and it adds plant-based protein.
This is the perfect recipe to use up leftover rice and/ or veggies. I often make it at the end of the week to use leftover ingredients; almost any combination of vegetables will create a delicious and nutritionally balanced meal.
Vegan Tofu Fried Rice Ingredients and Substitutions
The ingredients for this recipe are generally easy to find and extremely versatile based on what you have around and your preferences. They include:
- Tofu: I use extra-firm tofu that crumbles perfectly and easily replaces the texture (and protein content) of eggs. Pressed firm tofu could also work but avoid soft tofu options because they will not hold up well when you cook it.
- Sesame oil: This is by far my favorite oil to use; it’s packed with flavor and truly makes a spectacular tasting fried rice.
- Soy sauce: For delicious flavor and saltiness, this recipe uses a fair amount of one of my favorite ingredients – soy sauce! I use a low sodium option whenever possible. You could also use tamari to keep this recipe gluten free.
- Mirin: This is not necessarily a common ingredient in fried rice but one I love using for its added flavor. It’s a rice wine that is sweet and delicious, often used in Japanese cooking. If you can’t find mirin, or don’t want to use it, choose a sweet cooking wine (or sherry). For an alcohol-free option, use 2 tsp of rice vinegar with 1 tsp sugar for each tablespoon of mirin.
- Rice: Leftover rice that’s completely cooled is best for this recipe. I typically make fried rice when I have leftover rice (or purposely make extra one night earlier in the week). You can also use leftover quinoa (or other cooked grains) in place of rice.
- Vegetable oil: Fats bring flavor to any recipe and prevent food from sticking to your pan. If you’ve ever cooked at home and wondered why it’s not as good as a restaurant, it’s likely because you haven’t used as much fat, salt and/ or sugar. Don’t skip the oil unless you want a drier, less tasty rice.
- Garlic powder: While fresh garlic is delicious, I highly recommend garlic powder for fried rice. I find it makes this recipe taste much more like what I get at restaurants that serve Chinese food.
- Onion: Fresh onion is a must for me and a vegetable I always have on hand!
- Carrot, mushrooms, edamame, corn: One of the best parts of this recipe is how versatile it is; you can use any vegetables you have around or whatever you like. This could include broccoli, cauliflower, bell pepper, green peas, green beans, snow peas, cabbage, spinach, kale, bok choy or anything else!
- Sesame seeds and/ or green onion: These ingredients are optional for a delicious and eye-catching garnish. Black sesame seeds provide a great color contrast!
How to Make Eggless Fried Rice: Instructions, Video Tutorial and Tips
This recipe is simple to make and can be quick to toss together, especially if you cook the tofu at the same time as your veggies and rice (in separate pans). Read through the detailed directions below or watch this video for a visual on how to prepare tofu fried rice.
Step 1: Prep Ingredients
Fried rice cooks quickly so it’s best to prepare everything ahead of time.
You’ll need cooked rice, ideally leftover rice that’s chilled. If your rice is freshly cooked, it may become slightly mushy when fried.
Get all your vegetables prepped by washing and chopping into small pieces. Using frozen veggies that are ready-to-go is a great way to save time when prepping fried rice. I’ve used corn and pre-shelled edamame here. Frozen green peas are also a great choice.
As the cooking process goes quickly, it’s also best to get the sauces you’ll need along with garlic powder.
Step 2: Cook Tofu
You can either cook the tofu on its own (before the vegetables and rice), using the same pan for everything, or cook the tofu at the same time as your vegetables in a separate smaller pan.
To cook the tofu, warm some sesame oil over medium heat and toss in crumbled tofu. If desired, you can break the tofu into smaller pieces as you cook.
Cook for a few minutes, until the tofu starts to brown.
At this point, add soy sauce and mirin. Toss to coat the tofu evenly with these sauces and continue to cook for another few minutes, until the tofu is lightly browned.
Remove your tofu from the pan and set aside.
Step 3: Cook Veggies and Fry Rice
In a large pan, warm some vegetable oil over medium-high heat.
I like to start by cooking the onion for a minute before adding in the carrots and cooking for another minute. These two vegetables take longer to cook, so it’s best to give them a head start (don’t worry, your carrots will still be crisp and not overcooked at the end).
Once the carrot and onion have had some time to soften, add the rest of your veggies and cook for another minute or two, depending on how soft you like them.
Add the rice and sauces (soy sauce, mirin, sesame oil and garlic powder). Toss to coat everything evenly.
Add your cooked tofu into the pan and cook everything together for about 2-3 minutes. Keep everything moving around so all the ingredients cook evenly.
Step 4: Serve
Serve this tofu fried rice hot, topped with sesame seeds and/ or green onion for garnish. Both these garnishes add a delicious flavor to the meal!
How to Serve this Recipe: Create a Balanced Vegan Meal
This vegan tofu fried rice recipe checks off all those boxes. You can easily load up on a variety of colored vegetables. The tofu brings plant-based protein as does the edamame. You’ll get plenty of complex carbohydrates from the brown rice and healthy fats from the vegetable oils, tofu and edamame.
This recipe can be served as a meal on its own or alongside other items.
How to Store Leftovers
Leftover vegan tofu fried rice should be refrigerated in an airtight container for up to 5 days. Reheat using a microwave or in a pan over medium heat until the rice and veggies are warmed through.
I hope you enjoy this recipe! If you make it, please rate and comment below so others benefit from your experience.
More Deliciously Filling Vegan Dinner Recipes
Vegan Tofu Fried Rice with Vegetables
- Cutting Board
- Large frying pan
Step 1: Prep Ingredients
- Crumble the tofu in a medium-sized bowl. It doesn’t need to be too finely crumbled; you can break the pieces up further while cooking.
- Chop onion, carrot and mushrooms or whichever veggies you use.
- The corn and edamame I use is frozen and ready-to-go!
- Make sure you have the other ingredients ready because cooking happens quickly (I keep them on the counter with measuring spoons available).
Step 2: Cook Tofu
- In a large pan, warm 1 tbsp sesame oil over medium heat and add your crumbled tofu.
- Cook for about 5 minutes, until the tofu starts to brown. Then, add 1 tbsp soy sauce and 1 tbsp mirin.
- Toss to coat the tofu with soy sauce and mirin and continue cooking for up to another 5 minutes.
- Remove the browned tofu from your pan and set aside.
Step 3: Cook Veggies and Fry Rice
- Warm 2 tbsp vegetable oil in a large pan or wok over medium-high heat.
- Add onion and cook for about 1 minute, until it begins to soften.
- Then, add carrot and cook for another 1-2 minutes (depending on how soft you like your vegetables and how large or small you’ve chopped them; larger pieces take longer to cook).
- Add mushrooms, edamame and corn and cook for about 1 minute.
- Add 4 C cooked rice to your pan along with the remaining ingredients: 4 tbsp soy sauce, 2 tbsp sesame oil, 3 tbsp mirin and 2 tsp garlic powder.
- Toss to evenly coat the veggies and rice in sauces.
- Next, add the tofu that was cooked earlier.
- Stir fry for another 2 minutes to give the flavors time to work together. Keep everything moving around the pan during this time so it can cook evenly.
Step 4: Serve
- Remove the pan from heat and serve hot.
- Optional to garnish with sesame seeds (white or black) and/ or chopped green onion.