This tofu tahini scramble is deeply savory and packed with plant protein! A combination of tahini and hummus contribute creamy texture and flavor, while chickpeas add extra nutrition to the dish. The tofu in this scramble is cubed, rather than crumbled, which is a nice texture contrast from regular tofu scramble.

A plate covered in baby spinach has been piled with a vegan tofu tahini scramble. A fork rests nearby.

For years, I’ve been making my tofu scramble the same way, with only small variations in ingredients and add-ins. I crumble the tofu, sauté it in a little oil, then scramble it with vegetables, turmeric, mustard, nutritional yeast, and spices.

This tofu tahini scramble is a little different. It’s inspired by a tofu scramble that I tasted at a restaurant called Open City, back when I lived in DC. That scramble incorporated tahini, which is one of my favorite all time ingredients.

My friend said that she thought the tahini gave the scramble an almost feta-like flavor. When I tried a bite, I knew what she meant. The combination of tahini, tomatoes, and lots of lemon juice gave the scramble a creamy and umami-rich quality.

As soon as I got home, I knew that I would try my own version of a tofu tahini scramble. I did, and the recipe that I created has become one of my favorite tofu scrambles ever. It’s especially great in the summer, when grape tomatoes are juicy, sweet, and fresh.

An overhead image of a round, white rimmed plate on a white tablecloth. The plate holds a dish of a plant-based protein and green spinach leaves.

Why tahini makes tofu scramble better

This tofu tahini scramble puts both tahini and hummus, which is usually made with tahini, at front and center. But I now make it a habit to add tahini to all of my tofu scrambles, even when I’m not making this exact recipe.

Why? Creaminess! On its own, tofu can become a little dry in scrambles. It’s also usually quite crumbly, which isn’t a bad thing. But if the goal is to pay homage to eggs, which hold together without getting crumbly, even as they scramble, the addition of tahini makes a really big difference.

Tahini will gently coat your tofu, giving it a slight creamy quality that’s more reminiscent of real egg. It adds healthful fats and other nutrients from sesame seeds. And those healthful fats also help to carry flavor, so the spices and nutritional yeast you might use in your tofu scramble recipe will shine.

A duo of plant protein

The recipe marries two of my favorite plant proteins, chickpeas and tofu.

This vegan protein “double hitter” helps to make the tofu tahini scramble even more filling than it would be otherwise.

In addition to adding extra protein to the scramble, the chickpeas contribute fiber, folate, and trace minerals. They also add textural contrast, a hearty bite to offset the soft quality of the tofu.

How to prepare tofu for tofu scramble

Normally the tofu that ends up in a tofu scramble is crumbled into pieces. Those crumbles can be relatively fine or more substantial. That’s a personal preference, and I’ve used both types of crumbles in my own tofu scramble experiments.

The tofu in this tofu tahini scramble gets a different preparation. This is in keeping with the scramble that inspired it at Open City, which featured tofu that had been cut into small cubes.

While I love using crumbled tofu in my tofu scrambles, I’m also a big fan of the cubed preparation. It gives the tofu scramble a different kind of texture. I’d say that it’s a cross between classic tofu scramble and a lunch salad.

Tofu tahini scramble ingredients

This tofu tahini scramble comes together quickly, and it features a short list of ingredients.

Tofu

I choose extra firm or firm tofu for this and all of my other tofu scramble recipes. I do recommend pressing the tofu a little before scrambling.

You don’t need to press it as thoroughly as you would if you were making baked tofu cubes or a stir fry, because the texture doesn’t need to be as firm or crisp. Just place the tofu between two tea towels (or some paper towels) and give it a firm, yet gentle squeeze. This will remove excess water that the tofu is packed in.

Tahini

You can use any tahini that you have at home for this recipe. I personally prefer tahini made with roasted sesame seeds. I think that it’s less bitter than raw tahini. My favorite brand is Seed + Mill—I like it so much that I order it online in packs of three!

Chickpeas

I love the texture that chickpeas add to this tofu tahini scramble. And I love their health benefits. However, you can substitute another type of bean for the chickpeas if you need or want to. I’ve made this recipe with cannellini beans, and they work very well.

Hummus

If tahini is the first secret weapon ingredient in this tofu scramble, then hummus is the second! It adds creaminess along with the tahini, and it also adds some flavor. I think it helps to marry all of the ingredients together.

Any plain flavor of hummus will work here. However, it’s also fine to add a flavored hummus, so long as you don’t think that the flavors will compete with the scramble. Roasted red pepper hummus and sun-dried tomato hummus both work well.

You can use either homemade hummus or store-bought hummus for the recipe. Keep it simple, and use what you have.

Garlic

I don’t use a lot of garlic in the tofu tahini scramble, because I tend to be sensitive to strong garlic flavor in food. With that said, I find that one clove of garlic brings the Mediterranean flavors of the scramble to life.

Tomatoes

I tend to use either grape or cherry tomatoes for this recipe. (If you’re confused about that distinction, you’re not the only one—this article clarified it for me.)

I like the size and sweet flavor of these smaller tomato varieties. However, it’s fine to use a whole, roughly chopped tomato in place of the little ones. One small beefsteak tomato should give you about 3/4 cup chopped.

Tamari

I’m a big fan of using tamari in place of salt to season my tofu scrambles, and this tofu tahini scramble is no exception. I think that the tamari gives a deeper flavor than regular salt does, and it’s also easy to fold and distribute the liquid seasoning into the recipe.

Lemon juice

Lemon juice adds acid and brightness to the recipe. It offers a lovely contrast with the slight bitterness of tahini, and it’s an essential part of what I love about this recipe. Using fresh lemon juice will give you the most vibrant flavor.

How to serve tofu tahini scramble

There are so many great ways to serve this savory dish!

My favorite accompaniment is some sort of green, like the baby spinach in the pictures or steamed kale. I’ve served the scramble with roasted broccoli in winter and fresh, sliced summer tomatoes when it’s warm out, and grilled asparagus in the spring.

The tofu tahini scramble is also really nice with some toast, pita wedges, or a cooked whole grain, like quinoa, brown rice, farro, or barley.

A round, white plate with a small rim has been covered in a tofu tahini scramble, baby spinach, and a wedge of fresh lemon. A fork with a wooden handle rests to the side of the plate.

Can I substitute the tahini?

Sesame seeds are a common allergen, which means that some readers may need to substitute the tahini in this recipe.

Not to worry! Cashew butter is a nice replacement for the tahini. I recommend using the same amount: two tablespoons. If you have a batch of my cashew cream on hand, you can use a couple tablespoons of that as well.

Storing tofu tahini scramble

The tofu tahini leftover scrambles keep very well, which means that this dish is a great option for make-ahead breakfasts. You can store them in an airtight container in the fridge for up to five days.

You can also freeze leftovers of the tofu scramble for up to six weeks.

A plate covered in baby spinach has been piled with a vegan tofu tahini scramble. A fork rests nearby.
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Tofu Tahini Scramble

Author – Gena Hamshaw
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 25 minutes
Yields: 4 servings

Ingredients

  • 2 teaspoons olive oil
  • 15 ounces extra firm tofu
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 3/4 cup cooked chickpeas (half of a 14.5-ounce can)
  • 3/4 cup halved grape or cherry tomatoes
  • 2 tablespoons tahini
  • 1/4 cup hummus (any you like)
  • 1 tablespoon tamari
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice

Instructions

  • Heat the oil in a deep skillet over medium high heat. Add the tofu cubes and cook till they're browning, stirring frequently (about 5 minutes). Add the garlic and cook for 1 minute longer, stirring the mixture constantly.
  • Add the chickpeas, cherry tomatoes, tahini, hummus, tamari, and lemon juice to the pan. Fold everything together and heat till the ingredients are all warmed through. Serve, with our without some greens on the side.
A white plate holds a savory, vegetarian breakfast dish and fresh baby spinach. A serving fork is poking off of the plate.

What a healthful, nourishing breakfast this scramble is. While I enjoy a huge variety of breakfasts, both savory and sweet, I always feel the most strong and satiated when I have something savory and rich in protein.

And yet, one of the best thing about tofu scramble for breakfast is that the leftovers work for any time of day. Enjoy this morning, noon, or night—no matter what, I hope you’ll be won over by its simplicity and flavor.

xo

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    38 Comments
  1. I recently had this dish at Open City. It was delicious! Thanks for recreating the recipe. Open City used broccoli and not tomatoes in my dish.

  2. To Gena’s followers: please give this recipe a try. I made it tonight for the 4th time. It’s another one of Gena’s recipes “worth repeating!” Didn’t have any greens in the house. So, what’s a girl to do??? I shredded white cabbage & carrots & topped those veggies off with this warm, amazing mixture! Mmmmmmmmm it was heavenly! My husband & I should have been ashamed of ourselves. We gobbled the tofu scramble down so fast— you would have thought we hadn’t eaten all day. But we’re not ashamed… we’re just thankful to be eating delicious no-meat meals that have us coming back for more!!! Gena, I wish you could have joined us tonight! Our tummy’s are full and satisfied because of YOU! 🙂

  3. Hi Gena! I previously made a post about this recipe, but wanted you to know after my husband and I finished eating Tofu Tahini Scramble tonight; my husband said, “you need to put stars by this recipe—I could eat it once a week!” Doesn’t that just thrill your soul! Did mine! We’ll, we’re going on a road trip which means eating breakfast, lunch, and dinner in the car. Guess what kind of salad I’ll be packing in the ice chest—Tofu Tahini Scramble! 🙂 Hmmmm even lunch in the car can be a meal looked forward to, taste wonderfully yummy, and be tons more appealing than any of the restaurants on the highway!!! I’m so thankful to have found you here at Choosing Raw!

  4. I made this tonight with the slight modification of adding chopped onion and julienne zucchini and carrots. It was delicious, served as lettuce wraps! My husband and son enjoyed the same recipe with chicken in place of the chick peas and tofu.

  5. I love this recipe! It’s super filling and great on top of whatever greens are in the fridge. I actually made it twice this week for my husband and me… it’s really that tasty, good, and satisfying. My husband didn’t even ask for dessert! Oh yow!!! Thanks, Gena!!!

  6. Hey Gena! So I know this is totally off topic, but I wanted to say it anyways. I have been reading your blog for a while, and I know that you have always been a fan of juicing. Especially veggie juice. I never really understood the fascination. That is until I tried it for myself. I used to suffer from IBS stuff just like you, and green juice has changed my life! It has totally turned my digestion around, and now I can’t imagine going a day without it! Thank you for the inspiration, and keep spreading the vegan love girl!

  7. New reader to your blog, and already truly inspired…I am not a vegan or even a vegetarian, but I am slowly weeding animal products out of my diet because I just FEEL better! Hope you don’t mind I read up and borrow some of these recipes to help me along my journey…huge fan of cheese, so your recipe above looks devine! can’t wait to try it!
    Sinerely,
    Christin

  8. Just made a triple batch of this for the family – I added some home-grown zucchini and served it over kelp noodles. Ahhmazing! Thanks for the recipe.

  9. ok, feta? i’m so down.
    re: protein cravings, when I first went vegan and was less organized about how I ate, I often had cravings for raw fish and sushi after work-outs. eventually i came to recognize that as “proteeiiiinnn!!” and started nourishing with nuts and beans, and it’s worked out. Lately, I find myself craving peanut butter (more specifically, a smoothie with banana, peanut butter, blueberries, and kale) at the end of a workout, so I guess I’ve changed my body’s mind about what “proteeiiinnnN!!” is.

  10. Looks great! I have a creamy hummus tofu scramble in one of my ebooks and it’s become a major favorite (though I wouldn’t say mine tasted like feta. . .). I’ve got a block of tofu in the fridge just waiting to be made into a scramble–this one! 🙂

  11. It’s as if you read my mind! I’m not vegan, but was looking for a healthier alternative to the cheeses I love in my salads when I clicked on this in my Google reader this morning. Just made it for dinner and…AMAZING. I was surprised how much it resembled the tanginess of feta. Also, I used to be a big tofu eater then maybe I just ate too much of it because I suddenly could not stand the texture and was worried that this would be the case here. But this was perfect combined with the subtle crunchiness in the chick peas. And the flavors are just perfect together. I added a little sriracha on top too and it was great.

  12. This looks wonderful. I’m always looking for new ways to dress up tofu. Re: feta – yes, this was one of my favs too. I have tried the soy feta, but never again. It is a pretty weak substitute. This would make a nice wrap or pita filling.

  13. Gena, this may sound like a naive or dumb question but – it’s called scramble because everything is all mixed up and not – because it tastes like scrambled eggs. Right? I’ve never tried tofu and I’m trying to add more vegan meals to my life. I would love to try this but if it tastes like eggs I know I won’t like it. Please let me know. Thanks.

    • Ha, this isn’t even a legit scramble, dear Johanna! My real tofu scrambles look like scrambled eggs (but thankfully, the resemblance stops there; they don’t taste egg like). So this is more a stir fry, called scramble only because it’s a little bit like my tofu scramble, which is not like eggs except in preparation/technique. That’s a complicated answer, but the upshot is: this does not taste like eggs. If it did, I sure wouldn’t be eating it.

  14. It looks delicious, and I used to love tofu scramble, but now it seems to bring back old hypoglycemia symptoms I used to have. Ever since giving up meat and cheese (I do have a tiny bit occasionally) my hypoglycemia went away. It feels so good not to shake and sweat whenever I go for a few hours without any food! But for some reason if I eat a bit of tofu the symptoms come back. Not sure why so sadly I have to stay away. After reading your post yesterday I am excited to try the salad at Josie’s you ordered. I never thought to just order it without the tofu and now it gives me another option when I go there.

  15. Gena,
    really enjoyed your post yesterday but didn’t get a chance to comment. eating out is still an ordeal for me at this point in recovery. it was so nice to hear a positive but realistic perspective on what restaurant dinning can be for a recovered disordered eater. thanks!

  16. Looks delicious– tofu scramble in hummus form is definitely my kind of meal 🙂 I bet some cumin, smoked paprika and nutritional yeast would give the scramble more flavor and depth as well.
    Can’t wait to try this with a big tortilla to sop it up with 🙂

  17. Hummus anything and you have me! 🙂 just got some raw vegan feta, it’s really good! My friend Zoe makes it, RAWbundant is her company. 🙂

  18. Mmm, tahini, tofu, chickpeas, veggies, scrambled up in a stir fry that’s fast, one pan, easy…I am all about it!

    And I am the same way:
    “protein cravings” (whatever those are; I’m never really sure what others mean when they refer to them!) but I do often crave something dense and filling —

    Me too.

    And sometimes I reach for edamame or tofu when that hits. And other times I reach for chocolate and peanut butter 🙂

  19. I’m a recent tahini convert, already through my first jar, and this sounds delicious.
    And I think you’re right when you say this could serve 1 hungry athlete, but I’m willing to test that for you. 😉

  20. Feta is one of my non-vegan favorites too – I wonder how they created that unique flavor! Your dish looks amazing, and I’m digging the super-high protein. It would definitely tide me over pretty well!