STREAMING NOW: Simply Nigella

Mapo Dofu: Spicy Tofu With Meat Sauce (Szechwan Style)

sparkle sparkle

Want more from Genius Kitchen?

Watch on your Apple TV, Roku, or Fire TV and your iOS, Fire, or Android device.

Learn More
“Ever wonder what to do with a package of tofu? Something delicious and different so that your guests will ask, "How did you make this? It's wonderful!" Think Chinese cooking is scary and mysterious? This simple and simply delightful recipe can change all that in one stroke. My family loves this and it's so easy, it gives me a break.”

Ingredients Nutrition

  • 2 tablespoons sesame oil
  • 2 tablespoons cooking oil
  • 1 chopped sweet onion (can also use green onions)
  • 1 tablespoon crushed garlic
  • 1 lb ground turkey (can also use ground beef, pork, chicken, lamb)
  • 1 tablespoon chili paste, to taste (we like Sriracha brand)
  • 1 12 cups chicken stock
  • 2 -3 tablespoons soy sauce (to taste)
  • 2 -3 tablespoons sake (rice wine or other white wine)
  • 1 tablespoon minced gingerroot
  • 2 (14 ounce) containers silken tofu (drained and cut into cubes)
  • 3 tablespoons cornstarch


  1. In a large sturdy frying pan (preferably a 12" one), saute the onions and the garlic in the oils until onions are somewhat tender (saute less if using green onions).
  2. Add in the ground meat and chop it up with your spatula as you stir-fry. Continue until meat is no longer pink (takes only a few minutes--do not overcook!).
  3. Add in ginger, chili paste (to taste--leave it out if cooking for a toddler), sake or other wine, soy sauce, and chicken stock. Bring to a boil, skimming off fat, if needed.
  4. Add in the cubed tofu and stir gently, while trying to avoid breaking up the cubes. Cook only until tofu is coated and hot (not long!).
  5. Stir the cornstarch into a few tablespoons of water--just to moisten--and add this mixture slowly to the meat and tofu--stirring constantly.
  6. Scoop heaping portions of the mapo dofu over steamed white rice and let guests add in more chili paste, if they desire.

Watch more

Join the Conversation

  • all
  • reviews
  • tweaks
  • q & a