My Favorite Way to Cook Tempeh

In the last year or so, I've gotten REALLY into tempeh.

It's inexpensive, high in protein, filling, and takes less than 10 min to cook.

If you've never heard of tempeh, it's a fermented soy product commonly used in vegan and vegetarian dishes, oftentimes as a substitute for meat. 

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Other types of soy products you may be more familiar with (e.g. soy milk, soy veggie burgers made with texturized vegetable protein, or protein bars made with soy isolate) are associated with a host of health risks but the beauty of tempeh is that because it's fermented, it's easier to digest and is not associated with the same health risks as genetically modified, processed soy.

I don't know about you, but I used to get gnarly stomachaches when I was in my soy protein bar and soy veggie burger phase many years ago. Ugh it was so uncomfortable! (TMI??)

Tempeh doesn't have much of a taste on its own but it'll take on the flavor of whatever sauce you use on it. My favorites - which we'll be using in today's recipe - are Coconut Secret and Big Tree Farms coconut aminos, two soy sauce substitutes.

The brand of tempeh I like is the Organic Original Tempeh by Westsoy which contains only 3 ingredients:

  • Cultured organic soybeans
  • Water
  • Organic white rice

And now onto the recipe! I currently make this every Sunday as part of my food prep for the week.

My Favorite Way to Cook Tempeh

Yields 3-4 servings

INGREDIENTS

  • 1 package tempeh
  • 2 tbsp coconut aminos or any soy sauce substitute (these are my favorite brands: Coconut Secret and Big Tree Farms)
  • 2 tbsp coconut oil
  • Salt (to taste)
  • Ground black pepper (to taste)

DIRECTIONS

Scroll down to check out the step-by-step photos!

  1. Remove tempeh from package and cut into cubes (I slice 5 times length-wise and 4 times width-wise = 30 cubes)
  2. Place in a container with a lid and pour sauce over tempeh. Marinate for anywhere from 20 minutes to 24 hours. (The longer you wait, the more flavorful, but if you want to eat it right away, 20 minutes works totally fine)
  3. Heat a 10" skillet on low to medium heat and add coconut oil
  4. Add tempeh and any leftover sauce from the marinating bowl
  5. Fry for 3-4 minutes or until golden brown
  6. Flip and fry for another 3-4 minutes or until golden brown
  7. Add salt & pepper to taste
  8. Let cool for a few minutes so you don't burn your tongue. Then serve immediately or enjoy later.

SERVING SUGGESTIONS

  • Eat plain as a snack
  • Serve with 2 of your favorite veggies (my go-to veggies are asparagus, broccoli, sweet potatoes, butternut squash, or spaghetti squash)
  • Make it into a bowl with quinoa or rice, sautéed kale, and roasted veggies
This is the brand of tempeh i buy - sprouts (a natural market in san diego) sells it as does whole foods

This is the brand of tempeh i buy - sprouts (a natural market in san diego) sells it as does whole foods

Remove tempeh from the package / cut into 30 cubes / place into a container with a lid / pour 2 tbsp sauce, put on lid, and shake!

Remove tempeh from the package / cut into 30 cubes / place into a container with a lid / pour 2 tbsp sauce, put on lid, and shake!

Top: place tempeh in pan of coconut oil / bottom: flip after 3-4 min or until golden brown (or a little darker) like the color in this photo

Top: place tempeh in pan of coconut oil / bottom: flip after 3-4 min or until golden brown (or a little darker) like the color in this photo

tempeh served with brown rice, broccoli, and asparagus

tempeh served with brown rice, broccoli, and asparagus

food prep - tempeh served with white rice, butternut squash, and asparagus

food prep - tempeh served with white rice, butternut squash, and asparagus

TEMPEH SERVED WITH ASPARAGUS AND SPAGHETTI SQUASH

TEMPEH SERVED WITH ASPARAGUS AND SPAGHETTI SQUASH


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