I will admit, this healthier take on the classic “fried chicken” did take me quite a few attempts to perfect. But finally, I’ve got this recipe nailed down and these are baked to crispy perfection. Like seriously SO crispy.
Now I know this might seem time consuming and difficult, but this recipe is honestly quite straightforward and so worth it. And don’t let the long ingredient list scare you away — they are almost all spices!
Vegan Baked “Fried Chicken”
- 10-12 oz extra firm tofu
- ½ cup cornstarch
- 2 tsp onion powder
- 1 tsp garlic powder
- 1 tsp dried basil
- 1 tsp salt
- ½ tsp thyme
- ½ tsp smoked paprika
- ½ tsp ground mustard
- ¼ tsp turmeric
- ¼ tsp black pepper
- 6 tbsp water
- ¾ cup breadcrumbs (I made my own by blending 2 slices of toasted sprouted grain bread*)
- coconut oil or avocado oil (to spray)
- Press the tofu with paper towel, squeezing out as much of the liquid as possible.
- Optional (but recommended): Freeze the tofu overnight. The next day, let the tofu thaw and press again. This will help remove even more of the liquid, and achieve more of a chicken-like texture.
- Preheat the oven to 425°.
- Using your hands, break the tofu into irregular chunks (what makes it look like chicken). Press the tofu again.
- In a medium bowl, combine cornstarch, spices and water. Stir to combine until a thick paste forms.
- In a separate bowl, prepare the breadcrumbs.
- Taking one tofu chunk at a time, dip in the cornstarch slurry. Immediately dip the same piece in the breadcrumbs, making sure the tofu is fully coated. Transfer to a parchment lined baking tray. Repeat until all tofu chunks are coated.
- Spray all the tofu chunks with an oil of choice.
- Transfer the baking tray to the oven and bake at 425° for about 30 mins. Flip after 15 minutes and spray with more oil if needed.
- Remove from the oven and cool briefly.
- Serve alone or with dipping sauce of choice. Enjoy!