For those looking to stick to a plant-based diet, finding enough protein and flavor are two main challenges. Tempeh is the solution to both of these issues. Tempeh is rich in protein and lends itself to taking on a variety of flavors.
Rich in protein and other nutrients, Tempeh is a great meat substitute. Tempeh also works in lots of different recipes. Finding protein-dense foods that don’t come from animals and still taste good is a challenge, but these nutrient deficiencies are easily solved with Tempeh.
If you’re looking to spice up your plant-based diet with Tempeh, this article is for you. For more ways on how you can add Tempeh to your meal rotation, stick around. Keep reading for five amazing tempeh recipes.
What is Tempeh?
For those who aren’t used to trying out foods that aren’t locally grown, Tempeh at first can seem like a strange thing to put in your body. Usually sold in block form, Tempeh is fermented soybeans and initially came from Indonesia before making its way into foreign markets. While Tempeh is similar to Tofu, it is fermented and also has a nuttier flavor than its more famous counterpart.
Tempeh is typically marinated in a chosen sauce and cooked before it is placed in a dish to give it more flavor. This is much the same process as preparing meat. With its upcoming popularity, there are many Tempeh recipes for different cuisines around the world.
5 Amazing Tempeh Recipes
With the versatility of Tempeh, hundreds of recipes show you unique ways to add it to your diet. Below are five of the many amazing recipes you can try along with recommendations for food of the same type.
Vegan BLT With Baked Tempeh Bacon
A twist on the classic American sandwich, this plant-eater friendly sandwich makes excellent use of Tempeh, showing it can easily be a meat substitute.
The vegan BLT sandwich is also a great recipe to have because it allows you to be versatile with your food. If you aren’t a fan of straight-up vegan cheeses or bread, you can swap in whatever kind of bread or toppings you want without astronomically affecting the taste.
The sandwich is typically served with Ciabatta bread, vegan cheddar cheese, mayo, red onion, and avocado slices. To make the Tempeh more bacon-like, you can just cut into thinner slices.
If you’re craving a good old burger, try a vegetarian BBQ tempeh cheeseburger. No matter what your tastes, if you’re a sandwich person, Tempeh would be a great staple.
If you’ve recently gone off meat and are looking for a delicious substitute to eat with your typical rice and other sides, Tempeh Delight would be an excellent choice for you. It’s a stand-alone dish so you could eat it by itself without adding anything to it if you wanted to.
A spin on a traditional chicken seasoning, Tempeh Delight uses ginger, soy sauce, garlic, and maple syrup to provide a marinating sauce for Tempeh sliced to your desired size. The cook time on this dish is a little lengthy, but the end product is worth it.
If you’re more interested in finger food versions of a stand-alone tempeh dish, you should try baked buffalo tempeh tenders. If you’re careful while buying the ingredients, you can even make these bad boys dairy-free.
Another great finger food option is crispy panko-crusted tempeh fries. While they might be called fries, they’re more like sausage-shaped chicken nuggets and don’t require any frying.
Instead of frying, you use panko breadcrumbs and roll the Tempeh in the mixture. As with most of these recipes, this dish takes a while to make, so don’t do it if you’re in a hurry.
Tempeh Bean Stuffed Peppers
If you’re a fan of stuffed vegetables, you’ll love Tempeh bean-stuffed peppers. While this recipe also takes a little time to cook, it tastes incredible. In this version, the Tempeh is cooked a bit differently, being cooked at the same time as other ingredients in the recipe.
Because of the stuffed nature of the dish, the recipe calls for a lot of ingredients, including bell peppers, olive oil, feta cheese, and onion, cannellini beans, vegetable broth, and baby spinach.
While the recipe does require a lot of time and preparation, the product is a reasonably easily portable snack that is less likely to make a mess and tastes phenomenal.
Due to the moldable and easily separable nature of Tempeh, it works as a great addition to stuffings for all kinds of dishes. Another popular tempeh stuffed dish is tempeh sausage-stuffed acorn squash.
This is an excellent choice for those who also don’t eat dairy products. The tempeh-stuffed acorn squash for fall is a sweet spin off the tempeh sausage-stuffed acorn squash, being filled with fruits, making it a good option for dessert or a snack.
For those looking for a more bite-sized stuffed vegetable option, try vegan cheese and Tempeh stuffed portobello mushrooms.
Easy Thai Salad with Peanut Tempeh
This is an excellent choice for those who want a tasty meal but are not into long baking times or aren’t fans of being in the kitchen. The whole salad only takes thirty minutes to make, including five minutes to bake the Tempeh.
The original recipe calls for vermicelli noodles, carrots, green onion, cilantro, chopped mint, loosely packaged spinach, red cabbage, bell peppers, and Tempeh marinated in a peanut sauce. If you want to make the salad a little lighter, you can take out the vermicelli noodles.
The recipe also comes with a recipe for a custom sauce, which includes peanut butter or almond butter, tamari or oy sauce, maple syrup, chili garlic sauce, lime, and water. Fair warning that the salad might be a little spicy if you are weak against spices.
Tempeh is a great ingredient to use in salads. It is an easy replacement for chicken and can quickly be marinated to match the sauce you are using. Other great salads that use Tempeh are a simple kale salad with maple pepper tempeh and a roasted vegetable salad with smokey Tempeh.
Along with salad recipes being easily altered, salads are also a great choice because of the short prep time and the relative cleanliness in preparing the food.
Vegan Tempeh Carbonara
If you’re looking for a hearty main course, then the vegan tempeh carbonara is perfect for you. This a great take on an American-Italian classic. To season the Tempeh, you will need an onion, olive oil, BBQ sauce, paprika, salt, soy sauce, and black pepper.
The sauce used is made up of cashews, unsweetened almond milk or other plant-based milk, white miso paste, nutritional yeast, salt, pepper, parsley, and garlic. The whole process takes just over half an hour, so it’s the right choice if you don’t want to spend a lot of time in the kitchen.
Other dishes that do an excellent job of incorporating Tempeh in for a full course meal are the kale and tempeh curry and the vegan pumpkin and smokey tempeh chili. Both are hearty recipes that are sure to fill you up and correctly uses Tempeh in the mix.
Tempeh is an up and coming soybean-based source of protein that is great for all plant-eaters. Even if you typically adhere to a meat-centered diet, Tempeh is such a great source of protein that it should not be ignored. With these recipes, all of which are relatively easy to adapt to meet your dietary needs and desires, Tempeh is sure to be a staple food in the future.