Vegan Sesame Tofu Tenders (oil-free)

Hi friends!

I have and INSANELY DELICIOUS new recipe for you! These vegan sesame tofu tenders are LEGIT. They are the perfect plant-based version of “chicken” tenders but they are made with tofu instead of meat – but you’d never know!

These are everything you want in a tender, they are crispy, high in protein, tender in the middle, crunchy, and absolutely perfect dipped in the honey-less mustard dip that’s also featured in this recipe.

How do you make vegan sesame tofu tenders?

The first step is breaking up the tofu into tender/nugget like shapes! I break them instead of cutting them because it gives them that imperfect look of a classic “chicken” tender. Make them as little or as big as you’d like. I’d suggest making them the length of your thumb.

Furthermore, my favorite tofu is the high-protein tofu from Trader Joe’s

Prepare one bowl with bread crumbs of choice mixed with raw sesame seeds. You can use any bread crumbs you want, they can be gluten-free, whole wheat, regular, or panko – whatever floats your boat.

Prepare a second bowl with the chickpea flour and water and then mix it together until combined and smooth.

Dip the tofu first in the chickpea water mixture, then roll it in the bread crumbs. Carefully place each tofu tender in the air-fryer or on a baking sheet.

Bake in the oven at 450 degrees F for 30-40 minutes or until golden brown OR fry in the air-fryer for 8-10 minutes or until golden brown on the outside.

After they are done they should look like this!

Vegan sesame tofu tenders are going to be your new favorite. I cannot get over how incredible these turned out – we can’t stop making them (LOL).

The only issue is that I could eat the whole batch. In addition, I love how these are crispy and indulgent tasting but they are made without oil in an air-fryer and they are completely cholesterol-free, meat-free and cruelty free!

These vegan sesame tofu tenders are: 








Vegan Sesame Tofu Tenders

How do you make the dip?

Honey-less mustard: mix mustard with maple syrup for a vegan dipping sauce. The tofu tenders paired with this dip is a MUST. If you don’t like mustard dip you can use ketchup or make an aioli of some kind! Yum!

Vegan Sesame Tofu Tenders

A few important tips:

  • If you don’t have an air-fryer, bake these in the oven!
  • These are best eaten fresh! However, if you have leftovers, simply pop them back into the air fryer for a few minutes to heat them up and get them crispy again.
  • If you don’t have sesame seeds, don’t worry about it! Just omit them.

Vegan Sesame Tofu Tenders

Rate + Comment

If you make this recipe and love it, please rate and comment down below at the bottom of your page with your honest thoughts. Your feedback means a lot to me here at HealthyGirl Kitchen. If you weren’t a fan of the recipe or substituted an ingredient/s, please let me know!

Vegan Sesame Tofu Tenders

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Vegan Sesame Tofu Tenders

What are you waiting for!? Get cooking!

Vegan Sesame Tofu Tenders (oil-free)

Crispy, delicious plant-based meatless "chicken" tenders crusted with bread crumbs and sesame seeds. Pair them with honey-less mustard for the best combination!
serving 3 servings
prep time 10 minutes
cook time 8 minutes
total time 18 minutes

the ingredients

  • 1 block extra-firm tofu I use high protein tofu from Trader Joe's
  • 1/2 cup bread crumbs of choice
  • 1/3 cup sesame seeds
  • 1/2 cup chickpea flour
  • 1/2 + 1/8 cup water

Honey-less Mustard Sauce

  • 2 tbsp maple syrup
  • 1/3 cup dijon or yellow mustard


  • Preheat air-fryer to 400 degrees F.
  • Break your tofu into nugget/tender like shapes (not too big), about the length of your thumb.
  • Prepare one bowl with the chickpea flour and water - mix together.
  • Prepare another bowl with bread crumbs and sesame seeds - mix together.
  • Dip each piece of tofu in the chickpea flour mixture first, then roll in the bread crumb mixture until completely coated. Place gently in the air-fryer.
  • Bake in air fryer for 8-10 minutes or until golden brown.
    Oven method: bake on parchment paper at 450 degrees for 30-40 minutes or until golden brown.
  • Dip in honey-less mustard, eat fresh and enjoy!

More recipes like this one: 

Make my air-fried pickle recipe too!

Vegan Air-Fried Pickles

Also, checkout these plant-based chickpea nuggets 

Crispy Chickpea Nuggets

Another way to make tofu here!

air-fried tofu nuggets



Danielle Brown

Hi! I’m Danielle Brown, the face behind HealthyGirl Kitchen! I share easy, approachable plant-based recipes that are not only healthy but taste amazing. Follow me on Instagram, TikTok, and Facebook for free vegan meal ideas, recipes and healthygirl tips.

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  1. Sharon says:

    This looks delicious!! Can’t wait to make it!!

    1. Danielle Keith says:


  2. Marcus LeFevre says:

    Wow!!!! These Vegan Sesame Tofu Tenders are outstanding! These things are so good I felt like I cheated hahaha. I will definitely be making these on the regular. Thanks for sharing.5 stars

  3. Lauren says:

    These were great! substituted Cassava flour for chick pea flour, made in the air fryer – got super crispy. Everyone loved them – even the meat eaters! will make again for sure! thanks for the great recipes!5 stars