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Cooking with Tempeh!

At Philosophy Nutrition, we love included plant-based alternatives to animal protein for added variety and health benefits! One awesome plant-based protein source is tempeh, which is actually made with fermented soy beans. The fact that tempeh is fermented also makes it a souce of probiotics!  It’s also less processed than tofu, because it uses whole soybeans. You can find tempeh at most health food stores (less commonly in chain grocery stores). Check the deli section by the tofu, or the freezer section!

Cooking with tempeh! Methods and flavour ideas

Today we’ll share a few methods for preparing tempeh, as well as some ideas for flavouring tempeh if you’re baking it or preparing it stovetop!

Baked Tempeh

Baked tempeh is very simple and finishes in about 20 minutes at 350o You’ll want to use a “creamy” base that will coat and stick to each piece. Our recipe suggestions follow approximately the same formula:

  • 1 tbsp of a creamy base (Dijon mustard, tahini/sesame seed paste, and hummus are all great options!), plus 1-2 tbsp of a thinner liquid like vinegar, lemon juice, soy sauce or water.
  • From there, we add in various spices for more flavour!

Some ideas to get you started:

Ideas for making Baked Tempeh

Stove Top Tempeh

This is a great, quick and easy method for preparing tempeh. We like to add a bit of oil, plus just enough of another liquid (water, soy sauce, vinegar) to cover the bottom of the pan. This keeps the tempeh moist, prevents burning and adds a “steaming” effect that really allows the tempeh to pick up other flavours you’re adding in!

Once you’ve added your spices, mix everything fairly evenly, cover and simmer on medium heat. Checking every few minutes, your tempeh is done when the edges start to become crisp, and the liquid is mostly evaporated.

Some ideas to get you started:

Ideas for making Stovetop tempeh

Baked and stovetop tempeh can be enjoyed wherever you would typically have a protein source:

  • On top of salad
  • Alongside roasted vegetables
  • Inside a sandwich, pita, wrap or quesadilla

Other preparation methods:

As BBQ season approaches, get creative! Experiment with marinating tempeh to enjoy grilled or kebab style! You can also use a blender or food processor to make ground tempeh and add it to recipes wherever you would typically use ground meat:

  • Tacos, burritos, enchiladas
  • Chili and stews
  • Stuffed peppers
  • Spaghetti and pasta

Have you ever tried tempeh? 

written by Lauren Knipping, MSc RD

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We’re a team of devoted dietitians who embrace the science behind healthy eating, and the crucial role your own body chemistry plays. When you need to know what eating well means to you, we’ll provide the what, why and how.

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