What Is Silken Tofu?

What is silken tofu? Is it tofu dressed for a night out? It’s it tofu you use as a pillow so you don’t mess up your hair? It’s certainly the most intriguingly named of all the different types of tofu—firm, extra firm, soft, and then…silken. It sends sensuous shivers down your spine. Get your soy sauce and scallions ready, because you’re in for a deep dive into silken tofu. 

What is silken tofu?

Silken tofu is a smooth and delicate form of tofu. (Wondering, what is tofu, generally? We covered that in another article.) It is used in both sweet and savory dishes due to its neutral flavor profile and unique, custard-like texture. Silken tofu is prized for its versatility, seamlessly blending into smoothies, desserts, or soups. It’s used as a substitute for dairy in various recipes. And, of course, it’s the central ingredient in many Japanese recipes such as agedashi tofu and hiyayakko tofu, as well as Szechuan recipes like mapo tofu. 

Is silken tofu the same as soft tofu?

While both silken tofu and soft tofu share a delicate texture, they aren’t quite the same thing. For one, they’re made differently. To make silken tofu, you coagulate soy milk by heating it with a salt solution, then let it set. Soft tofu, on the other hand, is produced by coagulating soy milk while pressing the curds slightly, giving it a firmer texture. 

Can you eat silken tofu raw?

Yes, silken tofu is safe to eat raw. Raw silken tofu is a terrific addition to salads, smoothies, and cold appetizers. It can be blended into creamy dressings, used as a base for dips, or incorporated into desserts like puddings and mousses without any cooking. Let that chef’s hat gather some dust, and eat it raw with some good soy sauce and chili crisp!

Can you freeze silken tofu?

Yes, you can technically freeze silken tofu but it will change the texture. Frozen silken tofu loses its signature custardy silkiness and becomes much chewier and crumbly. So, it’s not recommended. But some Redditors suggest using it as a scrambled egg substitute should you decide to freeze your silken tofu anyway. 

What to do with silken tofu?

Silken tofu can be blended into smoothies for a creamy texture or used as a base for dairy-free desserts like puddings and mousses. In savory dishes, silken tofu is great cubed in brothy soups (notably, miso soup) or blended into creamy soups. It can also be used to make creamy vegan sauces for pasta or vegetables. You can also just plop it onto a plate, top it with your favorite sauce, and chow down. You can pretty much do everything with silken tofu but wear it (although we think a tofu tuxedo would look pretty dapper).

The next time you’re considering a nutritious and convenient option for a raw or minimally processed plant-based protein, silken tofu is a solid choice. Well, not solid, kind of gelatinous really.

About the Author

Joe Rumrill

Joe Rumrill is a fictional one-eyed spinach-loving sailor created in 1929 by E.C Se- Wait, no, that's not right... Joe Rumrill is a stand up comedian and writer currently based in Los Angeles. His favorite thing about food is a close tie between the taste and the nutrients one gets from it. His least favorite thing about it is the "gritty, dirt-like quality some food has", but he's most likely referring to the time in third grade he was dared to eat playground sand.

Thoughts? Questions? Complete disagreement? Leave a comment!

Your thoughts.

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *