This is a simple, yet super flavorful vegan tofu egg salad. Perfect for sandwiches and tartines, wraps and crackers, and more! It’s one of my favorite every day lunchtime staples.
I’m slowly finding that I’ve got the energy to make more homemade food (after a long stretch of feeling stuck with It). The key, I’m finding, is to keep everything very simple.
This tofu egg salad is the epitome of simple—no cooking, ready in about fifteen minutes—but it’s really versatile, too. Make one batch, and you’ll be able to use it in wraps, as a sandwich filling, with crackers for a snack, and however else your heart desires.
I love to meal prep recipes like this: humble, unassuming staples that can multitask as the week goes on. The tofu egg salad is especially welcome because my quarantine lunches have been more uninspired than any other meal. It’s great to break up my sandwich routine with this fresh, protein-rich option.
Tofu: the great multitasker
Is there anything tofu can’t do?
I use tofu almost as obsessively as I use cashews. In my home, it becomes scramble, hash, cream cheese, a creamy base for soup, a vegan ricotta, and even chocolate pudding.
Tofu is a great base ingredient because it doesn’t have much flavor (until you season it), and it comes in a few different textures. It’s easy to turn it into anything and everything. Best of all, it adds plant protein and good nutrition (healthful fatty acids, disease-fighting phytonutrients) to anything that you make with it.
The secret to an “eggy” tofu egg pudding
Tofu is the star of this tofu egg pudding, of course. But there’s another ingredient that helps to make the egg salad “eggy,” which is kala namak, or black salt. Kala namak has sulphureous compounds that give it a distinctively “eggy” flavor.
Kala namak is used in chutneys, salads, raitas, and chaats in South Asian cuisines. In vegan cooking, it’s a convenient way to help create egg flavor. I love using it in my tofu scrambles and chickpea scrambles. I also like to sprinkle it on blocks of tofu, pan fry them, and use them for tofu “egg” sandwiches.
If you don’t have kala namak but you’re ready to make the tofu egg salad, don’t worry. It’s worth trying the recipe with the kala namak at some point because it does make a taste difference. But the salad is still bright and tasty and flavorful with fine sea salt as a substitute.
Tofu egg salad ingredients
Extra firm tofu is what I use most often in tofu cookery. But for this recipe, firm (rather than extra firm) tofu works best. If you don’t have or can’t find a block of firm tofu, then extra firm will work well, too. The recipe calls for 15-ounces, which is a standard sized block.
You can use any vegan mayo that you love for creaminess and authentic flavor in the tofu egg salad. My go-to is Follow Your Heart’s Vegenaise.
You can often find kala namak in Indian grocery stores and markets. You’ll also find it from spice suppliers and websites. I like to order this one for my eggy recipes.
A pinch of turmeric makes this recipe a little yellow, which evokes traditional egg salad. I don’t use much turmeric here because I find that the flavor of the spice interferes a bit with the simple flavors of the egg salad.
My mom always loaded up egg salad with mustard when I was growing up, and I continue to love the taste of mustard in lunch salads like this one!
Vinegar gives the salad just a little bit of tanginess and character. I like to use white vinegar, but for a more assertive taste, you can use apple cider vinegar instead.
You can season the tofu egg salad with finely chopped dill, chives, or parsley. I like all three varieties, and I tend to use whichever herb I have and am in the mood for!
Serving and storage
As you can see, I like the egg salad best on sandwiches and toast. But it’s a really nice dip, very good in a wrap, and great with crudités, as a snack. I also really, really love it on a bagel sandwich.
The tofu egg salad will keep in an airtight container in the fridge for up to four days.
More vegan lunch salads
If you’re keen on recipes like this one, which are so convenient for sandwiches and toast, here are some of my favorites:
- Mustardy lentil sweet potato salad
- Fifteen minute tempeh lunch salad
- Smashed kimchi chickpea salad
- Tofu tahini lunch salad
- Curried chickpea tahini salad
- Garlic tahini white bean salad
- 15 ounces firm tofu (1 standard sized block)
- 6 tablespoons vegan mayonnaise
- 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
- 2 teaspoons white or apple cider vinegar
- 1 tablespoon water (adjust as needed)
- 1/2 teaspoon turmeric
- 1/4 teaspoon kala namak (substitute fine sea salt)
- Freshly ground black pepper (to taste)
- 3 tablespoons finely chopped, fresh dill, chives, or parsley
- Wrap the tofu in a tea towel and squeeze firmly. You don't need to press the tofu—you're just aiming to remove some excess moisture from it.
- Crumble the tofu into a mixing bowl with your hands. You're aiming for it to be mostly crumbled, but with a few larger pieces for a little bit of texture.
- Add the mayonnaise, mustard, vinegar, water, turmeric, kala namak, and black pepper to the bowl. Use a large spoon to mix everything together. Keep mixing until everything is evenly incorporated. Fold in the herbs. Taste. Add additional mustard, vinegar, pepper, or some fine sea salt to taste. Serve on toast, crackers, or in a sandwich or bagel sandwich.
This salad is so lovely for the time of year when the weather is warming up, breeze is becoming gentle, and lunches that don’t require cooking and heating are starting to hit the spot. I hope it’ll keep you company this spring.