These Sausage Tofu Crumbles only look and taste like sausage. They are 100% vegan and plant-based too! When tofu is pressed and seasoned, it takes on the flavor of any seasoning or spice you mix in with it. The Sausage Tofu Crumbles are light enough in flavor and seasoning that you know you aren’t getting the “fake” vegan meats that are full of oil and sometimes just a little…weird.
You can use the Sausage Tofu Crumbles in dishes like my Breakfast Potato Hash, as a topping on pizza, veggies, potatoes or pasta. In our house we may or may not sometimes just eat them with a spoon…
A “secret” ingredient is the fennel seeds. Fennel seeds lend a distinctive slightly sweet/bitter taste. They have been used for years to flavor Italian dishes including meat such as sausage. Fun fact: fennel is related to a carrot! If you’ve ever seen a carrot seed, you’ll understand – very similar.
To get the full flavor effect, put the seeds between a little paper and crush slightly to release the oils. They smell a little bit like licorice!
Another ingredient that gives this dish a savory taste and “full mouth taste” is tahini. Tahini is ground sesame seeds and really is a staple in a plant-based kitchen. It is considered a healthy fat (check your label to make sure it only contains sesame seeds and no added oil). Oil doesn’t actually add a lot of flavor when you cook with it, but helps to carry the other flavors and gives that “mouth full” texture. When we don’t use oil in our cooking, we aren’t missing out on flavor but on a texture and mouth-feel we’ve become accustomed to. Using tahini instead of oil solves this problem.
Drain and press your tofu. Using a tofu press is really the easiest and quickest way to do it. You can be preheating your oven and prepping your other ingredients while it’s pressing and so no time is wasted. If you don’t have a tofu press, put between plates and weigh down – with actual weights! You’ll need to add about an hour to your prep time though. In this photo the tofu is well pressed.
It really works best to crumble the tofu by hand into your bowl of already mixed ingredients. It takes a few minutes but hand-crumbling makes the crumbles into the best size and looks more “natural” than if you cut into small pieces.
When everything is well mixed and your tofu is evenly coated, turn onto a silicone baking sheet – or baking sheet lined with parchment paper – and spread evenly.
Put in a 375° oven for a total of 35-40 minutes. You must open the oven and stir and turn the tofu at 15 minutes and then at 30 minutes. Move the more dried outer edges to the center and the center pieces out to the edges. After 30 minutes, check every two minutes to make sure it’s not drying out too much. It’s done when it’s a little browned and somewhat dried. Note: The Sausage Tofu Crumbles will not brown as much as they would if they were really sausage – because lucky for us this is a clean and cruelty-free dish! No “real” sausage included:)
Sausage Tofu Crumbles
These Sausage Tofu Crumbles are vegan and plant-based. They can be used as a topping on pizza, pasta, vegetable or potato dishes. Try in my Breakfast Potato Hash.
- 16 ounces tofu extra firm
- 2 Tablespoons tahini
- 2 Tablespoons soy sauce low sodium
- 1 Tablespoon vegetable broth
- 1 Tablespoon nutritional yeast
- 1 Tablespoon coconut sugar
- 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1 teaspoon onion powder
- 1 teaspoon fennel seeds
- 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
- 1/2 teaspoon Italian herb blend
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
Preheat oven to 375°.
Press and drain tofu, pouring of liquid as necessary. This will take about 10 minutes using a tofu press. If pressing between plates with weights, it might take up to an hour.
While oven is preheating and tofu is pressing, stir together all other ingredients into a medium-sized mixing bowl.
When tofu is fully pressed and drained, crumble into small pieces directly into the mixing bowl with other ingredients. Toss and still to evenly coat.
Turn onto a silicon baking sheet - or baking sheet covered with parchment paper and put in oven for 35-45 minutes, checking at intervals (see next instruction).
After putting in oven, set you timer for 15 minutes. Open the oven and turn and stir, moving the dryer tofu on the outer edges to the center and the center out to the outer edges. Put back in the oven and check again in 15 minutes.
After stirring the second time, put back in the oven and check every 2 minutes for 5-10 minutes. This tends to dry out fast. It will be done when it's a little browned and dried.