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April 22, 2021

by Alyssa

Vegan Nicoise Salad Recipe + Video

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Make healthy and light Vegan Nicoise Salad with baked tofu, potatoes, olives, green beans and crunchy fresh lettuce. 

overhead of two plates with nicoise salad topped with sliced tofu and creamy dressing

A few years ago I traveled to Nice in southern France. I wasn't following a plant-based diet then, so I ate dozens of Nicoise salads. I've always loved the combination of crunchy greens, fresh vegetables and a hearty protein on top. So now, instead of topping my Nicoiuse with hard-boiled eggs or tuna, I use savory baked tofu.

This vegan twist on Nicoise is just as satisfying, healthy and flavorful. Plus, it's easy to whip up for a work-from-home lunch or weeknight dinner.

If you love loaded salads like this recipe, be sure to try Vegan Cobb Salad and Asian Quinoa Power Salad next!

close up overhead of a bowl of tofu nicoise salad with potatoes and green beans

How to Make Vegan Nicoise Salad

This salad has all of the makings of a classic Nicoise, with tofu instead of tuna and no eggs to keep it vegan.

To build the salad base, you'll need:

  • Chopped greens. Feel free to use your favorite fresh crunchy greens as the base for your Nicoise.
  • Green beans. This is a classic addition to Nicoise. Be sure not to overcook them, as they will quickly turn from bright, vibrant green to mushy and brown.
  • Tomatoes. Cherry tomatoes, if they're in season, make a sweet and colorful addition to your salad.
  • Dried herbs. Don't hold back with the herby flavors in this salad! I love oregano, thyme and parsley or basil. You can also use fresh herbs.
  • Kalamata olives. For a nice salty, briny flavor.
  • Potatoes. These round out the salad into a complete meal with healthy protein, greens, fiber and carbs.


collage of overhead images of how to bake tofu for nicoise salad with seasonings and olive oil

How to Make the Best Baked Tofu

To mimic the meatiness of seared tuna with a plant-based replacement, this salad is topped with a baked tofu steak. Make sure to use extra-frim tofu for the best texture. Before roasting, slice the tofu block into even “steaks.”

They get a quick seasoning of olive oil, dried herbs, salt, and pepper before roasting to golden perfection.

This baked tofu is one of my favorite plant-based protein options. It gets crispy on the outside, tender on the inside and has this soft, almost pillowy texture to it. It absorbs flavors like nothing else and each bite kind of oozes with dressing.

Plus, you can easily meal prep a batch of baked tofu steaks and use them to top salads all week long. They also work great in vegan sandwiches for a quick workday lunch.

overhead of two bowls of tofu salad with olives, tomatoes and potatoes with creamy dressing

Dressing for Vegan Nicoise Salad

Classic Nicoise has an herby and delicious salad dressing. I replicated these flavors with a creamy twist from tahini to make a silky smooth Lemon Herb Tahini Dressing.

If you're looking to play with the favors in your Nicoise salad dressing, you can try another favorite tahini dressing recipe. Here are four that I love to get you started.

close up on a spoon drizzling dressing on top of sliced tofu with salad under

If you try this Vegan Nicoise Salad with Baked Tofu, be sure to let me know with a rating and comment below. And follow along on Instagram for more tasty healthy recipes.

xo Alyssa

More Delicious Salad Recipes to try:

Vegan Nicoise Salad with Tofu

This is a delicious and healthy vegan twist on classic Nicoise salad with tofu instead of tuna.
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 35 minutes
Total Time 40 minutes
Servings 4 Servings
Calories 223kcal
Author Alyssa Rimmer
Print Pin
close up on a spoon drizzling dressing on top of sliced tofu with salad under
5 from 2 votes

Ingredients

  • 1 block extra firm tofu
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1 teaspoon dried parsley/basil
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 6 - 8 cups chopped greens
  • 2 cups chopped cherry tomatoes
  • 2 cups green beans lightly steaming is optional
  • 1 cup chopped kalamata olives
  • 1 batch Lemon Herb Tahini Dressing

Instructions

  • Preheat the oven to 400ºF. Line a baking sheet with parchment and set aside.
  • Slice the tofu into four equal steaks. Place them on the prepared baking sheet and drizzle with 1 tablespoon of oil. Sprinkle half the hers on top and rub this mixture over the tofu to evenly coat. Flip and repeat with remaining oil and spices.
  • Bake for 35 - 40 minutes, flipping halfway through until tofu is golden brown and crispy. Remove and let cool for 5 minutes.
  • Assemble the salad by separating the remaining ingredients equally across four bowls. Slice each piece of tofu into strips and arrange on top. Drizzle with dressing and enjoy!

Video

Nutrition

Calories: 223kcal | Carbohydrates: 13g | Protein: 10g | Fat: 15g | Saturated Fat: 2g | Sodium: 1266mg | Potassium: 531mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 5g | Vitamin A: 1445IU | Vitamin C: 35.3mg | Calcium: 91mg | Iron: 3.1mg

Check out what else we've shared for #SALADWEEK!

 

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TOFU SALAD NICOISE >> a plant-based version of the classic French recipe with a healthy twist!

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About Alyssa

Hey there, I’m Alyssa Rimmer, a certified Holistic Nutritionist, yoga-lover, dog mom, and founder of Simply Quinoa. It’s nice to meet you! I created SQ as a way to provide solutions for women just like me, who were struggling to find helpful information about how to live a healthy and fulfilled life. My hope is that you will find inspiration here on SQ – in my story, in my recipes, in the hundreds of wellness articles, and in our amazing community. Welcome!

Interested in Healthy Eating? Grab our 7-Day Vegan Meal Plan!

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  1. An easy and savory salad that I make again and again! For the tofu, I always take the one that has fine herbs inside + the herbs rub in this recipe = excellent!

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