Can you eat firm tofu without cooking it?

In this brief guide, we will address the query, “Can you eat firm tofu without cooking it?” We will also discuss the types of tofu and the benefits of eating firm tofu.

Can you eat firm tofu without cooking it?

Yes, you can eat firm tofu without cooking it. Tofu is cooked with soy cheese, so what you would be doing is heating it up or cooking it a second time.

Tofu is an affordable, high-protein cheese that caters to lactose intolerants, vegans, and lovers of Asian cuisine. Firm Tofu is widely used in recipes that require greater cohesion of the cheese, resisting shear.

What are the different types of tofu?

There are many types of tofu. Originally from China, tofu began its history as food for the nobility and monks and today it is the star in dishes all over the world, especially traditional Chinese, Japanese and Korean recipes.

For each type of recipe, there is a type of tofu that fits best. Some tofus go through pressing steps to make them firmer and less watery, but there are recipes where the tofu’s softness is the highlight. The most widespread types of Tofu are

  • Silken: with a very creamy and silky consistency, Silken is the tofu with the highest water content among tofu. It is very fragile and will hardly be able to be cut into pieces. This type of tofu can be used for fillings, smoothies, sauces, and replacing ricotta or cream cheese.
  • Regular: a little more compact but still very soft. Regular tofu has the ability to absorb flavors from the liquids it is cooked in. It is widely used in soups, broths, and stews and is not recommended for frying as it is likely to crumble.
  • Firm: Compact and easy to cut, firm tofu is more widespread around the world. Its popularity is due to its versatility as it can be fried, marinated, boiled, toasted as well as used in stews, dips, and fillings.
  • Extra-firm: Compact with less water than firm tofu, extra-firm tofu has the perfect texture for pan-frying, stir-fry, or deep-fry. However, it cannot absorb marinades and does not have the creamy texture of other types of tofu.
  • Super-firm: this is a type of tofu so dense it can be mistaken for meat. Super firm tofu can be a great substitute in vegetarian and vegan meals and can be cut into any shape and prepared in pan-fry, stir-fry or deep-fry.
  • Seasoned tofu: usually made from firm tofu, it is easier to prepare as it is already seasoned. Like firm tofu, it can be pan-fried, stir-fried, deep-fried, grilled, roasted in the oven, barbecued, or eaten straight from the package.
  • Smoked tofu: Made with extremely firm tofu, smoked tofu undergoes a smoking process similar to that of smoked salmon using wood and a special chamber. It can be eaten chopped in stews and salads as well as pan-fried or stir-fried.
  • Tofu à la minute: These are small pre-marinated and cooked pieces that can be added to a pan until crispy.
  • Fermented tofu: made from the conservation of salt, rice wine, and water, the fermented tofu is used as a condiment for the depth of flavors acquired, especially the umami flavor.
  • Tofu skin: a kind of skin that forms when soy milk is boiled. Tofu skin is often sold dry and can be stuffed and fried into a roll or marinated and pan-fried.
  • Tofu sticks are sun-dried, rolled tofu skins. Tofu sticks go great with soups and stews.
  • Fried tofu: Called Abura-age, they are pressed and fried pieces of tofu that acquire a spongy consistency and are perfect for soaking up marinades and sauces.

What are the health benefits of Tofu?

Tofu, like soy milk, has several minerals and vitamins. The advantage of consuming soy cheese is the concentration of proteins and nutrients. Note the nutritional table for 100g of firm Tofu and 100g of Soy Milk:

NutritionFirm TofuSoy Milk
Calories70 kcal47.7 kcal
Total Fat 4.2g1.4 g
Omega-6 fatty acids1602 mg~
Omega-3 fatty acids181 mg~
Total Carbohydrate1.7g6.4 g
Dietary Fiber0.9 g0.4 g
Protein8.2 g2.3 g
Calcium201 mg124 mg
Potassium148 mg~
Phosphorus121 mg~

As tofu is coagulated and whey-free soy milk, it can provide almost 4 times more protein with a lower amount of carbohydrates as well as significant amounts of Omega 3 and Omega 6.

The presence of these healthy fats makes tofu a very functional food with several benefits such as

  • Strengthens bones and teeth: Tofu has a good amount of calcium, helping to prevent osteoporosis.
  • Prevents cardiovascular problems: the presence of potassium, EPA, and DHA helps to reduce cholesterol and prevents clogging of veins.
  • Reduces Menopause Symptoms: Soy has a phytosteroid that helps in estrogen replacement in women.
  • Helps with memory: Both phosphorus and omega 3 can help improve concentration and memory.

Conclusion

In this brief guide, we have addressed the query, “Can you eat firm tofu without cooking?” We have also discussed the types of tofu and the benefits of eating firm tofu.

Hope you found this blog useful. If you have any questions, please let us know.

Citations

http://www.tofupedia.com/en/tofu-bereiden/soorten-tofu/#:~:text=Tofu%20is%20categorized%20as%20silken,compared%20to%20that%20of%20meat.

https://www.webmd.com/food-recipes/benefits-tofu#:~:text=Tofu%20has%20 fiber%2C%20and%20high,thinking%20as%20you%20get%20older.

https://www.foodyourself.com/blog/2019/1/15/tofu-101-the-health-benefits-of-tofu-and-how-to-cook-it#:~:text=Tofu%20contains%20several%20anti%2Dinflammatory,%2C%20iron%2C%20copper%20and%20manganese.

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3262608/

https://nutritiondata.self.com/facts/foods-from-starbucks/9485/2

https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/lactose-intolerance/symptoms-causes/syc-20374232#:~:text=People%20with%20lactose%20intolerance%20are,its%20symptoms%20can%20be%20uncomfortable.

Hi, I am Charlotte, I love cooking and in my previous life, I was a chef. I bring some of my experience to the recipes on this hub and answer your food questions.