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Grilled Teriyaki Tofu Steaks on Rice

Grilled Teriyaki Tofu Steaks (Vegan + Gluten-Free)

The Pesky Vegan
These grilled teriyaki tofu steaks are the perfect vegan barbecue food. Delicious, crispy, meaty, and gluten-free, they’re also great when pan-fried.
5 from 1 vote
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Marinating Time 30 minutes
Total Time 45 minutes
Course BBQ, Main Course, Side Dish
Cuisine Gluten-free, Japanese, Vegan
Servings 2
Calories 153 kcal


  • 8 oz (225 g) extra-firm tofu, drained and cut into 4 slices
  • tablespoons tamari or soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon mirin (see notes)
  • 1 tablespoon agave syrup or maple syrup
  • 2 teaspoons sesame oil
  • 1 clove garlic, minced or finely chopped
  • ½ inch piece of ginger, minced or finely chopped
  • Toasted sesame seeds, to serve (optional)
  • Sliced spring onions, to serve (optional)



  • In a large bowl, mix together the tamari/soy sauce, mirin, agave syrup, sesame oil, garlic, and ginger. Once combined, add the tofu slices and coat these well, gently turning them over once or twice. Note: You could also use a freezer bag for the marinade – just be gentle with the tofu slices as they may start to fall apart if you move them around too much.
  • Leave to marinate in the fridge for at least 30 mins, but ideally for several hours or even overnight. Turn once or twice during this time to coat with the marinade.


  • Preheat the barbecue/grill to a medium heat (not scorching hot or else the tofu will quickly burn). Add the tofu slices and cook for approx. 5 minutes on each side, brushing regularly with the leftover marinade. The tofu should be crispy on both sides with slight char marks.
  • Remove from the grill and serve, adding a final brush of the teriyaki marinade before sprinkling with toasted sesame seeds and sliced spring onions (see notes below for more suggestions).


  • In a frying pan or griddle pan, heat a small amount of cooking oil on medium heat. Add the tofu slices and cook for 3-4 minutes on each side or until crispy.
  • Once the tofu is crispy, add some of the remaining marinade to the pan and cook for a few more minutes, turning the tofu once or twice. This will help to add a little extra flavour, glaze the tofu slices, and create a sauce for serving.
  • Remove from the pan and serve, drizzling over any sauce left in the pan and sprinkling with toasted sesame seeds and sliced spring onions (see notes below for more suggestions).


Leftover marinade: When it comes to leftover teriyaki marinade, I’d encourage you to not throw it away – it’s full of flavour that you can use as the base for stir-fry sauces or other savoury dishes such as soups or stews.
Quantity: This amount of tofu is good as a main for two people along with sides. If part of a larger barbecue meal, you can turn it into several servings as a side.
Serving suggestions: Serve the steaks either whole or sliced, with sides such as boiled rice or rice noodle salad, steamed veg, toasted sesame seeds, and sliced spring onions. Other suggestions for sides include rainbow slaw with sesame ginger dressing, courgette and carrot salad with peanut dressing, Cajun-spiced baked potato wedges, and easy roasted cauliflower.
Marinating time: I would marinate this tofu for at least 30 mins, but ideally for several hours or even overnight. Turn once or twice during this time to coat with the marinade.
Cooking time: This will vary slightly depending on the type of barbecue/grill, the cooking temperature, and how thick your tofu slices are.
Reuse your freezer bag: If using a freezer bag for the marinade, remember to wash it out and reuse in future. Note that acidic ingredients may weaken the bag over time, but you should be able to get at least a few uses out of it.
Tofu: I'd always recommend using extra-firm tofu for dishes like this. If you don't have extra-firm, you may need to squeeze out some of the water between two plates or using a tofu press. If pan-frying rather than grilling, you could always cut the tofu into cubes instead of slices.
Sear marks: If you want some fancy-looking criss-cross marks on your tofu steaks, position them at a 45° angle to the grill bars and then rotate 90° after a few minutes, before flipping over and doing the same on the other side.   
Cooking oil: If your tofu seems to be burning or sticking to the grill, reduce the heat and brush with a little cooking oil. 
Mirin: If you don't have mirin, you can swap this out for e.g. sake, dry sherry, marsala wine, dry white wine, or rice wine vinegar. If using any of these substitutes, you'll want to add an extra teaspoon of agave syrup or sugar for every tablespoon (and note that those ingredients may not always be strictly vegan).
Agave syrup: If you don’t have agave syrup, you can replace this with maple syrup or sugar. If using sugar, you'll want to make sure that this has dissolved in the marinade mix.
Garlic & ginger: You want the garlic and ginger to be very finely chopped or minced, almost to a paste. On that note, you could also use shop-bought pastes.
Salt/pepper/seasoning: I find that the salty tamari/soy sauce and other aromatics provide tonnes of flavour, but feel free to add any additional seasonings you like.
Gluten-free: Tamari is a variant of soy sauce that’s usually gluten-free. If this recipe needs to be 100% gluten-free, make sure you use a GF soy sauce or tamari.
Storage: Store the cooked tofu in the fridge for up to four days. You can also freeze it for up to six months, but I wouldn't recommend this as it may take on a porous texture and lose the flavour of the marinade.
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The nutrition info below is for one serving of the teriyaki tofu, based on a total of two servings.
Note: The nutrition info reflects the full amount of the marinade ingredients. Since you're not likely to consume all of the marinade when grilling the tofu, it means items like fat and sodium will be even lower than stated.


Calories: 153kcalCarbohydrates: 15gProtein: 10gFat: 6gSaturated Fat: 1gPolyunsaturated Fat: 3gMonounsaturated Fat: 2gSodium: 569mgPotassium: 231mgFiber: 0.3gSugar: 10gVitamin A: 0.1IUVitamin C: 2mgCalcium: 42mgIron: 2mg
Nutrition Facts
Grilled Teriyaki Tofu Steaks (Vegan + Gluten-Free)
Amount Per Serving
Calories 153 Calories from Fat 54
% Daily Value*
Fat 6g9%
Saturated Fat 1g6%
Polyunsaturated Fat 3g
Monounsaturated Fat 2g
Sodium 569mg25%
Potassium 231mg7%
Carbohydrates 15g5%
Fiber 0.3g1%
Sugar 10g11%
Protein 10g20%
Vitamin A 0.1IU0%
Vitamin C 2mg2%
Calcium 42mg4%
Iron 2mg11%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.
Keyword tofu recipe, vegan barbecue, vegan foods for grilling
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