Recipe for Mapo Tofu

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I’m actually not the biggest fan of tofu, yet I absolutely love Mapo Tofu. Soft cubed tofu cooked in a flavorful spicy meaty sauce? It’s basically a Chinese comfort food! Especially when you eat it with rice! So, I thought I’d share a recipe for Mapo Tofu this week.

What is mapo tofu?

Mapo tofu (aka 麻婆豆腐) is a popular Chinese dish that originated from the Sichuan province. It consists of tofu in a spicy sauce usually based on doubanjiang (chili bean paste) with with ground meat.

Why is it called mapo tofu?

“Ma zi” actually means pockmarks. And “po” 婆 actually means elder lady. So Ma-po actually means an elder lady whose face is pockmarked! It is said that the original mapo tofu was invented by an elder lady whose face was pockmarked over a hundred years ago in Chengdu, capital of Sichuan province.

How many calories in mapo tofu?

This recipe serves 6 and each serving is estimated to be about 235 calories. Of course it’s so delicious – you might not end up eating just one serving!

What kind of tofu for mapo tofu?

Soft or medium tofu is usually used in mapo tofu, but you can use your preferred tofu firmness when cooking this dish. I’ve made it with medium firm tofu before, and it also turns out delicious as it’s really all about the tasty spicy meat sauce! I encourage you to try the different types!

How to make mapo tofu?

Ingredients

  • 14 oz pack of soft tofu or medium, drained
  • 1 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 6 oz. ground pork or beef
  • 2 tbsp spicy chili bean paste (aka doubanjiang)
  • 2 tsp sichuan peppercorn, grounded
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • 1 tbsp light soy sauce
  • ¼ cups cornstarch, mixed with 6 tbsp water
  • Salt, as desired
  • Green onions, thinly sliced, as desired

Instructions

Remove tofu from package carefully and place on a plate. Using a knife, cut it horizontally, vertically and on the sides so they are 1 inch cubes.

In a skillet or wok, heat up oil on medium heat. Add ground pork or beef, break it up and stir fry.

Turn down the heat and add the spicy chili bean sauce, sichuan peppercorn, soy sauce, sugar, and minced garlic and stir fry.

Add tofu to skillet/wok and gently mix it with the sauce so that it doesn’t break apart.

Add the cornstarch slurry and mix well (gently). Now let the tofu simmer in the sauce for 2-3 minutes.

Sprinkle with sliced green onions, mix well and then remove from heat and serve!

Recipe for Mapo Tofu

Recipe for Mapo Tofu

Ingredients

  • 14 oz pack of soft tofu, drained
  • 1 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 6 oz. ground pork or beef
  • 2 tbsp spicy chili bean paste (aka doubanjiang)
  • 2 tsp sichuan peppercorn, grounded
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • 1 tbsp light soy sauce
  • ¼ cups cornstarch, mixed with 6 tbsp water
  • Salt, as desired
  • Green onions, thinly sliced, as desired

Instructions

    1. Remove tofu from package carefully and place on a plate. Using a knife, cut it horizontally, vertically and on the sides so they are 1 inch cubes.
    2. In a skillet or wok, heat up oil on medium heat. Add ground pork or beef, break it up and stir fry.
    3. Turn down the heat and add the spicy chili bean sauce, sichuan peppercorn, soy sauce, sugar, and minced garlic and stir fry.
    4. Add tofu to skillet/wok and gently mix it with the sauce so that it doesn’t break apart.
    5. Add the cornstarch slurry and mix well (gently). Now let the tofu simmer in the sauce for 2-3 minutes.
    6. Sprinkle with sliced green onions, mix well and then remove from heat and serve!
Nutrition Information:
Yield: 6 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 235Total Fat: 15gSaturated Fat: 4gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 9gCholesterol: 39mgSodium: 351mgCarbohydrates: 9gFiber: 1gSugar: 2gProtein: 18g

The nutrition information for this recipe is an approximate total per serving. Please double check the nutrition information for your exact ingredients and brands for more precise nutrition information.

Did you like this recipe?

If so, follow my Pinterest account for more delicious recipes here! If you make it, sure on Instagram and remember to hashtag #ohsnapletseat 🙂

If you liked this spicy dish, you might also enjoy my Jalapeno Chicken Stir Fry which also uses the chili bean paste and the jalapenos add an extra texture and kick! Recipe here.

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