Updated: Aug 5
An amazing plant-based, vegan-friendly, soy-free, dairy-free, and gluten-free Pumpkin Seed Tofu Alternative (Pumfu) recipe that makes approximately 3 servings and takes about 35 minutes to prepare, with an additional 40 minutes for cook time.
Tofu is a common way for vegan or plant-based people to get their daily protein with 20 grams per cup of tofu. Although soybeans do have some health benefits, we must remember that most non-organic soy products are brimming with GMOs, causing less nutritional value and more toxic effects due to the chemicals involved in the genetic modification process. Soybeans contain compounds like phytate, which may interfere with the body's ability to absorb vitamins and minerals crucial for vegan and plant-based dietary demands. These same anti-nutrient compounds may also cause digestive issues due to a reduction in the gut's barrier functions resulting in inflammation that causes these digestive problems. To learn more regarding The Truth About Soy Products, click here.
Then, of course, people like myself are allergic to soy. When I was looking for an alternative to tofu, I wanted to ensure I chose an option with decent protein content. Initially, I stumbled across Pumfu, a pumpkin-based alternative to soy-based tofu. Still, it was pretty expensive, so I learned how to make my own with roughly 45 grams per block, or 15 grams per serving of Pumpkin Seed Tofu Alternative (Pumfu).
But first, let's discuss the many benefits of pumpkin seeds.
Forms and maintains healthy bones (5)
Improves urinary function (15)
Protects against genotoxicity (16)
So without further ado, I introduce a recipe I love that many non-plant-based eaters in my life also do, so I think it's safe to say that you'll enjoy it, too. Since I am allergic to soy and have adapted to a plant-based lifestyle (no meat or dairy), this recipe is vegan-friendly, plant-based, soy-free, dairy-free, and gluten-free.
This recipe and a few of my other recipe was featured in Earthley's Nourished Living Cookbook.
Pumpkin Seed Tofu Alternative (Pumfu)
1 cup (150 grams) of pumpkin seeds
1/2 cup of water
Gather the ingredients, preferably organic: pumpkin seeds and water.
After gathering the pumpkin seeds, soak the pumpkin seeds in a bowl, and cover overnight. If you're in a rush, 30 minutes is fine. This process will help soften the pumpkin seeds for a smoother blend.
After soaking pumpkin seeds for at least 30 minutes, drain the pumpkin seeds and add them to a blender with 1/2 cup of water. Blend until the mixture becomes a thick yogurt-like consistency. At this step, you could add seasoning before blending to lessen the marination time and infuse the flavor into the tofu alternative.
After draining and blending the pumpkin seeds, line a small glass baking pan with parchment paper and pour the pumpkin seed puree into the pan.
After lining the baking pan, preheat the oven to 350 °F. After the oven has reached the desired temperature, bake the pumpkin seed puree for 40 minutes.
After baking the pumpkin seed mix for 40 minutes, take it out of the oven and let it cool on the counter before putting it in the refrigerator. Let cool for at least 1 hour before marinating.
After the pumfu has cooled for at least one hour, you can marinate and cook it as desired, as you would tofu.