Tofu Bacon Panini

This tofu panini is pressed with the unlikely addition of bacon. Served with a spinach sundried tomato pesto it’s absolutely delicious even if it’s not vegetarian.

Just saying that feels wrong. Very, very wrong. I kept looking over my shoulder while making this thinking the tofu police were about to pop out of the corner of my house for breaking the tofu code of conduct or something. “Thou shall not mix tofu with bacon.” Ok, that’s in the form of a commandment, but whatever. It felt wrong and dangerous. I kinda liked it.

Tofu Bacon Panini

I’m sure this combination makes vegetarians everywhere squirm, but let me tell the rest of you omnivore, bacon loving peeps out there something. This is a combination to die for. Seriously.

Tofu Panini

If paninis make normal sandwiches better and bacon makes everything better, this combo is like winning the friggin lottery.

Tofu Panini with bacon

Balsamic vinaigrette marinated tofu & peppers and a spinach sundried tomato pesto might also have a little something to do with it.

Pressed tofu panini

We had the rest of the tofu for dinner and all I did was mock fry it in olive oil. It was a sad, sad comparison to this lunch. Lucky for Ulysses, he didn’t know any better.

Tofu Bacon Panini

If this is wrong, I’m so over being right. I’ll take my chances with the tofu police.

Tofu Bacon Panini

Tofu Bacon Panini

Yield: 1 serving
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 7 minutes
Total Time: 17 minutes

This tofu panini is pressed with the unlikely addition of bacon. Served with a spinach sundried tomato pesto it's absolutely delicious even if it's not vegetarian.


  • 2 slices wheat bread
  • 2 slices bacon
  • 3 thin slices of extra firm tofu, drained and pressed
  • 1/4 orange pepper, sliced
  • 1 cup packed baby spinach
  • 3 sundried tomatoes
  • 1 tablespoon hummus
  • 31/2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, divided
  • 2 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
  • salt & pepper


  1. Combine 2 tablespoons of olive oil & balsamic vinegar in a shallow bowl. Season tofu slices with salt & pepper and set in marinade. Let sit for at least 10 minutes, flipping once.
  2. While tofu marinates, combine spinach, sun-dried tomatoes, hummus, remaining olive oil (1 1/2 tablespoons) and salt & pepper to taste in a food processor. Pulse until a pesto consistency forms.
  3. Transfer tofu to a hot panini press and grill for about 7-10 minutes, flipping once.
  4. While tofu cooks, heat a small pan over medium high heat and cook bacon until crispy. Set aside.
  5. Remove bacon grease from pan, saute pepper slices with the balsamic vinaigrette marinade from tofu for about 5 minutes until peppers are just charred.
  6. Removed tofu from grill and assemble sandwich. Spread pesto on both pieces of bread, place tofu on one slice, then peppers, then bacon. Top with other slice of bread and press in the panini maker for about 5-7 minutes.


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    1. Running to the Kitchen Post author

      It’s real bacon! I’m not a fan of the fake stuff so I combined the real thing with tofu. haha

  1. Jen @ Light Enough to Travel

    This would probably be good with smoked tofu instead, to get the smokey flavour of bacon without the bacon.

    That said, in Asia, people have been mixing tofu and meat forever, so I think you’re safe considering they invented the stuff. :)

  2. emily

    I’m not going to lie, this is one of the best looking things I’ve come across in the blogosphere this week! The combination of flavors sounds divine.
    Obviously, since I’m vegan, I’ll use a bacon replacement- but you can bet I’ll be making this ASAP. Thanks for sharing! :)

  3. Kate @ Naturastride

    That looks ridiculously good! Love the idea of marinating tofu in balsamic (maybe I’m late to the tofu-party) – plus, of course, adding the bacon is a bonus. You know what, I bet adding some sliced avocado would bring this to the next level, too! Thanks for the idea!

    1. Running to the Kitchen Post author

      I thought about using the avocado sitting on my counter when I was making it but then got too lazy. I bet it would be great!

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