Healthy Vegan “Fried Chicken”

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”

A healthier vegan take on the classic fried chicken that uses tofu for a chicken-like texture. This recipe is baked to use less oil, but pan frying works as well.
Servings 20 pieces


  • 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!


* To make my breadcrumbs, I toasted two slices of Silver Hills Organic 20 Grain Train bread and blended it in the blender.