This healthy vegan tofu poke bowl features tofu poke marinated in a sesame ginger soy sauce and paired with rice, edamame, avocado and fresh veggies.

Vegan poke bowl with veggies, edamame and tofu poke.

About the Recipe

Tofu poke is a vegetarian twist on classic raw tuna poke, offering a simple, fresh, and enjoyable dish that’s easy to prepare.

Tofu takes center stage in the bowls, marinated in ginger-soy sauce, and then paired with ingredients like rice, carrots, edamame, cabbage, avocado, and seasoned cucumber, all assembled into a vibrant poke bowl.

Poke bowls are not only delicious but a nourishing choice, packed with wholesome ingredients that provide plenty of flavour and texture. They’re also wonderfully versatile, allowing you experiment with different grains, veggies, sauces and garnishes to suit your tastes and nutritional needs.

For more tofu recipes like this, don’t miss my sushi bowls, tofu banh mi and tofu katsu! For more reader-favourite bowls, you have to try these teriyaki chickpea bowls, peanut tofu bowls and tofu edamame bowls.

What is poke?

Traditional poke is diced and marinated raw fish, often tuna, served as an appetizer or main dish and is a traditional dish of Native Hawaiian cuisine.

Classic poke seasonings vary but have been influenced by Japanese and other Asian cuisines and may include soy sauce, green onion, sesame oil, sesame seeds, wasabi and sea salt.

Poke bowls became popular throughout North American in recent years and are often served in casual restaurants where you can customize everything from the base of the bowl, to the veggies and marinade on the fish.

Ingredients

All of the ingredients gathered in bowls for making a vegan tofu poke bowl recipe.

This list is not complete. Please see the recipe card at the end of the post for the complete ingredient list with measurements and detailed instructions.

  • Tofu: Use firm tofu or extra-firm tofu. You’ll need to plan ahead for 20 minutes of pressing time. This will help the tofu soak up of the marinade so it’s more flavourful.
  • Tamari or Soy Sauce: Either works great. Use tamari if you need the recipe to be gluten-free.
  • Sesame Oil: You can use regular sesame oil or toasted sesame oil.
  • Sambal Oelek: Sambal oelek is a chili garlic paste and should be easy to find in a major grocery store. If you can’t find it, anything labelled “chili paste” or “garlic chili paste” works. You could use sweet chili sauce but the flavour will be a bit sweeter.
  • Ginger & Ginger: Fresh is really nice in the marinade but you can substitute 1 tsp ground garlic and ginger if needed.
  • Rice: Short-grain brown rice, basmati or jasmine work best but any variety of rice or other grain, such as quinoa, works.
  • Green Onion, Cabbage, Carrot and Cucumber: The veggies are easy to customize with whatever you have available or prefer. Mix and match the amounts or try something else like radish, bell pepper or spinach. Mango is also a yummy addition!
  • Nori: I think nori is a must for poke bowls. Look for any toasted nori or seaweed snack and slice it into thin strips with scissors or just crumble over your bowl.

Variations & Additions

Tofu poke is a flavorful and customizable dish that can be made numerous ways. Here’s a list of variations and additions to consider when creating your own vegan tofu poke bowl recipe:

  • Tofu: The recipe calls for raw tofu but you can also use baked or pan-fried crispy tofu like this chili tofu, black pepper tofu, sweet and spicy tofu or crispy tofu.
  • Base:
    • Rice: Use sushi rice, white rice, brown rice, quinoa or cauliflower rice for a low-carb option.
    • Noodles: Not into rice? Try rice noodles or any other noodle you enjoy.
    • Greens: For a lighter base, you can use a bed of mixed greens or baby spinach.
  • Fresh Ingredients:
    • Avocado
    • Cucumber
    • Edamame Beans
    • Carrot
    • Radish
    • Red Bell Pepper
    • Red Onion
    • Mango
    • Seaweed
    • Pineapple
    • Pickled Onion
    • Green Onion
  • Sauces and Dressings:
  • Toppings & Garnishes:
    • Sesame Seeds
    • Nori
    • Lime
    • Chopped Peanuts or Cashews
    • Wasabi

Step-by-Step Instructions

Step 1: Start cooking the rice.

If you don’t have cooked rice on hand, start preparing that now. You can use short-grain brown rice or a long-grain white rice like basmati rice or jasmine rice.

Step 2: Press the tofu.

I used a tofu press but if you don’t have one, wrap the tofu in a dish cloth or paper towels, place on a plate and place a heavy object like a skillet on top for about 20 minutes.

Step 3: Make the marinade and marinate tofu.

First, mix up the marinade in a bowl or sealable container big enough to fit all of the tofu. I like to use a container so I can easily marinate it by shaking it occasionally.

Let the tofu marinate for 15 minutes. When it’s ready, drain the tofu and reserve the remaining marinade to drizzle on top of the bowls.

Cubed tofu marinated in a ginger soy sauce in a Tupperwear container.

Step 4: Make the seasoned cucumber, prep all the veggies and cook edamame.

Place the sliced cucumber in a colander and add a few pinches of salt. Gently toss with your hands until they begin to release liquid.

Let it sit for 5 mins then toss again, drain and transfer to a small bowl. Add the rice vinegar, and toss to coat.

Sliced cucumber in a small ceramic bowl.

Step 5: Assemble the poke bowls.

Start with rice then top with all the veggies, edamame, avocado and tofu.

Enjoy your fresh and delicious vegan poke bowl!

Colourful vegan tofu poke bowl with cucumber, avocado, carrot, cabbage, nori and sesame seeds.

Storing

  • Fridge: Leftover bowls can be stored in the fridge for up to 3 days.
  • Meal Prep: Make the tofu and edamame and chop the veggies ahead of time. You can store everything separately or assemble into bowls and store.
  • The rice is best added fresh but can be made in advance as well, if needed.
Rice, tofu, cucumber, edamame, cabbage, carrot, sesame seeds and nori strips mixed up in a bowl with a fork in it.

Did you try this recipe? I’d love to hear about it! Scroll down to the comment section to leave a star rating and review.
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Print
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Colorful tofu poke bowl with carrot, cabbage, cucumber, avocado, nori and edamame.

Vegan Tofu Poke Bowl Recipe

  • Author: Deryn Macey
  • Prep Time: 40 mins
  • Cook Time: 40 mins
  • Total Time: 1 hour 20 minutes
  • Yield: 4
  • Category: Main Dish
  • Cuisine: American
  • Diet: Vegan
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Description

These healthy and colourful tofu poke bowls are fun to make and packed with fresh flavour! Enjoy for a vegetarian twist on tuna poke.


Ingredients

For the Tofu Poke

  • 1 block, extra firm tofu, drained (approx. 350 g)
  • 1/2 cup soy sauce or tamari (120 ml)
  • 3 tbsp lime juice 
  • 1 tbsp sesame oil (15 g)
  • 2 tsp sambal oelek (14 g)
  • 1 tbsp grated ginger (about 2” piece of ginger)
  • 3 cloves garlic, grated (heaping 1 tsp) 
  • 1 tsp sesame seeds

For the Bowls:

  • 1 1/4 cup short-grain brown rice (or approx. 1/2 cup cooked rice per bowl)
  • 2 cups cucumber, cut into ¼-inch diagonal half-moons (225 g)
  • 1 tbsp rice wine vinegar or lime juice (15 mL)
  • 1 avocado, diced
  • 2 cups red cabbage, thinly sliced (150 g)
  • 1 large carrot, peeled and grated (90g/1 cup packed)
  • 1 cup edamame (178 g)
  • 4 green onions, thinly sliced
  • 2 tbsp toasted sesame seeds
  • 2 large sheets nori thinly sliced with scissors, or crumbled seaweed snacks

Instructions

  1. Cook Rice:  To a medium pot, add rice and 2 cups of water.  Bring to a boil, then cover and reduce heat to low.  Simmer for 30-35 min, until rice is tender and water is absorbed. Remove from heat.  Let rest, still covered for 5 mins.  Season with salt, then fluff rice with a fork. 
  2. Press Tofu: Cut tofu in half lengthwise, so you have two thinner rectangles, then wrap in clean kitchen towels. Place on a dinner plate or cutting board. Weigh tofu down with a heavy object like a cast iron skillet, or large pot for at least 20 minutes.
  3. Make Marinade: In a medium bowl, whisk together soy sauce, lime juice, sesame oil, sambal, ginger, garlic and sesame seeds
  4. Marinate Tofu: Once tofu is pressed, cut into ½-inch cubes.  Add tofu pieces to the bowl with the marinade, then toss to coat. Let marinate for 10-15 mins, tossing occasionally. Drain tofu, reserving the excess marinade. (Tip: You could also make the marinade in a Tupperware, then add tofu, seal and shake the container every now and again).
  5. Make Seasoned Cucumber: Place cucumbers in a colander and add a few pinches of salt. Gently squeeze and toss with your hands until they begin to release liquid. Let sit for 5 mins. Squeeze again, drain and transfer to a small  bowl. Add the rice vinegar, and toss to coat; set aside.
  6. Assemble bowls: Divide rice between four bowls. Arrange tofu, veggies and toasted nori on top.  Drizzle with the reserved marinade. Sprinkle with toasted sesame seeds.

Notes

Leftover bowls can be stored in the fridge for up to 3 days.


Nutrition

  • Serving Size: 1 bowl
  • Calories: 521
  • Sugar: 7 g
  • Fat: 20 g
  • Carbohydrates: 66 g
  • Fiber: 10 g
  • Protein: 23 g

Keywords: vegan poke bowl, tofu poke bowl