Among the side dishes made with tofu, Korean pan-fried tofu with seasoning sauce is one of the easiest to make and a favorite among all Koreans. With just one block of tofu, you can create a delicious side dish in 10 minutes! The flavorful sesame oil, toasted sesame seeds, soy sauce, garlic, minced onion, and green onion come together to enhance the taste, making it a very popular side dish.

When I lived in Toronto, Canada, I often went to the St Lawrence farmers market on the weekend. It was in a big building, and in the basement there was a store where people were lining up every weekend to buy some special tofu.

My friend was a regular customer at the store, so she let me taste it when she bought it. I was very surprised! Firstly, because it was so expensive, and secondly because it was a very simple tofu recipe. They were selling the tofu cubed and cooked with sauce for $7.99! The sauce was made with soy sauce and sugar or maple syrup.

It seemed like a very easy recipe to make. I took my friend to a Korean store and bought a package of tofu for 99 cents. We came home and we cooked it together. She was very happy and since that time, she has been doing all kinds of experiments with her favorite tofu side dish. She invents her own sauce these days. : )

Shortly after I started my YouTube channel, I posted this recipe along with a video, and now I have remade it with more precise measurements and updated proportions.

Enjoy making it deliciously!


Serves 3 to 4


Prepare the Sauce:

In a bowl, combine the soy sauce, gochu-garu, minced garlic, chopped onion, chopped green onion, sesame oil, and sugar (if using). Mix well and set aside.
Making seasoning sauce

Prepare the Tofu:

  1. Cut the tofu into 8 equal pieces, each about ¼ inch thick.
    Slice tofu
  2. Pat each piece of tofu dry with a cotton cloth or paper towels.

Cook the Tofu:

  1. Heat the vegetable oil in a skillet over medium-high heat.
  2. Add the tofu pieces one by one to the skillet. Be sure not to crowd them, so they don’t stick to each other. Turn down the heat to medium and cook for about 5 minutes, until the bottom turns crunchy and golden brown.
  3. Flip the tofu pieces with a spatula and cook for another 5 minutes until both sides are light golden brown and crunchy.
    Golden brown tofu


  1. Transfer the cooked tofu to a serving plate.
  2. Drizzle the seasoning sauce evenly over each piece of tofu.
    Add seasoning sauce
  3. Sprinkle with toasted sesame seeds and some additional chopped green onion.
    Sprinkle sesame seeds
  4. Serve with rice as a side dish.


You can refrigerate the tofu for up to 4 to 5 days. It does not need to be reheated when served cold.

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  1. cosimaluise Germany joined 3/19 & has 6 comments

    This tasted amazing!! My family is having a bbq today and since I‘m vegan I needed a substitute for meat and this was perfect. Me and my mom loved it! And it was so easy too. Thank you for this recipe :)

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  2. CrystalS USA joined 11/17 & has 1 comment

    So good! Served with kimchi and rice.

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  3. Jhoy_melendrez14 philippines joined 10/17 & has 10 comments

    hi maangchi this is my masterpiece..hehehe

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  4. O, Joo-Hwan Las Vegas, Nevada USA joined 2/17 & has 10 comments

    Served this with baechu doenjang and rice. A bit too spicy for one of my family, but she just mixed the tofu into the stew and all was well. A big hit. I don’t eat tofu and I had seconds.

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  5. John in Baton Rouge Baton Rouge Louisiana joined 12/16 & has 40 comments

    Who would have ever thought tofu could be so delicious? Yum… nice and crispy on the outside. And that awesome sauce with the delicious Korean flavors. I love to substitute honey in place of sugar. It’s funny, I find that if I take your recommended pepper flake quantity and use 1/3 of that, it’s perfect for me! And I’m from south Louisiana where we love spicy cajun food. Korean’s are so funny to tolerate so much heat lol. For anyone using pepper flakes, i recommend starting out with 1/4 or 1/3 of the recommended quantity and go from there. You can always add more but you sure as heck can’t take away once you’ve added it :-) Thank you for introducing me to a whole new world Maangchi… I am loving the Korean food! I eat it daily! All because I happened to find you on YouTube one day…

  6. elphyra Netherlands joined 7/16 & has 1 comment

    Hi Maangchi,

    I was wondering what the word buchim literally means. I have been searching the internet but it says something different on every website I find. Since you are an expert I hope you can help me out, haha!
    I’ve been making a lot of your recipes lately, but I always also like to know the other details concerning the dish.

    Love from the Netherlands!

  7. HikariLynn Canada Saskatchewan joined 3/16 & has 1 comment

    This recipe is so delicious!! I made it for the first time yesterday and had to go to the grocery store today just to get more Tofu to make it again tonight! my family thinks i’m crazy for eating tofu but its so good! I do have a question though, If i made this to take for lunch the next day would i add the sauce when i put in in the container? or would i keep them separate until i’m going to eat them?

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  8. I’ve made this dish few times already – I feel in love with it and make it at least once a week! Thank you so much for it, Maangchi-ssi!

  9. My friend showed me your website and I feel you have really improved my cooking!

    The food tastes so yummy and exactly like my favorites that I would get at a store or restaurant but I am so very happy that now I can make at home for a lot cheaper!

    Every weekend now, I cook many side dishes so I won’t have to spend much time on cooking during the work week.

    I’m very grateful to you Maangchi!!! Thank you so much for sharing your knowledge!

    I have made your Roll-Pang, seasoned broccoli, spinach, radish kimchi, strawberry jam, Japchae, mungbean sprout and cucumber, mixed grain rice, cucumber kimchi and now tonight, I made your fried spicy tofu dish!!!

    I knew I loved this dish already so I made four times the sauce so I plan on using it on top of a fried egg over rice for breakfast soon.

    The next dish I want to learn from you is your cabbage and soybean paste stew!

    You are an excellent cook and very funny!


    I am a big fan of yours now! I wish I could give you a hug because your recipes make me so happy! I am Korean but adopted so my family doesn’t know how to cook Korean food and I have always wanted to learn it.

    I will buy your cookbook soon too!

    • Maangchi New York City joined 8/08 & has 12,045 comments

      I’m happy to hear that your Korean cooking is going well!
      “Roll-Pang, seasoned broccoli, spinach, radish kimchi, strawberry jam, Japchae, mung bean sprout and cucumber, mixed grain rice, cucumber kimchi”
      Happy cooking!

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