Indonesian Marinade for Tofu and Chicken

This marinade was originally inspired by a Cooking Light recipe from 2000 for Indonesian Shrimp Sate with Creamy Peanut Sauce. I prepared 2 batches of this marinade and used 1 batch to marinate 2 lbs. of thick tofu slices for Mr. Batch, and 1 batch to marinate 3.5 lbs. of chicken breasts for me (intentionally made extra, to have some in the freezer).


  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1/3 cup soy sauce (or coconut aminos, if you are gluten-free)
  • 1 Tablespoon minced fresh ginger (approximately 3″ piece of peeled ginger)
  • 2 large garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 Tablespoon minced jalepeno (can add more if you like more heat; with or without ribs and seeds, depending on heat-preference)
  • zest of 1 lime, minced (this resulted in 1-1/2 teaspoons of zest for me)
  • 15 – 20 leaves of fresh cilantro, minced
  • 2 green onions, green and white parts thinly sliced (this resulted in 4 Tablespoons for me)
  • 1 Tablespoon sesame oil
  • 7 grinds of freshly cracked black pepper (this resulted in approximately 1/2 teaspoon for me)

Combine marinade ingredients in the dish you will use to marinate protein in.  Marinate protein for at least 1 hour at room temperature, and up to 24 hours, refrigerated:

To Marinate Tofu:

I consulted‘s article How to Grill or Broil Tofu that’s Really Worth Eating for this technique, which involved using extra firm tofu, cutting wide strips, and drying the slices well (but not freezing them). Then seasoning the tofu well in a flavorful marinade, flipping the slices periodically.

Grill or Broil the Tofu:

I love when other people grill foods, but I hate grilling. So I broiled Mr. Batch’s tofu. It had soaked-up almost all of the marinade. I transferred the slices to a clean, dry, foil-lined baking sheet, and broiled each side for 5 minutes on high.


To Marinate Chicken:

No special technique — rinse chicken breasts and immerse in marinade. Flip chicken breasts periodically while they marinate:


Grill or Bake the Chicken:

I poured-off almost all of the liquid marinade and baked these chicken breasts in a 350-degree F oven, in a foil-covered dish for 20 minutes. And then took the foil off to cook, uncovered, for the remaining 15-20 minutes. The cooking times will vary according to the thickness & size of your chicken breasts, so check them after the first 20 minutes.

I assume you could grill this chicken — if you do, please let me know how they turn out.



Leave a Reply