10-ingredient Vietnamese-inspired spring rolls packed with fresh vegetables, tender cooked rice noodles, seared marinated tofu, and crispy sautéed shallot! Paired with peanut sauce, they're the ultimate plant-based meal or side.
Preheat oven to 400 degrees F (204 C) so you're prepared to bake your seared tofu.
Press tofu (see notes for methods) to drain out some of the moisture, then slice into thick long rectangles (see photo). Place in a shallow dish (or plastic/reusable bag) and add coconut aminos (start with the lesser amount and work your way up to coat) and chili garlic sauce or chili flake (optional). Toss / shake gently to coat and let marinate for 5 minutes.
Heat a medium, oven-safe skillet (we prefer cast iron) over medium heat. Once hot, add avocado oil and tofu (reserving any leftover coconut aminos for dipping). Sear tofu for 4 minutes or until golden brown, then carefully flip with a fork or spatula for even cooking. Cook for 3 minutes, then transfer skillet to the preheated 400 degree F (204 C) oven for 10 minutes to finish cooking. Then set aside to cool.
In the meantime, add thinly sliced shallot to a small mixing bowl and toss with brown rice flour and salt to coat. Heat a large skillet (we prefer cast iron) over medium / medium-high heat. Once hot, add oil and let it warm for 1 minute.
Once the oil is hot (you can test by adding a piece of shallot — if it sizzles quickly, it’s ready), add shallot. If your pan isn’t able to comfortably fit all of the shallot, cook in 2 batches. Sauté, stirring occasionally, until golden brown (about 8-10 minutes). Then remove from heat and set in a small dish to cool.
Prep vegetables and set aside. Then add rice noodles to a medium mixing bowl and top with just-boiling water. Cook for 4-5 minutes or until tender. Then drain and set aside.
Prepare peanut sauce for serving (optional). Set aside.
Prepare spring rolls: Add hot water to a wide shallow dish — wide enough to comfortably fit the spring roll papers. Add a single rice paper to the water and let soften for 30-45 seconds. Be careful not to soak too long or the papers can tear easily. It should feel pliable, but not too soft.
Once softened, quickly transfer to a clean, flat surface that’s been dampened with a little water to prevent sticking. Carefully smooth edges without tugging too much. Then, to the bottom third of the rice paper, add a modest layer of radish, bell pepper, carrots, cooked rice noodles, tofu, and crispy shallot, and top with fresh herbs.
To roll, tuck the bottom edge of the rice paper (closest to you) over the fillings. Then tuck the left side in over the center, followed by the right side over the center. Finally, roll forward and away from you until the roll meets the seam. Repeat with a freshly soaked rice paper until all fillings have been used up (about 8 rolls as the recipe is written).
Enjoy immediately as is, or with peanut sauce and/or sriracha and chili garlic sauce (optional). Store leftovers covered in the refrigerator up to 3 days. Not freezer friendly.
*To press tofu, either use a tofu press or wrap in a clean, absorbent towel and set something heavy (like a cast iron skillet) on top to encourage moisture wicking. Press for about 10 minutes, then unwrap and proceed with recipe per instructions. NOTE: This recipe calls for 8 ounces extra firm tofu, which is roughly half of one 16-ounce block tofu. *Not all rice papers are created equal. We prefer Three Ladies brand. It seems to hold up better than other brands (less tearing). *Nutrition information is a rough estimate calculated without optional ingredients and with 2 cups red bell pepper, 1 cup carrot, and 1 cup radish distributed evenly among the 8 spring rolls.