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Is Fried Tofu a Healthy Option?

Despite the nutritional benefits of tofu, fried tofu is not a healthy food choice. The problem lies in the frying cooking method. Although tofu is naturally low in calories and fat, frying adds tons of fat grams to the tofu and drastically increases the dish's calorie count. 

Nutrition of Tofu

Tofu is a natural, nutritious vegetarian soy food. Fresh out of its package, tofu typically contains roughly 90 to 100 calories, 11g of protein, 220 mg of calcium and only 5g of fat per half cup serving. But this doesn't mean fried tofu is healthy. Frying tofu in oil increases the fat and calories of the dish. There are other ways to prepare tofu, however, without sacrificing taste or adding extra fat and calories.

Healthy Baked Tofu

If you can't stand the taste of tofu in its raw form, baked tofu is a nice alternative. You can bake tofu with much less oil than you would need to fry it. In fact, you can bake tofu using hardly any oil at all. All you need is a few sprays of nonstick cooking spray. And baked tofu has a texture similar to fried tofu. Baked tofu contains fewer calories but still has the chew you might associate with fried tofu. 

Oven Fried Tofu

Another alternative is oven fried tofu. Instead of frying tofu in a deep fryer, you can brush tofu with a little oil and then bake it on a cookie sheet in an extremely hot oven. This way, the recipe uses much less oil and you still end up with a crispy tofu dish. 

But fried tofu isn't the only unhealthy tofu dish. You should pay attention to the calories in the sauces and marinades you mix the tofu with as well. If the sauce or marinade contains many calories, it won't matter whether your tofu is baked or fried. It'll still be an unhealthy dish. 

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