Japanese style Ma Po Tofu Donburi

Ma Po Tofu is originally from China and one of popular dishes in Japan. Japanese style Ma Po Tofu is less spicy and light.

I often make this dish at home. It is a perfect simple dish for weeknight supper with a couple of side dishes (Sunomono Salad, Gomaae etc)! Pack this in a thermos for your kids lunch and they will love it.

What you need; 4 servings

  • ½ lb. (about 225g) ground pork ( I sometime like to use ground turkey or chicken for healthier option)
  • 1 package of Medium Tofu (about 1 lb)
  • 1 tbsp cooking oil
  • 2-3 clove garlic, finely chopped
  • 1 thumb side fresh ginger, finely chopped
  • 1 tbsp tobanjan (Chile bean sauce/paste)
  • 1 cup water
  • 2-3 tbsp medium miso paste
  • 1 tbsp low sodium soy sauce
  • 1 tbsp corn starch mixed with 1 tablespoon water chopped green onion for garnish
  • Cooked rice

How to;

  1. Place tofu in a cutting board, add some weight (plate with a can of beans works well), and let the tofu drain for about 30 minutes. Cut tofu into ½-inch cubes. Set aside.
  2. Heat oil in a frying pan on low-medium heat, add garlic and ginger. Stir fry for a few minutes. Add the tobanjan and stir frequently for 3-4 minutes.
  3. Add the ground pork and break up the chunks of meat until no longer pink.
  4. Add the water, miso paste and soy sauce into the pan, mix and simmer for 5 minutes.
  5. Add tofu cubes and simmer for about 10 minutes. Mix the cornstarch with the water and stir it into the pan.
  6. Stir gently, so as not to break the tofu cubes, until the sauce is thickened and glossy.
  7. Serve in bowls on top of Japanese rice. Sprinkle chopped green onion.


If you like hot, increase the amount of chili paste. You can create your own taste for using other kinds of miso. If you don’t have medium miso paste, just use one you have and adjust soy sauce amount for your taste.

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