I am confused. I pressed my tofu all day, put corn starch on it, and threw it up in some vegetable oil. I turned the induction stove up to fairly high up to the point where the oil bubbles immensely when putting in the tofu. It takes about 4 minutes to get it golden.

The result is that I have tofu with a crust (a bit too much I must have put too much corn starch on) but the crust is soft and squishy. Not crispy.

What did I do wrong here? Do I need to heat the oil more? Press the tofu more? Do something special when removing it?

  • 2
    What firmness of tofu are you using, and how are you putting the cornstarch on it? When you take it off the pan after cooking how are you treating it?
    – GdD
    Mar 21 '19 at 9:39
  • 1
    Which variety of tofu did you use? For frying you need a fairly firm one, not the softer silken.
    – bob1
    Mar 21 '19 at 18:16
  • I used extra firm. And I put it in a small bowl that had a paper towel at the bottom.
    – J.Doe
    Mar 21 '19 at 18:17
  • 1
    Are you deep frying or shallow frying? Mar 22 '19 at 0:57
  • @BrownRedHawk deep frying although there is barely any oil on top of the tofu as I hate how much oil that practice uses (about 1/4th of my container)
    – J.Doe
    Mar 22 '19 at 1:09

Well there are a lot of variables to this but from my experience you can do the following:

  1. Use a tofu press and press evenly (not just the edges from a poorly balanced plate etc) for several hours, gradually increasing the pressure with the screws (you can find them online).

  2. Cut your pieces more thinly; if theyre too thick the heat wont penetrate fully.

  3. You can also freeze the tofu pre-press and pre-cooking to force more water out of it, although Im not a fan of this method.

  4. Try different brands of tofu. Different brands have different mouthfeel and may drain more thoroughly with the above methods.

  5. Try a slow, low heat fry to get allll the moisture out rather than a fast/flash fry which may not penetrate as deeply. Honestly I think you can get crispy tofu without deep frying, but long and slow with a shallow fry.


If you have the time, I would try cutting your tofu and placing it in a colander over a bowl in your fridge overnight to let it drip dry. Possibly experiment with salting in this step also to desiccate the exterior of the tofu. Then fry the next day. Also, you can use a small amount of oil, BUT you may be experiencing an oil temp problem. Are you using a thermometer to make sure your oil temp isn't dropping too far? This drop in temp will make things soggy v. crispy.

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