Vegetarian Cholent with Tofu

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31 Aug 2015
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Tamar Ansh, Columnist – Nutritious and Delicious says:

I make a sort of stew, but I never left it on the blech overnight. If I was trying to make a cholent from tofu here’s what I would do (it would serve about 4 to 6 people):

  1. In a large pot, saute a large onion and 4 cloves fresh garlic in about 2 Tablespoons of canola oil
  2. Meanwhile, slice up 400 g (a bit less than one lb.) of tofu into bite sized cubes. Saute them a bit in the oil as well
  3. Add in some water to cover everything, then about ¼ cup ketchup, a pinch of black pepper, and ½ teaspoon salt. Into the bubbling liquid add in 1 cup barley and ½ cup of any kind of beans or a mix of beans. I would use dried beans after soaking for 8 hours . To do a quickie version, use one small can of baked beans instead.
  4. If you like unconventional stuff in your cholent, add in 2 shredded carrots.
  5. Keep it covered with water as the barley will soak up a lot of liquid. Add in some sliced potatoes to the top, sprinkle it with some paprika and let it cook for 4 hours.

To give it more of an Oriental flavor, you can add in 3 Tablespoons  of soy sauce.

This should taste great after the 4 hours. I have not tried it overnight on a hotplate but I see no reason why it would not work. If you do try it, write me back and let us know how it went!

Norene Gilletz, Columnist – The Flavor of Memory says:

Vegetarian Cholent

8 servings

Bev Bergman of Toronto has a daughter who is a vegetarian, so this delicious cholent has become a standard favorite in their household. She shared her recipe with me and it is in my book Healthy Helpings (Whitecap Books).

Broccoli and cauliflower develop a strong taste from long cooking, so you may prefer to omit them. You can also add tofu to this dish to boost the protein content, but be sure to use extra-firm so it will hold its shape. Enjoy!



  1. Soak beans overnight in cold water. Rinse and drain well
  2. Spray a roasting pan (or slow cooker) with nonstick spray. Combine all ingredients in pan and mix gently to combine. (Barley absorbs salt and pepper, so season generously.)
  3. Cover tightly and place in a 275°F oven from late Friday afternoon until lunchtime Saturday. (Or cook covered on the low setting in a slow cooker.)

Tofu Variation: Slice 1 lb. (500 g) extra-firm tofu into 1-inch thick slices, then cut into 1-inch cubes. Pat dry with paper towels, then add to the cholent in Step 2.

Grain Variation: Instead of barley you can use wheat berries or bulgur with excellent results. If you want to add vegetarian kishka, wrap it tightly in foil and place it on top of the cholent in Step 2.

Nutrition Information:

322 calories per serving, 2.9 g fat (0.3 g saturated), trace cholesterol, 13 g protein, 64 g carbohydrate, 522 mg sodium, 917 mg potassium, 4 mg iron, 13 g fiber, 58 mg calcium.

The words of this author reflect his/her own opinions and do not necessarily represent the official position of the Orthodox Union.