Goma Dofu: How to Enjoy Japanese Sesame Tofu

As you know, Tofu (豆腐) is soybean curd indispensable for Japanese cuisine. We commonly use the food as an ingredient in miso soup, so we eat it almost daily.

Today, the Japanese delicacy is available in many countries, but together with Tamago Dofu, have you ever heard of Goma Dofu (胡麻豆腐: meaning Sesame Tofu)?

Goma Dofu (胡麻豆腐: Sesame Tofu)

Goma Dofu or Japanese Sesame Tofu

In the name of Goma Dofu, Goma (胡麻) means sesame, and Goma Dofu is often referred to as Sesame Tofu in English-speaking countries.

Although Sesame Tofu includes the word Tofu in its name, the delicacy doesn’t use soybeans but mainly consists of finely ground sesame seeds and kudzu flour.

Production Area

Eiheiji (永平寺)Eiheiji Temple

Goma Dofu is a food widely enjoyed in Japan, bought at supermarkets. Regarding the production area, Nara and Wakayama Prefectures are well known.

Sesame Tofu is an essential of the Shojin Ryori cuisine served at Buddhist temples on Mt. Koya, Wakayama. The mountain is a holy site of the Shingon sect of Buddhism, inscribed as a World Heritage Site of Unesco in 2004.

The Goma Dofu, seen around the Eiheiji temple in Eiheiji Town, Fukui, also has an established reputation. Eiheiji (永平寺) is one of the headquarters temples of the Soto Zen sect, by the way.

How to Eat 

As for eating, we enjoy Goma Dofu in various ways, which include the following.

As a Side Dish

Goma Dofu with Soy Sauce and Wasabi

Generally, Goma Dofu is not used in other dishes because it has a strong sesame flavor. When eating, as with cold Tofu or Hiyayakko, we typically dress it with soy sauce and garnish it with wasabi.

As a Dessert

Goma Dofu with Kinako and KuromitsuImage: FC2 Blog

We also enjoy Goma Dofu by dousing it with Kuromitsu brown syrup or honey and dusting it with Kinako soy flour. The dessert is like Bavarian cream.

With Sweet Miso

Goma Dofu with Sweet Miso

Goma Dofu also pairs well with sweet miso (Ex. a mixture of miso and mirin). The miso-topped Sesame Tofu is like a cross between a dish and a dessert.

(Reference Page: Wikipedia 胡麻豆腐 )


Hi, I'm Tomo, a Japanese blogger living in Niigata Prefecture, Japan. For the purpose of enriching your life, I would like to introduce things about Japan on this blog, especially unique Japanese products, cooking recipes, cultures, and facts and trivia.

4 Responses

  1. Nancy Cadet says:

    Thanks. That was a great introduction to goma dofu and the most popular ways to serve it.

    I wonder if it must be kept in the refrigerator. How long is it edible or safe to eat after you make it?

    • Tomo says:

      Thank you for the comment!

      Actually, goma dofu comes in 2 types: one is made from sesame seeds and kudzu arrowroot powder, while the other has the addition of starches other than kudzu.

      When you have the former type, you have to eat it as soon as possible in a couple of days, because the sesame tofu is unsuitable for refrigerated storage. Therefore, right before you eat it, chill the sesame tofu in the refrigerator for one or two hours.

      Regarding the latter type, whether the sesame tofu should be refrigerated or not and how long the food can be preserved depend on the variety of the starches used in the sesame tofu.

  1. August 9, 2017

    […] Sesame Tofu is a Tofu-like food that is made by crushing sesame seeds,then boiling in water and chilling like tofu.(I wrote about Sesame Tofu in my past article) […]

  2. August 9, 2017

    […] Sesame Tofu is a Tofu-like food that is made by crushing sesame seeds,then boiling in water and chilling like tofu.(I wrote about Sesame Tofu in my past article) […]

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