Delicious Vegan Palak Tofu in Instant Pot in just 20 minutes. Lightly fried tofu added to spinach cooked in a onion, tomato sauce with spices. This is a dairy-free and gluten-free recipe. You can try this same curry with sweet corn in place of tofu, which is a great variation to this recipe. I made this recipe with spinach, but you can also vary by adding half spinach and half mustard greens to make saag tofu.
I made Palak Paneer some time back, but felt that I want to have a recipe for my vegan friends. So I made Palak Tofu this time. Guess what, my husband did not even realize that it is tofu, and not paneer. I know being vegan you don't miss paneer in any way, but I was pretty impressed with they being so similar in taste.
I love these one-pot recipes which can be prepared in minutes, rather than hours. It takes less than 30 minutes from start to end of this recipe, so it is absolutely one on my list for quick weekday dinners.
How to make Palak Tofu in Instant Pot?
Start with removing moisture from the tofu and cutting it into cubes. Lightly fry it in a sauce pan.
While the tofu is frying, start the instant pot and heat oil in it. Add the cumin seeds, ginger, garlic and whole red chili. When the garlic turns golden, add chopped onions. Saute them for about 3 minutes until they are lightly browned, then add chopped tomato and spices.
Add in the spinach and change the instant pot setting to manual mode for 2 minutes with vent closed. When the instant pot beeps, let the pressure release naturally for 5 minutes, then release the pressure manually. Use an immersion blender to blend the spinach to a creamy texture. Then add in the fried tofu.
Vegan Palak Saag Tofu - Instant Pot Pressure Cooker
- Lightly press the tofu and remove excess water. Cut it in to small cubes.
- Add 2 tbsp oil in a sauce pan and lightly fry the tofu. Turn the tofu, so it browns evenly. This will take about 5 minutes. Take out of sauce pan and keep the tofu aside.
- Start the instant pot in sauté mode. Heat 1 tbsp oil and add cumin seeds. (You can do this in parallel while tofu is frying)
- When cumin seeds start to splutter, add ginger, garlic, red chili and onions. Sauté for about 2 minutes until onion is lightly browned.
- Stir in the tomato, spices and saute for another 2 minutes.
- Add water and deglaze the pot. Add in the spinach. Press cancel and close the instant pot lid with vent in sealing position. Set on manual or pressure cook mode for 2 minutes.
- Once the instant pot beeps, let the pressure release naturally for 5 minutes, then manually release the pressure.
- Blend the spinach and other ingredients in the pot to a creamy texture using an immersion blender.
- Add the tofu and let it rest for 5 minutes, so it soaks in the flavors of the curry.
- Garnish with coconut or cashew cream if desired. Palak Tofu can be served with naan, roti or paratha.
- Stovetop Variation: The exact same preparation can be done in a sauce pan. Do not use a non-stick pan, if you plan to use an immersion blender to puree the spinach.
Note: Nutrition values are my best estimates. If you rely on them for your diet, use your preferred nutrition calculator.
Check out other Instant Pot Curries you might enjoy: