Hearty Greens and Grains with Sesame Tofu Squares

This image courtesy of Olivia Brent

Tofu, quinoa, amaranth, chard, spinach, and sesame seeds are all rich sources of calcium. The nutrients in this fun-to-assemble dish offer support and protection for the body during times of transition and stress.

NotesCooking tip from recipe tester Sara Snyder: “I used amaranth and kale for this great recipe. I also deviated from it slightly by using some medium tofu, and 1 really liked how the softer texture sort of melted in your mouth. Also. I suggest adding a little fresh lemon juice.”

Makes4 servings

Cooking Methodsauteeing



Total Timeunder 2 hours

Recipe Coursemain course

Dietary Considerationegg-free, halal, healthy, kosher, lactose-free, peanut free, tree nut free, vegan, vegetarian

Mealdinner, lunch

Type of Dishsalad


  • One 16-ounce package firm tofu, or prebaked or seasoned tofu
  • 2 cups plus 3 tablespoons water, divided
  • 1 cup quinoa or amaranth, or a combination (see Notes)
  • 1½ pounds chard, spinach, kale, or other greens, chopped (see Notes)
  • ¼ cup sesame seeds, toasted
  • 2 tablespoons low-sodium soy sauce, plus additional for serving
  • 2 tablespoons minced fresh ginger
  • 2 tablespoons minced garlic
  • Freshly squeezed lemon juice or rice vinegar, for serving (optional)


  1. • Drain the tofu, slice into bars, and lay them over paper towels to drain off moisture. You may have to do this several times (removing soaked paper towels and laying down dry ones) so that the tofu will hold its texture and absorb flavors. Cut the bars into cubes.

  2. • Bring 2 cups of the water to a boil in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Stir in the quinoa. Reduce the heat to low, cover, and cook until the liquid is absorbed and the quinoa is tender. about 20 minutes.

  3. • Place chard in a steamer basket over boiling water. Steam the greens just until wilted. Set aside.

  4. • Place the sesame seeds in a shallow bowl and gently toll the tofu cubes in them to coat on all sides.

  5. • In a large nonstick skillet, heat the soy sauce and remaining 3 tablespoons water. Add the ginger and garlic and sauté for 2 minutes. Add the sesame-coated tofu cubes. Cook, turning occasionally, for 5 to 7 minutes.

  6. • Fluff the quinoa with a fork and divide among 4 serving bowls. Place the greens over the quinoa and top with the tofu. Serve with additional soy sauce and lemon juice or rice vinegar.

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