Vegan Egg Foo Young No Tofu

Vegan Egg Foo Young - No Tofu

Does Vegan Egg Foo Young sound impossible? It’s not! Find out why this delicious recipe is one of my favorite go-to dishes for an easy Chinese dinner.

If you want to avoid tofu, you’ll be happy to know this tender, veggie-filled egg foo young smothered in mushroom gravy doesn’t contain any bean curd.

Now don’t get me wrong. The ever-versatile tofu is still a mainstay in my kitchen. But sometimes you want variety. 

Or perhaps you have a family member that prefers not to eat tofu. Thus, this entree is for everyone, including those who are not a fan of the beautiful, jiggly bean curd.

Vegan egg foo young batter

Vegan egg foo young ingredients.

Key seasoning

There’s one indispensable ingredient in this recipe. That star seasoning is kala namak black salt. I love how the aromatic quality from naturally occurring sulfur compounds in kala namak fools your senses into thinking you are eating eggs. It’s truly amazing! 

Is Himalayan salt the same as black salt?

But maybe you are wondering what kala namak salt is? Kala namak, also called black salt, starts out as pink rock salt mined near the Himalayas. You can purchase pink Himalayan salt as it is, but it won’t have the magical culinary qualities of black salt.

To create the pungent sulfurous aroma of kala namak, pink rock salt is fired in a kiln with charcoal. The high heat transforms compounds in the salt giving the finished product a dark purple-black color as well as its distinct smell.

Once it’s finely ground, the “black” salt turns a pinkish color. So, don’t confuse gourmet black salts from places other than India with Himalayan black salt. Fortunately, your nose will give you the final confirmation! 

Ginger and white pepper complement the black salt making each bite of vegan egg foo young scrumptious. Plus, the blended batter is high in excellent plant protein.

Vegan egg foo young batter.

These delicious pan-fried cakes are stuffed with bean sprouts, sweet carrots, and crunchy water chestnuts.

Vegetable filling for Chinese pancakes.

The moong dal batter holds the crunchy fillings together and turns light and springy as it all cooks in a skillet.

Scooped Chinese pancake batter.

Quick shiitake mushroom sauce

The finished pancakes are topped with a silky baby shiitake mushroom sauce. It’s light and glistening, more like a glaze than a heavy gravy. Arrowroot in place of flour or cornstarch is the thickener that gives the sauce its clear appearance.

Baby shiitaki mushroom sauce ingredients.

Look how the precious shiitake mushrooms shine in the finished sauce. The gravy moistens the savory pancakes just the right amount without overwhelming the delicate flavors of the water chestnuts and bean sprouts inside.

Finished baby shiitaki mushroom sauce.

Serving suggestion

I like to serve this dish with steamed rice and bok choy flash braised in vegetable broth. Ladle your mushroom gravy over the pancakes and sprinkle everything with sliced green onion for a complete and satisfying meal.

Vegan egg foo young served with rice.

More vegan International favorites

Thai Style Hot and Sour soup

Vegan Pate Banh Mi Sandwich

Roast Pumpkin Red Curry

I would be thrilled to know if you tried this recipe! Leave a comment, rate it, and don’t forget to tag a photo #poppyswildkitchenrecipes on Instagram. Aloha!

egg foo young full plate set up

Vegan Egg Foo Young – No Tofu

Pan-fried savory Chinese pancakes loaded with bean sprouts, sweet carrots, and crunchy water chestnuts. Finished with silky, baby shiitake mushroom sauce. Gluten-free, dairy-free, and whole food.
Print Recipe Pin Recipe
Course Dinner
Cuisine Chinese, Plant-Based, Whole Food
Cooking Skill Intermediate
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 35 minutes
Servings 4
Calories 340
Author poppyswildkitchen


Vegan Egg Foo Young Batter

  • 2/3 cup yellow split moong dal
  • 2 TB basmati or jasmine rice
  • 2 TB chopped ginger
  • 1 TB lemon juice
  • 1 tsp. kala namak black salt
  • 1/4 tsp. white pepper
  • 1/4 tsp. turmeric powder
  • 1 tsp. onion powder
  • 2 TB neutral oil
  • 1/2 cup water

Vegetable Filling

  • 2 cups raw bean sprouts
  • 1 cup sliced water chestnuts
  • 1 cup shredded raw carrot
  • 2 TB soy sauce or tamari for gluten-free
  • 1/2 tsp. baking soda

Shiitake Mushroom Sauce

  • 1 1/2 TB arrowroot starch
  • 1/8 tsp. garlic powder
  • 1/16 tsp. sea salt
  • 1 1/2 cups water
  • 2 1/2 TB soy sauce or tamari for gluten-free
  • 1 TB neutral oil
  • 4 oz. fresh baby shiitaki mushrooms, about 1 1/2 cups


Soak Dal and Rice 4 hours or Overnight

  • Place yellow dal and rice in a medium sized bowl. Cover with 2 cups of water and soak for 4 hours at room temperature or overnight in refrigerator. Rinse in a strainer and shake off water.


  • Place soaked dal and rice in a blender with ginger, lemon juice, black salt, pepper, turmeric, onion powder, oil, and water. Blend on high speed until batter is light and fluffy.
  • Pour batter in a bowl. Fold in bean sprouts, water chestnuts and carrots. Dissolve baking soda in soy sauce. Lightly stir baking soda mixture into batter.
  • Grease a large cast iron skillet with a small amount of neutral oil and set at medium-low heat. Pour batter in skillet 1/4 cup at a time and spread to 4 inches wide with a fork. Cook until golden on both sides.

Shiitaki Mushroom Sauce

  • Dissolve arrowroot starch, garlic powder, and salt in a bowl with water and soy sauce.
  • Pour oil in skillet and heat to medium. Add mushrooms and give a quick stir.
  • Pour the arrowroot mixture into the pan with mushrooms. Turn up heat and bring to a quick boil while stirring. As soon as the mixture thickens, the sauce is done.


  • Serve fried pancakes with mushroom sauce and slivered green onions over the top.


Arrowroot starch will make a clear, silky sauce that glistens. You can substitute cornstarch 1 for 1 in this recipe, but it will change the texture and appearance of the sauce slightly.
If you are lucky enough to have left overs, the pancakes are incredible reheated in a toaster oven for a couple minutes. Top with chipotle aioli or any favorite sauce.  They make a delicious 5 minute breakfast.


Calories: 340kcal | Carbohydrates: 48g | Protein: 15g | Fat: 11g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 3g | Monounsaturated Fat: 7g | Trans Fat: 1g | Sodium: 1857mg | Potassium: 425mg | Fiber: 8g | Sugar: 7g | Vitamin A: 5424IU | Vitamin C: 12mg | Calcium: 52mg | Iron: 3mg

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