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Vegan nicoise salad with tofu, in various bowls on a tiled table.

Vegan Nicoise Salad

5 Stars 4 Stars 3 Stars 2 Stars 1 Star 5 from 3 reviews
  • Author: Alexandra Shytsman
  • Prep Time: 20 minutes
  • Cook Time: 25
  • Total Time: 45 minutes
  • Yield: 4 servings 1x
  • Category: Main Course
  • Method: Stovetop
  • Cuisine: French
  • Diet: Vegan


Nicoise salad is summer in France, in a bowl.



For the Salad:

  • One 14-ounce block extra firm tofu* (see note below)
  • 1 1/2 pounds baby potatoes, cleaned thoroughly*
  • About 12 ounces green beans, trimmed
  • Fine sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • About 2 tablespoons neutral cooking oil, like avocado, refined coconut, or organic canola
  • 10 ounces cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 2 large roasted red peppers from a jar, drained well and sliced
  • 1 cup pitted calamata olives, halved

For the Dressing:

  • 3 tablespoons mild vinegar, like apple cider, wine, or champagne (or lemon juice)
  • 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
  • 1/4 teaspoon fine sea salt
  • Fresh ground black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons drained capers
  • 1 small or 1/2 large shallot, finely diced*


  1. Press tofu. Drain tofu and place on a plate, then top with another plate or cutting board and weigh it down with something heavy (like a couple of cans), to squeeze out as much water as possible. Let stand for about 15 minutes, periodically draining off the excess water. (Or use a tofu press.)
  2. Cook potatoes. If your potatoes are small, leave them whole; if they’re bigger, cut into 1-inch chunks. Place in a pot, add enough water to cover by about 2 inches, plus a heaping teaspoon of salt. Cover and bring to a boil. Then reduce the heat to low and simmer until they can be pierced with a fork, 12 to 15 minutes, being careful not to overcook them.
  3. Cook green beans. When the potatoes are almost done, add the green beans to the pot and simmer for 3 to 4 minutes, just until they’re bright green. (Don’t overcook – you don’t want them to be limp.) Using tongs, quickly transfer the beans to a colander and immediately run under cold water to stop the cooking process. (Alternatively, cook the beans in a separate pot of salted boiling water.)
  4. Drain the potatoes and return to the pot. Let stand until they stop steaming.
  5. Meanwhile, cook tofu. While the veg are happening, start the tofu. Slice the pressed block into 8 slabs and lay them in a single layer on the cutting board. Sprinkle the top-facing side with salt, pepper, and garlic powder.
  6. Heat a large non-stick skillet over medium heat and add enough oil to cover the bottom. Add tofu in a single layer seasoned-side down, then season the top-facing side. Cook until a golden crust forms on the bottom, about 8 minutes, then flip and brown the other side; do not flip/move the tofu unless absolutely necessary.
  7. Transfer tofu to a paper towel-lined plate. When cool enough to handle, slice crosswise.
  8. Make dressing. In a bowl, whisk together 3 tablespoons each vinegar and oil, 1 tablespoon mustard, 1/4 teaspoon salt, and lots of pepper. Then stir in 2 tablespoons capers and the chopped shallot.
  9. Serve salad. To serve, divide the potatoes, green beans, tofu, tomatoes, olives, and peppers among bowls, then drizzle with dressing. Alternately, arrange everything on a large platter and serve family-style.


  • If avoiding soy, replace this seared tofu with crispy chickpeas or marinated white beans.
  • If all you have are regular-size potatoes, cut them into 1-inch chunks, then cook the same way as instructed.
  • Don’t have shallots? Sub with finely diced red onion.


  • Serving Size: 1/4 of the recipe
  • Calories: 385
  • Fat: 22.1 g
  • Carbohydrates: 39.3 g
  • Fiber: 9.8 g
  • Protein: 13.4 g