Introduction: Tofu Jerky

Picture of Tofu Jerky

I went veg and missed jerky, so I tried this out and it actually turned out really well.
(It really does taste better than it looks.)

Step 1: Ingredients

Picture of Ingredients

Vinegar, either malt or apple cider
Liquid smoke
Hot Sauce
Soy Sauce
Veg Oil
Garlic Salt
Salt and Pepper

Step 2: Drain, Cut and Marinate

Picture of Drain, Cut and Marinate

 Drain the tofu by wrapping the block in cloth or paper towels then place between two plates and put some weight on top ( a bag of flour or something about that weight) and let it sit for about 15-20 min. Cut the tofu into strips, then put them in a  zip-top bag. Then add the other ingredients, I just eyeball it, but, I would say about a table spoon of all the wet ingredients and 1/2 of the dry. Then close the bag squeezing out as much of the air as possible. Then put it in the fridge overnight.

Step 3: Prepping for the Oven

Picture of Prepping for the Oven

I don't have a dehydrator so I used the oven, if you have a dehydrator use that. Set the oven to 200, this takes a few hours so there's no reason to pre-heat. Put some parchment paper on a baking sheet and then put the tofu on top of that. 

Step 4: Cooking/Drying

Picture of Cooking/Drying

 Put it in the oven and let it cook/dry for 4-6 hours flipping every hour. The time will vary depending on the humidity.

Step 5: Finishing

Picture of Finishing

 When it's done it should look like it does below. I know it looks burnt and not very tasty, it's not burnt and it is tasty! You can change the ingredients to match your own tastes I just listed how I did it. Enjoy!


deathsmileyinc (author)2010-02-25

can a vegatarian eat honey? sometimes all the bees get killed for the honey, but most of the times they just take that "thing" out and poor the honey into pots i think, anyway, honey is the vomit of a bee :S

Usually, vegetarians don't eat meat because of health issues. Vegans are the die hards who do not eat a hamburger because a cow doesn't get to sleep in a king size bed with a down comforter.

So yes, this should be vegetarian friendly.

Actually, a lot of vegetarians do it for ethical reasons. I went veg as a kid when I made the correlation between meat and death, but have no problem with free range eggs and grassfed milk because the animals aren't harmed. Factory farmind is an abomination, though. :(

Oh and also it's really bad for the environment, in terms of land required and water used, meat just isn't sustainable. Milk and eggs are less bad, but still not the most sustainable of foods which is why veganism will eventually be practiced by necessity.

Agree to disagree, Tigerstripe. While beef certainly uses a TON of resources, if you look at the water requirements for alternative vegetable PROTEINS, many are higher than chicken or pork. Crickets are not on the list, but they probably beat out everything else.

Looking forward to making this recipe for my vegan gf, although I'll sub agave for the honey.

Hi- I just wanted to say that animals are harmed in the egg and dairy industries- male chicks and calves are killed as they aren't useful- often the chicks are gassed or put into a macerator and the male calves have a sad, short life and become veal- this is the same for free-range or grass fed/organic farming sadly.

Eggs that you eat commercially either free range, organic or mass produced are not fertilized there is no chicken/bird in there. Now if you were to go to Philippines there they sell fertilized eggs to eat...its called balut and its interesting but gross.

thats not true, im vegatarian myself, a lot of my friend are vegatarian and i know 2 vegans, all of these people just love animals, i would like to be a vegan but my parents wont let me :P

... Your parents have a say wether you turn vegan or not? That's nice of you and all but that can't be the only reason bacause being a vegan is YOUR choice... Btw, I eat meat and love it. lol 8D....

lol i know, but they wont cook vegan for me, its hard enough to cook vegatarian every day. i dont think milk and eggs are inportent enough to cook my own meal every day when my mom can do it for me, of course i will be a vegan when i leave the home

bettbee (author)deathsmileyinc2010-02-26

Hi deathsmileyinc,

You absolutely can learn to cook for yourself! Or at least to help and thus influence meal choice. Remember that even just reducing the amount of animal products you eat is a big help. I bet you could impress your parents by learning about nutrition. You can get this book from the library - if your local one doesn't have it ask for an interlibrary loan:
Becoming Vegan: The Complete Guide to Adopting a Healthy Plant-Based Dietby Brenda Davis and Vesanto Melina

And I'll also bet that you can talk them into making at least some meals entirely animal-free if you present them with great recipes you can help make. There are some great vegan cookbooks for kids, and here are some websites with information and recipes: (See: This month's features) (not the same as

deathsmileyinc (author)bettbee2010-03-01

ive tried to talk with my family but my father, sister and mom wont give up meat :( ive convinced my little brother and some friends :) when i cook (one a week) it will be vegan, and i eat vegan moist of the times, but im not going to make a big deal out of eggs and milk cause its hard to replace them.

most of the times i eat vegan. most of the times i eat pizza ones a week, (with cheese) i think i will change that :P

edsobo (author)deathsmileyinc2010-11-17

I know this thread is old, but I wanted to chime in with a couple additional suggestions.

The book Skinny Bitch is pretty awesome and is about 90% responsible for my wife and I going vegan to begin with. Plenty of good information and recipes in there.

The Ultimate Uncheese Cookbook has a lot of good ideas for replacing cheese in your home cooked meals. There's a dilled havarti recipe in there that we use as a replacement for the Boar's Head dilled havarti that goes into our veggie pot pie recipe. Goes great in the pies or on a cracker.

And on the topic of pizza, believe it or not, there are several really tasty vegan cheeses out there - Daiya, Follow Your Heart and Teese, to name a few. Check your local health food store or co-op or, if all else fails, for some. (Beware that buying perishables from will cost extra in shipping and the mandatory cold packs that they add to the order.)

Good luck!

bettbee (author)edsobo2010-11-17


Thanks! I love The Ultimate Uncheese Cookbook, and Daiya is just incredible.

Now for folks who aren't already vegan, these things don't taste exactly like cheese. But for those who choose not to participate either in the damage to the body that these foods cause, or the damage to the Earth that they also cause, and so aren't having cheese or meat anyway, some of the replacement products make being vegetarian or vegan a whole lot nicer.

Another great product is Gardein. It could be better but it could be a whole lot worse. The previous generation of vegan meat analogues had better take notice, because it's now a lot easier to feed non-vegans with vegan foods.

Also good timing on your note, because HealthyPlanet Long Island is about to have our 17th TurkeyFree Thanksgiving Dinner this Sunday: or

bettbee (author)jdwaynes19802010-02-26

Hi, Juggsy,

Well it's usually less about the lack of king sized beds and more about how they are kept in horrible dirty feedlots where they often suffer infections and illness from overuse of antibiotics, and the way they are killed, often being dismembered while still alive and conscious . . . same for chickens and pigs and other animals that are "farmed" . . . also the impact of concentrated animal feedlot operations upon the environment (to name just a few possible reasons.) But hardly ever about beds or comforters.

bettbee (author)deathsmileyinc2010-11-17

Two different answers:

First, from someone I know and respect highly: Why Honey is Vegan:

Second, a thoughtful piece from the opposite end of the spectrum, which I also find compelling: Why Honey is Not Vegan:

redheadeb (author)deathsmileyinc2010-02-25

If you don't eat honey for whatever reason you could most likely substitute agave nectar, maple syrup, or, heck, even a bit of sugar. 

This looks great, I'd bet even my jerky-loving son would like it!

ghostrider2 (author)redheadeb2010-04-09

i doubt it.  nothing compares to the taste of a reel strip of beef jerkey.  unless you count moose meat jerkey.

muberblob (author)ghostrider22010-07-20

i like deer jerky too

morganw (author)deathsmileyinc2010-03-04

Honey is not the vomit of a bee. honey is nectar that the bees expose to the air and condense it into what we know as honey. after that given that we don't take it from them they(the bees) store it as food. If it where vomit I really doubt that we would be eating it, that would be the equivalent of eating an owl pellet(owl vomit).

deathsmileyinc (author)morganw2010-03-06

they store it into a second stomach when they bring it to the hive

Traibhse (author)deathsmileyinc2010-03-03

 Vegetarians can eat honey, vegans cannot.  Vegans cannot eat any animal products or bi-products.

some do.... my english teacher is a vegan and he eats it. and it's not the same vomit you'd think of, they just carry it in a second stomach.

PatN7 (author)2015-08-11

Hi "otherscott," It's a delicious recipe! Thanks! One question - does it have to be refrigerated? I don't think my batch will last that long, but I'd like to know. Thanks again. Pat

DavidG49 (author)2015-05-24

My wife is a vegetarian and I am a carnivore. I do all the cooking and I eat a mostly vegetarian diet, but I love a good plate of ribs or a bag of jerky. This recipe came out great; my wife liked it because it was tofu, and I felt it had the tuff, chewy texture of meat. And it had a lot of flavor. To marinated the tofu for two days (unintentionally) then placed the pieces on a wire rack over a cookie sheet, set the oven for 200, and left the house for 6 hours. Perfect. Next time I'm making a double batch.

HoneyB2 (author)2015-03-28

Thank you for the delicious recipe! I am transitioning to vegan and am looking for different and interesting ways to prepare tofu! This sounds like a sure fire hit (minus the honey).

Does freezing the tofu help give it a more 'jerky' texture?

Hoping HaileighM comes back with that picture as promised.

HaileighM (author)2015-01-20

Please ignore the trolling below. It's common whenever vegetarianism or veganism comes into the conversation. It's not that I don't like the taste of meat, I grew up with it and liked it up until I realized how that meat got onto my plate, after which it left a horrible feeling in my gut after I ate it. I just don't think a bag of jerky that'll last me 10 minutes is worth a life. To each their own, though. Please keep the comments respectful. If you're looking for a recipe for meat jerky, I'm not sure a recipe for tofu is the place to start, so maybe do a basic google search for a recipe instead of being rude to those who want this recipe.

If you're vegan, substitute the honey for some other sweetener like agave nectar or raw sugar, whatever your preference is. I ended up using my own blend of spices and used this recipe to figure out the times and temperatures. I had a half-bottle of sweet and spicy thai sauce (check for honey when you buy this!) and black bean garlic paste that I mixed together with a touch of soy sauce, hot chili sauce and liquid smoke. The marinade tastes amazing! The tofu is sitting with it now and in a little bit I'll get the oven prepped. I've tried tofu jerky that a friend made using this technique and it was amazing! If the texture feels a bit off when it's fresh out of the oven, stick it in a ziplock bag and stick it in the fridge for about 24 hours. I got my bag of tofu jerky out of my friends fridge and it was amazing! I prefer mine strongly flavored so I didn't use any water to cut the marinade. I'll post a picture when it's finished, so glad I could find such an easy recipe to follow! :)

tanyas1 (author)2014-12-28

I've had this before and i'm making it again today...just needed a refresher but i think this stuff is DELICIOUS!

pamala.leonard (author)2014-10-09

I added a little Teriyaki marinade and BBQ sauce, then baked it on a rack. The rack helps the jerky cook faster and, to quote Steven Raichlen, gives it killer grill marks.

hippyland2 (author)2010-03-09

turn out botched for me didn't compare in the least to normal BEEF jerky.
its not fibery like BEEF jerky. ok idea though . one question though, why would you ever want to become a vegitarian? why would you want to give up meat, and as we ll know pork is the meat of kings.

if you freeze tofu overnight and then thaw it, it has a more meat-like consistency.

ghostrider2 (author)hippyland22010-04-09

thank you.  i was about to ask the same question.  for me, nothing compares to the taste of a nice fat juicy steak.

Agreed. I couldn't live without my steak. Yesterday I went with some friends to the Texas Longhorn, ordered a big, fat, n juicy 24 ounce steak :P It was awsome. I want another im sad D:             XD

Well aside from being unfunny and unoriginal, apparently all of you must love cattle that are pumped full of growth hormones things that cause the taint to shrink. Oh and I am sure you're such big guys you love higher taxes to pay for meat subsidy...yummm...most likely you guys are just complete asstards who are too afraid of looking weak in front of other men that you'd do whatever you were told to because you are complete cowards and have no minds of your own...kind of like posting the same thing 3 times... oh and hippyland probably made it wrong.

This kind of trolling is common anywhere there is talk of vegetarian stuff for some reason. It's the same with any talk of religion, or lack of it, or political views, or sexuality or anything. People who aren't secure in who they are reassure themselves by attacking those who disagree with them.

I'm just a little confused about it myself. If these people all love steak so much, why don't they read an Instructable about cooking steak?
So few websites I'm on have members who bother insulting vegetarians anymore, and I haven't been harassed in real life in years (mind you, I also don't harass others about their dietary choices) or on any websites... Especially not one with a "Be nice" policy. I find it really, really confusing, kind of insulting, and very distressing.

Una (author)hippyland22010-09-01

Why would you want to eat road kill? Not much diff between the stuff you buy in the store and the animals on the side of the road. At that. What business is it of yours anyway? Eat meat if you want to. Just don't come down on other people for their choices. If this is an honest inquiry into a person's c hoices, because you desire to learn something, then learn to ask in a more respectful manner.

roystonlodge (author)Una2010-09-13

If it was freshly-killed and well-prepared, I'd eat roadkill.

roystonlodge (author)hippyland22010-09-13

I'm not a vegetarian, but I love soy-based meat alternatives for one simple reason - camping trips. It is WAY easier to haul textured vegetable protein, dried soybeans, and/or wheat gluten (along with the requisite spices, flavourings, etc) through the bush than it is to haul meat.

blancopantera (author)2013-05-05

How expensive is this compared with the real thing?

octollama (author)2012-01-29

What kind of tofu are you suing? is it just firm tofu?
because you can get firm, medium firm and soft.

vlxwgn (author)2011-06-02

In the last picture it looks crispy, is it hard like crackers or somewhat soft/flexible?

veggielife4me (author)2010-10-20

I know u said it tasts great, but does it actually tast like beef jerky?

avengingwatcher (author)2010-06-14

I've found that wheat gluten produces a much better texture than tofu. Post Punk Kitchen has a decent starter recipe, some tips if you go the gluten route. Use a food dehydrator, it produces much better results, cut the slices thick enough so that they are chewy not crunchy. Also I recommend marinating in two stages with a barbecue sauce. I personally like Sweet Baby Rays Honey Barbecue, but they have vegan alternative and I have written the company who assures me that if it looks vegetarian it is. If anyone's interested I can dig up a recipe and maybe throw up a ible.

I agree. I like to make veggie "ribs" out of wheat gluten from time to time.

Sadly, however, there are more than a few people out there who are allergic to gluten.

Mr. Potato Head (author)2010-09-07

Some things just can't be ported to the meatless world - this surely looks to be one of them. Ditto for Vegan tofu shoes.

Blackie Ray (author)2010-09-05

I think it looks brilliant, and no doubt tastes great. Tofu jerky is great.

godfish (author)2010-07-17

Stupid political eating views aside! I eat what I want, I'm a free man! not some person that is told what to eat. I have this in the oven right now and can't wait to try it. I avoid meat, because it's murder, and murder is stupid. I don't fill my belly and body with anger and stupidity... Thanks for posting this and giving us a way to be kind and compassionate.

tubanator-2.0 (author)2010-07-15

mmmm this looks good...i will probably try these sometime this week.

mmmmna (author)2010-06-22

Could the author please insert COMMAS where ingredients end? I have a hard time reading long, run-on style lists.

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