Officials said Kelley Coffman-Lee's request for a personalized plate with the phrase "ILVTOFU" was rejected due to concerns that it could be misread as "I-LV-TO-F-U," KMGH-TV, Denver, reported Wednesday.
Coffman-Lee said she has been a vegetarian for 13 years and a vegan for the past four.
"I love tofu; it doesn't mean anything bad," Coffman-Lee said of her license plate request. "I'm very expressive, I'm anti-fur, anti-rodeo, anti-circus when they come to Denver and I thought here's a chance to be positive and say I love something."
"Tofu is a word, I haven't said anything bad. I think it's crazy they denied it," she said. "It's not a dirty, evil food. It's very wholesome."
Mark Couch, spokesman for Colorado Department of Motor Vehicles, defended the decision to reject the plate.
"We have nothing bad to say about (Coffman-Lee's) love of tofu," he said. "We're concerned about others who may misread the plate."