Baked Sesame Tofu Sticks with a Peanut Ginger Dipping Sauce



Well, it has been embarrassingly long since I have posted something for you all. It is not that I have not been cooking, I have been (believe you me!), but for some reason the ability to slow down and write about it has been challenging. Can I blame it on my last semester in college and the gazillion papers I have to write? Ug.

I found this recipe on pinterest (obvi), and despite not usually a huge tofu fan, was really intrigued by this flavor combination. As far as meat alternatives go, I have always found the consistency of tempeh to be much more appealing than that of tofu. However, when I saw this delicious combination I thought this was worth a try, and I’m so glad I did! By cutting the tofu into thin slices and baking it, the tofu gets a nice outer crisp. Then, the marinade and sauce make this dish absolutely scrumptious and impossible to put down! I had to stop myself from eating all of them in one sitting! Womp.

Whether or not you are a vegetarian, this dish makes for an excellent lunch, dinner, or appetizer. Throw these tofu strips on top of a salad, beside some asparagus and barley, or eat them like French fries- either way, I promise you can’t go wrong.

Happy cooking, and look forward to some more delicious recipes from A Rented Kitchen, coming your way soon!!!

Ps. It’s spring! That means strawberries, asparagus, avocados, and peaches coming your way!!! Horray!





  • 14 oz. firm or extra firm tofu
  • 4 teaspoons toasted sesame seeds
  • 1 teaspoon peanut oil (or other high smoke-point oil)

Marinade Ingredients:

  • 1 Tablespoon sesame oil
  • 1 ½ Tablespoons soy sauce*
  • 1 teaspoon rice vinegar
  • 2-3 teaspoons agave nectar
  • 1-2 teaspoons Sriracha Sauce
  • ½ teaspoon ground ginger or grated fresh ginger root

Sauce Ingredients:

  • 1 Tablespoon ground ginger or grated fresh ginger root
  • 2 Tablespoons smooth natural peanut butter
  • 2 T Tahini Sauce (or if you don’t have Tahini, use 2 T more peanut butter)
  • 3 T soy sauce
  • 1-2  Tablespoons agave nectar
  • 2 teaspoons rice vinegar (not seasoned rice vinegar, which contains sugar)
  • 3 Tablespoons water


  1. Remove tofu from packaging and cut in half lengthwise. Cover the tofu with a towel or a double layer of paper towels. Place a heavy object (like a bowl or a skillet) on top of the tofu and towels, and allow to sit for 10 minutes, pressing the water out of the tofu.
  2. Meanwhile, while the tofu is pressing, whisk together the marinade ingredients in a small bowl.
  3. After the tofu has pressed under a heavy object, cut the tofu into thin, long strips and continue pressing the water out with a towel. The more thoroughly you do this, the crispier your tofu will be, so I suggest taking your time with this step and removing as much water as possible!
  4. Arrange the tofu in a Tupperware and pour the marinade over top. Allow the tofu to soak for 20 minutes, occasionally flipping the Tupperware, so that all sides of the tofu are marinated.
  5. Preheat the oven to 400˚ F and brush a small baking sheet with peanut oil. Arrange the tofu strips in the pan and sprinkle each piece with sesame seeds. Carefully flip the tofu strips, and sprinkle the alternate side with sesame seeds as well.
  6. Bake the tofu for 20 minutes, flip the pieces, and bake for an additional 20 minutes.
  7. While the tofu is baking, combine the sauce ingredients in a food processor and blend until smooth. Serve alongside the tofu.



Notes and Tips!:

  • Source: Kalyn’s Kitchen
  • Suggested serving: Hot, with the sauce, the day of preparation. However, these tofu sticks will keep for a few days in a covered container in the refrigerator!
  • If gluten free, make sure you use a gluten free soy sauce!
  • Like this dish? Try these other delicious option from ‘A Rented Kitchen!’ (Recipe links below):

Edamame Hummus


For those of you who didn’t see, my boyfriend and I were vegan for Lent. We wanted to try something new, and practice a discipline that also respected the environment. Thus, everything I have posted since Valentine’s Day has been vegan! Check it out!

The hardest part about being vegan for lent was no milkshakes, cheesy pizza, or chai tea lattes.  However, I loved trying some new vegan recipes, several of which I still have to show you!

Hummus is one of those perfect vegan recipes, and one of my all-time favorite snacks.  There are dozens of ways to make hummus, with countless variations of beans and spices.  This recipes calls edamame beans, which when blended make a very light and fluffy hummus. Much healthier than store bought hummus, no more expensive, and with zero prep work- this is one recipe that you could (and should!) easily work into your weekly schedule. Give it a try, and have fun with it!



  • 1 (500g) bag frozen shelled edamame (equal to 3 cups thawed)
  • 2 garlic cloves, peeled
  • 4 Tablespoons lemon juice
  • ¼ cup tahini
  • 3-4 Tablespoons water, to thin as needed
  • ¾ teaspoon fine grain sea salt, or to taste
  • ¼ teaspoon ground coriander seeds, optional
  • 1/8teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • Optional garnish: smoked paprika, freshly ground black pepper, extra virgin olive oil, whole edamame beans


  1. If using thawed edamame, rinse and drain.  If using frozen edamame, empty the beans into a pot of water and simmer until the edamame is heated through, just a few minutes; then, rinse and drain.
  2. Set aside a handful of whole beans for the garnish.
  3. Using a food processor, blend the 2 garlic cloves until well minced.
  4. Add the edamame to the food processor and process until somewhat smooth. Periodically, you may want to use a spatula to rearrange the edamame in the bowl, and scrape the sides, allowing for a more even blend.
  5. Stir the tahini well, and then add to the food processor, along with the lemon juice and water. Process for a few minutes until smooth.
  6. Add the spices and process again. Taste to see if you would like more of anything (I added more cayenne pepper!)
  7. Scoop the hummus into a bowl and garnish as desired. Serve with toasted pita chips, pretzels, raw vegetables, or crostini. Enjoy!


Notes and Tips!:

Pineapple Avocado Spring Rolls with dipping sauce

I love making spring rolls. This has been my second attempt and Oh my gosh they’re so fun and delicious! There’s no cooking or waiting involved.  You just chop up the veggies you want inside, wrap em’ all up, and eat it all up; a win- win- win! This spring roll combination consists largely of pineapple and avocado, two of my favorite flavors. However, if you’re not a pineapple fan, try mango! Or if you don’t like avocado, add cucumber and yellow squash! In other words, feel free to play around with this recipe.  It can be so refreshing to have a completely raw meal. I dare you to try it- you won’t regret it!


  • ¾- 1 whole red pepper
  • 10 cabbage leaves
  • 1 carrot, julienned
  • 1 tablespoon hoisin sauce
  • 2 tsp lime juice
  • 2 tsp sesame oil
  • 1 tsp soy sauce
  • 7-9 rice paper sheets
  • 1 avocado
  • ½ fresh pineapple- cut into thin slices

Dipping sauce ingredients:

  • 1 tbl soy sauce
  • 1 tsp hoisin sauce
  • 1 tsp lime juice
  • 1 ½ tsp agave
  • 1 tsp sesame oil


  1. Slice the vegetables. For carrots: wash, peel, and julienne.  For the red peppers, avocado, and cabbage: slice into thin strips. For the pineapple: cut into thin slices about an inch long.
  2. Place the carrots, cabbage slices, and red pepper slices in a medium sized bowl.
  3. In a separate small dish whisk the hoisin sauce, lime juice, sesame oil, and soy sauce thoroughly. Add to the vegetable mixture and toss the vegetables to coat.
  4. Fill a large pan with 2-3 inches of warm water to soak the rice sheets in. Warm water from the tap is fine. If the water is too hot the rice sheets will curl and harden.
  5. Place each rice sheet in the warm water one at a time and let soak for about 15 seconds. When rice sheet has soaked and is easily pliable, remove from water and place on a large plate.
  6. Place a small handful of the cabbage vegetable mixture in the middle of the rice sheet, about an inch away from the right edge. Arrange a few avocado and pineapple slices on top of the other vegetables.
  7. Starting with the edge closest to yourself, roll the rice sheet over the vegetables, tucking them in tightly. Fold the ends in and then continue rolling.
  8. To make the dipping sauce: Combine the ingredients in a small bowl and whisk completely.

Notes and Tips:

  • For a different dipping sauce, try this peanut dipping sauce from another spring roll recipe. It’s crazy delicious!
  • These spring rolls will keep for a day (or two) in the refrigerator in a sealed container, however they are best served fresh.
  • The Yield for this recipe is 7 – 9 spring rolls, depending on how much filling you use in each roll. To increase or decrease this number, simply prepare more or less vegetables. It’s easy to adjust as you go!

Homemade Tzatziki Sauce

Hello everyone! Today I am posting my first specifically requested recipe, and it makes me so happy!  I love knowing that there are people out there reading this blog who want to see specific things or have questions. Keep the questions and comments comin’!  I am posting this particular sauce  as a follow up to another previously posted recipe.  On June 2nd I posted a delicious recipe of a quinoa burger. I mentioned the burger could be served with Tzatziki sauce if desired, and pictured it that way in my photos. Some readers were curious as to what Tzatziki sauce is and how to make it, so here we go! Tzatziki sauce is one of those sauces you can probably find at your grocery store, definitely at an organic grocery store, but can also easily be made at home! The sauce originated in Greece and is most commonly served there as a sandwich spread with gyros.  Tzatziki is also commonly served with a loaf of bread as part of the first coarse of a meal. I recommend making a batch of this delicious dipping sauce and trying it with sliced veggies and toasted pita bread. It’s quite refreshing. Now get out there and try something new!


  • 2 cups plain Greek yogurt
  • 1 cup cucumber- diced and seedless
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh dill
  • salt and pepper, to taste
  • ½ lemon, juiced


  1. Peel the cucumber and lightly salt it. Set it aside to allow for excess water to be drained from the cucumber.
  2. Mix up the remaining ingredients until completely blended.
  3. Squeeze the remaining water out of the cucumber slices and add to the yogurt mix.
  4. Taste and flavor as desired- add more salt, dill, garlic, lemon, etc.
  5. Serve with pita bread slices, vegetables, baked or fried zucchini/ eggplant slices, Or my quinoa burger! (follow the link below!)

Notes and Tips!:

  • This sauce pairs perfectly with the Quinoa Burger recipe that was featured in early June!
  • If you do not have any full garlic cloves, 1/8 teaspoon of garlic powder can be substituted for every clove missing.