Divine Sesame and Grilled Tofu Watercress Salad [Vegan/Gluten-Free]

Don’t know what to do with watercress? This fabulous Sesame and Grilled Tofu Watercress Salad oughta’ get your mouth watering.20170118Vegan watercress and tofu healthy salad recipe005

I quite enjoy watercress but other than using it as a side, I hadn’t really experimented much until now. There is no reason why watercress should not be considered a main player in the salad world.

It’s a tiny bit bitter, but very fresh, and has some great health benefits like boosting immunity and cancer-fighting properties. In this recipe, watercress balances impeccably with the creamy Divine Sesame Dressing and the added freshness of the cucumber and smooth avocado. To make this a complete meal, I’ve added marinated grilled tofu for some protein. 20170118Vegan watercress and tofu healthy salad recipe001

Divine Sesame Dressing

This sesame dressing is simple, fabulous and a perfect addition to just about any salad. I also love to use it for dipping veggies, and since it’s pretty thick, you can spread it onto crackers or bread. 

20170118Vegan watercress and tofu healthy salad recipe002

If you’re feeling a bit rushed, feel free to swap out the homemade creamy sesame dressing for a store-bought dressing like Wafu – it won’t be as healthy but you’ll save time.

Divine Sesame and Grilled Tofu Watercress Salad

Don’t know what to do with watercress? This fabulous Sesame and Grilled Tofu Watercress Salad oughta’ get your mouth watering.
2.96 from 50 votes
Prep Time 20 mins
Cook Time 20 mins
Total Time 40 mins
Servings 4 side salads or 2 meal sized salads


Divine Sesame Dressing

  • 2 tsp ginger minced
  • 1/4 cup rice vinegar
  • 1/4 cup tahini
  • 3 tsp tamari
  • 2.5 tsp agave syrup
  • 1/4 cup canola oil
  • 1/4 cup sesame oil

Marinated Tofu

  • 1 block of tofu 250 g
  • 2 tsp ground coriander
  • 2 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tsp ground ginger
  • 1/2 cup tamari
  • 2 cups water


  • Watercress approx. 165 - 200 g, washed, large stems removed and roughly chopped
  • 1 avocado sliced
  • 1/2 large English cucumber thinly sliced
  • 2 green onions sliced
  • Handful fresh cilantro chopped
  • Black or toasted sesame seeds


Marinated Tofu:

  • Cut tofu into thin slices (1/8 - 1/4 inch thick), then cut the slices into triangles.
  • Combine remaining marinade ingredients (ground coriander, garlic powder, ground ginger and tamari) into a bowl and mix well.
  • Place tofu in wide container, preferably with a lid and pour marinade over the tofu ensuring all pieces are immersed.
  • Marinate overnight, or minimum 1 hour.
  • Oven roast or grill the tofu.

Oven roasting: Preheat oven at 400F/200C, place tofu on a parchment lined baking tray and roast for 20 minutes, flipping halfway.

    BBQ or Grill: Grill tofu on the BBQ or electric grill, allowing each side to brown.

      Divine Sesame Dressing:

      • Add ginger, rice vinegar, tahini, tamari and agave syrup into a blender (or food processor) and blend.
      • Combine canola and sesame oil and add into the blender small batches, little by little to well incorporate. For best results – working with a top loading blender, pour the oil in very slowly and thinly. This is how you can achieve a thick and creamy texture without mayonnaise.


      • Divide watercress into four small or two large bowls.
      • Divide tofu, cucumber, avocado, green onions, cilantro equally among the bowls.
      • Separate the sesame dressing in two, put half aside and separate the other half among the bowls. Keep the extra dressing on the side for those who may like it heavier dressed.
      • Sprinkle with sesame seeds.
      • Enjoy!
      Tried this recipe?Share and tag @mtlveg!