You’ve tried tofu, now try tempeh! Tempeh is a soy product from Indonesia that makes a great meat replacement. It is made by fermenting cooked soybeans (unlike tofu, which is made using soy milk). It has a dry, chewy consistency, is brownish in color, and is less processed than tofu. Even better, tempeh has significantly more protein and fiber than tofu. If this sounds good to you, but you don’t know what to do with this meat replacement, read on—we’ve gathered some of the best tempeh recipes around.
1. Basic Oven Baked Marinated Tempeh
In this tempeh recipe from Epicurious, you’ll marinate the meat substitute in an adobo-like marinade made from soy sauce and vinegar and then bake it. The marinating process can last as little as 20 minutes and as long as 2 days, making this recipe very versatile. Once you’re done marinating the tempeh, all you’ll need is about 15 minutes for your oven to preheat and about another 15 minutes to actually bake the tempeh.
Once the tempeh is baked, you can use it in a number of ways. Epicurious suggests using it to make spring rolls, adding it to stir-fries, or making sandwiches out of it.
2. Barbecued Tempeh
You’ll scarcely believe that this next tempeh recipe’s vegan. In food.com’s barbecued tempeh recipe, you’ll make a delicious barbecue sauce with onion, clove, ginger, crushed tomatoes, molasses, Dijon mustard, soy sauce, rice vinegar and just a bit of cayenne. The tempeh is boiled, then pan-fried in olive oil, then cooked in the barbecue sauce until it absorbs all of those delicious flavors.
Prep for this recipe will take about 15 minutes, and cooking will take about 50 minutes. This recipe is perfect for summer days, and would go great with grilled corn, watermelon and ice-cold lemonade.
3. Hoisin-Braised Tempeh and Chinese Vegetables
If you like more of a Chinese flare in your tempeh recipes, try this delicious concoction from food.com. In this recipe, the tempeh is browned lightly in olive oil with garlic and ginger, then cooked with hoisin sauce, carrots, bok choy, water chestnuts and scallions, with snow peas added in at the end. Serve this dish with white or brown rice and enjoy!
4. Tempeh with Coconut Milk and Lemongrass
If you’re in the mood for more of a Thai inspired tempeh recipe, you’ll probably find this next one delicious. This recipe from vegancoach.com mixes milk, coconut milk, soy sauce, peanut butter, brown sugar, lemon grass, and crushed red pepper to make a delicious sauce. Then, tempeh, bell pepper, scallions and snow peas are stir-fried and added to the sauce, with lime juice and peanuts added at the end.
5. Tempeh Chimichurri
For a more South American flavor, this tempeh recipe from Food 52 combines homemade chimichurri marinade (made with cilantro, parsley, oregano, olive oil, red wine vinegar, garlic, vegetable broth, and tamari) with steamed tempeh, then pan-fries the tempeh to a golden brown. It’s delicious, exotic, and easy.
6. Curried Tempeh Grilled Cheese with Mango Chutney
This entry by veggiebelly.com is certainly one of the more unusual entries on our list, but it is still one of the best tempeh recipes you’ll find. You’ll begin by marinating tempeh in soy sauce and curry powder, then pan-fry it. Next, you’ll make a grilled cheese sandwich using provolone or mozzarella, and will add mango chutney, fresh arugula and the pan-fried tempeh. All of this combines to make a unique and wonderful combination of flavors. This tempeh recipe goes well with salad and Indian spiced potato chips.
7. Tempeh Gyros and Tzatziki
This Mediterranean-inspired dish comes courtesy of food.com. Because the tempeh wants to marinate in the tzatziki sauce overnight, it takes a little more planning than some of the other recipes, but the taste makes it well-worth it. It’s just like eating at one of those Greek restaurants, but vegetarian and delicious.
8. Tempeh Coconut Curry
This delicious curry tempeh recipe from myrecipes combines onion, ginger, garlic, coriander, turmeric, red pepper, cinnamon, sweet potato, lime juice, coconut milk and tempeh for a rich, complicated flavor that’s sure to have you coming back for seconds. This curry pairs well with basmati rice.
9. Tempeh Ratatouille
Usually in tempeh recipes, you’ll swap out meat. But another way to make tempeh recipes easy is to switch out a vegetable, making the recipe higher in protein. This ratatouille recipe from myrecipes replaces eggplant with tempeh. It combines browned tempeh with zucchini, yellow squash, mushrooms, cherry tomatoes, red bell pepper, and basil, then cooks it into a delicious and healthy French-inspired dish.
10. Sweet and Sour Tempeh
The last entry on our list of best tempeh recipes comes from vegancoach.com. It’s Asian-themed, and it combines tempeh with vegetables and canned pineapple. It has a yummy, sweet-and-sour flavor, and it goes great with rice or quinoa.