Korean Tofu Noodle Bowl

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You will love this flavorful Korean Tofu Noodle Bowl with crispy, sweet, & spicy Korean tofu, chewy sweet potato noodles, and stir-fried veggies. This tofu is packed with flavor from a delicious caramelized Korean sauce made from gochujang paste and other tasty ingredients.


  • Easy – This easy recipe is simply 3 components: tofu, noodles, and stir-fried veggies! There is a lot of room for customizing in this recipe as well. This is a quick stir-fry recipe you will love for a weeknight meal.
  • Flavorful – The Korean sauce is savory, balanced, sweet, a little spicy, and flavorful.
  • Healthier– This bowl is packed with plant-based protein and veggies.
  • Vegan, dairy-free, & potentially gluten-free (with sub)

If you’ve never had Korean tofu, it’s the perfect blend of spicy, sweet, savory, and umami all in one. The gochujang paste provides to much flavor (and you don’t need a lot of it!). This is one of my favorite recipes and I hope it will be yours too!

Tofu and noodles is such a great combination! The crisp tofu pair perfectly in texture to the soft noodles and drizzled with a yummy sauce. If you’ve never had tofu noodle bowls before, you are going to love this one!

Want more delicious tofu recipes?

Ingredients

Ingredient notes:

  • Sweet potato noodles: Also known as “korean glass noodles,” sweet potato noodles are slender, translucent noodles made from sweet potato starch, offering a gluten-free and nutrient-rich alternative to traditional wheat noodles. They can typically be found in Asian grocery stores or well-stocked supermarkets. You can also find them on Amazon. (If you can’t find these you can always use something as simple as ramen noodles). These are great for noodle bowls because they are very quick to cook too!
  • Extra firm tofu: The get the crispiest texture in this recipe, use drained and pressed extra firm tofu. I always press it in a tofu press for 20 minutes before cutting.
  • Gochujang paste: A Korean fermented paste, featuring a robust blend of red chili peppers, glutinous rice, fermented soybeans, and salt that is common in korean cuisine. It will provide the sweet and spicy element to our sauce (honestly my favorite part). Find it near in the International aisle at your grocery store, on Amazon, or Asian markets.
  • Soy sauce: This is used in our Korean sauce but for a gf version use a gluten-free soy sauce like tamari or coconut aminos.

See recipe card for full ingredient list and quantities.

Substitutions

  • Feel free to swap out these sweet potato noodles with udon, rice, or soba.
  • Use other types of veggies like bok choy, peppers, and more for this korean noodle bowl.

📝Step-by-Step Instructions

Step 1: Start by cutting your pressed tofu into 1-2 inch cubes (based on size preference).Next, you can either air fry or pan-fry your tofu.

Air Fry: 400F for 12-15 minutes, shaking halfway until crisp and golden brown.

Pan-Fry: Cook over medium heat in a large saucepan with sesame oil until crisp and golden brown.

Step 2: While your tofu cooks, begin preparing your stir fry vegetables. If desired, add in a touch of oil and 1 clove of minced garlic. Cook them in a large saucepan for 8-10 minutes. Add a splash of water halfway through and cover to steam for 2 minutes. Cook until they are slightly browned and cooked through to your liking.

Step 3: Whisk your sauce ingredients including the gochujang sauce in a small bowl and set aside.

Cook noodles to package directions. They generally take only 5-6 minutes to cook. Once they are finished cooking, rinse with cold water and set aside in the pot, adding a dash of sesame oil and stirring for best results. (The sesame oil prevents sticking).

Step 4: In a large saucepan over medium heat, add your cooked tofu (last step). Add ~3/4 of the sauce to the pan (you can save a small bit of sauce, if desired, for topping the noodles). Stir until the tofu is evenly coated with the sauce. Let the tofu caramelize on one side for 2-3 minutes, untouched. Flip the tofu. It should start to get a caramelized sear from the sauce. Cook for another few minutes, careful not to let it burn, until the tofu is caramelized to your liking.

Step 5: Assemble your bowl with the cooked and drained noodles, Korean tofu, stir fried veggies, and little bit of the sauce on top, if desired. Top with chopped green onions, red pepper flakes, cilantro, and/or sesame seeds.

❓Recipe FAQs

Where do I find gochujang paste?

Gochujang paste can be conveniently found in Asian grocery stores, international sections of supermarkets, or online retailers (like Amazon).

Is Korean tofu spicy?

This Korean tofu has a mild kick to it from the gochujang paste, but it is not unbearably hot. It also has a touch of sweetness with savory flavors so it adds a complex flavor to the tofu.

Do sweet potato noodles taste like sweet potato?

Sweet potato noodles, made from sweet potato starch, don’t have a strong sweet potato flavor; instead, they offer a neutral taste with a distinctive chewy texture, making them a versatile option in various savory dishes. The noodles tend to absorb the flavors of accompanying sauces and ingredients, enhancing the overall taste of the dish.

How do you make these sweet potato noodles?

These noodles, also called “glass noodles” are really easy to make! Soak dried glass noodles in boiling water for 5-10 minutes until translucent, then drain and rinse under cold water before using.

Can I use other types of noodles for this tofu noodle bowl?

Yes, you can also try rice noodles, udon noodles or soba for a unique twist.

What else can I add to tofu noodle bowls?

This bowl is easily customizable with any stir-fry vegetable you want. Add a variety of colorful vegetables like bell pepper, carrots, bok choy, and broccoli not only for visual appeal but also for a nutritional boost.


Pro Tips


  • This bowl is easily customizable with any stir-fry vegetable you want. Add a variety of colorful vegetables like bell pepper, carrots, bok choy, and broccoli not only for visual appeal but also for a nutritional boost.
  • Save time in this recipe by cutting up the veggies ahead of time (can store for 1-2 days in the fridge).
  • You could serve this with a little vegan sriracha mayo for a tasty dipping sauce on top.
  • Feel free to experiment with different noodle types like rice noodles, udon noodles or soba for a unique twist.

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Korean Tofu Noodle Bowl

Allie Petersen
This Korean Tofu Noodle Bowl is filled with crispy, caramelized tofu pieces marinated in a flavorful spicy Korean sauce combined with sweet potato noodles and stir fried veggies.
5 from 48 votes

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Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 35 minutes
Course Dinner
Cuisine Asian
Servings 3
Calories 463 kcal

Equipment

  • Air Fryer optional
  • Large saucepan

Ingredients
  

  • 1 block extra firm tofu drained and pressed
  • 250 g sweet potato noodles (also known as glass noodles or Japchae)
  • ~3 cups chopped stir fry veggies of choice (I used 2 cups chopped broccoli, 1 large carrot peeled and diced, and 1 cup snap peas)*

Korean Sauce

  • 3 tablespoons soy sauce or tamari/coconut aminos for gluten-free
  • 1 tablespoons sesame oil
  • 1 tablespoon brown sugar
  • 1 tbsp water
  • 1 tsp rice vinegar
  • 2 cloves garlic minced
  • 1 teaspoon ginger grated
  • 1 teaspoon Gochujang paste* adjust to taste for spice level

Optional toppings

Instructions
 

  • Start by cutting your pressed tofu into 1-2 inch cubes (based on size preference).
    Next, you can either air fry or pan-fry your tofu.
    Air Fry: 400F for 12-15 minutes, shaking halfway until crisp and golden brown.
    Pan-Fry: Cook over medium heat in a large saucepan with sesame oil until crisp and golden brown.
    1 block extra firm tofu
  • While your tofu cooks, begin preparing your stir fry vegetables. If desired, add in a touch of oil and 1 clove of minced garlic. Cook them in a large saucepan for 8-10 minutes. Add a splash of water halfway through and cover to steam for 2 minutes. Cook until they are slightly browned and cooked through to your liking.
    ~3 cups chopped stir fry veggies of choice
  • Whisk your sauce ingredients in a small bowl and set aside.
    3 tablespoons soy sauce, 1 tablespoons sesame oil, 1 tablespoon brown sugar, 1 tbsp water, 1 tsp rice vinegar, 2 cloves garlic, 1 teaspoon ginger, 1 teaspoon Gochujang paste*
  • Begin cooking your sweet potato noodles to package instructions. They generally take only 5-6 minutes to cook. Once they are finished cooking, rinse with cold water and set aside in the pot, stirring in a dash of sesame oil to prevent sticking.
    250 g sweet potato noodles
  • In a large saucepan over medium heat, add your cooked tofu. Add ~3/4 of the sauce to the pan (I like to save a small bit of sauce for topping the noodles). Stir until the tofu is evenly coated with the sauce. Let the tofu caramelize on one side for 2-3 minutes, untouched. Flip the tofu. It should start to get a caramelized sear from the sauce. Cook for another few minutes, careful not to let it burn, until the tofu is caramelized to your liking.
  • Assemble your bowl with the sweet potato noodles, Korean tofu, stir fried veggies, and a drizzle of extra sauce, if desired.
    Top with chopped green onion, red pepper flakes, cilantro, and/or sesame seeds.

Notes

⭐️This bowl is easily customizable with any stir-fry vegetable you want. Add a variety of colorful vegetables like bell peppers, carrots, and broccoli not only for visual appeal but also for a nutritional boost.
⭐️What is Gochujang paste? This is a Korean condiment found in most international food aisles that is a fermented blend of red chili peppers, glutinous rice, fermented soybeans, and salt. It has a spicy, sweet, and savory flavor with fermented undertones. 
Other tips:
    • Save time in this recipe by cutting up the veggies ahead of time (can store for 1-2 days in the fridge).
    • Feel free to experiment with different noodle types like rice or soba noodles for a unique twist.

Nutrition

Calories: 463kcalCarbohydrates: 86gProtein: 14gFat: 8gSaturated Fat: 1gPolyunsaturated Fat: 4gMonounsaturated Fat: 2gSodium: 1130mgPotassium: 549mgFiber: 4gSugar: 7gVitamin A: 746IUVitamin C: 79mgCalcium: 112mgIron: 3mg
Tried this recipe?Comment below & tag @naturallieplantbased on Instagram!

3 Comments

  1. 5 stars
    This recipe is a total flavor bomb! Love the sweet and spicy tofu. Definitely making this one of my go-to weeknight recipes! I love you can change up the veggies for whatever you have on hand.

  2. 5 stars
    I have been craving noodles lately! (Probably because it’s cold and dark and I just want something warm and comforting every night for dinner.) This Korean noodle bowl recipe was easy to make and absolutely delicious. I’d never tried sweet potato noodles before, and now I can’t get enough of them!

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