Tofu has become a prominent source of protein for people who are allergic to dairy products. Those who adopt a vegan lifestyle also try Tofu to satisfy their protein requirements. But due to some misconception, they often ask, “Is Tofu Vegan?” Well, yes it is!
People switching to a plant-based diet due to the booming culture of veganism often face many hurdles in fulfilling their protein needs. An easy way to consume protein is by eating tofu in various forms.
It is an excellent dairy or meat substitute you can effortlessly adopt in your daily diet. It is a rich source of protein and contains many essential nutrients vital for overall growth.
I remember when I started adopting a vegan lifestyle due to being allergic to dairy products. Initially, it was tough for me to come up with sources of adequate proteins.
But slowly, things started to work out and I discovered tofu as a great option to get high protein. The best thing about tofu is you can eat it raw or cook it in your own style to enjoy it.
In this post, I have explained how tofu is vegan. Surely, you will get sufficient information on this subject to clear your doubts in your mind. So, read on without any further delay!
Tofu Origin and Types
Speaking of the origin of Tofu, its roots are linked to the earlier Asian diets. With time, it also started becoming popular in the Western regions due to various food movements.
Thanks to its high protein content and the presence of other vital minerals, it is now being consumed globally. And you might have come across many vegan recipes made with Tofu as the major ingredient.
Once I tried a Mongolian dish made of Tofu, and, to my surprise, it really took me to a new level of delicacies. I recommend you to try various recipes made of tofu to experience a fine taste of this food item.
Types of Tofu Used in Cooking
Nowadays, you can choose from a variety of Tofu items to make different food recipes. With the use of different tofu types, you can add texture to foods while cooking.
If you choose firm or extra firm tofu which has a dense texture, you can consider it as a replacement for meat in food dishes. You can grill, fry, or bake these tofu items to add flavor to your food. Its meaty texture is due to freezing it in water which expands to give it the resultant texture.
Another type is soft tofu which has a smooth texture. Due to its delicate texture, a different technique is adopted for its cooking. For dairy replacements, it is an excellent choice and you can even mix it into baked foods to get vegan food items.
List of Ingredients in Tofu and the Process of Making it
Mainly, Tofu is made of soybeans and there is a presence of many other vegan ingredients in it. Along with it, it also contains many other vegan items in it. Here are the ingredients present in Tofu that make it a vegan product:
- Dried soybeans
- Salt Coagulants
Firstly, dried soybeans are soaked in water and then their subsequent crushing and boiling take place. As a result, it forms the soy milk base of tofu.
Post this, the addition of salt coagulants such as calcium, magnesium chlorides and sulfates takes place. And they help to form soy curds from soy milk.
Does that Mean all Tofu are vegan?
Well, you have to take it with a pinch of salt and read the ingredients list before purchasing it. Why I am saying so is because some brands ferment the tofu using dairy products which makes it unsafe for vegans.
It is mainly common in regions such as Taiwan, China, etc. Also, the Japanese eat egg Tofu which contains only eggs and stock. Therefore, I suggest you read the labels especially if you choose flavored or altered tofu products for consumption.
Reason for its Popularity: Multiple Health Benefits it Offers
As people are realizing the health benefits of a vegan diet, the use of tofu has increased drastically. Apart from protein, it contains iron and other minerals that make it a healthy alternative to meat or dairy products.
Today, more and more people are becoming aware that tofu is vegan and they adopt it into their diets due to the benefits it offers.
- Tofu is made of soy and it contains no cholesterol. Hence, it offers many cardiovascular health benefits to users.
- It boosts kidney function due to the presence of soy proteins and benefits kidney patients undergoing treatment.
- Rich source of nutrients and minerals to support overall health.
- As per the latest research, tofu helps to prevent breast cancer by lowering its risk.
- Women dealing with menopause should include tofu in their diets to deal with this health issue.
Finally, it is fair to say that Tofu is vegan, in general, as it is made of soybean. However, you still need to check its ingredients list as some flavored tofu items contain animal products which make it non-vegan.
Since it is a source of protein and other vital nutrients required for overall growth, it enjoys a huge demand among vegan people.