Quick Tofu Stir Fry

Here’s a little quickie for you this weekend! This super simple tofu stir fry is a riff off of my favorite Beef and Cabbage Stir Fry. It’s super fast, super easy, and endlessly customizable. Keep reading to see all the possibilities for making this tofu stir fry your own!

The post Quick Tofu Stir Fry appeared first on Budget Bytes.

Here’s a little quickie for you this weekend! This super simple tofu stir fry is a riff off of my favorite Beef and Cabbage Stir Fry. It’s super fast, easy, filling, inexpensive, and endlessly customizable. Keep reading to see all the possibilities for making this tofu stir fry your own!

Quick Tofu Stir Fry in a skillet with sriracha and a bowl of peanuts on the side

Use any Stir Fry Sauce

This recipe is so flexible that you can literally use any type of stir fry sauce, so go with whatever you like best. The stir fry sauce for the Beef and Cabbage Stir Fry, which this recipe is based upon, is a spicy and super simple 4-ingredient sauce, but I switched it up this time and used a non-spicy sauce, then just added sriracha on top for heat as needed. Feel free to use that original sauce, something a little less sweet like the sauce used in my Ground Turkey Stir Fry, a richer oyster based sauce like in my Garlic Noodles with Beef and Broccoli, or even something a little sweeter like a bottled sweet chili sauce. It’s so flexible!

Change Up the Vegetables

I love using bagged coleslaw mix (shredded cabbage and carrots) in stir fry because there’s no prep involved, it’s filling, and it’s still super inexpensive. I used about ½ of a 1 lb. bag of mix here, but you could probably even add more if you want it more vegetable heavy. You can shred your own cabbage and carrots (you’ll want about 5 cups), or even use a bag of frozen stir fry vegetables in place of or in addition to the shredded cabbage.

If using frozen vegetables, I suggest adding them to the skillet before the cabbage because they’ll need a little longer to cook. If you are increasing the amount of vegetables, you may wan to also increase the sauce and add half to the tofu and half after adding the vegetables.

Substitute the Peanuts

If you don’t like or can’t have peanuts, don’t worry! They’re totally optional. I love the crunchy texture they add to the dish, but you can either leave them out, substitute with another nut (maybe cashews or almonds), or add a few sesame seeds to the stir fry at the end. It’s up to you!

How are the Leftovers?

I’m going to call the leftovers of this one “subjective.” Haha! Dishes like this will seep water as they sit in the refrigerator and the cabbage (or other vegetables) will soften further, but that wouldn’t stop me from reheating and enjoying the leftovers. If you’re a bit more sensitive to texture and flavor changes, you may not enjoy the leftovers.

front view of three bowls full of quick tofu stir fry
three bowls of quick tofu stir fry

Quick Tofu Stir Fry

This super fast and inexpensive tofu stir fry is super filling, easy enough for busy weeknights, and endlessly customizable!
Total Cost $3.82 recipe / $0.96 serving
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 20 minutes
Servings 4
Calories 272.43kcal
Author Beth – Budget Bytes

Ingredients

Stir Fry Sauce

  • 3 Tbsp soy sauce $0.18
  • 2 Tbsp brown sugar $0.08
  • 2 Tbsp water $0.00
  • 1 tsp toasted sesame oil $0.10
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced $0.16
  • 1 tsp freshly grated ginger $0.10

Stir Fry

  • 2 Tbsp cooking oil $0.08
  • 14 oz. extra firm tofu $1.79
  • 1/4 cup chopped peanuts $0.12
  • ½ lb. coleslaw mix (shredded cabbage and carrots) $0.90

Toppings

  • 2 green onions, sliced $0.20
  • 1 Tbsp sriracha (optional) $0.11

Instructions

  • Prepare the stir fry sauce first. In a bowl combine the soy sauce, brown sugar, water, toasted sesame oil, minced garlic, and grated ginger. Set the sauce aside.
  • Slice the green onion and chop the peanuts.
  • Take the tofu out of the package, draining away any liquid from the package (no need to press the tofu as the water will be cooked out). Crumble the tofu into a bowl.
  • Heat the cooking oil in a large skillet over medium-high. Once the skillet and oil are very hot, add the crumbled tofu and stir fry for about 5 minutes, or until there is no longer any water pooling on the bottom of the skillet.
  • Add the prepared stir fry sauce to the skillet and continue to cook and stir for 2-3 minutes more. Finally, add the slaw mix and chopped peanuts and stir fry for 1-2 minutes more, or just until the cabbage begins to wilt. Top with sliced green onions and a drizzle of sriracha, then serve!

Nutrition

Serving: 1serving | Calories: 272.43kcal | Carbohydrates: 16.98g | Protein: 14.53g | Fat: 17.73g | Sodium: 815.75mg | Fiber: 3.33g
close up of quick tofu stir fry in the skillet

How to Make Quick Tofu Stir Fry – Step by Step Photos

stir fry sauce in a white bowl with a fork

Make the stir fry sauce first. In a bowl, combine 3 Tbsp soy sauce, 2 Tbsp brown sugar, 2 Tbsp water, 1 tsp toasted sesame oil, 2 cloves of minced garlic, and about 1 tsp grated fresh ginger. Set the sauce aside.

chopped peanuts and sliced green onion

Chop ¼ cup peanuts and slice two green onions.

tofu and coleslaw mix

These are the two main ingredients in this super simple stir fry–tofu and shredded cabbage and carrots (coleslaw mix). You can switch up the vegetables or add more if you’d like. See the notes above the recipe for ideas.

crumbled tofu in a bowl

Take the tofu out of the package, draining away any liquid (there is no need to press the tofu for this recipe because the excess water will be cooked out). Crumble the tofu into a bowl.

sauce being added to cooked tofu in the skillet

Heat 2 Tbsp cooking oil (your favorite kind) in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Once the oil and skillet are hot, add the crumbled tofu and stir fry until there is no longer any liquid pooling in the skillet. Pour the prepared sauce over top and continue to cook and stir for 2-3 minutes more.

shredded cabbage and carrots added to the skillet

Finally, add the shredded cabbage and carrots, and the chopped peanuts to the skillet. I used half the bag, or about ½ lb., but you could probably add more if you’d like. Continue to cook and stir for only 1-2 minutes more, or just until the cabbage begins to wilt.

Sriracha being drizzled over the skillet

Top the stir fry with sliced green onions and a drizzle of sriracha, then serve!

three bowls of quick tofu stir fry

The post Quick Tofu Stir Fry appeared first on Budget Bytes.

Easy BBQ Chicken Sandwiches

Craving BBQ, but don’t have a pit? These Easy BBQ Chicken Sandwiches only take about 30 minutes to make and cost only a couple of bucks a piece, making them a really fast, inexpensive, and tasty way to kill that BBQ craving. Keep this recipe in your back pocket because you’ll be pulling it out […]

The post Easy BBQ Chicken Sandwiches appeared first on Budget Bytes.

Craving BBQ, but don’t have a pit? These Easy BBQ Chicken Sandwiches only take about 30 minutes to make and cost only a couple of bucks a piece, making them a really fast, inexpensive, and tasty way to kill that BBQ craving. Keep this recipe in your back pocket because you’ll be pulling it out often for quick weeknight dinners!

Two Easy BBQ Chicken Sandwiches, one on a wooden cutting board

This recipe utilizes my Quick BBQ Chicken recipe, which I created as a sort of “à la carte” meat option for households who are trying to feed both meat-eaters and vegetarians. In addition to adding this super simple BBQ chicken to other recipes, it can also be used to make sandwiches and wraps, like this one! 

Coleslaw Options

I really like the combination of BBQ and ranch dressing, so I made a quick “ranch slaw” for this sandwich using bagged coleslaw mix (shredded cabbage and carrots) and a thick ranch dressing as the dressing. If you’re not into ranch (many people aren’t), try my classic creamy coleslaw recipe instead. It also goes great with BBQ!

Other BBQ Chicken Sandwich Topping Ideas

I kept my BBQ Chicken Sandwiches simple, because that’s how I roll, but if you like to get fancy, here are some other things you can add on top of your sandwich:

  • Pickles
  • French Fried Onions
  • Cheddar cheese
  • Fresh red onions
  • Sliced avocado
  • Bacon
  • Pineapple slices

What Kind of BBQ Sauce is Best?

You can use pretty much any type of BBQ sauce for this recipe, so I suggest going with whatever brand or flavor that you like the best. I’m not too picky about BBQ sauce, so I used what I had on hand, which was a Kroger brand hickory smoke flavored BBQ sauce. I also tend to like Sweet Baby Ray’s BBQ sauces, so that’s another affordable option. Or, you can even try making your own Homemade BBQ Sauce.

What to Serve with BBQ Chicken Sandwiches

I’m a big fan of sweet potatoes with BBQ, so I love Spicy Sweet Potato Fries as a side for these BBQ Chicken Sandwiches. Thick cut Steak Fries (and maybe some Comeback Sauce) would also be awesome on the side. If you’re looking for something a little more fresh and vibrant to lighten up the plate, try Cowboy Caviar!

Front view of a single Easy BBQ Chicken Sandwich on a wooden cutting board

 

 

Front view of a single Easy BBQ Chicken Sandwich on a wooden cutting board

Easy BBQ Chicken Sandwiches

These Easy BBQ Chicken Sandwiches are a fast, easy, and delicious way to satisfy your BBQ craving. No grill needed! Perfect for busy weeknights.
Total Cost $7.04 recipe / $1.76 serving
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 25 minutes
Servings 4
Calories 415.23kcal
Author Beth - Budget Bytes

Ingredients

  • 1 tsp smoked paprika $0.10
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder $0.05
  • 1/4 tsp salt $0.02
  • 1/4 tsp pepper $0.02
  • 1 lb. boneless, skinless chicken thighs $2.99
  • 1 Tbsp cooking oil $0.04
  • 1/4 cup BBQ sauce $0.11
  • 7 oz. coleslaw mix* $0.65
  • 2 green onions, sliced $0.20
  • 1/4 cup ranch dressing $0.37
  • 4 buns $2.49

Instructions

  • Combine the smoked paprika, garlic, powder, salt, and pepper in a small bowl. Cut any large chicken thighs in half to make them more sandwich-sized (you'll want four pieces total). Season both sides of the chicken thighs with the prepared spice mix.
  • Heat the cooking oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Once hot, swirl to coat the surface of the skillet. Add the seasoned chicken and cook for 5-7 minutes on each side, or until the chicken thighs are well browned and cooked through.
  • Remove the chicken from the heat and brush BBQ sauce over both sides of each piece.
  • Add the coleslaw mix, sliced green onions, and ranch dressing to a bowl. Stir until everything is combined and evenly coated in dressing.
  • To build the sandwiches, place one piece of BBQ chicken on each bun and top with a heaping scoop of the ranch slaw. Serve immediately.

Notes

* This is a bagged mix of pre-shredded cabbage and carrots. I used half of a 14oz. bag.

Nutrition

Serving: 1sandwich | Calories: 415.23kcal | Carbohydrates: 32.28g | Protein: 28.18g | Fat: 18.73g | Sodium: 1552.98mg | Fiber: 2.3g

Looking for a vegetarian option? Try my BBQ Tofu Sliders.

How to Make Easy BBQ Chicken Sandwiches – Step by Step Photos

Seasoned chicken thighs on an orange cutting board

In a small bowl, combine 1 tsp smoked paprika, ½ tsp garlic powder, ¼ tsp salt, and ¼ tsp pepper. Cut any large chicken thighs in half to make them more sandwich-sized. You’ll need about 1 lb. boneless, skinless chicken thighs. Season both sides of the chicken thighs with the prepared spices.

Cooked chicken thighs in a skillet

Heat 1 Tbsp cooking oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Once hot, swirl the oil in the skillet to coat the surface, then add the seasoned thighs. Cook on each side for 5-7 minutes, or until they are well browned and cooked through.

BBQ sauce being brushed onto chicken thighs in the skillet

Turn off the heat and brush BBQ sauce over both sides of the chicken pieces (about ¼ cup in total).

Ranch slaw ingredients in a mixing bowl

To make the ranch slaw, combine 7 oz. (half of a 14 oz. bag) of coleslaw mix (shredded cabbage and carrots), 2 sliced green onions, and ¼ cup ranch dressing.

Finished ranch slaw in a mixing bowl

Stir until everything is combined and coated in dressing.

BBQ chicken sandwich being built on a wooden cutting board

To build the BBQ Chicken Sandwiches, place one piece of chicken on a bun and top with a heaping scoop of the ranch slaw.

Two BBQ Chicken Sandwiches, one on a cutting board, the other in the background.

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Crunchy Chicken Ramen Stir Fry

I’m all about quick stir fry dinners because they’re easy, you can work a LOT of vegetables into them, and they’re just plain delicious. My newest creation, Crunchy Chicken Ramen Stir Fry, is kind of a new twist on an old favorite Beef and Cabbage Stir fry. This time we’re using chicken instead of beef, […]

The post Crunchy Chicken Ramen Stir Fry appeared first on Budget Bytes.

I’m all about quick stir fry dinners because they’re easy, you can work a LOT of vegetables into them, and they’re just plain delicious. My newest creation, Crunchy Chicken Ramen Stir Fry, is kind of a new twist on an old favorite Beef and Cabbage Stir fry. This time we’re using chicken instead of beef, using the same light and easy sauce, tons of shredded cabbage and carrots for inexpensive bulk, and some crushed up ramen noodles for crunch. Oh, and I added a drizzle of creamy sriracha mayo because I was feeling a bit #extra. ;)

Quick & Easy Crunchy Chicken Ramen Stir Fry

A bowl of crunchy chicken ramen stir fry next to a ramen package, yellow napkin, and a bowl of sliced green onions

Can I Skip the Ramen?

Sure! If you’re not the ramen type, this is still a really killer (although slightly less crunchy) stir fry recipe! No hard feelings. You do you. 

Same goes for the sriracha mayo topping. While *I* love the contrast of the creamy spicy with the fresh crunch, you don’t have to add it to your stir fry if you’re not into it.

How to Store Your Stir Fry

If you plan to eat some of your stir fry as leftovers, make sure to keep the crunchy crushed ramen noodles separate from the stir fry and just stir them in after the stir fry has been reheated. Same goes for the sriracha mayo topping. Add that after reheating. The cabbage and carrots do get slightly softer after refrigeration and reheating, but I still find it to be quite delicious.

Other Vegetables You Can Add:

The other awesome thing about stir fries is that you can add just about any vegetable that you might have leftover in your fridge. Some other good options would be spinach, broccoli, bell pepper, mushrooms, snow peas. Keep in mind that if you increase the amount of vegetables, you may also want to increase the sauce.

A skillet full of Crunchy Chicken Ramen Stir fry with a spatula in the side and a package of ramen on the left

 

Crunchy Chicken Ramen Stir Fry

Crunchy Chicken Ramen Stir Fry is an easy weeknight dinner with tons of cabbage and carrots, crunchy crushed ramen, and a creamy sriracha drizzle.

Stir Fry Sauce

  • 2 Tbsp soy sauce ($0.12)
  • 1 Tbsp toasted sesame oil ($0.30)
  • 1/2 Tbsp brown sugar ($0.02)

Sriracha Mayo Drizzle (optional)

  • 1 Tbsp mayonnaise ($0.09)
  • 1 Tbsp sriracha ($0.11)

Stir Fry

  • 1 boneless, skinless chicken breast (about 2/3 lb.) ($4.08)
  • 2 Tbsp cooking oil ($0.08)
  • 1 14oz. bag coleslaw mix (shredded cabbage and carrots) ($1.49)
  • 2 cloves garlic ($0.16)
  • 1 tsp grated fresh ginger ($0.10)
  • 3 green onions ($0.30)
  • 1 3oz. block ramen noodles (seasoning packet discarded) ($0.25)
  1. Prepare the sauces first so they're ready to use when needed. In a small bowl stir together the ingredients for the stir fry sauce (soy sauce, sesame oil, and brown sugar). In a separate small bowl stir together the sriracha and mayonnaise.

  2. Mince 2 cloves of garlic, grate about one teaspoon of fresh ginger, and slice three green onions.

  3. Without opening the package of ramen, use a rolling pin or mallet to crush the noodles into small pieces. Once crushed, open the package and discard the seasoning packet.

  4. Chop the chicken into small 1/2-inch pieces.

  5. Place a large skillet over medium-high heat. Once hot, add the cooking oil and swirl to coat the surface of the skillet. Add the chicken pieces and sauté until they're cooked through (3-5 minutes). Add the garlic and ginger to the skillet about half way through cooking the chicken.

  6. Once the chicken is cooked through, add the coleslaw mix (shredded cabbage and carrots). Continue to sauté for about 2 minutes more, or just until the cabbage begins to soften slightly (do not overcook at this step).

  7. Add the stir fry sauce to the skillet and continue to sauté for 1-2 minutes more, or until the cabbage has softened to your liking (I prefer mine still slightly firm).

  8. Finally, turn off the heat, stir in the crushed ramen, and top with sliced green onions and a drizzle of sriracha mayo.

Close up of Crunchy Chicken Ramen Stir fry in the skillet

 

How to Make Crunchy Chicken Ramen Stir Fry – Step by Step Photos

Stir fry sauce in a small white bowl

This stir fry cooks SUPER fast, so it’s best to prepare all of the components before you begin cooking. Start with the stir fry sauce: stir together 2 Tbsp soy sauce, 1 Tbsp toasted sesame oil, and ½ Tbsp brown sugar. The brown sugar might not dissolve all the way, but that’s okay.

Sriracha mayo being stirred together in a small white bowl

For the sriracha mayo, simply stir together 1 Tbsp sriracha and 1 Tbsp mayonnaise.

Garlic, ginger, and green onions being prepped on a cutting board

Mince two cloves of garlic, grate about 1 tsp fresh ginger (I keep mine in the freezer for easier grating and longer storage), and slice three green onions.

Crush ramen noodles in the package

Without opening the package of ramen, use a rolling pin or a mallet to crush the noodles into small pieces. After crushing the noodles you can open it and discard the seasoning packet (or use it for something else).

Chopped chicken breast on an orange cutting board

Chop one boneless, skinless chicken breast (about ⅔ lb.) into small 1/2-inch pieces.

Cooked chicken in the skillet with garlic and ginger

Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat. Once hot, add 2 Tbsp cooking oil and swirl to coat the skillet. Add the chicken and sauté until the chicken is cooked through, adding the garlic and ginger about half way through cooking. Because the chicken pieces are so small and the pan is so hot, it should only take a few minutes for the chicken to cook through.

Coleslaw mix being poured into the skillet

Add one 14oz. bag of coleslaw mix (shredded cabbage and carrots) to the skillet. Continue to sauté for only 2 minutes, or just until the cabbage begins to soften.

Stir fry sauce being poured into the skillet

Add the prepared stir fry sauce, making sure to scrape any sugar that has settled to the bottom into the skillet. Continue to sauté for a couple minutes more, or until the cabbage is to your desired softness. I like mine still a bit firm, so I only sauté for about 2 minutes more.

Crushed ramen noodles being added to skillet

Pour the crushed ramen into the skillet. Turn the heat off, and stir the crunchy noodles into the stir fry.

Close up of sriracha mayo drizzled on stir fry

Sprinkle the sliced green onions on top and then drizzle the sriracha mayo over everything.

Finished skillet full of Crunchy Chicken Ramen Stir Fry

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