How to marinate tofu like a pro

Posted · 22nd August 2023

One of the greatest things about tofu is how versatile it is. By upping your marinade skills, you can learn how to infuse tofu with any flavour you can think of and use it in a million magnificent recipes (give or take)!

Prepping your tofu and leaving it to marinade also means you can get ahead so your tofu’s ready for cooking and already full of flavour. You can even marinate your tofu and pop it in the freezer to get really ahead and make sure you don’t waste any tofu.

Here’s a rundown of how to marinate your tofu like a pro.

1. Press your tofu

First thing’s first – prep your tofu.

You can either use a tofu press to press your Authentic Tofu Block or grab a pack of our Quick & Tasty Tofu that comes ready-pressed!

If you have a regular block of tofu with no tofu press, give this super easy pressing technique a go.

  1. Drain the water from your tofu block.
  2. Place a cooling rack over a baking tray (to catch the excess water).
  3. Pop your tofu block on the cooling rack and place your heaviest chopping board over the tofu.
  4. Leave for 20-30 mins to press with no need for paper.

You can also see a quick video tutorial on how to press tofu here: Transforming Tofu How-to Guides.

Once your tofu is nicely pressed, simply cut your tofu to your preference. Usually, cubing your tofu is a winner, as it works for almost any dish. However, if you’re planning to grill your tofu, cutting slab-like pieces works well too.

2. Make your marinade

The next step is to make your marinade. There’s a huge variety of fantastic recipes to infuse tofu with all kinds of phenomenal flavours.

Loads of our tofu recipes include glazes and sauces to soak maximum taste into our tofu. But this recipe for marinated tofu in three different ways is a great place to start:

Marinated Tofu 3 Ways

This recipe shows you how to make three super tasty and totally different marinades to get the ball rolling.

Learn how to make a spicy sriracha marinade, a teriyaki tofu marinade, and a herby oregano and olive oil marinade. Give one or all three a go!

View recipe

3. Let the marination magic happen

In a sealed container, add your tofu and cover in the marinade. You should aim to marinate for at least 2 hours in the fridge. To infuse more flavour, you can leave it to marinade for up to 2 days before cooking up.

Top tip: Don’t ditch the leftover marinade when you come to cook your tofu. Add it to the pan when you’re cooking, or heat it on the side and add it when plating up for an extra saucy serving!

Useful tofu marination information

Now you’re all set to start experimenting with magnificent marinades for maximum tofu flavour!

But before you scamper away to put your new skills to the test, here’s some super handy info you should know.

How long does marinated tofu last?

Once you have marinated your tofu, you can keep it in the fridge for two to three days before cooking. For best results, we recommend marinating your tofu overnight and cooking the next day.

If you have the time, cook your tofu as soon as it’s marinated. This can keep in the fridge for up to five days before adding it to your dish and devouring.

Can you freeze marinated tofu?

In a word – yes! However, freezing will affect the texture of your tofu, making it a little drier and more fibrous (see our guide to freezing tofu for more information).

Once you’ve pressed, cut, and covered your tofu in a marinade, put the sealed container in the freezer. On the day that you want to cook with it, remove the container from the fridge and let it defrost throughout the day before whipping up your tofu dish.

Marinated tofu recipes to try:

Now you know what’s what when it comes to marinades, give these tip-top marinated tofu recipes a try for a bit more inspo!

Kale and Ancient Grains Salad with Citrus Marinated Tofu

With a sweet, citrusy, and aromatic marinade, the tofu topping a bed of warm grains and kale is bursting with flavour. Finished with pomegranate seeds and a zesty salad dressing, this makes for a superb lunch or light dinner dish.

View Recipe

Crispy Szechuan Tofu & Noodle Bowl

Tofu cubes are marinated in traditional Szechuan ingredients, then fried and served with choy sum to make a belting Chinese-inspired noodle bowl.

This one’s super simple to whip up – perfect for a mid-week evening meal!

View Recipe

Peruvian Ceviche Salad with Refreshing Citrus Marinated Tofu

Swap fish for tofu in this zingy, zesty, and fantastically fresh ceviche salad.

This one’s a great light lunch that’s perfect for getting a taste of summer (whether it’s hot or not!).

View Recipe

Char Siu Glazed Tofu with Pickled Vegetables & Steamed Rice

Char siu (a glaze made from hoisin, sugar, and soy sauce) is the perfect sweet and sticky glaze for this tantalising tofu dish. Paired with pickled veg and rice, this one’s a winner, especially if you like the marriage of sweet and sour.

View Recipe

Want to try marinated tofu but are short on time?

If you’re short on time but still want that marinated tofu deliciousness, give our Marinated Tofu Pieces or Hoisin Tofu Pieces a try.

These tofu pieces come pre-marinated and ready to eat – either cook straight from the pack or get stuck right in!


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