The Best Vegan Karaage Chicken


The best vegan karaage! This Japanese fried chicken is perfectly crispy on the outside while still juicy and flavourful on the inside– just like the real thing.



  • 1 lbs cotton / traditional tofu (450g)*
  • 1 oz soy chunks (30g)
  • 1 garlic clove, minced (1 tsp // 4g)
  • slice of minced ginger (2 tsp // 6g)
  • 23 tbsp soy sauce, to taste (30-45ml)
  • 23 tbsp sake, to taste (30-45ml)
  • 1 ½ tbsp sugar (23g)
  • 68 tbsp potato starch (60-80g)


Tofu Preparation

  1. Day 1: Drain the tofu and then dry with a kitchen cloth. Gently press to remove any excess water. Cover and store in the freezer. 
  2. Day 2: Remove the tofu from the freezer and place into the fridge to let it thaw completely. Then press the tofu, removing as much liquid as you can without breaking it apart. Place into container and freeze again.
  3. Day 3: Remove the tofu from the freezer. Cover with a damp paper towel and microwave for 3 minutes. Flip and microwave for another 1-2 minutes or until thawed. Once cool enough to handle, squeeze out any excess liquid. Now it’s ready to be used!

For the karaage:

  1. Add garlic, ginger, soy sauce, sake and sugar together. This is the marinade.
  2. Tear off chunks of tofu and place into the marinade. Add soy curls and toss with the marinade. Let it marinate for 10 minutes. a
  3. Add potato starch to the container and then shake it up. Let it sit for a few minutes– the potato starch should start firming up while sticking the soy chunks to the pieces of tofu. Before frying, add another thin coat of potato starch.
  4. Over medium heat, fry the karaage or until crispy golden brown (2-3 minutes). Place on a wire rack to allow excess oil to drip off. Fry in small batches until complete.
  5. Serve with vegan Japanese mayonnaise and lemon juice, and enjoy!


  • *Cotton / traditional tofu has the texture between soft fresh tofu and medium firm tofu. This kind of tofu yields the best meat-y texture while still keeping it juicy– however, if you can not find traditional tofu soft fresh or medium firm (or really, any firmness of tofu) can be used. 
  • Leftovers can be stores in the fridge for up to 3 days.