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Easy Vietnamese Fried Tofu in Tomato Sauce

A simple Vietnamese recipe that is perfect for mid-week dinners. Great to have the next day for work or school lunches. 

Course Dinner, Lunch, Rice Dish
Cuisine Vietnamese
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 25 minutes
Servings 4 people
Author Scruff


  • 1 tbsp canola oil (15 ml)
  • 2 large garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 1 medium brown onion, cut into wedges
  • 400 gm canned cherry tomatoes (or your choice of tomatoes)
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • Freshly cracked pepper
  • 1/2 tsp sugar
  • 1 tbsp fish sauce (15 ml) (use soy sauce for vegan option)
  • 150 gm medium-sized fried tofu cubes (available at Asian groceries)
  • 2 spring onions, chopped
  • 4 sprigs coriander (optional)


  1. Prep all the ingredients.

  2. In a fry pan on medium heat setting, add the oil and fry half of the garlic for 30 seconds (Note 1).

  3. Add the canned tomatoes to the fry pan and use a wooden spoon to squash any whole tomatoes. To the empty can of tomatoes, add 1/4  cup of water, swirl and pour it into the fry pan.

  4. Add the salt, sugar, pepper and fish sauce / soy sauce. Stir until thoroughly mixed.

  5. Add the fried tofu and ensure that each one is covered in the sauce. Turn down the heat to low and allow to cook gently for 15 minutes.

  6. After 15 minutes add the onion wedges and the remaining garlic. Stir through and allow to cook for a further 2 minutes.

  7. Check the seasoning of the sauce. Add more fish sauce (soy sauce for vegans) for salt and flavour or sugar to control the tang of the tomatoes. 

  8. Garnish with spring onions / coriander.

Recipe Notes

  1. If you want a milder garlic flavour then add all the garlic add this step.  Otherwise, per the recipe add the remaining garlic later for a stronger flavour.