Pan-Seared Tofu with a Sweet and Sour Sticky Glaze

Firm tofu gets coated in cornstarch then pan-seared until browned on both sides. The sweet and sour sauce gets added to the seared tofu and as it sizzles in the hot pan, it creates a thick, glossy glaze that adheres to the tofu. This is a fast and easy way to make intensely flavored tofu that works well over brown rice, noodles or steamed veggies. If you use tamari instead of soy sauce, this dish is 100% gluten-free.

Pan-Seared Tofu with a Sweet and Sour Sticky Glaze


1# firm tofu

1/4 cup cornstarch

2 tablespoons olive oil or vegetable oil


1/3 cup water

1 1/2 tablespoons soy sauce

1 tablespoon hoisin sauce

1 tablespoon honey

1/2 tablespoon sesame oil

2 teaspoons unseasoned rice vinegar (if you have black vinegar, even better although not gluten-free)


  1. Pat tofu dry. Cut it into 6 rectangles (width-wise) about 1/2 inch thick. Place the tofu slices in a bowl and sprinkle with cornstarch. With your hands rub the cornstarch so it coats both sides.
  2. Heat a 10″ non-stick skillet over medium-high heat, add the oil. Place tofu in the skillet, brown for about 3-5 minutes per side.
  3. While the tofu is browning, in the same bowl you used for the tofu, whisk together the glaze ingredients, water through rice vinegar.
  4. Once the tofu has browned on both side, pour the sauce over the tofu. It will bubble up. Cook the sauce until it forms a thick glaze. Turn the tofu over so it gets coated on both sides.

Note: Serve tofu with brown rice, noodles or steamed veggies. For a firmer, denser tofu texture, freeze the tofu and then defrost it and press out the water before coating in cornstarch.

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