This vegan cold spaghetti salad with balsamic tofu is ideal for potlucks, BBQs and parties as a side dish or main course. Also a fantastic plant based meal prep option – it’s even tastier the next day! Gluten-free and oil-free.

Cold spaghetti salad with balsamic tofu vegan

People always joke that vegans eat a lot of salad. I go out of my way, in turn, to prove them wrong, by flaunting countless pasta dishes, burgers, and other comfort foods sourced either from the supermarket or my own kitchen.

But that makes me stop and think: there is nothing wrong with eating lots of salad! The word has negative connotations, for sure. You imagine a miserable bowl with a couple of lettuce leaves and cherry tomatoes, perhaps. Yet if you do them right, salads can become anyone’s latest addiction!

Plate of spaghetti salad with vegetables

Hence, this cold spaghetti salad with balsamic tofu. After all, pasta makes everything better – so let’s not dwell and get straight to the food.

Vegan Cold Spaghetti Salad

As I write this, it’s the start of March and I’m already getting excited for the summer. Summer means long days, warmer weather, and of course, BBQs. BBQs = lots of food, which is basically music to my ears. And of course, no one has to miss out, regardless of their dietary preferences!

The fab thing about this spaghetti salad is that it’s not a vegan-only dish. Therefore everyone will love the creamy, satisfying and intense tanginess of it. Each forkful carries the chewiness of spaghetti, the creamy tahini dressing, and crunch from an array of vibrant vegetables. No one will ever guess that this dish is entirely plant based/healthy/oil-free!

Spaghetti on a fork with a tahini sauce

Balsamic tofu ‘feta’ cheese

The balsamic tofu is probably my favourite part of this recipe. However, make sure not to skip or shorten the marinading stage, as this is the step when the flavours really come together and take tofu from plain to an absolute melt in your mouth deliciousness.

Tofu marinading in a bowl

In this spaghetti salad, the tofu acts as a bit of a feta cheese replacement. I used to add feta to salads all the time before going vegan. And, I quickly learned that it is very easy indeed to replace! You can also add this tofu to other dishes – how about adding a few chunks to a falafel salad, or serving on top of cauliflower steak?

Creamy Tahini Dressing

The key to an excellent salad, of course, is the dressing. After all, no good dressing = plain, boring sameness. However, with the right combo of ingredients? You won’t be able to stop eating the exact dish you were sceptical of.

And the key to a good dressing is quite often tahini. It has an earthy, nutty flavour that works well in countless dishes. I’m so obsessed, I sometimes eat it by itself with a spoon like it’s peanut butter. Ok, I admit that some of my eating habits are a bit strange (lol), but I think we can all agree that tahini is magic.

Tahini dressing in a bowl

Making this dressing is as simple as stirring the ingredients together. What you end up with is tangy, summery, and mild to balance out the marinade of the tofu. This is just what you need for a great pasta salad! But you can serve this tahini dressing with other dishes too, such as my sheet pan potatoes and tofu dinner.

Ingredients and substitutions

Plate of cold vegan pasta with tofu and vegetables

  • Firm tofu. Depending on the variety you buy, you may have to press it before cubing.
  • Tamari. Use soy sauce if not avoiding gluten, or coconut aminos for a soy-free version.
  • Balsamic vinegar.
  • Maple syrup or agave nectar.
  • Dried basil.
  • Paprika.
  • Gluten-free spaghetti.
  • Tahini. I tried this with peanut butter too and it’s likewise delicious, just not as tangy.
  • Soy yoghurt, or any other unsweetened vegan yoghurt of your choice.
  • Lemon juice.
  • Garlic granules.
  • Plant based milk of your choice. Adjust how much you use depending on how thick you want the sauce to be.
  • Red onion.
  • Cherry tomatoes.
  • Cucumber.
  • Green bell pepper.
  • Spinach.
  • Pitted green olives.
  • Salt.

Step-by-step to this vegan pasta salad

STEP 1: Prepare the tofu. Add the tofu, tamari, balsamic vinegar, maple syrup, dried basil and paprika to a mixing bowl. Stir together, and set aside to marinade for at least 30 minutes.

STEP 2: Meanwhile, cook the spaghetti according to packaging instructions.

STEP 3: Prepare the sauce by whisking together the tahini, soy yoghurt, lemon juice, garlic granules and plant based milk.

STEP 4: Add the spaghetti to the sauce together with the red onion, cherry tomatoes, cucumber, bell pepper, spinach and olives. Toss together really well, seasoning to taste with salt and pepper.

STEP 5: Add the tofu on top of the salad and leave to chill in the fridge for at least 10-15 minutes before serving.

Tips to take this spaghetti salad to the next level

  • Cold pasta salads often taste better after left overnight in the fridge in an airtight container.
  • Don’t skip out on marinading the tofu!
  • Make sure you don’t overcook the spaghetti.
  • For a spicier salad, add a few drops of hot sauce.

Closeup of vegan pasta with tofu

You will love this cold spaghetti salad!

It is …

  • Super flavourful and wholesome.
  • Made from healthy ingredients.
  • Gluten-free.
  • Oil-free.
  • Easy and beginner-friendly.
  • Meal prep friendly.
  • Perfect for BBQs and parties.
  • Super creamy.
  • Non-vegan approved.

Cold spaghetti salad with balsamic tofu

Other vegan pasta dishes

Let me know in the comments: what’s your favourite way to serve spaghetti? If you give this cold spaghetti salad with balsamic tofu a go, be sure to tag me on Instagram (@earthofmariaa) so I can see your creations, and leave your feedback in the comments below!

Cold spaghetti salad with balsamic tofu vegan

Get the Recipe: Cold Spaghetti Salad With Balsamic Tofu

This vegan cold spaghetti salad with balsamic tofu is ideal for potlucks, BBQs and parties as a side dish or main course. Also a fantastic plant based meal prep option - it's even tastier the next day! Gluten-free and oil-free.
5 from 1 vote

Ingredients

Balsamic tofu

  • 7 oz firm tofu, cubed
  • 1/4 cup tamari
  • 1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
  • 2 tbsp agave nectar
  • 2 tsp dried basil
  • 1 tbsp paprika

Tahini dressing

  • 1/2 cup tahini
  • 1/4 cup soy yoghurt
  • juice of 1 lemon , plus more if too thick
  • 1 tsp garlic granules
  • 1/4 cup plant milk

Other salad ingredients

  • 14 oz gluten-free spaghetti
  • 1 medium red onion, chopped
  • 10 cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 1/2 large cucumber, diced
  • 1 large green bell pepper, diced
  • 2 cups spinach, chopped
  • 10 pitted green olives, halved
  • Himalayan pink salt, to taste

Instructions 

  • Prepare the tofu. Add the tofu, tamari, balsamic vinegar, maple syrup, dried basil and paprika to a mixing bowl. Stir together, and set aside to marinade for at least 30 minutes.
  • Meanwhile, cook the spaghetti according to packaging instructions.
  • Prepare the sauce by whisking together the tahini, soy yoghurt, lemon juice, garlic granules and plant based milk.
  • Add the spaghetti to the sauce together with the red onion, cherry tomatoes, cucumber, bell pepper, spinach and olives. Toss together really well, seasoning to taste with salt and pepper.
  • Add the tofu on top of the salad and leave to chill in the fridge for at least 10-15 minutes before serving. 
Calories: 687kcal, Carbohydrates: 103g, Protein: 23g, Fat: 23g, Saturated Fat: 4g, Sodium: 1280mg, Potassium: 592mg, Fiber: 7g, Sugar: 15g, Vitamin A: 2743IU, Vitamin C: 51mg, Calcium: 207mg, Iron: 6mg

Click here to pin this for later

Vegan spaghetti salad with balsamic tofy