Air Fryer Tofu (Popcorn Nuggets): A Delicious and Healthy Snack


 Air Fryer Tofu (Popcorn Nuggets): A Delicious and Healthy Snack

Are you looking for a delicious and healthy snack? Look no further than air fryer tofu popcorn nuggets! These crispy, flavorful bites are the perfect alternative to traditional deep-fried snacks. In this article, we will guide you through the process of making air fryer tofu popcorn nuggets, from pressing the tofu to coating it with a crunchy breadcrumb mixture. Get ready to indulge in guilt-free snacking!

Pressing and Preparing the Tofu

To achieve the perfect texture for your air fryer tofu popcorn nuggets, it's important to press the tofu to remove excess moisture. Start by wrapping the tofu in a clean tea towel and placing it on a large plate. Place a heavy object, such as a frying pan, on top and add cans or jars to provide extra weight. Leave it for 30 minutes, allowing the tofu to shrink in size and release its liquid. Alternatively, you can press the tofu for up to 24 hours in advance for even better results.

Once the tofu is pressed, it's time to prepare it for air frying. Cut the tofu into 3cm squares or rip it into bite-sized chunks. In a bowl, toss the tofu with 1 tbsp flour and 1 tsp paprika, ensuring each piece is well coated. This will help create a crispy outer layer. Set the tofu aside while you prepare the coating mixture.

Creating the Crunchy Coating

The coating is what gives the air fryer tofu popcorn nuggets their irresistible crunch. In a separate bowl, combine the remaining flour, Dijon mustard, and milk. Whisk the mixture if it becomes lumpy, ensuring a smooth and creamy consistency. In another bowl, mix together breadcrumbs, garlic granules, bouillon, and ½ tsp paprika. This flavorful blend will add a delicious kick to your tofu nuggets.

Coating and Air Frying the Tofu

Now that your tofu is prepared and the coating is ready, it's time to start air frying! Preheat your air fryer to 190C, ensuring it reaches the desired temperature for even cooking. Dip each piece of tofu into the milk mixture, coating it thoroughly. Then, roll the tofu in the seasoned breadcrumbs, making sure it is evenly coated on all sides. Place the coated tofu on a plate or tray, ready for air frying.

Depending on the size of your air fryer, you may need to cook the tofu in batches. Arrange a layer of tofu in the bottom of the air fryer basket, making sure not to overcrowd it. Overcrowding can lead to uneven cooking and less crispy results. Cook the tofu for 12-15 minutes, or until it is cooked through and golden brown. Once cooked, remove the tofu from the air fryer and set it aside. Repeat this process for the remaining batches, if necessary.

Finishing Touches and Serving Suggestions

To ensure your air fryer tofu popcorn nuggets are perfectly crispy, it's time for the finishing touches. Lower the heat of your air fryer to 160C and return all the cooked tofu to the basket. Warm the tofu through for 2-3 minutes, taking care not to burn the pieces. This additional step will ensure that your nuggets are heated evenly and remain crispy.

Now that your air fryer tofu popcorn nuggets are ready, it's time to enjoy them! Serve the nuggets as a delicious snack with your favorite dipping sauce or as a flavorful side dish to accompany your main course. The crispy exterior and tender interior of the tofu will surely impress your taste buds and leave you craving more.

Health Benefits of Air Fryer Tofu Popcorn Nuggets

Air fryer tofu popcorn nuggets offer a healthier alternative to traditional deep-fried snacks. By using an air fryer, you can achieve the same crispy texture without the need for excessive oil. This cooking method significantly reduces the calorie and fat content of the dish, making it a guilt-free option for snacking. Additionally, tofu is a fantastic source of plant-based protein and is rich in essential nutrients such as iron, calcium, and magnesium. By incorporating air fryer tofu popcorn nuggets into your diet, you can enjoy a tasty and nutritious snack.

Tips for Customizing Your Air Fryer Tofu Popcorn Nuggets

While the basic recipe for air fryer tofu popcorn nuggets is delicious on its own, there are countless ways to customize and elevate the flavors. Here are a few ideas to try:

  1. Spice it up: Add some heat to your nuggets by incorporating spices such as cayenne pepper, chili powder, or smoked paprika into the breadcrumb mixture.
  2. Asian-inspired: Create an Asian-inspired flavor profile by using soy sauce, ginger, and garlic in the coating mixture. Serve the nuggets with a side of sweet chili sauce or soy dipping sauce.
  3. Herb-infused: Experiment with different herbs such as thyme, rosemary, or oregano in the breadcrumb mixture to add a fresh and aromatic twist to your tofu nuggets.


Air fryer tofu popcorn nuggets are a delicious and healthy snack option that you can easily make at home. By following these simple steps, you can achieve perfectly crispy and flavorful tofu nuggets that are sure to satisfy your cravings. Whether you enjoy them as a snack or a side dish, these guilt-free bites are a great addition to any meal. So grab your air fryer and get ready to indulge in this tasty and nutritious treat!

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