Winner, winner, tofu dinner, let’s make these 30-Minute Tofu Lettuce Wraps! They’re easy to make, adaptable and full of flavor.
The vegan lettuce wrap filling features crispy Korean tofu and fresh bites of cucumber. To round out all of the flavors, top each lettuce wrap with quick-pickled carrots.
Table of contents
Why I Love this Recipe
First and foremost these tofu lettuce wraps are quick, healthy and flavorful, all things I want in a weeknight meal! I also love a good crispy tofu recipe. This Korean tofu is crumbled, not cubed, which creates crispy edges and flavorful browned bites. Plus, the craggy edges of the tofu hold onto the flavorful sauce better.
Additionally, these vegan lettuce wraps are super adaptable (most ingredients can be modified) and keeps well as leftovers or for meal prep.
Ingredients in These Vegan Lettuce Wraps
- carrots, if you don’t have time to shred them yourself, pick up a bag of shredded carrots.
- distilled white vinegar, you can also use rice or white wine vinegar.
- kosher salt
- avocado oil or high heat oil
- yellow onion, you can also use white or red onion
- extra firm tofu
- fresh ginger is best, but dried ginger can be used in a pinch
- fresh garlic is best, but garlic powder can be used in a pinch
- Honey or brown sugar
- gochujang, a fermented Korean chili paste that’s sweet, spicy and savory.
- red miso paste, or doejang (a Korean fermented soybean paste) which is more traditional but harder to find.
- toasted sesame oil
- English cucumber
- butter lettuce leaves
Step-By-Step Instructions to Make Vegan Lettuce Wraps
- Shred the carrots then toss with vinegar, water and salt; set aside.
- Cut the tofu into two thinner planks and press between clean kitchen towels to absorb and remove excess water.
- Cook shredded onion in oil until golden brown. Meanwhile, crumble pressed tofu.
- Add the tofu to the skillet with the onion and cook until the tofu starts to crisp.
- Once the tofu starts to crisp, add the fresh ginger and continue to cook until tofu is very crisp.
- Stir in the garlic and cook briefly.
- Add the sauce ingredients into the tofu and toss to coat.
- Remove the skillet from heat and stir in the cucumber.
FAQs & Test Kitchen Tips
Miso has a thick, creamy consistency (similar to thick nut butter) and a super savory, umami flavor. Nothing can replicate miso, but if you don’t have it or don’t have time to shop, you can use 1 tablespoon soy sauce in its place. Just know that the tofu filling won’t be nearly as saucy.
You can absolutely double the tofu mixture! I find one 14-ounce block of tofu feeds about 3 people. If you’re serving 4 and want to make the lettuce wraps more filling without doubling the recipe, you can cook up some basmati rice or brown rice and add a scoop or two to each lettuce wrap.
Tofu will be found in square plastic containers in the refrigerated area of the produce section or the health food area.
More Vegetarian Recipes to Try…
Did you make these vegetarian lettuce wraps? Let me know how it went—leave a comment and star-rating below. And if you snapped a pic, share it on IG and tag me @zestfulkitchen. I love seeing what you make!
Vegan Korean Tofu Lettuce Wraps
- 1 cup shredded carrots (about 3 medium carrots)
- ¼ cup + 1 tablespoon distilled white vinegar, divided
- Kosher Salt
- 3 tablespoons avocado oil or high-heat oil
- ½ large yellow onion
- 1 14-ounce package extra-firm tofu
- 1 tablespoon finely chopped ginger
- 2 teaspoons chopped garlic
- 2 tablespoons honey or brown sugar
- 1 tablespoon gochujang
- 1 tablespoon red miso paste or doejang
- 1 tablespoon toasted sesame oil
- 1 cup diced English cucumber
- 1 head butter lettuce
- Combine carrots, ¼ cup vinegar, 1 tablespoon water and ½ kosher salt; set aside.
- Cut tofu horizontally into 2 planks, wrap tofu in a clean absorbent kitchen towel and set something heavy on top (like a cast iron skillet), let tofu press 15 minutes.
- Heat 2 tablespoons oil in a large cast-iron or nonstick skillet over medium-high until shimmering.
- Grate onion on a large-hole box grater then, using your hands, gently squeeze out excess liquid. Onion should measure about ½ cup. Add onion to sillet with oil and cook, stirring occasionally until golden brown, about 5 minutes.
- Crumble tofu into ½- to 1-inch pieces.
- Add tofu and remaining tablespoon oil, season with salt then toss to coat. Cook without moving too frequently (this is how we’ll get it crispy), until tofu starts to brown and crisp, about 5 minutes.
- Add ginger and continue to cook until tofu is very crisp and browned, about 5 minutes. Add garlic and cook 1 minute.
- Whisk together honey, gochujang, miso, sesame oil, and remaining 1 tablespoon vinegar. Add to skillet and stir to columbine.
- Off heat stir in cucumber; season with salt to taste.
- Serve in lettuce cups with quick-pickled shredded carrots.