Tofu with Miso Glaze Recipe

Tofu with Miso Glaze

This tofu with miso glaze recipe is every vegetarian’s favourite meal. Slathered in a sweet and savoury miso glaze, it’s definitely not your regular old tofu dish.

What is Tofu with Miso Glaze?

Traditionally known as miso dengaku, this recipe has been enjoyed in Japan since the 1500s.

So what is miso dengaku exactly? To put it in simple terms, miso dengaku is a general term for any miso-glazed dish. Popular ingredients include tofu, eggplant, daikon and konnyaku. This recipe calls for just tofu but you can use other ingredients as well.

If you’re cooking eggplant or tofu with a miso glaze recipe, they are usually skewered and grilled before adding the miso glaze. With the konnyaku or daikon, you boil them until they become tender before slathering on the thick coat of miso glaze on top.

The name dengaku comes from dengaku boshi (田楽法師), a stilt dancer who performed for the god of the rice field during rice planting. Since the skewered tofu resembles dengaku boshi, the dish was named after it.

About the Glaze

Miso on its own is a very versatile ingredient. It can be used in stir-fries, soups, salad dressings and marinades. There are also different kinds of miso and in traditional Japanese miso recipes, they tend to vary based on the region.

The most common type of miso used in tofu with miso glaze recipe is red or hatcho miso but any type of miso will work for this recipe! Red miso is very dark and has a long fermentation process which gives it a more intense and salty flavour. Similar to red miso, hatcho miso has a richer flavour than the more common white miso but it is also subtly tart. Hatcho is also made with 100 percent soybean while red has a mixture of soybean and rice.

To balance the naturally salty taste of the main ingredient of this recipe, we need to add sugar and mirin. An equal amount of miso and sugar are mixed together to create the miso glaze. If that’s too sweet for you, try reducing the amount of sugar and add in more mirin since it has a naturally sweet flavour.

If you feel the miso flavour is too strong (especially if you are using hatcho miso), you can add dashi to dilute a bit.

Now let’s get started on this tofu with miso glaze recipe! If you enjoy this recipe, also try our Miso-Glazed Salmon recipe.

Tofu with Miso Glaze

Traditionally called miso dengaku, this tofu with miso glaze recipe is every vegetarian’s favourite meal. Slathered in a sweet and savoury miso glaze, it’s definitely not your regular old tofu dish.
Prep Time40 minutes
Cook Time30 minutes
Course: Appetizer, Main Course
Cuisine: Japanese
Keyword: appetizer, Japanese, main, miso, tofu, vegetarian
Servings: 4


  • 2 tbsp sake
  • 2 tbsp mirin
  • 2 tbsp sugar use 3 tbsp instead if you use hatcho miso
  • 4 tbsp red miso or substitute for any kind of miso
  • 2 medium firm tofu
  • 1 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 1 tsp toasted sesame seeds


Prepping the Tofu

  • Preheat the oven to 400 ºF.
  • You should begin by dehydrating the tofu. Wrap two sheets around each piece of tofu and press the tofu between 2 plates for 30 minutes. You can set something heavy on top of the plates instead of pressing for the entire time.
  • Once the tofu has been dehydrated, cut them into bite-sized pieces.
  • Line a baking sheet with some parchment paper and place the tofu pieces on it. Brush the tofu with vegetable oil and bake for 20 to 30 minutes.
  • Do not turn off the oven after the tofu is finished baking. You will need it again later but while waiting for it to bake, get started on the miso glaze.

Miso Glaze Sauce

  • Combine the sake, mirin, sugar and miso in a saucepan. Make sure to stir constantly so that the miso doesn’t burn.
  • Bring the mixture to a gentle simmer over low heat and cook for 2 to 3 minutes.
  • Once the miso sauce has thickened into a glaze, remove from the heat it is ready to use. If you have extra, you can store it in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 3 to 4 weeks.
  • Slather it evenly on top of the tofu pieces once they have finished baking. Adjust one of the baking racks in the oven to be 6 inches from the heating unit. Broil the tofu with miso glaze for 3 minutes, or until the top has nice char and caramelization.
  • Transfer to a serving platter, garnish with sesame seeds and serve immediately. Enjoy!


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