You don’t have to take an island vacation to enjoy the sweet and savory flavors of the Caribbean. A flavorful Caribbean dish is just a few steps away, in your kitchen! The key to island cooking is a combination of fresh fruits and the right spice combination. Here, our ingredients don’t just add flavor, they add an array of health benefits, too.
The spices used in island cuisine are as healthy as they are delicious. Spices are loaded with active compound that immediately go to work to optimize health.
For this flavor combination, we were inspired by Jamaican jerk seasoning, but took it in a healthier direction. Most Jamaican jerk recipes involve a good amount of sugar. Making your own is your best bet, as most blends on the shelves are full of added sugar. Our recipe is just a starting point — play with the spices and find your perfect combination.
Caribbean Tofu Salad with Mango Lime Vinaigrette
- Prep Time: 10 minutes
- Cook Time: 18 minutes
- Total Time: 28 minutes
- Yield: 2 1x
- 1/2 lb organic extra firm tofu, cubed
- 1 tsp coriander
- 1 t onion powder
- 1/2 tsp turmeric
- 1/2 tsp all spice
- 1/4 tsp cloves
- 1/4 tsp cayenne (optional)
- 2 Tbsp Native Forest Simple Organic Coconut Milk
- 1 mango, diced
- 1 lime, juiced
- 2 cup red cabbage, shredded
- 1/4 cup cilantro, chopped
- Preheat oven to 400F
- Gently squeeze excess water from tofu
- In a large bowl, toss tofu with coriander, onion powder, turmeric, all spice, cloves, cayenne (optional) and salt and pepper to taste
- On a baking sheet lined with parchment paper or a silpat, arrange tofu in a single layer then transfer to oven and roast 15-18 minutes, tossing halfway through
- In a high speed blender, combine lime juice, coconut milk, and half of the mango then puree until smooth
- Pour half of dressing into a large bowl then add cabbage, half of cilantro, salt and pepper to taste then toss to coat
- Divide cabbage salad between plates and top with roasted tofu, remaining mango and garnish with remaining cilantro and dressing
- Serving Size: 1/2 of recipe
- Calories: 232.2
- Sugar: 13.2
- Sodium: 31.8
- Fat: 10
- Saturated Fat: 1.9
- Unsaturated Fat: 0.26
- Trans Fat: 0
- Carbohydrates: 20.3
- Fiber: 3.1
- Protein: 15.5
- Cholesterol: 0
Keywords: dairy free, egg free, gluten free, grain free, oil free, vegan
The superstar of the spice world right now is turmeric, and for good reason. Its active ingredient, curcumin, does wonders for unhealthy inflammation in the body. It has been used for centuries as a therapeutic agent and is now finding a place in modern medicine. It has even been used in treatment of inflammation and pain that occurs after some surgical treatments (1).
On it’s own, black pepper has antiseptic, antibacterial and anti fungal properties. This activity is due to the active compound, peperine. The peperine in black pepper also helps with absorption of the curcumin in turmeric (2).
Cloves and all spice have an incredible aroma and are both a staple in Jamaican cuisine. Studies have shown cloves to have protective effects on the digestive system. It also has demonstrated anti-cancer, antioxidants and anti-parasitic activity (2). Both cloves and all spice have been studied as possible treatments in metabolic disease for their ability to activate receptors in the intestine responsible for metabolic processes (3).
Coriander are the seeds of the cilantro plant, so we get a double dose in the coriander spice mix and the cilantro garnish. It is a potent antioxidant that can protect against neurodegenerative diseases and cancer. Additionally, it has been studied for its ability to relieve migraine and reduce inflammation (4).
This vibrant, delicious fruit is known as the “king of fruits” and is the most popular fruit in tropical regions. It is chock full of health-promoting activity due to their high bioactive phytochemical content. These compounds are notorious for righting free radicals and fighting cancer (5). High antioxidant activity comes from a combination of Vitamin E, Vitamin C, anthocyanins and carotenoids, all found in good quantity in mango. A diet high in these types of fruits and vegetables high has been linked to a reduction in chronic diseases like cancer, diabetes and heart disease (6).
There are unlimited ways to personalize this meal. Think of this as a starting off point. You can use any spice combination on the tofu. If your diet allows, swap the tofu for some lean, organic chicken. You can also play with some other island fruits, like pineapple or papaya!
1–2 times per week
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