Tofu for health

Tofu is a treasure trove of proteins

It is considered an essential ingredient in Asian cuisine, which has become popular in recent decades and across the globe, and that includes a high percentage of important nutrients, many consider tofu a super food. Legend has it that tofu or soy cheese began to be produced more than two thousand years ago when some cook accidentally poured nigari (refined sea salt) in the soy milk. However we now know that this recipe is generally accepted around the world and is increasingly sought after, in our article we'll give you more information on this soy product, and we will share with you a few recipes.

Tofu; calories and nutritional value

Tofu has a low calorific value, but it is an extremely rich source of protein. In 100 grams of tofu there is as much as 11 grams of protein. By comparison, in 100 grams of ground beef is up to 9 grams of protein, and in 100 grams of regular cheese there is about 6 grams of protein. Protein composition is the most significant thing and in fact, unlike most other foods of plant origin, soy contains “complete” proteins. They are composed of all the essential fatty acids, the ones that the human body cannot synthesize and that usually intakes over food of animal origin.

It is assumed that soy protein lowers bad cholesterol levels in the blood. This is why tofu is indispensable in the diet of vegans and vegetarians. Although half of the calories which are contained in tofu are waste fats, in only one portion you can find on the average about 5 grams of fat. The same amount of beef contains about 15 grams of fat. This cheese has a very small amount of saturated fats and contains no cholesterol. Let's say, half a cup of milk, with 2 percent milk fat contains about 9 mg of cholesterol, and in the portion of 75 grams of fish there is up to 100 mg of cholesterol.

Also, tofu is rich in calcium. The average serving has about 450 mg of calcium and 40 percent of the required daily intake, so it is recommended for people who suffer from osteoporosis or are at risk of it. In addition, this product is a very good source of iron: tofu portion corresponding to the half a cup contains about 2 mg. Otherwise, men are recommended 8 mg of iron a day, and women even twice.
How to make tofu at home? 

It is made as an ordinary cheese. After the coagulation it is put in a special cloth and then the pressure is applied in order to squeeze all excess liquid. Depending on how much fluid is squeezed out during the pressing, soy cheese can turn very soft, slightly dry or even extra dry.

To make the cheese you will need
  • soy milk - 2 litres,
  • alcoholic vinegar - 1 decilitre,
  • warm water - also 1 decilitre,

How to make it: 

First, heat the soy milk, and pour a mixture of vinegar and warm water in it. Mix it all together and let it rest for a while until you notice that the mixture is slowly tightening. Wait for some time and when it becomes sufficiently tight then make sure that the tofu is finely formed. We now need to complete the whole process of making cheese and over a larger pan you should strongly tightened the gauze, to which you apply the obtained tofu. Wrap well in cheesecloth and let it gently squeeze the next five to six hours. Now the process of making cheese is over and you need to take it out of the gauze and transfer it into a clean container in which you will pour water (over cheese). The water should be changed every 48 hours.

Tofu is mainly used in Asian cuisine, but in recent decades has spread throughout the world, and is especially popular among vegans and vegetarians.

How else can we use tofu for health?

Some of the health benefits that allows regular consumption of soy cheese have already been mentioned. What many do not know is the fact that tofu can alleviate hot flashes and is ideal help during menopause.

The tofu contains valuable phytoestrogens isoflavones, which are structurally similar to the female hormone estrogen in the body and mimic its function. Natural binding to estrogen receptors, including cells of breast, and potentially reduce the risks of breast cancer. It is known that phytoestrogens from soy can be of great assistance to women in menopause, when the secretion stops which causes various unpleasant symptoms. Although the level of phytoestrogen in soybeans is not so high that it could completely replace the function of estrogen - it can certainly alleviate the unpleasant and unpredictable flashes.

Soy cheese protects the cardiovascular system

Some studies suggest that consumption of fermented soy products such as tofu, has a beneficial effect on our cardiovascular system and protects it. The tofu contains more bioactive peptides, which are part of the protein. Also it contains two important proteins - glycine and conglycinin. These proteins are broken down during fermentation of the peptides, which have antioxidant and anti-inflammatory effect, and thereby decrease the level of blood pressure.

The best recipes with tofu

We have prepared four excellent recipes with tofu:

Tofu chow main

This meal is prepared for about thirty minutes, it is easy to make, and this amount is intended for two people.

Required ingredients:
  • 200 g of Chinese noodles (chow main) - cook for about 5 minutes and drain 100 g of tofu chopped into cubes (about 1 cm)
  • two tablespoons of peanut oil
  • one carrot (small) chopped in long sticks,
  • a piece of chopped celery root in bars,
  • young garlic chopped diagonally into rings - a dozen rings,
  • leek chopped into circles - a dozen rolls,
  • half an onion - finely chopped,
  • okra - chopped
  • a tablespoon of light soy sauce
  • a teaspoon of fish sauce,
  • scoop (or half) of chili powder
  • scoop of brown sugar,
  • cups of water mixed with half a teaspoon of gustin

Preparation: In a well-heated wok, in the peanut oil fry the onion, add the diced tofu, fry for three to four minutes, and then add the vegetables. Fry all for another three to four minutes, then insert noodles. Fry for three or four minutes and add the water to the mixture, gustin, fish sauce, chili soy sauce and brown sugar. Let it boil for one minute straight. Stir the vegetables and noodles so that they are covered from all sides with sauce.

Tofu with cashew

This recipe is for two people, it is easy to prepare it in just 30 minutes.

Required ingredients: 
  • tofu - 200 grams (chopped into cubes of 1 cm)
  • one carrot (chopped into sticks)
  • a piece of root celery (chopped into sticks)
  • diagonally chopped leeks in slices about 4-5 mm thick (about ten rolls)
  • two tablespoons of peanut oil
  • noodles, rice,
  • handful of cashew nuts,
  • tablespoon of soy sauce
  • tablespoon of chili sauce
  • teaspoon of brown sugar
  • teaspoon of rice vinegar,
  • a cup of water with half a teaspoon of gustin.

Cook the rice noodles (they take about 5 minutes) and then strain them. Fry the cashews two to three minutes until they become completely dry. In a well-heated wok, pour peanut oil. In hot oil fry vegetables and tofu cubes (five or six minutes). Add a mixture of chili sauce, soy sauce, vinegar, water, sugar and gustin. Then let it boil for a good two minutes. This recipe with tofu is best to serve with rice noodles. The recommendation is to be sure to add the cashews.

Tofu recipe with sesame

This dish is easy to prepare, a total of 30 minutes and is intended for two people.
  • tofu - 200 grams,
  • one carrot,
  • small zucchini,
  • small cucumber,
  • a sprig of fresh mint,
  • four tablespoons of drought,
  • two tablespoons of sesame oil,
  • tablespoon of soy sauce
  • tablespoon of hot sauce (yellow habanero)
  • tablespoon of olive oil
  • tablespoon of lemon juice,
  • salt and pepper.


Cut tofu into slices. Two per person. Coat them and fry in the sesame oil until golden brown on both sides. Add the rest to fry. Cut vegetables into long, thin strips. Arrange the vegetables on your plate. Season with salt and pepper. Put fried tofu over it. Now pour over the dressing of soy sauce, hot sauce, olive oil and lemon. Sprinkle with the excess sautéed dressing. Add fresh mint leaves, chilli, young garlic and a pinch of oregano. Through it all, grate cheese, then pour over olive oil and bake in preheated oven at 200 degrees C for about twenty-five minutes. Before serving, garnish with pieces of blue cheese and fresh oregano leaves.

Tofu cheese with polenta - easy recipe

To prepare this dish you will need more than ten minutes, the recommended amount is intended for two people.

You need:
  • 200g of cooked polenta (during cooking, if desired, you can add a little butter),
  • 200g of tofu (chopped into cubes of 1 cm)
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • a teaspoon of hot smoked paprika,
  • two tablespoons of grape seed oil.


On some oil briefly fry diced tofu. During roasting, season them with hot smoked red pepper, salt and pepper. Serve with polenta and corn salad seasoned with lemon juice and olive oil.

We hope that tofu will find its way on your menu, and that you will try some of the dishes offered, as you can see it can be prepared and consumed in many different ways.