A simple how to guide for making Tempeh Bacon with just 8 ingredients. Great for sandwiches or as a breakfast side dish!
So, let me start by saying this Tempeh Bacon is not the same as meat bacon. It won't fool anyone, but it is absolutely delicious. The flavor is salty, smoky, a little bit sweet, and kind of addictive. And did I mention how easy it is make? You'll need 8 ingredients and just a few minutes to assemble. There's some hands off wait time, but you can easily prep and marinade the night before so the tempeh is ready to go when you are in the morning. Simple and delicious!
What is Tempeh?
Tempeh is vegan protein source made from fermented whole soybeans. It is formed into a firm patty and sometimes includes grains like barley, rice, and millet. Tempeh differs from tofu both in texture and flavor. While tofu has a rather bland flavor and soft texture, tempeh has a mild nutty flavor and firm, chewy texture.
Tempeh is a great source of protein with around 16 grams per serving depending on the particular brand. It's also high in fiber, pretty low in fat, cholesterol free, and because it is a fermented food, more easily digested.
How to Make the Bacon
Making this tempeh bacon is simple. Start by slicing the tempeh into thin pieces and whisking up the marinade. It's a simple marinade, but you will need one special ingredient, liquid smoke. I find it in the condiment aisle of my local grocery store for less than a couple of bucks a bottle. If you can't find liquid smoke you can simple omit, or use smoked paprika instead of regular to add a bit of smoky flavor.
Marinade the slices for at least an hour, but the longer the better. You can marinade the slices overnight to save time in the morning. After marinading the tempeh, simply bake to desired crispness. You can fry your tempeh if you prefer, I just find you have to use quite a bit of oil to keep it from sticking so I like to bake it instead.
A little bit sweet, a little bit smoky, and just the right amount of seasoning this Tempeh Bacon is perfect as a side dish to tofu scramble or making a vegan BLT.
If you try this recipe, let me know how it turns out! Leave a comment below or snap a pic and tag it @weelittlevegans on Instagram so I’ll be sure to see it!
How to Make Baked Tempeh Bacon
- 1 8 oz package tempeh
- ¼ cup soy sauce
- 1 teaspoon liquid smoke
- 2 tablespoon maple syrup
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 2 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
- ¼ teaspoon black pepper
- ½ teaspoon smoked paprika or regular paprika
- Whisk together all ingredients except tempeh.
- Slice tempeh into thin slices about ⅛ inch thick for roughly 24 slices.
- Transfer tempeh to a shallow dish and place in a single layer.
- Pour sauce over tempeh being sure to coat all pieces.
- Let marinate for at least an hour or overnight.
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
- Transfer tempeh to baking sheet in a single layer. Reserve marinade.
- Bake for 10 -15 minutes and flip tempeh slices. Brush tempeh with more of the reserved marinade and continue to bake for 10-15 minutes longer. How long you need to bake with depend on how crispy you prefer. We bake ours for 30 minutes.
- Serve immediately and enjoy!