Dinner, Recipes, Tofu

Tasty Tofu Étouffée Recipe

Cooks in 1 hour Difficulty Medium 4 comments

My recent trip to New Orleans was quite inspiring when it came to trying and exploring new and dynamic flavors.  I was exposed to amazingly delicious Creole and Cajun cuisine (I learned that these are distinct from one another) and wanted to explore making a vegan version of a New Orleans classic, Crawfish Étouffée.

The étouffée sauce is traditionally made with butter and a meat or seafood stock, but I used soy butter and a veggie broth instead.  I also made it with pan fried tofu instead of crawfish.  I based my recipe off of Emeril’s recipe (because who is more of an expert than he is when it comes to classic New Orleans cuisine ?!).  https://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/emeril-lagasse/crawfish-etouffee-1-3645763

I thought this rich, yet plant-based étouffée would go well with a nice garlic bread to soak up the sauce.  While the traditional étouffée is served with long grain white rice, I didn’t have that at home and I have Basmati rice, which serves a similar thickness and texture.  This is not an authentic étouffée recipe, but I thought it turned out to be very soothing and delicious while keeping its plant-based integrity.

If you try making any of these recipes, I would love if you could tag it on Instagram or FB @chivegfood!

Tasty Tofu Étouffée Recipe

Tasty Tofu Étouffée Recipe

The étouffée sauce is traditionally made with butter and a meat or seafood stock, but I used soy butter and a veggie broth instead.  I also made it with pan fried tofu instead of crawfish.

Recipe by ChiVeg
0 from 0 votes
Course: Dinner, Recipes, TofuCuisine: AmericanDifficulty: Medium


Prep time


Cooking time




  • Etouffée
  • 2 cups Basmati rice

  • 6 tbsp soy butter

  • 4 tbsp flour

  • 1/2 lemon juiced

  • 2 tsp Tamari

  • 2.5 cups vegetable broth/stock

  • 1 cup diced tomatoes

  • 6 dashes hot pepper sauce

  • 2 small-medium sized onions (finely chopped)

  • 2 medium celery sticks chopped

  • 1 Banana Pepper or bell pepper (I prefer banana peppers)

  • 1/2 oz Baby Bella mushrooms

  • 6 cloves garlic finely chopped or minced

  • 1 handful parsley for garnish

  • 3 sprigs green onions chopped

  • 2 bay leaves for the sauce

  • 2 tsp thyme (fresh or dried)

  • 2 tsp salt

  • 2 tsp black pepper

  • 1.5 tsp red pepper

  • 1.5 tsp paprika

  • 1.5 tsp cayenne

  • 2 tsp “Slap Ya Mamma” cajun seasoning

  • Tofu
  • 1 lb tofu

  • 2 tsp Tamari sauce

  • 2 tsp liquid smoke

  • 2 tsp olive oil


  • Start to prepare the rice according to the directions on the package.
  • Please see my other recipes for preparing tofu, make sure it is drained for about 30 minutes.
  • Add the olive oil to the pan and once it’s warm, put in the tofu.
  • Sauté on each side for about 5 minutes.
  • Once you flip it over once, add the Tamari and Liquid Smoke sauce.
  • Once the tofu is browned, take it off the stove, and keep it warm while you make the étouffée.
  • In a large saucepan (that has a bit of depth to it since you’re making a thick sauce with a lot of veggies), melt 4 tbsp of soy butter and whisk in the flour – do this slowly and whisk the flour in tablespoon by tablespoon.
  • Once your roux is made, add in the onions, celery, Banana or bell pepper, and mushrooms. Sauté for about 5 minutes, then add in the garlic, bay leaves, half of the parsley, and green onions and sauté for about 1 more minute.
  • Now it’s time to make the sauce! Add the stock, diced tomatoes, Tamari, hot sauce, and all of the spices/seasonings to the pan, stir, and bring to a boil.
  • Once it comes to a boil, gently stir the top of the sauce, reduce the heat to very low and simmer for about 30 minutes uncovered, stirring occasionally.
  • At the end, stir in the lemon juice, the rest of the green onions, and parsley. You can simmer the sauce for an additional 10 minutes.
  • Add and stir in the remaining 2 tbsp of soy butter. Taste and see if you’d like to add the spices of your choice.
  • Throw in the tofu at the very end so it doesn’t lose its crispiness.


  • See my recipe below for some tasty garlic bread!
  • Want more spice? Add more hot sauce!
  • If you don’t have tofu, tempeh also works.

Garlic Bread:

The garlic bread soaks up the étouffée perfectly even if you eat it with rice.  My garlic bread recipe is based off of this recipe: https://www.epicurious.com/recipes/food/views/garlic-bread-106583. I have always found it to be simple and flavorful.


  • 1 baguette or loaf of Italian bread
  • 4 cloves of garlic that are finely chopped or minced
  • 1/4 cup of soy butter
  • 2 tbsp of extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 handful of finely chopped parsley
  • 1 tsp of salt


  • Preheat oven to 350.
  • Put the bottom of your loaf in foil and cut the bread into diagonal, horizontal slices, but not all the way through so it’s still a cohesive, attached loaf.
  • As you’re waiting for the oven to preheat, melt the soy butter in a bowl in the microwave for about 30 seconds. Stir in the oil, basil, garlic, and salt with the butter until it is smooth.  Then add in the parsley.
  • Using a brush, dip the brush into the paste, and polish it on both sides of each of the garlic bread slices.  Then completely wrap the bread in the foil.
  • Bake in the oven for 15 minutes, open the foil and bake it for 5 more minutes so you get that crispiness.

Bon appetit!  Enjoy a New Orleans classic without as much of the ethical/health guilt!

Hungry for more recipes? Check them out here.


  1. This looks so good!

  2. Pingback: 5 Easy & Quick Vegan Comfort Meals – Vegan Soul Food

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