These vegan poke bowls with crispy tofu were inspired by traditional Hawaiian poke bowls and offer three unique takes on gluten free power bowls!
I first saw poke bowls when I was in LA looking at wedding venues. I was trying to eat really healthy at the time to get ready for my big day, so I was super excited when I found a little cafe specializing in these nutrient dense meals.While I am a huge personal fan of sashimi fish, I totally get that a lot of my friends are not so on board. Some are pregnant, some are vegan, and some are just a bit squeamish when it come to raw stuff. So I decided to take some inspiration from the poke bowl way and make vegan poke bowls with crispy tofu.
Now before you lose you’re lid on me, I know that these vegan poke bowls are not authentic. I try not to get too hung up on authenticity because my number one goal is always just to make food that tastes good and feels good. So I swapped the raw fish for tofu, and yes, I cooked the tofu. I was going to just serve it “raw” but a) some would argue that’s not exactly food safe because it is possible for bacteria to live in the liquid tofu is stored in and b) it just doesnt taste good. I like a little caramelization and sauce factor on my tofu, so I crisped mine up in a hot pan.
In my opinion, these vegan poke bowls are the ultimate health food. You have lean protein, whole grains and tons of veggies. They’re also vegan, gluten free and dairy free for those who have dietary restrictions. You kinda need these in your life RIGHT-NOW.
How to Make Vegan Poke Bowls
Since I already broke all the poke bowl rules with my vegan poke bowls, the only other rules that matter is that you add in lots of nutrient-dense colourful veg. I couldn’t decide so I decided to make three versions and let you choose your favourite.
The first has crunchy edamame, sweet mango, and creamy avocado. I’m not going to lie- it’s probably my fave.
The second is totally different with grated beets, apple, cabbage and watermelon radish. TELL ME THAT RADISH ISN’T THE MOST BEAUTIFUL THING IN THE WORLD.
The third features crunchy cucumber, sweet mandarin, peas and tangy pineapple. I totally love the little sesame seed crunch on top.
Okay, so vegan poke bowls are maybe not a “real” thing, but what they are are packed with nutrition, gluten free, vegan, and totally delish.
I want to know, what your favourite combinations in poke bowls are?
Have you tried making my vegan poke bowls?
Which of the three combinations would be your favourite vegan poke bowl?
Leave me a comment below!
Vegan Poke Bowls Three Ways with Crispy Tofu | Gluten Free Power Bowls
Poke Bowl Base:
- 1 cup mango cut into strips
- 1 avocado cut into strips
- 2 carrots shaved into ribbons
- 1 cup cilantro leaves
- ¼ cup nori strips
- 1 lime cut into wedges
- 1 red beet peeled and shredded
- 1 yellow beet peeled and shredded
- 1 green apple cored and shredded
- 2 watermelon radish thinly sliced
- 1 cup red cabbage finely shredded
- 2 tsp chia seeds
Mandarin Snap Pea
- 2 mandarin oranges segmented
- 1 ½ cups snap peas
- 1 cup pineapple thinly sliced
- ½ English cucumber thinly sliced
- 1 tsp black sesame seeds
- 1 tsp white sesame seeds toasted
- Place the tofu on a few sheets of paper towel, top with more paper towel and add a few heavy books or pots on top to press the moisture out. Let it sit for 10 minutes.
- Heat the coconut oil in a skillet over medium high heat and add in the tofu pan fry on all sides until very crispy and golden, about 5-8 minutes.
- Meanwhile, mix together the sesame oil, ginger, tamari, coconut sugar and sriracha. Once the tofu is caramelized and golden, turn off the heat, and brush the pieces with the coconut sugar glaze. Toss in the pan to coat and allow to lightly caramelize. Set aside and sprinkle with sea salt. Don’t worry about the tofu not being super hot, it’s just as tasty at room temperature.
- Mix together the vinegar, sesame oil, tamari, sugar, oil and sriracha in a bowl. Season with salt and pepper, to taste.
- To assemble, fill each bowl with 1 cup of brown rice and a drizzle of the dressing. Top with a quarter of the tofu and add the poke bowl toppings of your choice. Enjoy!
Updated on November 22nd, 2019
Abbey Sharp is a Registered Dietitian (RD), regulated by the Ontario College of Dietitians. She is a mom, YouTuber, Blogger, award winning cookbook author, media coach specializing in food and nutrition influencers, and a frequent contributor to national publications like Healthline and on national broadcast TV shows.