Mapo Tofu

Mapo Tofu (麻婆豆腐)

Mapo tofu is a popular Chinese dish originated from China’s Sichuan province. Mapo means “grandma with pock marked face). Authentic Mapo tofu is extremely spicy (“numbing” has been the adjective commonly used to describe it) to the extent that it is inedible, in my opinion.  We tried it in Chengdu, home of Mapo Tofu, and had to leave the dish untouched after having a little taste of the super super spicy bean curd.

Wind down the chilli heat scale several notches and you will love that wonderfully silky soft bean curd and pork mince in the delicious spicy bean sauce.  Here’s the recipe of an updated version on how we like it.

Video Link:


  • 200 gm belly pork (minced)
  • 1 tube of soft and silken bean curd (they are sold in Asian groceries) – cut into small cubes
  • 1 tablespoon oil
  • 2 cloves of garlic (bashed)
  • 1 tbsp of preserved cabbage (chopped)
  • 2 tbsp chilli bean paste (I like Lee Kum Kee brand)
  • 1/2 cup of water
  • 1 tsp sugar



  1. Heat oil in the pan, add garlic and fry till fragrant.
  2. Add preserved cabbage and fry to mix well.
  3. Add minced pork and fry till brown.
  4. Add chilli bean paste. Stir to ensure pork mince is fully coated with chilli bean paste.
  5. Add the cubes of soya bean curd and stir to combine.
  6. Add water and let the pork and bean curd simmer in the sauce over medium heat for a few minutes.
  7. Taste and add sugar, if needed. Adjust the taste of the sauce to your liking.  If it’s too spicy, add more sugar.
  8. Let the sauce thicken a little before removing to a serving plate.
  9. Serve immediately with steamed rice.

Click here for a vegetarian version of Mapo Tofu:


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