Healthy Tempeh Recipes
Tempeh (pronounced TEHM-pay) is made by a simple process—hull soybeans, crack and boil them, and then introduce a starter bacteria that ferments the soybean mixture. The result is a pebbled, buff-colored soybean cake. That minimal processing helps tempeh retain many of the nutritional properties related to soybeans, such as high quality protein, fiber, and calcium, and it can also provide significant amounts of iron.
Tempeh has an assertive flavor. It obtains much of its nutty, subtle, tangy flavor from the fermentation process. When the temperature changes, the bacteria present in tempeh may cause small patches of gray or black spores to bloom on the surface of the cake. These spores are harmless and only add to tempeh’s unique yeasty flavor. You can store opened tempeh, tightly wrapped, in the refrigerator for up to five days.
Why we love tempeh: It makes a delicious plant-based riff on a Reuben and packs 9g fiber (a third of your daily needs) into just 3 ounces.
Tempeh with Charred Peppers and Kale
Ever tried tempeh? This soybean-based veggie protein is a great option for vegetarian or vegan sandwiches and wraps because of its firm texture and incredible flavor adaptability. We love it here with a quick soy sauce hit, layered over earthy kale. Got leftovers? Pile this tempeh and veggie combo into a whole-wheat wrap for a perfect to-go lunch.
Grilled Tempeh Skewers
The salty-sweet glaze complements the nutty, slightly tangy flavor of the tempeh. If you've never experimented with this soybean cake before, this is a good recipe to start with.
BBQ and Tempeh and Mushroom Kebabs
Make sure you've got something for everyone at your next summer get-together by throwing these tasty vegetarian kebabs on the barbie.
Tempeh Sloppy Joes with Coleslaw
Topped with cool coleslaw, these saucy vegetarian sandwiches are a great way to try tempeh for the first time. Substitute wild rice or three-grain tempeh, if available.
Tempeh and Green Bean Stir-Fry with Peanut Sauce
Bright in both color and flavor, this stir-fry will become a vegetarian weeknight favorite. Substitute extra-firm tofu, if desired.
Tempeh and Broccolini Stir-Fry
Streamline your stir-frying process by prepping all ingredients before you start cooking. For a whole-grain base, use brown rice.
Tempeh Greek Salad Wraps
These wraps are full of delicious fresh flavor. Summertime, or anytime, this will be your new go-to. Serve with pita chips.
Vegetable Tagine with Baked Tempeh
To peel the tomato this recipe calls for with ease, use a sharp knife to cut a shallow “X” in the bottom of each tomato. Drop the tomatoes into boiling water for 15 to 20 seconds, then remove them with a slotted spoon or tongs. Plunge the tomatoes into ice water and the skins will come off with no trouble.
Tempeh and Wild Mushroom Fricassee
This woodsy dish should be rustic, but don’t let the leeks this recipe calls for bring too much earthiness. Notorious for hiding dirt within their concentric layers, leeks require thorough washing.
Tempeh Coconut Curry
Basmati rice—an aromatic, long-grain variety—is dry and fluffy when cooked, which makes it a nice accompaniment to this fragrant curry.
Tempeh with Curried Cashew Sauce
The papery brown skin and gnarled root of fresh ginger can be puzzling to deal with if you are unfamiliar with it. Its powerful scent and peppery flavor smooth out during cooking and add a liveliness to dishes.
Without the vegetable broth this would be a collection of sautéed veggies, but the broth unifies the flavors into a coherent dish. Ratatouille is normally vegetarian anyway, but we've subbed tempeh for the usual eggplant to give it a meatier texture.