Sweet and Sour Tempeh

sweet and sour tempeh

For those of you still looking for easy, awesome tempeh recipes, this might be the solution to all your searching! This recipe is simple, uses pantry staples, and comes together with a minimum of time and effort. The rich flavor makes it an easy dish to enjoy, especially if tempeh is a new food to you. This recipe comes from my vegan sauce cookbook, Gettin’ Saucy.

The main ingredients are orange juice, flavored with some apple cider vinegar and soy sauce, with just a little bit of potato starch to thicken the sauce into a glossy sauce that coats the tempeh perfectly. For even more flavor, you can stir in fresh grated ginger, spices, sesame seeds, or anything else to make it your own.

sweet and sour tempeh
The citrus in the sauce will make your greens brown, so serve on the side.

Sweet & Sour Tempeh

2-3 Tablespoons avocado or peanut oil
½  cup thinly sliced onions
1 (8-ounce) package tempeh, cubes or triangles
1 cup orange juice
¼ cup apple cider vinegar
¼ cup soy sauce or Bragg’s Liquid Aminos
¼ cup coconut sugar or brown sugar
2-4 cloves garlic, minced
1 Tablespoon potato starch, cornstarch, or arrowroot
4 cups thinly sliced greens (cabbage, kale, etc.) (see note below)

  1. In a large skillet heat oil over medium heat. Add onions, and cook until just soft.
  2. Add in tempeh around the onions, trying to lay flat into the pan. Let cook until just browned on all the bottom. Flip tempeh and cook about 10-15 minutes longer.
  3. In a small bowl whisk together orange juice, apple cider vinegar, soy sauce, coconut sugar, and garlic until sugar dissolves.
  4. Lower heat and add orange juice mixture to skillet, reserving about ½ cup of the liquid.
  5. Cook tempeh and onions in the sauce about 15-20 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  6. Add potato starch to reserved liquid and whisk to combine. Add this mixture to saucepan, stirring quickly as the sauce will thicken almost immediately.
  7. Remove from heat and serve! Serve this Sweet & Sour Tempeh with coconut rice, noodles, grains, or mashed into wraps for an awesome protein rich meal!

Note: If you’re not going to eat it all at one sitting, I recommend cooking the greens separately. In the presence of acid (vinegar + orange juice), leafy greens like kale and spinach will turn an unsavory brownish color and make for less appetizing leftovers.

Yield: 2-4 Servings

sweet and sour tempeh
Soft cooked onions and just browned tempeh, ready to be sauced up.
sweet and sour tempeh
Simmering in the sauce: let the tempeh be infused with all the flavors.
sweet and sour tempeh
After the starch is added, the liquid thickens into a glossy sauce to coat the tempeh and make your tastebuds dance.


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About Andrea Bertoli 597 Articles
A vegan chef, cookbook author, wellness educator, writer, surfer, and yogi based in Honolulu. Follow my delicious adventures on Instagram

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