Recipes » Vegan Souvlaki

Vegan Souvlkai

This vegan souvlaki uses frozen tofu for a meaty texture. Add cashew tzatziki, veggies, and pita for a Greek-inspired meal!

Image of a vegan souvlaki wrap on a black background

About This Recipe

There is something so satisfyingly simple about souvlaki. Just wrap a marinated protein and veggies in pita or flatbread, and add a creamy sauce. Perfection.

I wanted to create a Greek-inspired wrap using tofu, with a meaty texture and chicken-y flavor. To achieve this, I froze the tofu, brushed on a marinade, dipped it in a nutritional yeast mixture, and baked it.

Ingredients

For the Marinade

  • Juice of 1 Lemon – I tested this recipe using fresh, and this is what I recommend.
  • Garlic, Dried Oregano, Salt, Nutritional Yeast, and Black Pepper – These flavors infuse into the lemon juice for a Greek-style marinade.

For the Tofu

  • Extra-Firm Tofu – Prepare, freeze, and defrost according to the directions below.
  • All Purpose Flour, Nutritional Yeast, and Salt – Combine to make a dredge for the tofu.

For the Wrap

Method

Advance Prep

For best results, remove the tofu from its packaging and pat it dry using a kitchen towel before freezing. Freeze overnight, or for several days at most.

Prepare the marinade and let it rest in the refrigerator for at least an hour while you prepare the other ingredients. The flavors of the garlic and oregano need time to infuse into the lemon juice.

Combine the ingredients for the dredge, mix well, on a plate, and set aside.

Preparing the Wraps

Remove your tofu from the freezer, and place it in a microwave-safe container. It will release a lot of water as it defrosts. Set your microwave to 50% power and defrost in 5-minute intervals, checking frequently and pouring off the water frequently as it melts. If your microwave does not have this setting, use the defrost setting for 5-minute intervals.

Once defrosted, handle carefully, as it is very soft. Gently wrap the block in a kitchen towel and press to release more water.

Cut into 8 slices, each about 1/2 inch thick. Brush generously with the marinade on both sides, being careful not to soak. The tofu will be very absorbent at this point, and could easily become too wet. It should be well-flavored, but not drenched in the marinade, so it will bake up nice and chewy.

image is of a white plate containing sliced tofu being brushed with marinade, which is pictured in a jar in the background.

Next, place the tofu in the dredge mixture, pressing lightly so that the mixture coats evenly. Repeat on the other side. Place on a sheet pan lined with a Silpat or parchment paper. If using parchment paper, you may need oil to keep it from sticking.

Image is of a silpat-lined baking sheet with tofu coated in a flour-nutritional yeast mixture, before baking.

Bake at 425º F for 15-20 minutes, checking after 15 minutes. Flip and bake for 8-10 minutes more.

Image is of a silpat-lined baking sheet containing breaded tofu after baking.
Ingredients for souvlaki laid out on white plates on a black background. Pictured are tomato, cucumber, Olives, onions, and spinach.

Frequently Asked Questions

Why do you freeze the tofu?

Freezing tofu changes the texture, making it meatier. As it defrosts, much of the water drains out, making it easy to use a towel to gently press and remove even more water.

How do you prep tofu to freeze? Can you freeze it in its original packaging?

I find the tofu too soft to work with when frozen in its original packaging. Instead, prepare it for freezing by removing the packaging and lightly pressing the block with a towel to remove some of the water it has absorbed from the package. Then place in a freezer container and freeze overnight, or up to 3 days. This gives it a texture that when baked, substitutes well for meatier proteins.

How to thaw frozen tofu?

Defrosting in the microwave is fast and gives good results. Thaw at 50% power, or on the defrost setting. Check frequently and pour off excess water as it defrosts.

Print

Vegan Souvlaki

close up of a tofu souvlaki wrap on a black background. visible in the wrap are spinach, cucumber, tomato, tofu, onions, black olives and tzatziki sauce.

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This vegan souvlaki recipe uses frozen tofu for a meaty texture. Add cashew tzatziki, veggies, and pita for a Greek-inspired meal.

  • Author: Jennifer @ Always Add Alliums
  • Prep Time: 30 minutes
  • Cook Time: 30 minutes
  • Total Time: 1 hour
  • Yield: 4 wraps 1x
  • Category: Main Dish
  • Method: Bake
  • Cuisine: Greek-Inspired
  • Diet: Vegan

Ingredients

Units Scale

For the Marinade

  • juice of 1 Lemon
  • 1 clove Garlic, minced
  • 1/4 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1/8 teaspoon Salt
  • pinch Black Pepper
  • 2 tablespoons Water
  • 1/2 teaspoon Nutritional Yeast

For the Tofu

  • 1 package Extra-Firm Tofu, frozen and defrosted according to instructions below
  • 2 tablespoons All Purpose Flour
  • 2 tablespoons Nutritional Yeast
  • 1/4 teaspoon Salt

For the Wrap

  • 4 Pita or Flatbread Wraps
  • 1 small White Onion, sliced
  • 4 small Tomatoes, sliced
  • 1 small Cucumber or 1/2 large, sliced
  • 1 cup sliced Kalamata Olives
  • 4 cups Baby Spinach
  • Cashew Tzatziki

Instructions

Advance Prep

  1. Remove the tofu from its packaging and pat it dry using a kitchen towel before freezing overnight or for up to 3 days.

For the Marinade

  1. Combine lemon juice, garlic, dried oregano, salt, black pepper, water, and nutritional yeast in a jar and mix well.
  2. Refrigerate for at least 1 hour, for flavors to combine.

For the Tofu

  1. Combine the all purpose flour, nutritional yeast, and salt on a plate and set aside.
  2. Remove the tofu from the freezer, and place it in a microwave-safe container. It will release a lot of water as it defrosts. Set your microwave to 50% power and defrost in 5-minute intervals, checking frequently and pouring off the water as it melts. If you do not have this setting on your microwave, use the defrost setting for 5-minute intervals.
  3. Once defrosted, handle it carefully, as it is very soft. Gently wrap the block in a kitchen towel and press to release more of the water.
  4. Cut into 8 slices, each about 1/2 inch thick. Brush generously with the marinade on both sides, being careful not to soak. The tofu will be very absorbent at this point, and could easily become too wet. You want it to be well-flavored, but not drenched in the marinade, so it will bake up nice and chewy.
  5. Place the tofu in the dredge mixture, pressing lightly so that the mixture coats evenly. Repeat on the other side. Place on a sheet pan lined with a Silpat or parchment paper. If you use parchment paper, you may need oil to keep it from sticking. 
  6. Bake at 425º F for 15-20 minutes, checking after 15 minutes. Flip and bake for 8-10 minutes more. 

For the Wrap

  1. Warm the flatbread or pita in the oven.
  2. Layer the tofu, vegetables, and cashew tzatziki on your wrap and enjoy!

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