Homemade Crispy Shake and Bake Tofu Tenders

crispy-tofu-tenders

Crispy Tofu Tenders with Homemade Honey Mustard

I have begun to experiment with tofu.

I don’t know why it took me so long to research safe tofu companies. I got in touch with Nasoya and was told their facility is free of dairy, eggs and beef. SCORE!

Let the tofu love begin!

I have made tofu at home three times in a little over a week. I have made a tofu and veggie stir fry twice. Yum!

Last night, I decided to try an old chicken recipe with the tofu.

The result?

Mmmmmm… even the 5 year old liked it! (covered in ketchup, of course, but hey- she ate it happily!)

This recipe comes from allrecipes.com.

I have modified the spices a bit. Feel free to change the spices to ones you and your family enjoy.

I also use homemade bread crumbs, but store bought breadcrumbs or panko would work well, too.

This breadcrumb mixture made more than enough for half a container of tofu. I think I could have used this recipe for the entire package, but I was hesitant to use all the tofu in case this didn’t turn out. But it did and my little family loved it!

So tonight, we are having the other half of the tofu and I’m making these crispy shake and bake tofu tenders again! Along with some garlic mashed potatoes and maybe some stewed fresh green beans. And some homemade vegan gravy for the taters and beans… Mmmm, mmm! I better hurry this post up so I can cook- it’s almost dinner time already!

Ingredients:

2 cups breadcrumbs
3 Tbs canola oil
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp paprika
1/8 tsp pepper
1/4 to 1/2 tsp garlic powder
1/2 tsp onion powder
1/4 tsp poultry seasoning
pinch (or a peench as we say) of basil, dried parsley & dried oregano
***********************************************************************
2 flax eggs (2 Tbsp of ground flax and 6 Tbsp of water mixed together)

1 package of extra firm tofu, pressed between two plates for about 20-30 minutes (do this in advance and cut the tofu into strips like chicken tender sized)

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350. Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper.
  2. Prepare your flax eggs in a medium sized bowl and whisk with a fork. When the flax eggs are gelled and gooey, they are ready.
  3. Take everything above the starred line and mix it together in a gallon plastic baggie- adding the oil last. I like to shake the dry ingredients together first and then add the oil.
  4. Dip one tofu strip into the flax egg and then put it into the seasoned breadcrumb mixture and shake. Place the tofu strip onto a parchment lined cookie sheet (foil works, too, but parchment gives you no stick to the pan-ness! 😉 )
  5. Repeat with each tofu strip. If you run out of flax eggs, you will need to make another one (1Tbsp of ground flax & 3 Tbsp of water)
  6. Bake for 5 minutes. Gently flip the tenders. Bake for 5 more minutes. Flip tenders. Bake for another 3-4 minutes, or until tenders are crispy.

Notes:
Serve as you would serve chicken tenders, with a sauce or ketchup. (SG loves it this way.)
The Huzz and I prefer these crispy tenders cut up and served in a bowl along with other food. (Like in a salad or with a pasta dish with the tofu standing in for the chicken.)

It totally looks like chicken- but it doesn’t taste like it. The flavor is all in the crispy coating, so don’t be afraid to spice it up in the bag!

I hope y’all enjoy these crispy shake and bake tofu tenders.   (I’m still working on getting my Southern back, y’all! I kind of lost it from living in Ohio and Iowa for so long!)

 

Christmas Meal Prep Plan

 

For Christmas this year, I’m pretty much making exactly what I made this past Thanksgiving, with a few changes to the dessert menu.

Here’s my menu and the breakdown of what I make ahead. I make as much in advance as I can to make it a little easier on the big day.

I’m breaking it down between four days. You can do it in two days if you’re pressed for time. I’m spreading it out slowly because I’m not rushed for time this year.

Day 1:

Make a double batch of Buckeyes and freeze them.  Use dairy free subs and coconut oil instead of shortening.

Day 2:

Make Homemade Bread (I use this to make the breadcrumbs I need for Day 3’s Cutlets recipe.)

Make Fudge and refrigerate.

Make Sugar Cookies and decorate.

Day 3:

Make Pumpkin Pie and refrigerate.

Make Cornbread.

Make Double Batch of Chickpea Cutlets and refrigerate.

Peel Potatoes in the evening and completely cover potatoes with water in a bowl. Cover bowl with plastic wrap. Keep in fridge until it’s time to make the mashed potatoes the next day. (Optional step. Can omit and do this on day 4.)

Day 4:

Start Dough for Homemade Dinner Rolls early. When dough is ready, prepare rolls and bake.

Boil and season fresh green beans (I use vegetable broth and season with Adobo, garlic powder and onion powder.) Transfer to a crockpot and cook on high for approximately 4 hours.

Make Gravy. A triple batch. Use the suggested variation of adding poultry seasoning and sage to the gravy.

Make Cornbread Dressing.

Make Holiday Mashed Potatoes.

I hope this breakdown helps. If you need any last minute recipes for Christmas, these recipes will not disappoint!

I hope you have a wonderful week leading up to Christmas.

Merry Christmas, y’all!

Homemade Ranch Mashed Potatoes: Dairy & Egg Free

I’ve tried lots of different recipes for dairy free mashed potatoes. Most were okay, but I couldn’t find the perfect recipe. SG has never liked any of my attempts… until I tried my hand at homemade ranch mashed potatoes! To be honest, she loved them the first time I made them and then didn’t like them when I made them again tonight. Oh, four year olds!!!

However, the Huzz and I really LIKE these mashed potatoes, or “mashies” as we called them growing up. (Remember mashies, Tracy & Josh???)

I do make my own ranch dressing. Click here to read how to make dairy and egg free ranch dressing. You’ll need to make it for this recipe. To speed up making ranch dressing, I keep several recipes of ranch mix premixed and ready to go in a clean jelly jar.

Also, I read on a blog somewhere that yukon gold potatoes are the best for dairy free mashed potatoes. I have no idea if that is true or not, but I tried it for this recipe instead of my usual russet potatoes and it tasted good.

Homemade Ranch Mashed Potatoes:

Ingredients:
4-6 Medium to Large Yukon Gold Potatoes, peeled and cubed
3 Tablespoons of non-dairy milk (I used my half and half sub)
8 Tablespoons of Homemade Ranch Dressing
1.5 small spoons of Vegan Butter (I used a regular small spoon)

Directions:
1. Bring a pot of water to a boil. Add potatoes and cook until tender. Drain water and return potatoes to hot pot. Mash potatoes.
2. Add non-dairy milk, ranch dressing & vegan butter. Stir until mixed.
3. Serve and enjoy.

Ranch Mashed Potatoes

Ranch Mashed Potatoes

By the way, I’ve never been a good photographer. My pics aren’t the greatest- I know. I do have a new camera and am still kind of clueless on how to take good photographs. I’m working on it! 🙂

Thanksgiving Recipes: Dairy & Egg Free

Holidays are steeped in tradition. Food allergies change things. But what doesn’t have to change is still having a yummy, delicious, and safe spread for Thanksgiving or Christmas.

Maybe it’s the first time cooking the holiday meal for everyone.

Maybe you’re the sweet family member or friend who is searching for safe recipes for a food allergic loved one. (Thanks for that, by the way. It means more than you know.)

Maybe the idea of a dairy and egg free holiday feast terrifies you.

Whatever the hesitation or reason, fear not. I’m going to share links to yummy recipes.

Last year we had a completely “safe” Thanksgiving and Christmas feast! None of the food tasted weird- just good.

Without further ado, here are some of the dishes I made last year. I’m also going to throw in a few recipes I haven’t yet tried, but will try for either Thanksgiving or Christmas.

A star in front of the name means I haven’t tried the recipe yet but I’m going to soon. No star means I made it, liked it and will make it again this holiday season.

Herb Roasted Turkey

Twice Baked Potatoes

*Mashed Potatoes

Sweet Potato Mallow Melt

My Mama’s Southern Puerto Rican Green Beans
(Simmer green beans for approximately 30 minutes along with fatback (or bacon) and lemon juice to taste. Salt and pepper to taste.)

Nana’s Safe Stuffing
(I never knew this recipe is originally from Better Homes and Gardens. You can look it up if you have that cookbook. Use vegan butter and safe bread. We omit the celery and carrot and only use the onion. We used homemade bread the last time we made it. Delish! And Nana uses poultry seasoning, not the suggested sage.)

Pillsbury Crescent Rolls

Pumpkin Bread
(This makes a delicious breakfast. We slather our pumpkin bread with Earth Balance Natural Buttery Spread.)

Pumpkin Pie
(I made this one last year. Last year I omitted the cinnamon and subbed allspice.)

*Pumpkin Pie 2
(I’m trying this recipe this weekend before the big day. I always use the Refrigerated Pillsbury Roll Out Crusts. That’s not the official name but that’s what I call it.)

Cherry Pie

Cherry Pie & Apple Pie

Cherry Pie & Apple Pie

Apple Pie

Chocolate Chip Cookies
(Can dip half of the cookie in melted chocolate. Melt some Enjoy Life chocolate chips along with some shortening or coconut oil in the microwave. Mix well. Dip cookie. Repeat. Let cool on parchment paper.)

Chocolate Dipped Chocolate Chip Cookies

Vanilla Cupcakes
(These are great for making ahead and freezing. Mine are in the freezer baked already. I’m planning on frosting them with Pillsbury Maple Brown Sugar frosting and putting cute little pumpkin picks in the cupcakes to make them festive.)

If you like to bake in advance, the following freeze well:
Pumpkin Bread
Chocolate Chip Cookies
Vanilla Cupcakes (unfrosted)

The apple and pumpkin pie can be made the day before Thanksgiving. The cherry pie tastes better (to me) the day it’s baked, so that pie I bake the day of.

I hope these recipes help you have a safe and delicious Thanksgiving.