Stir Fried Veggies & Tofu

A stir fry is a great way to use up veggies from the fridge and fill your plate with plants! The key is to group your vegetables according to cooking time so they get added to the pan or wok at the right time to achieve the right texture (e.g. not too crunchy, not too mushy). The tofu is also another conundrum—if you’ve ever had bland, improperly cooked tofu, it’s possibly turned you off for life! But tofu can be so delicious, as long as it has time to absorb some flavour. This can be done by marinating it in advance or to save time, try using smoked tofu which already has great texture and flavour. 

Serves 4

1 Tbsp high-heat cooking oil (e.g. peanut, grapeseed, coconut, canola)

6-8 cups of vegetables

2 packages firm, extra-firm or smoked tofu

1 Tbsp low sodium soy sauce

1 tsp sesame oil

1 tsp rice vinegar, apple cider vinegar or lime juice

2 cloves garlic, minced

1 tsp ginger, grated or finely minced (optional)

2 Tbsp toasted sesame seeds

2 Tbsp fresh cilantro, finely chopped

Tofu Marinade (unless using smoked tofu):

1 Tbsp olive oil

1 Tbsp low sodium soy sauce

Juice of 1 lemon or lime

2 Tbsps fresh herbs (e.g. cilantro, parsley, basil)


1. If using firm or extra-firm tofu, marinate it for 1 hour at room temperature (or in the fridge for a few hours or overnight) prior to cooking. Simply combine marinade ingredients in a shallow dish then add 1- inch cubes of tofu and swirl gently to coat the tofu.

2. Meanwhile, prepare your veggies. It’s key to have everything cut in small enough pieces that they cook quickly but not diced so small it turns to a mushy stew. So quarter or halve mushrooms, slice peppers, onion and cabbage, tear or slice greens, cut broccoli into small florets, trim the ends off green beans. Make the sauce by combing the soy sauce, sesame oil, vinegar or lime, garlic and ginger then set aside. 

3. When everything is ready, heat your large pan or wok on medium-high heat then add the cooking oil. Add one drop of water to the pan to test if it sizzles and pops, meaning it’s ready First cook the heartier veggies like broccoli, carrots and onion, stirring continually. After 3 minutes, add the tofu, drained of any remaining marinade. After 3 more minutes, add the next round of veggies like peppers, cabbage and mushrooms. After another 3 minutes, continuously stirring, add the remaining veggies like green beans and leafy greens and cook an additional 1-2 minutes. Remove from the heat and add the sauce, stirring to coat everything in the pan. Serve garnished with sesame seeds and cilantro over a bed of brown rice.

Recipe by Nicole Fetterly, RD

Generation Health delivers programs to families across British Columbia, on the territories of many distinct First Nations. We are grateful to all the First Nations who have cared for and nurtured the lands and waters around us for all time. We acknowledge the rights, interests, priorities, and concerns of all Indigenous Peoples - First Nations, Métis, and Inuit - respecting and acknowledging their distinct cultures, histories, rights, laws, and governments.