Learn how to press tofu with these two easy methods - no tofu press required!
We eat a good amount of tofu around here and so you'd think we spring for a fancy tofu press, but we just haven't found that it's necessary when the same results can be achieved using things we already have around the kitchen.
We use the two methods detailed below most often.
Table of Contents
Why Bother To Press Tofu?
Taking the time to press tofu really does make a difference in the texture and flavor is definitely worth the effort.
Here are few benefits of pressing tofu:
- Removing the liquid before cooking will ensure that your final dish doesn't get watered down.
- Pressing out the water allows the tofu to soak in any seasoning or marinade.
- It will result in a firmer texture and remove as much as ½ cup of water.
Step By Step Instructions Method #1
- Prepare the tofu. Open the package of tofu and drain out the water. Place a folded paper towel on a plate, then put tofu block on top and place another folded paper towel on top. Alternatively, you wrap in a clean kitchen towel.
- Add a flat surface. Put a cutting board or another plate on top of the tofu to distribute the weight.
- Apply weight on top. Use heavy books, some canned goods or cast iron pan to apply pressure. Let sit for at least 30 minutes before using.
Step By Step Instructions Method #2
- Prepare the tofu. Open the package of tofu and drain out the water. Wash off the plastic tofu package and use a knife to cut three slits in the bottom. Then place it on top of plate.
- Add a flat surface. Put tofu on top of the overturned container.
- Apply weight on top. Place a cutting board or another plate on top of the tofu. Use heavy books, some canned goods or cast iron pan to apply pressure. Let sit for at least 30 minutes before using.
Frequently Asked Questions
No, not all methods of preparation will require pressing, but anything that you plan to bake or crisp up will benefit from pressing. As will anything that you marinate or cut and add to a stir fry or curry.
You'll want to press firm or extra firm tofu only. Anything softer will likely fall apart or crumble once pressure is applied. Silken tofu should also not be pressed.
Storing and Freezing
Tofu that been pressed keeps well in the fridge for a day or two.
You can freeze already pressed tofu, but we often freeze tofu right in it's original packaging and then press it after thawing.