Ma Po Tofu 2

*above picture was added (old removed) 11/16/13

Ma Po Tofu is actually very easy to make. It’s one of the first recipes I asked my mom to teach me. It’s a little difficult to give you exact measurements for the recipe though. There are so many types of tofu, from silken to firm, all giving off different amounts of water when cooked. All of them taste good. It’s just a matter of preference. The picture above is one made with medium firm tofu, which Lon prefers. The one below is a soft tofu, which I like equally as much as the firmer tofu. This recipe is also quite mild, suitable for most, but if you like things spicy, you can add more chili garlic sauce.

Ma Po Tofu Soft 2

Ma Po Tofu
~2 servings


  • 5 ounces ground pork
  • 2 tablespoons soy sauce + extra
  • 2 teaspoons cornstarch + extra
  • 1/2 teaspoon sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vegetable oil
  • 1 box or block of tofu (usually 1 1/4 – 1 1/2 pounds without liquid), cut into 1″ squares
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 teaspoons chili garlic sauce
  • 1/2 cup frozen peas (optional)
  • rice for serving (optional)


  1. In a small bowl, mix together pork, 2 tablespoons soy sauce, 2 teaspoons corn starch, and sugar. Set aside.
  2. In a 3 ½ quart pot, heat vegetable oil on medium flame. Add pork mixture and break it up as it cooks. Stir until cooked through.
  3. Add tofu and water. Stir, but try not to break it up too much.
  4. Add garlic and chili garlic sauce. Bring to a boil.
  5. Turn the heat down to a simmer and heat uncovered for 20 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  6. Stir in frozen peas (if using) and cook for 1 minute, until peas are no longer frozen. (I’ve also made this with edamame before and it’s a great variation.
  7. Depending on the strength of your soy sauce and the amount of water the tofu releases, you may have to adjust. Taste and add soy sauce if it’s not salty enough. If the sauce has not thickened enough, mix 1-2 teaspoons cornstarch with 2 -3 teaspoons water to form a slurry, and stir that in, in a slow stream.
  8. Serve immediately. I love it on top of rice.
posted by jessica at 02:06 PM Filed under Chinese, Recipes. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. Both comments and pings are currently closed.