Yes, It’s OK to Freeze Tofu (and It Actually Has One Big Benefit!)

(Image credit: Joe Lingeman)

We usually freeze food to hold and preserve it for another day, and it’s a great way to reduce food waste. While some foods don’t change much with a stint in the freezer, there are some that don’t fare so well.

But tofu is the exception. Not only is it totally okay to freeze tofu, but there’s one big benefit you get from doing it. Let’s talk about the magic that happens when tofu is frozen.

Freezing Tofu Helps It Better Absorb Marinades

Author Bryant Terry’s delicious recipe for Grilled Vegetable and Tofu Kebabs calls for freezing the tofu before marinating it. Why do this extra step? He explains the two-fold benefit:

“Freezing tofu gives it a chewier texture in addition to increasing its ability to absorb marinades.”

If you like the smooth texture of tofu, then freezing isn’t recommended, of course. But if you want it to firm up a bit to have a pleasant chew, plus absorb the flavors of marinades (which sometimes tofu doesn’t do well), freezing it and then defrosting it before you use it really changes tofu’s character. Frozen tofu is perfect for kabobs or if you want to fry or bake some up for salads, stir-fries, or grain bowls.

(Image credit: Melissa Ryan)

How to Freeze Tofu

Freezing tofu is easy and you can freeze any variety — it doesn’t matter if it’s silken, firm, or extra-firm. All you have to do is cut the tofu into cubes the size of your choosing, freeze them solid on a baking sheet, and store them in a freezer container until you’re ready to defrost and cook.

If you always have a stash of tofu in the freezer, a tasty meal isn’t too far away!

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