Looking for a 5-minute breakfast? Snack on the go? It doesn't get much easier than a smoothie made with silken tofu. Silken tofu adds a delightful, high-protein touch to your fruit smoothies. Did I mention it tastes delicious too? Learn how to make fruity tofu smoothies with variations you'll love!
Breakfast is both the easiest and the hardest meal to prepare. Either we have breakfast planned out -- a pot of oatmeal on the stove, yogurt waiting in the fridge -- or it's 15 minutes of hemming and hawing because nothing looks good.
I'm not a morning person.
That's why smoothies are a spectacular fallback option when nothing appeals to me, and I've got to start working asap. Because you've probably got the ingredients you need for a smoothie in the fridge, freezer, and pantry. Peanut butter, check. Frozen fruit, check. (If you don't, then you should put these items on your shopping list so your full pantry is always ready to serve you.)
But I hate protein powder. And dairy in the morning can give me stomach pains. Besides, sometimes when you live with a dairy addict like Alex, there's simply none left. So let's look at an unusual ingredient we can use to make silky and indulgent smoothies.
Can you put tofu in a smoothie?
Yes! But not just any kind of tofu. Silken tofu! It offers a creamy and silky texture, which makes the best dairy substitute. You won't even miss the milk, half and half, yogurt, or ice cream when you have silken tofu in your smoothie.
I discovered silken tofu smoothies soon after I became a vegetarian thanks to a class called "Crises of a Planet" where I learned that we were all doomed. Even though I've lapsed out of strict vegetarianism, I've stuck to the tofu smoothies. They're packed with protein, low carb, environmentally friendly, and taste great.
RELATED: Learn more about silken tofu and how to use it in dishes.
Let's discover together how you can make a fruit smoothie with silken tofu. I'll share some variations so you can customize this must-try beverage to satisfy your taste buds.
Tips for success
- Defrost the fruits: If you can remember to thaw your fruits the night before, it makes blending go faster. But if you forget, no worries. Your blender should have enough horsepower to purée frozen fruits into a smooth beverage no matter what.
- Silken tofu keeps for a long time: If you have even a mild interest in making a silken tofu smoothie, buy silken tofu the next time you see it at the grocery store. It usually lasts 2 to 4 months in an unopened container (check the expiration date on the package before putting it in your cart/trolley!). So you might as well buy a package and store it in your fridge so you're ready the next time you crave a smoothie.
- Stick blenders should work: Even though the Garlic Delight recipe calls for a blender, you can probably get away with a stick blender as long as your ingredients are in a container tall and big enough to avoid splatter.
- Layer the tofu closest to the blades: If you're using a conventional blender, I find putting the tofu in first (i.e. closest to the blades) makes the blending go easier because the tofu gets crushed and weeps liquid.
- If it's not blending, add a little liquid: When the fruits are frozen and the tofu is far from the blender blades, it's too dry to blend into a smoothie. You might need to help out your blender by adding a touch of liquid -- soy milk, nut milk, regular milk, fruit juice, or even water.
I use whatever mega-sized bag of frozen fruits I stumble on at Costco. Frozen strawberries, blueberries, cherries, mango chunks, pineapple chunks, or bananas. They all work and work well together.
But if you need order and a plan (I get it!), here are my favorite smoothie combinations:
- Bananarama: Banana, peanut butter, and maybe chocolate chips
- The Parisian fix: Banana, Nutella, topped with strawberries
- Merry berry: Blueberries, blackberries, strawberries, and/or raspberries
- Black forest: Cherries with (or without) chocolate chunks
- Hawaiian dream: Mango, pineapple, coconut milk
- Anything goes: Any fruits and nuts that you can find
- Alex's poison: Blueberries, almond butter, and spinach (ew, only he likes spinach in his smoothies)
- 1 box silken tofu (about 1 lb/450 g, use 2 boxes if buying smaller aseptic silken tofu packages)
- 1 cup cherries (frozen works well because they're pitted, thawed if possible)
- 1 cup blueberries (frozen is often more cost-effective, thawed if possible)
- 1 tablespoon pineapples (frozen chunks for convenience but you can also use fresh)
- 1 tablespoon peanut butter (skip or replace with another nut butter if desired)
- Gather the ingredients.
- Cut the silken tofu into cubes
- Put the silken tofu into the blender.
- Put the frozen fruits and the peanut butter into the blender.
- Blend the silken tofu, fruits, and peanut butter until the ingredients become a smoothie. You may need to stop the blender periodically to stir the smoothie or push down the fruits that cling to the sides of the blender to get an even blend.
- Enjoy the smoothie! A quick breakfast ready in 5 minutes or less!
FAQ about silken tofu smoothies
Can you make this tofu smoothie ahead of time?
Yes, you can make a fruit smoothie with silken tofu a day or two before serving (yay, batch cooking!). Keep it in the fridge until you're ready to drink. The silken tofu might weep and leave a watery layer on top. Never fear. Simply stir it until it's evenly mixed before drinking, and it will taste the same as if you blended it 15 minutes ago.
Does the silken tofu make the smoothie taste weird?
Most silken tofu, especially sold in Western countries, tastes mild. At most, it will taste like soy milk. Do you like soy milk?
Thanks to tofu's superpower, you can make tofu taste like just about anything. So if the very mild taste of silken tofu bothers you, try adding strongly flavored fruits like mango, banana, peanut butter and avoid mild fruits like apples and pears.
Can you freeze the tofu smoothie?
I wouldn't because freezing tofu does weird, amazing, and spongy things to it. But if you'd like me to try freezing silken tofu smoothies and report back my findings, leave a comment below, and I'll let you know what happens.