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August 12, 2022

by Alyssa

Vegan Sofritas

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This recipe for Chipotle-style tofu sofritas will be your new go-to for burritos, salads, tacos, and more! It’s packed with protein, perfectly spiced, and naturally vegan.

Overhead view of burrito bowl with sofritas

You have to give credit to Chipotle—in a world where it’s still shockingly difficult to find appealing plant-based options at restaurants, the good folks at Chipotle have not one but two vegan proteins on the menu. Their tofu sofritas are definitely their most well-known option, and now you don’t have to order Chipotle to get it. You can make sofritas at home!

Sofritas start with sofrito, a blend of herbs, spices, peppers, garlic, onion, and tomatoes used in Spanish, Portuguese, Latin American, and Caribbean cooking. Each region has their own spin on sofrito, and Chipotle’s version is made with green bell peppers, chipotle peppers, cumin, and oregano, among other ingredients. These ingredients are pureed, then slow cooked with the tofu.

To make sofritas doable for a weeknight dinner, I streamlined the sofrito ingredients and the process, but the results are every bit as flavorful as the original. You’ll get plenty of smokiness, just enough heat (and you can always kick up the spice level if you want!), and that irresistibly chewy tofu texture that makes Chipotle sofritas so popular.

Overhead view of ingredients for sofritas

What You’ll Need

Scroll down to the recipe card below this post for ingredient quantities and full instructions.

  • Extra-firm tofu – Chipotle actually uses firm tofu in their sofritas, but I much prefer the texture of extra-firm.
  • Olive oil
  • Kosher salt
  • Yellow onion – Make sure the diced onions are all the same size so they cook evenly.
  • Garlic
  • Smoked paprika
  • Chili powder – You can add more if you’d like.
  • Cumin
  • Chipotle peppers in adobo
  • Adobo sauce – Measured from the can of chipotle peppers.
  • Diced tomatoes
  • Granulated sugar – Just enough to cut the acid in the recipe.

How Spicy Are Chipotle Peppers in Adobo?

Chipotle peppers are considered in the medium-hot range; they’re usually a little bit spicer than jalapeño peppers, so if jalapeños are too hot for you, you might want to add only one pepper to the sauce. Puree it, taste, and add another (or half of one) if you want your sofritas spicier.

How to Make Sofritas

Ready to put together some epic vegan burrito bowls? It all starts with this sofritas recipe! Here’s what you’ll need to do.

Press the tofu. Wrap the tofu in a dish towel and place something heavy on top. Let this sit for 30 minutes. (A cast iron skillet filled with cans works well for pressing tofu!)

Side-by-side photos showing process of browning tofu for sofritas

Cook the tofu. Heat a tablespoon of oil in a large skillet set over medium heat. Crumble the tofu into the skillet and sprinkle a teaspoon of salt over the top. Cook undisturbed for about 5 minutes, or until the bottom of the tofu is browned and crisp. Stir the tofu and continue to cook until it’s browned all over, about 10 minutes more. Transfer the tofu to a plate.

Side-by-side photos showing raw and cooked onion in skillet

Sauté the onion. Return the skillet to the stovetop over medium heat. Add the onion and the remaining salt. Cook until softened and just beginning to brown, about 5 minutes.

Side-by-side photos showing cooking aromatics in skillet for sofritas

Add the aromatics. Stir in the garlic, paprika, chili powder, and cumin; cook for 1 minute more, or until fragrant.

Side-by-side photos showing process of making sofrito

Puree the sauce ingredients. While the onion cooks, puree the chipotle peppers, adobo sauce, tomatoes, and sugar in a blender until smooth.

Side-by-side photos showing process of making sofritas

Simmer. Add the sauce and tofu to the skillet and stir to coat. Bring to a simmer and cook for 2-3 minutes, or until heated through.

Overhead view of sofritas in cast iron skillet

Tips for Success

Here’s everything you need to know to make sure your sofritas turn out perfect:

  • Use refrigerated, water-packed tofu. Not silken tofu, which doesn’t have the right texture for this recipe.
  • Don’t skip pressing the tofu. This releases the liquid so it can absorb all those amazing Tex-Mex flavors we’re adding to it. If you cook tofu often, you may want to invest in a tofu press!
  • Adjust the heat as needed. When you’re cooking the tofu, you might have to turn down the heat to keep it from burning. Make sure you stand by the stovetop so you can watch closely.
Overhead view of two sofritas burrito bowls

Build-Your-Own Healthy Vegan Burrito Bowls

So now that you have your sofritas, let’s talk about what you can do with them. You can use them in burritos, salads, and tacos, but I’m all about making healthy Chipotle-style burrito bowls. Here are some ideas:

Bases

  • White or brown rice with a squeeze of lime juice and cilantro
  • Quinoa
  • Cauliflower rice

Beans

Salsas

Guacamole

Veggies

Toppings

Burrito bowl topped with sofritas

How to Store Leftovers

Sofritas store well (which means they’re also great for meal prep!), so if you have any leftovers, just pop them in an airtight container and keep them in the fridge for up to 5 days. They can be reheated in the microwave or in a skillet on the stovetop.

Can This Recipe Be Frozen?

Yes, absolutely! Freeze sofritas for up to 3 months in an airtight container or freezer bag. For best results, I recommend letting the sofritas thaw in the fridge before reheating.

Spoonful of sofritas

Vegan Sofritas

These Chipotle-inspired tofu sofritas will add protein and smoky, spicy flavor to all your favorite Tex-Mex dishes. Easy enough to make for a weeknight dinner and perfect for vegan meal prep!
Prep Time 35 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 55 minutes
Servings 4 servings
Calories 198kcal
Print Pin
Overhead view of burrito bowl with sofritas
5 from 1 vote

Ingredients

Instructions

  • Wrap the tofu in a dish towel and place something heavy on top to press for 30 minutes.
  • Heat 1 tablespoon oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Crumble the tofu into very small pieces and add to the skillet. Sprinkle with 1 teaspoon salt. Cook, undisturbed, until browned and crisp on one side, about 5 minutes. Stir and continue to cook until browned all over, about 10 more minutes, reducing the heat as necessary to avoid burning. Transfer tofu to a plate.
  • Heat the remaining 1 tablespoon oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the onion and remaining ¼ teaspoon salt and cook until softened and starting to brown, about 5 minutes. Add the garlic, paprika, chili powder, and cumin and cook, stirring, for 1 minute, until fragrant.
  • Meanwhile, in a blender, combine the chipotle peppers, adobo sauce, tomatoes, and sugar.
  • Add the sauce and tofu to the skillet and stir well. Bring to a simmer and cook for 2-3 minutes, until heated through.
  • Serve on burrito bowls, tacos, or a salad.

Notes

Store leftovers in an airtight container and keep them in the fridge for up to 5 days. Sofritas can be reheated in the microwave or in a skillet on the stovetop.

Nutrition

Serving: 0.75cups | Calories: 198kcal | Carbohydrates: 15g | Protein: 10g | Fat: 11g | Saturated Fat: 2g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 2g | Monounsaturated Fat: 7g | Sodium: 2606mg | Potassium: 489mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 7g | Vitamin A: 852IU | Vitamin C: 15mg | Calcium: 99mg | Iron: 3mg

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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!

With a week’s worth of simple and healthy meals, Eat Clean will help you see just how easy living a life full of whole foods can be. Recipe are 100% gluten-free and vegan!

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