Sit. Stay. Eat. Spicy Tofu Salad

Motivation is a funny thing. I suppose that in some ways I’m not that much different from a well-trained dog: I do my best when I know that my actions will result in a treat. It has always been easier for me to stay motivated if I have something to look forward to, and I bet I’m not alone in feeling this way.

This spring, my spouse and I are taking a vacation. So, like good little doggies, we’ve decided that we want to “trim down” a bit before wearing our bathing suits in public for a week. The trip is like a big fakin’-bacon-flavored dog treat waiting for us. Work hard now, then reap our reward later: feeling good, looking good, and indulging guiltlessly in food and drink.

So far, we’re not making any major changes to our diet. We already eat healthful, wholesome foods most of the time, and neither of us needs to drop more than a few pounds. We just want to eliminate a little extra baggage. So we’re watching our intake of added sugars, eating out less, watching our portion sizes, and making sure that we eat fresh greens every day of the week. We also have salad as an entrée at least two times per week.

I fell off the wagon last Friday (bad dog!) and ate a GIANT vegan chocolate cookie, but for the most part, things are going well so far. We’re motivated and coming up with lots of delicious ways to eat salad: roasted sweet potato salad; spinach salad with boiled eggs; taco salad; walnut, cranberry and feta salad.

This week we made one of my absolute favorite salads: Spicy Tofu salad.  Tofu is cooked with soy sauce, chili-garlic sauce and sesame oil; tossed with plain yogurt and green onions; and served with rice, greens, cucumbers, avocados, carrots and toasted sesame seeds. Topped with a soy-ginger dressing, this salad is packed with protein, veggies, and flavors you’ll want to sit, stay and wag for.

The recipe is from Vegetarian Times magazine. The only change is that I thinly slice my carrots rather than using a vegetable peeler to shave them onto the salad. You can see the original recipe here.

Spicy Tofu Salad


Spicy Tofu

1/4 cup low-sodium soy sauce
1/4 cup chili-garlic sauce
2 Tbs. dark sesame oil
14 oz. extra-firm tofu, drained and cubed
5 green onions, finely chopped (1/2 cup)
1/4 cup nonfat yogurt
2 Tbs. lemon juice

Mix together the soy sauce, chili-garlic sauce and sesame oil. Add the tofu to the soy sauce mixture and toss gently to coat. Remove tofu with a slotted spoon, draining off most of the sauce. Cook in a non-stick skillet over medium heat until tofu is browned. Remove from heat and cool for ten minutes. Add the yogurt, green onions and lemon juice to the remaining soy sauce mixture. Once tofu has cooled add it to the sauce and toss gently to coat.


1/4 cup low-sodium soy sauce
2 Tbs. lemon juice
1 Tbs. minced fresh ginger
1 tsp. chili-garlic sauce
2 cups cooked short-grain brown rice
4 1/2 cups mixed baby greens
2 carrots, peeled and sliced into thin rounds
1 cucumber, sliced (1 1/2 cups)
1 avocado, peeled and sliced
1 Tbs. toasted sesame seeds

Whisk together the first four ingredients. Assemble salads in bowls with rice, greens, carrots, cucumber and avocado. Spoon the tofu onto the salad and sprinkle with toasted sesame seeds. Add dressing as desired. Makes about 4 servings

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One Response to Sit. Stay. Eat. Spicy Tofu Salad

  1. CK says:

    This one is so good that it makes me cry a little.

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