Tandoori Tofu Coconut Rice Bowls

by Kaitlynn Fenley
one plate of Tandoori Tofu Coconut Rice with tofu, rice and Brussels sprouts.

This Tandoori Tofu Coconut Rice Bowl is inspired by bold Malaysian flavors and makes a delicious plant-based dinner or lunch. These bowls include Tandoori tofu, Sambal Brussels sprouts, and creamy coconut rice.

Malaysian Inspired Rice Bowls with Tandoori Tofu

I checked out a book on Malaysian food from our local library when I was in a food rut last month. Jon and I were getting a little bored with our regular go-to meals. I think we were “going to” them a little too much. Luckily a library card is free, and our library has a great non-fiction section full of cookbooks.

The Malaysian Kitchen is such a great book. I found a lot of yummy recipes, but I wanted to veganize a lot of them. After cooking a few dishes from the book, I got pretty comfortable with spices and flavors in Malaysian cooking. So for lunch one day I made these nourishing tandoori tofu rice bowls. We love trying new flavorful plant based lunches that are great for gut health.

one plate of Tandoori Tofu Coconut Rice with tofu, rice and Brussels sprouts.

How to Cook Tandoori Tofu

Cooking with tofu is pretty easy. Tofu is a blank canvas ready for whatever flavor. It’s important to press tofu before cooking it if you want a crispy texture. I think crispy texture is best for this tandoori tofu recipe.

My favorite tofu is the firm sprouted organic tofu from Trader Joes. I press mine by wrapping it in a cloth towel and placing a cookbook on top of it for about 15 minutes.

Coconut Rice

I think that coconut rice is the BEST side for tandoori tofu. It compliments the intense flavors of the tofu with a creamy and soft texture. It’s easy to cook too! Simply cook rice as normal and use coconut milk in place of the water. It’s best to use a coconut milk without thickeners and preservatives. I like this coconut milk.

two plates of Tandoori Tofu Coconut Rice with tofu, rice and Brussels sprouts.

Sambal Brussels Sprouts

Sambal is a Malaysian condiment made with peppers, vinegar, sugar and salt. Sometimes containing secondary ingredients like shallots, garlic or shrimp paste. I made a lot of Sambal sauce and we used it on a variety of vegetables over the course of a week. It keeps well in the fridge for about 7 days. My favorite vegetable with sambal sauce was Brussels sprouts… mainly because Brussels sprouts are SO good for gut health.

two plates of Tandoori Tofu Coconut Rice with tofu, rice and Brussels sprouts.
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Tandoori Tofu Coconut Rice Bowls

This Tandoori Tofu Coconut Rice Bowl is inspired by bold Malaysian flavors and makes a delicious plant-based dinner or lunch. These bowls include Tandoori tofu, Sambal Brussels sprouts, and creamy coconut rice.

  • Author: Kaitlynn Fenley
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 30 minutes
  • Total Time: 40 minutes
  • Yield: 3 Servings 1x
  • Category: Entrée
  • Cuisine: Malaysian

Ingredients

Scale
  • 1 15 Ounce Pack Firm Tofu, Pressed and Cubed
  • 2 teaspoons Smoked Paprika
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon ground cumin
  • ½ teaspoon ground coriander
  • 1 teaspoon Turmeric Powder
  • 4 Tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 Tablespoon Minced Garlic
  • 3 Tablespoons Lime Juice
  • 1 Ripe Red Jalapeno, with seeds removed
  • 1 Small Shallot
  • 2 Tablespoons Apple Cider Vinegar
  • 2 Tablespoons Maple Syrup
  • 2 Tablespoons Tamari
  • 2 Cups Brussels sprouts, halved and steamed
  • 16 Ounces Coconut Milk
  • 1 Cup Basmati Rice
  • 1 teaspoon Ginger powder

Instructions

  1. Start by preparing the rice and letting it cook while you prepare the other ingredients. In a rice cooker or in a pot on the stove combine 1 cup of rice with 16 Ounces of Coconut milk and 1 teaspoon ginger powder. Cook until done.
  2. For the Sambal sauce: add the Jalapeño, shallot, apple cider vinegar, maple syrup and Tamari to a blender or food processor and blend until smooth. Put aside
  3. Add the Smoked Paprika, salt, cumin, coriander, Turmeric Powder, 2 Tablespoons of extra-virgin olive oil, Minced Garlic and Lime Juice to a small bowl and whisk to combine. 
  4. Heat olive oil in a skillet over medium-high heat. Add cubed tofu and brown evenly on all sides.
  5. Lower the heat. Pour the mixture of olive oil and spices over the tofu and mix until evenly coated. Remove from heat.
  6. In a mixing bowl toss hot, steamed Brussels sprouts with the sambal sauce you set aside in step 2.
  7. To build a bowl: Add a serving each of the tandoori tofu, the coconut rice, and the sambal Brussels sprouts to a bowl and enjoy!

Notes

* To steam Brussels sprouts: wash and remove stem ends. Cut in half and place in a large microwave safe bowl. Add 1/4 cup of water and microwave for 3-5 minutes.

Keywords: Tandoori Tofu, Tofu Recipe, Rice Bowl, Vegan

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Recipe rating

6 comments

Tammy Lawrence May 4, 2020 - 3:40 am

This was delicious with all the layers of flavor. My husband said it needs to be in the rotation.

Reply
Kaitlynn Fenley May 4, 2020 - 1:44 pm

I’m so happy you both enjoyed it!

Reply
Megan July 26, 2020 - 5:13 pm

Any non-spicy replacements for jalapeños?

Reply
Kaitlynn Fenley July 26, 2020 - 5:24 pm

You can sub with 1/2 of a green bell pepper!

Reply
Shannon January 25, 2021 - 12:47 pm

I actually found the sauce for the tofu incredibly bland. Anything suggestions on how to give it more flavor?

Reply
Kaitlynn Fenley January 25, 2021 - 1:46 pm

Sure! Throw it back into a skillet and double all the spices. Add more smoked paprika, salt, cumin, coriander, turmeric Powder, olive oil, Minced Garlic, and Lime Juice.

Reply