Budget-friendly and nutritious, this vegan tofu bowl features maple-mustard baked tofu, smoky collard greens, and a nutty millet pilaf made with carrot, onion, and garlic. Gluten-free and oil-free options.
Well, kids, I blew it this time. I got a little too excited about Sweet Mustard Tofu and lost sight of the original, budget-friendly goals I laid out for The $2 Lunch Series. I mean, tofu, collard greens, maple syrup....what was I thinking? These aren't exactly the cheapest plant-based ingredients.
"So, what's the damage?" you ask (in this pretend conversation I'm having in my head).
The grand total for this Sweet Mustard Tofu Bowl with Millet Pilaf and Collard Greens is...
$2.17 per serving. Damn it, Lori! Ugh, I tried. I tried so hard to stay under $2!!
Actually, haha, no I didn't. I didn't try at all. I just made the dish the way I wanted to, and it STILL ONLY WENT OVER BUDGET BY 17 cents! How's that for proving healthy, plant-based meals aren't necessarily expensive?
If you haven't seen the first two posts in this series you can find them here:
I'm going to keep today's post short and simple (the cost breakdown is in the recipe). So if you want to learn more about the intention behind The Two Dollar Lunch series check out post #1.
After coating the tofu in sweet mustard sauce, I added a crust of nutritional yeast, which you can omit if you like. I kept the flavor profile of the millet pilaf very simple with onion, garlic, carrot, and salt, but feel free to add spices. And for a little crunch and extra nutrition, I sprinkled pumpkin seeds on top of my bowl. Pumpkin seeds are packed with magnesium, iron, zinc, and fiber, and are especially affordable if you can find them in bulk bins at your grocery store. You can eat them raw, toast them in a pan, or make tamari-roasted pumpkin seeds like we did for the Sweet Potato recipe. Tip: Try adding a pinch of smoked paprika for smoky pepitas!
Speaking of nutrition, millet is a true gem. This gluten-free grain (technically a seeded grass) is a good source of B vitamins, essential amino acids, magnesium, manganese, potassium, phosphorus, iron, zinc, and fiber.
If you're into the idea of healthy, whole-food, affordable meals, give this Sweet Mustard Tofu Bowl a try. Dress it up with hot sauce or your favorite dressing, and snap a photo to share with us on instagram @myquietkitchen. Here's to a wealth of health!
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Sweet Mustard Tofu Bowl With Millet and Greens
For the tofu:
- 1 pound super (or extra) firm tofu, sprouted if possible, cut into rectangles ⅓ inch thick ($2 to $2.50)
- ¼ cup dijon mustard ($.50)
- 3 Tablespoons maple syrup ($.65)
- 1 teaspoon soy sauce (tamari for gluten-free) ($.05)
- ½ cup nutritional yeast, optional
For the millet pilaf:
- 1 Tablespoon olive oil, optional ($.20)
- 1 onion, chopped ($.50)
- 3 cloves garlic, minced ($.10)
- 1 ¼ cups millet, rinsed ($1.07)
- 2 ½ cups water
- 1 medium carrot, peeled, diced ($.10)
- 1 teaspoon salt
For the greens:
- 1 bunch collard greens or other leafy green ($3.00)
- ¼ teaspoon smoked paprika, optional
- pinch of salt
Make the tofu:
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees and line a baking sheet with parchment or a silicone mat.
- Press the tofu (if using sprouted, super-firm tofu that contains very little water, you can skip this step; just pat it dry before dipping/coating): Cut the tofu and place on a lint-free dish towel or paper towels. Arrange so that the tofu is surrounded on both sides by towel(s). Place a heavy skillet or weighted baking sheet on top of the tofu. Let sit 15 minutes.
- Mix the mustard, maple syrup, soy sauce, and pepper in a bowl. Coat each slice of pressed tofu in sauce, draining the excess, then coat in nutritional yeast, if using. Place in a single layer on the prepared pan. Bake for 20 minutes, flip the tofu, and bake another 10 to 15 minutes or until lightly browned.
Make the millet pilaf:
- Heat a deep saute pan or soup pot over medium heat. Add the oil, if using, and onion. Stirring occasionally, cook the onion 4 to 5 minutes or until it is just becoming translucent. Add the garlic and cook for 2 more minutes.
- Add the rinsed and drained millet to the pan. Stirring frequently, cook just long enough to "dry out" the millet and toast it slightly. This should take 2 to 4 minutes, depending on how well the millet was drained after rinsing.
- Add the water, salt, and carrot to the pot and bring to a boil. Stir once, cover, and reduce heat to low. Cook 20 to 25 minutes or until the water has been absorbed. Uncover and let stand 5 minutes. Fluff with a fork.
Saute the greens:
- Preheat a sauté pan over medium heat. Add the collard greens and a pinch of salt. Cook 2 to 3 minutes, or until dark green and wilted. Sprinkle with smoked paprika and remove from heat.
- Serve immediately or store each component separately for meal prep.
If you like this recipe you might also like Sticky Sesame Tofu with Broccoli!