March 9, 2023

Vegan Paprikash with Tofu

Traditional Hungarian Paprikash turned plant-based! This Vegan Paprikash is made with tofu and flavored with paprika, onion, and garlic. A simple, flavorful, and high-protein dish. Ready in 30 minutes.

Vegan Paprikash in a skillet with plated dishes surrounding it.

I’m half Hungarian, so I grew up eating paprikash quite regularly.

I must have a true Hungarian palate because I love paprika. And paprikash, like most Hungarian dishes, is loaded with paprika.

Paprika has a delicious savory, sweet, slightly smoky flavor. The flavor is really rich, and you don’t need a bunch of ingredients to make a flavorful dish.

There are quite a few paprikash recipes floating around the internet and a lot of them are pretty complicated. But Hungarian cooking usually is very simple. So I wanted to make this recipe just as simple.

I took the recipe that my family made growing up, which is just a few ingredients, and simply replaced the protein and tweaked the spice ratio.

Seven ingredients. Simple. And easy!

Vegan Paprikash served with elbow noodles.

What is Paprikash?

Hungarian Paprikash is traditionally a meat dish. It is similar to goulash (which is a paprika-based potato stew), but without potatoes and using meat instead, often chicken and sometimes veal. The chicken is pan-fried with paprika and usually some vegetables like onion and pepper.

This vegan version of paprikash is made with tofu. The dish is so similar in flavor to traditional paprikash. It’s crazy! My Hungarian dad was snacking on this when I was testing and was amazed by how flavorful it is.

Tofu is very porous, so it absorbs the ingredients you cook it with. Meaning, it’s really easy to get that classic Hungarian paprika flavor. You will need to use more spice than you might use for a meat-based recipe, but it’s worth it! This is how you get all the flavor.

What does paprikash taste like?

The word paprikash comes from the Hungarian "paprikas" which literally means a dish seasoned with paprika.

Paprikash gets its flavor almost entirely from paprika, so it tastes mild, slightly sweet, and like peppers.

I also add hot paprika to my version of paprikash, so this paprikash is also a tad spicy!

Vegan Tofu Paprikash in a skillet.

Why I love this Vegan Paprikash

  • Dietary needs — this dish is vegan, gluten-free, dairy-free, oil-free, and refined sugar free
  • Vegan version of a classic — paprikash is a staple Hungarian recipe and it’s so easy to make a plant-based version
  • High-protein — this paprikash is packed with protein from tofu. I served my paprikash with a bean-based pasta for even more protein
  • Seven ingredients — Hungarian cooking is very simple, and this recipe is true to that. The paprikash itself is only seven ingredients
  • Budget friendly — Hungarian cooking is very simple, so most Hungarian recipes are very inexpensive
  • Quick — this dish is ready in just 30 minutes

Two plates of Vegan Paprikash with Tofu.

Ingredient Notes & Substitutions

  • Extra Firm Tofu: be sure to buy extra firm tofu for the best texture.
  • Vegetable Broth: the original recipe for this paprikash has you pan-fry chicken in oil, but we’re using broth to keep this recipe oil-free. Veggie broth also adds a depth of vegetable flavor that gets infused into the tofu
  • Onion: I used a yellow onion - you could also use a red or white onion
  • Green Pepper: my family recipe called for green pepper, and green pepper is my personal favorite, so that’s what I call for here. But the recipe turns out great with red/orange/yellow peppers too. If you prefer a sweeter pepper, feel free to use your favorite color.
  • Tomato Paste: tomato paste helps creates a sort of sauce for the dish.
  • Paprika: most generic paprikas from the store aren’t super flavorful, so for maximum paprika flavor, I recommend buying real Hungarian paprika. Or, use smoked paprika, which will change the flavor slightly but is easily accessible at the store and significantly more flavorful than regular grocery store paprika
  • Hot Paprika: this is a spicy version of paprika. The quantities I have listed give this dish a moderate spice, so if you aren’t a fan of spice, start with just a teaspoon of hot paprika and work up from there
  • Salt
  • Elbow Pasta: traditionally, paprikash is served with German Spaetzle, which are small homemade egg noodles. My family always served it with elbow pasta, so that’s what I did here. I used a bean-based pasta for extra protein.

Vegan Paprikash Ingredients

How to make Vegan Paprikash

Step 1. Cube the tofu. Turn each block of tofu on its side and slice in half lengthwise. Then slice the block into 4 strips. Rotate and slice into 8 strips, creating 32 cubes per sheet (64 cubes per block).

Vegan Paprikash Step 1 - cube the tofu.

Step 2. In a large non-stick skillet, sauté the onion for 5-7 minutes until soft, using a splash of vegetable broth as the cooking liquid. If there's any liquid in the pan when the onions are soft, turn to high and cook off the liquid.

Vegan Paprikash Step 2 - saute the onion.

Step 3. Add the tofu and both paprikas. Cook for 6-8 minutes, stirring only a few times - let the tofu cook a minute or two on each side. If the tofu begins to stick, add a splash of vegetable broth.

Vegan Paprikash Step 3 - add tofu and paprika.

Step 4. Add the remaining vegetable broth, pepper, tomato paste, and salt. Cover and simmer for 5-7minutes, stirring occasionally.

Vegan Paprikash Step 4 - add remaining ingredients.

Step 5. Meanwhile, cook the pasta according to the package instructions.

Vegan Paprikash Step 5 - cook the pasta.

Step 6. Serve the tofu paprikash over the noodles. Enjoy!

Vegan Paprikash Step 6 - serve the paprikash with the noodles.

FAQ & Expert Tips

Optimize flavor

Often people will say that they think paprika is flavorless. Grocery store paprika can be pretty bland, so I highly encourage buying real Hungarian paprika. It has so much flavor and a little goes a long way!

We order our paprika from Spice Jungle. (This link is not sponsored, it's simply the paprika I use and recommend.

Do I need to press the tofu?

Sometimes I recommend pressing tofu. For this recipe, it is not necessary.

The tofu will soak up all the paprika flavor while cooking, so there's no need to take the extra time to press.

Can I make this recipe with tempeh?

I haven’t tested this but I think tempeh would be a great option.

Tempeh has a firmer texture, so it mimics meat more than tofu. If you try this, please let me know!

Mushroom paprikash

Mushrooms have a strong earthy, umami flavor that isn’t usually found in paprikash. So be most traditional, I left them out.

That said, the savory mushrooms would definitely be delicious!

If you want to add mushrooms, you could add 8-16 ounces of sliced mushrooms along with the peppers.


Store this tofu paprikash in an air-tight container in the fridge. It will last up to a week.

Feel free to store the tofu and pasta mixed together - get that paprika flavor all mixed in!

Vegan Paprikash ready to serve.

Recipe Prayer

Thank you God for this meal. Thank you for cultures and traditions that bring beauty into this world. Amen.

More Vegan Hungarian Recipes

Tried this recipe?

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Vegan Paprikash with Tofu

‍Traditional Hungarian Paprikash turned plant-based! This Vegan Paprikash is made with tofu and flavored with paprika, onion, and garlic. A simple, flavorful, and high-protein dish. Ready in 30 minutes.















  • 2 14-Ounce Blocks Extra Firm Tofu, drained
  • 1 Large Onion, small diced
  • 3 Tablespoons Hungarian Sweet Paprika
  • 2-3 Teaspoons Hungarian Hot Paprika
  • 3/4 Cup Vegetable Broth
  • 2 Green Peppers, small diced
  • 3 Tablespoons Tomato Paste
  • 1 Teaspoon Salt
  • 8 Ounces Elbow Pasta


  1. Cube the tofu. Turn each block of tofu on its side and slice in half lengthwise. Then slice the block into 4 strips. Rotate and slice into 8 strips, creating 32 cubes per sheet (64 cubes per block).
  2. In a large non-stick skillet, sauté the onion for 5-7 minutes until soft, using a splash of vegetable broth as the cooking liquid. If there's any liquid in the pan when the onions are soft, turn to high and cook off the liquid.
  3. Add the tofu and both paprikas. Cook for 6-8 minutes, stirring only a few times - let the tofu cook a minute or two on each side. If the tofu begins to stick, add a splash of vegetable broth.
  4. Add the remaining vegetable broth, pepper, tomato paste, and salt. Cover and simmer for 5-7minutes, stirring occasionally.
  5. Meanwhile, cook the pasta according to the package instructions.
  6. Serve the tofu paprikash over the noodles. Enjoy!
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March 28, 2023
Made these today and they’re delicious. Easy to make and didn’t take long to bake in convection oven. Thanks for your creativity. Can’t wait to try more of your recipes.
Hi Paula - Thanks so much for your comment :) So glad to hear that you tried the nuggets and enjoyed them! Can't wait to hear how it goes with other recipes you try!
March 17, 2023
thanks for ginger tea recipe it's really good remedy for cold and flu.
January 15, 2023
I really appreciated your ginger tea recipe. I also read it is great for morning also.
December 3, 2022
I made one like this a few years ago. Super yummy! Now I need to try some of your recipes. But where to start???🤷‍♀️💕💕
November 21, 2022
Virginia Sparks
I was in the middle of making your Tempeh Swiss Chard recipe and noticed you never mentioned how much Swiss Chard to add. I just added the sautéed tempeh towards the end and mixed it all together. I also reduced the amount of red pepper flakes.
Hi Jenny - so sorry about that! It should be one bunch. I've updated the recipe to include the correct information. Thanks!
November 20, 2022
This looks fantastic! Do you think we could substitute butternut squash for the acorn squash?
Hi Elissa - you can definitely use butternut squash. In terms of texture, the pie will be exactly the same with either squash. I'd recommend using the volume measurement instead of the weight measurement, since the density of butternut squash isn't exactly the same as acorn squash. Also, the flavor of the butternut squash might come through in the end pie a bit more prominently than acorn squash does, but I don't think it will be too noticeable. Let me know how it goes if you try with the butternut squash. I'd love to hear!
November 8, 2022
Gerry rauch
October 31, 2022
Debbie G.
Hi Elizabeth!Love your recipe prayer! I've never seen anyone else include a prayer with their recipes. Nicely done and to God be all the Glory!Blessings,Debbie
October 8, 2022
Just made a half batch of these and they came out really good! I learned I don’t know how to work with melted chocolate yet haha but I got it done!
Hi Noam - Glad you liked these bars! And I feel ya on the chocolate - somehow it is always a messy process. Thanks so much for sharing!
September 5, 2022
I get most of my recipes from youtube. I would love to see you on there. I didn't see a link for a youtube channel, just wanted to ask to be sure. God bless hon and thanks for this tasty recipe.
Hi Sara - thanks so much for your kind words. I am starting to post more on YouTube (I currently only have a few videos posted) but here's the link to my channel if you'd like to check it out: -Elizabeth
August 17, 2022
Hi Katherine - yes, I did use fire-roasted tomatoes when I photographed this recipe. I don't call for fire roasted in the recipe because it's intended to be a basic, use-in-anything type recipe. But it does taste delicious with the fire roasted tomatoes! -- Elizabeth
August 15, 2022
Cat Lewis
Hello - Is there a way to PIN this recipe? Thanks.
Hi Cat - yes, I just fixed an error on the site. You should be able to see a button above the very first image on the page that will allow you to pin the recipe. Let me know if you're still having trouble.
August 12, 2022
Allison Macfarlane
As someone who has pretty much never successfully scrambled tofu - this was the best scrambled breakfast dish I've ever had - better than eggs and the seasoning is truly delicious!!
Oh, amazing! So glad to hear it went well :) This is definitely one of my favorites - thanks for sharing your kind words! -- Elizabeth
August 4, 2022
Mary Merkelhess
The pesto is lovely! So happy to avoid the cheese and oil.
Hi Mary - So glad you like the pesto! I'm also happy to avoid the cheese and oil :) Thanks so much for your kind words!
July 21, 2022
I enjoy reading through your recipes and will be trying a few later in the week. I especially like the prayers at the end of each recipe. It reminds me to be grateful God provides me with so many beautiful and nourishing fruits and veggies.
Hi Debra - thank you so much for your kind words! I can't wait to hear how it goes when you try some of the recipes :)
June 22, 2022
I really enjoyed this recipe. Fits PERFECTLY in my allergy to foods world. I used Ripple milk and no sugar added SunButter. Was truly surprised at how quickly the recipe came together! Thank you!
Hi Vickie - I'm so glad you enjoyed this recipe and that it works with your allergies. Thanks so much for leaving a comment with your kind words!
June 21, 2022
Linda Casados
It's close to my bedtime, but I've been thinking about making this recipe all day, so I made it just now. After all, it only takes 15 minutes! I used what I had, so I made a few minor substitutions...white beans for cannellini, purple basil from my garden, red onion for more color, and date syrup for maple. I took a bite before putting it in the fridge for tomorrow, and oh my! It's delightfully flavorful, light, and fresh-tasting. Thanks for sharing your recipe!
Hi Linda - I'm so glad you liked the recipe - and your substitutions sound great (wish I was growing purple basil in my garden!) Thanks so much for sharing!
June 18, 2022
Hi, is this ice cream soft to scoop out? I always find my ice creams are hard.
Hi Carol - yes, this ice cream is soft if you let it thaw a few minutes after you take it out from the freezer. It can become pretty solid if it's in a deep freezer, but still thaws quickly on the counter. Hope this helps!
June 18, 2022
Sonia Hope St Claire
thank you for the recipe.
June 13, 2022
I made this pie for my friend who recently discovered she has severe allergies to egg whites, gluten, and dairy. Her favorite pie is sweet potato pie :) She loved it and so did I!
Hi Alexandra - so great to hear from you!! I'm so happy you tried this pie and I'm glad you enjoyed it! It is seriously one of my favorite recipes :) -- Elizabeth
June 7, 2022
Harriett Whited
Love it!!! Wonderful!
Thanks for your feedback! Glad you love this recipe :)
June 7, 2022
Hi Elizabeth! I found you by searching for plant based Catholics! There are very few of us! Thank you for your site and sharing recipes!! I look forward to trying these muffins! Can sugar be reduced safely in most of your recipes? -JMJ-
Hi Katherine, Thanks so much for reaching out! Glad to meet another plant-based Catholic - agree, there are so few of us. As for sugar, I never use white granulated sugar in any of my recipes. Most use maple syrup or date sugar/date syrup. I'm not sure if this is what you mean, or if you're asking about reducing the amount of date sugar that the recipe calls for. If that's the case, it really depends on the recipe. A lot of the baking recipes have specific ratios of flour to sugar and wet to dry, so it may not go well if you change the amount of sugar. I hope this helps, but if I didn't answer your question, please let me know. Also happy to advise on a particular recipe if you're looking to change it. Let me know how I can help :) Elizabeth
June 2, 2022
Love this vegan lentil/mushroom stew! For some odd reason, I had never thought to put mushrooms into my lentil stew. Thank you for a wonderful addition to my recipe box!
Hi Sharon - I'm so glad you are enjoying this recipe (mushrooms are so good!!). Thank you for taking the time to share :) Elizabeth
May 23, 2022
Hello, I found you on FB and really enjoy your Catholic Plant Based GF information & recipes. About the Chickpea beet burgers: if the beans are dried and not cooked, do you think it is enough cooking for the beans? If beans are not cooked completely I have read they are toxic with phytic acid & also cause digestive problems. I am just wondering and will leave it to you to decide/research. To be safe I am toasting canned garbanzos and trying that way out. God Bless
Hi Geraldine, Thanks so much for reaching out. In the beet burgers, the beans do get cooked when the burgers are cooked. You soak them first and then incorporate the beans into the burger patty, then cook the patty. I find that this is the best way to achieve the proper burger texture - if you use pre-cooked beans or canned beans the burgers are mushy and don't get crisp. Your solution of toasting the beans sounds like a great idea to completely ensure the beans are cooked fully - I hope that it worked for you and your burgers turned out well! -- Elizabeth
May 18, 2022
viki avgen (i am israel)
hi,thank you for the recepie of the banana.Iam diebetik and i would love any recepies without sugar. thank you
Hi Viki - thanks so much for your kind words! Several of my other dessert recipes are only sweetened with fruit - you can find them on my Desserts page. If you have any specific requests, please let me know! -- Elizabeth
April 28, 2022
Jean Mastin
Elizabeth: Thank you so much for making my meal times wonderful again. I am 86 yrs plus, and was finding eating dull and dreary. Now it is " scrum delicious time to eat". . Blessings de Jean
Hi Jean - Thanks so much for your kind words. I'm so glad you are enjoying my recipes. Please let me know if you ever have recipe requests or if there's anything else I can do to keep your meals delicious!
April 9, 2022
Can you leave nutritional info for your recipes? Serving size/calories would be so helpful! Trying mushroom lentil stew tonight! and looking forward to crispy chickpea stuffed sweet potatoes very soon. Thanks for creating healthy, attractive recipes!
Hi Katie - so excited to hear that you are trying some of my recipes! I'd love to hear how they go. I haven't posted nutritional information for my recipes because I know it can be difficult for some people with disordered eating to see nutrition facts. I've gotten a lot of requests to add them recently, so I'm working on a solution that can provide information for those who want it but not be triggering for others. In the meantime, if you're curious about the nutrient info about a particular recipe, I recommend using Cronometer. It's a website/app to track and understand nutrient info and I think it does a great job of emphasizing all the nutrients (not just macros). I hope this helps! Please let me know if I can help in any other way.
April 9, 2022
U mentioned date sugar on this recipe but it’s not in the instructions. I know u add it but just in case u wanna add to instructions. Love ur recipes! Thank u. I’m thinking of going to vegan a little nervous tho lol
Hi Vickey - thanks so much for catching that! I am updating the post now. So happy to hear you enjoy my recipes. And exciting that you are thinking about going vegan!! If there's anything that I can do to help, please let me know.
March 28, 2022
Sr Maureen Egan
I'd love to try this soup. What are the nutritional values, like how much fat does it contain, carbs, etc.
Hi Sr Maureen - I usually don't post macronutrient information because I know each person has their own goals and I don't want to encourage or discourage anyone's specific goals. But I often use Cronometer as a tool to understand the nutritional profile of my recipes. I plugged the ingredient information for this recipe into Cronometer and got the following nutrient information per serving: 521 calories, 44g fat, 23g carbs, 16g protein. I hope this helps. Please let me know if you have any other questions and if you try the recipe!
March 26, 2022
Margareta Ahle
This curry is absolutely delicious.
Thank you so much! It's one of my favorites :)
March 23, 2022
Martha maloney
Thank you I have been doing the fruit and oatmeal, etc for years and I love it. I will try the pears. I refrigerate my left over oatmeal and with a touch of milk or fruit juice liquid it’s fine the next day. Just a warning about tofu; it interferes with some medicines especially Thyroid medicine. Thank you for the short prayers, there are lovely.
Hi Martha - thank you so much for your kind words. I'm glad you like the prayers! As someone who doesn't take any medications I have no issues with eating tofu and encouraging others to eat it too (it's a great source of protein!). That said, you should always consult with your doctor about possible interactions with medications. I have plenty of recipes without tofu, so hopefully you can find things that work for you!
March 3, 2022
Susan Cunningham
I made this for Ash Wednesday and it was delicious. It was also simple and not much work time once the mushrooms and onions were cut.
Hi Susan - I'm so glad you liked it!
March 1, 2022
When you say shape into a rectangular loaf, what dimensions? 1/2 thick by 8 inches long or?
My loaf was about 7" long and 4" wide with about 1" of height. Then I sliced it 1/2" thick along the long end to get 12ish biscotti. I will clarify this in the post! Let me know if this makes sense and if you have any other questions.
January 16, 2022
Tracy Henry
Made this tonight. Absolutely delicious Elizabeth. You got this one just right!
Oh yay! I'm so glad you enjoyed it :)
January 16, 2022
L Collins
Hi Could you please confirm two things:1. The amount of salt. Seems like too much. 2. The directions say there is lemon juice in the dressing but it’s not listed under ingredients. ThanksL.
Hi there! Confirming that the two teaspoons of salt in the dressing is correct. I didn't salt the cauliflower when roasting it or the salad after it was done, so this amount of salt was perfect. If you're concerned about it you can decrease the amount of salt in the dressing and then add more at the end if you need it. As for the lemon juice, SO sorry about that! It was a typo in my directions and I've removed it now. Hope this helps :)
December 20, 2021
This looks lovely! Do you have a recipe for the red pepper hummus also? Thank you!
Hi Martha! I don't have a recipe for red pepper hummus on my site. I suggest taking a traditional hummus recipe and blending in roasted red pepper.
November 22, 2021
Amanda J Lehmann
I tried these and they were delicious! A bit dense but flavorful and the "buckeye" blend of peanut and chocolate was on point! Recommend!
Yay! I'm so glad you liked them! -- Elizabeth
December 6, 2021
Hi, these look amazing. I was wondering, could I used powdered peanut butter in place of creamy for the recipe? thanks
Hi Grace! There is already some powdered peanut butter in this recipe, so adding more might make the texture more gluey. Also, the real peanut butter adds some fat, which helps create flavor. That said, if you want to use powdered peanut butter, I would suggest mixing it with a high-fat liquid like coconut cream and then measuring out 2/3 cup. Hope this helps! Let me know how it goes :) -- Elizabeth
November 15, 2021
You mention using vegetable broth in your introduction but it isn’t included in the recipe
Hi Becky - thanks for pointing this out. I have removed mention of vegetable broth from this post. You do not need any vegetable broth. The mushrooms will release natural liquid which will prevent any sticking. -- Elizabeth
September 23, 2021
Tracy Henry
Hi Elizabeth, LOVE you recipes. Please keep them coming. :)I was wondering, can you share what is the vegan chocolate bar you used in this recipe?
August 28, 2021
Henry (Hank) Mader
thank you for the oil free recipe. I'm getting introduced to wild Bolete mushrooms here in Colorado, and everyone sautes Bolete's in butter or olive oil. I'm on a veggie, oil free regimen for heart health reasons. and your recipe suggestion may fill the bill. I can't wait to give it a try.
August 13, 2021
Lindsey Kuhn
This is so fun! Loving your creamy photography :)
August 13, 2021
Lindsey Kuhn
This looks incredible! So yummy and pretty photography