Crispy Tofu with Pumpkin Seed Mole, Spanish Rice & Chayote Squash

Crispy Tofu

with Pumpkin Seed Mole, Spanish Rice & Chayote Squash


Filling and hearty, this dish is a play on the traditional Mexican mole. Tofu steaks are coated in nutty pumpkin and sesame seeds, and pan-seared for a crisp crust. Rich, coffee and chocolate spiced sauce gets poured over top, with sauteed chayote squash and Spanish rice on the side. Chipotle pepper adds a distinctive smokiness, as well as a bit of heat. Our chefs suggest cutting the quantity in half if you prefer a milder spice level.

Comfort Foods Winter Recipes Summer Recipes Gluten-Free High-Protein Squash Tofu Dinner Spanish


  1. 1 onion
  2. 3 tbsp tomato paste
  3. ¾ cup brown basmati rice
  4. 3 garlic cloves*
  5. 2 tbsp bittersweet chocolate chips
  6. ¼ tsp pumpkin pie spice
  7. 1 chipotle pepper in adobo sauce
  8. 1 tsp instant coffee
  9. ¼ cup pumpkin seeds
  10. 3 tbsp + 1 tsp sesame seeds
  11. 2 tbsp golden raisins
  12. 2 tsp almond butter
  13. 1 lime
  14. 1 pack extra firm tofu
  15. 1 tbsp cornstarch
  16. 1 chayote squash
  17. 3 tbsp vegan sour cream
  18. 3 tbsp + 2 tsp vegetable oil**
  19. Salt and pepper**
  20. *Find a head of garlic with the ingredients for the Cannellini Bean Burger; it's for use in both recipes.
  21. **Not Included


  • Small saucepan
  • Medium saucepan
  • Blender
  • Large nonstick skillet


Setting the stage

Peel and small dice onion. Place a small saucepan over medium heat and add 1 tsp oil. Add tomato paste and one third of the onion. Cook until softened, about 3 minutes. Add rice, stir, and add 1 ¼ cups water and a pinch of salt. Bring rice to a boil and reduce heat to low. Cover and simmer until all liquid is absorbed, about 30 to 35 minutes. Let stand for 5 minutes and fluff with a fork.

Building flavor

Place a medium saucepan over medium-low heat with 2 tsp of oil. Once hot, add half the remaining onion and cook until translucent, stirring occasionally, about 5 minutes. Peel and mince 3 garlic cloves. Add to the skillet, and cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Add chocolate, pumpkin pie spice, chipotle pepper, and coffee. Cook, stirring frequently, until chocolate is melted, about 1 minute.

Ole Mole!

Add 1 tbsp pumpkin seeds and 1 tbsp sesame seeds to mole. Stir in raisins, almond butter, and 1½ cups water. Bring mole to a simmer and stir occasionally until sauce is thickened and reduced by half, about 15 to 20 minutes. Transfer to a blender and blend on high until smooth, 2 to 3 minutes. Halve the lime. Juice half the lime into the mole and season with salt. Return to the saucepan and cover.

Season the tofu

Drain tofu. Cut into 6 equal “steaks” and pat dry with paper towels. Chop remaining pumpkin seeds. In a medium bowl combine pumpkin seeds, cornstarch, and 2 tbsp sesame seeds. Toss tofu in the seed mixture, salt, and pepper. Place a large skillet over medium-high heat with 2 tbsp oil. Once hot, add tofu and cook until the crust is brown, about 3 to 4 minutes. Flip and cook for another 3 minutes.

Saute the chayote

Transfer tofu to a plate. Rinse, peel, and remove the pit from the chayote squash. Thinly slice. Wipe the skillet clean, place over medium-high heat with 2 tsp vegetable oil. Add the last of the diced onion, stir occasionally, and cook until translucent, about 5 minutes. Add the chayote squash and saute until crisp-tender, about 3 to 4 minutes. Season with salt and pepper.

Finish and serve

Cut the remaining lime into wedges. Divide the spanish rice, tofu, and chayote squash between plates. Smother tofu with mole sauce and serve with vegan sour cream and lime wedges. Sprinkle with remaining sesame seeds.