Smoky Tempeh, Lettuce & Tomato (‘TLT’) Sandwich

Today I’m sharing a recipe for smoky tempeh slices that are just perfect as a sandwich filling. They are super easy to make and packed full of flavour. Add some lettuce, slices of juicy tomato and a dollop of mayonnaise and you have a delicious vegan alternative to the classic BLT sandwich – the ‘TLT’ (Tempeh, Lettuce, Tomato).

Tempeh originally hails from Indonesia and is made from whole soy beans which are fermented with a live culture and pressed into a block. This gives it a distinct texture and flavour (very different to tofu, which is made from soy bean curd). Tempeh is nutrient dense and contains an array of minerals, B vitamins and prebiotics (types of fibre that promote the growth of beneficial gut bacteria). It also happens to be a rich source of protein (100 grams of tempeh contains just over 20 grams of protein).

Here in the UK, tempeh is starting to become more widely available. I’ve been buying the Tofoo brand, which I found in our local Waitrose, Sainsbury’s and Tesco (in the vegetarian/vegan chiller cabinet). It comes in a barrel shape, so I’ve found it much easier to slice it into disks rather than strips. 

I must admit that until recently, I haven’t been a big fan of tempeh. I found its texture quite hard and the flavour bitter (even after steaming it). However, the recipe I’m sharing today has been a complete game changer for me. I’ve learnt that by slicing the tempeh very thinly and soaking it for a few minutes in a tasty marinade, completely transforms both its texture and flavour. 

The recipe is lightly adapted from The Happy Pear’s Vegan ‘Bacon’ so a huge thank you to Steve and Dave for the inspiration, and for showing me a way to prepare tempeh that’s not only delicious but super easy too!

At the moment I can’t get enough of this smoky tempeh. It’s hard to resist eating it straight from the pan! It’s been a big hit with the rest of the family too. I hope you enjoy it as much as we do!

Smoky Tempeh Sandwich Slices

These smoky tempeh slices are perfect for serving in sandwiches. Add some lettuce, slices of juicy tomato and a dollop of mayonnaise and you have a delicious vegan alternative to the classic BLT… the TLT!
Hands-on Time 25 mins
Total Time 30 mins
Course Brunch, Lunch
Servings 3

Ingredients
  

  • 200 g / 7 oz tempeh*

Marinade

  • 1 tsp smoked paprika
  • 1 tsp minced garlic
  • 2 TBSP reduced salt soy sauce or tamari (for a GF option)
  • 1 TBSP tomato puree (paste)
  • 1 TBSP apple cider vinegar
  • TBSP extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 TBSP maple syrup
  • 1 TBSP water

Instructions
 

  • Slice the tempeh as thinly as possible and place in a wide, flat bottom dish.
  • In a small bowl, whisk together all the marinade ingredients. Pour over the tempeh and stir through, making sure both sides are coated in the marinade. Leave for five minutes (can be left longer).
  • Heat a large non-stick frying pan (skillet) on medium heat. Arrange some tempeh slices in a single layer in the pan. (You can spoon some of the extra marinade onto the slices if you wish, for an even deeper flavour). Cook the tempeh, flipping regularly until it is browned on both sides and all the liquid has evaporated (I find this takes me about six minutes in total). Transfer to a plate and repeat the process with the remaining tempeh slices.
  • The tempeh can be eaten straight away or stored in an airtight container in the fridge for 48 hours.

Notes

* I used Tofoo tempeh, currently available in the UK from Tescos, Waitrose and Sainsbury’s (in the vegetarian/vegan chiller cabinet). Tempeh is also available from independent health food shops.
The recipe is lightly adapted from The Happy Pear’s Vegan ‘Bacon’ so a huge thank you to Steve and Dave for the inspiration, and for showing me a way to prepare tempeh that’s not only delicious but super easy too!
Keyword Family Friendly, Gluten-Free, Plant-Based, Vegan Lunch, Vegan Lunchbox Ideas, Vegan Sandwiches

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If you make these smoky tempeh sandwich slices (or any other recipes on our blog), I’d love to hear your feedback and any suggestions for adaptations! Tag your photos with #bitofthegoodstuff on social media and they will find their way to me. You can also connect with me on my social media channels here: InstagramTwitterFacebookPinterest.   

With love,

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