Sunday, May 27, 2018

Baked peanut tempeh

May 19, 2018

This is one of those simple, brilliant, why didn't I think of that? recipes that we'll end up making so often that we'll be able to cook it from memory. It's wedges of tempeh, slathered in a sauce of peanut butter, tamari and lime juice and baked for half an hour. That's very nearly it.

Ironically, the Minimalist Baker's original recipe has a couple extra steps that we're happy to skip. First, they steam their tempeh wedges to remove bitterness. We like our tempeh just fine as it is! Second, they marinated their tempeh in the peanut sauce for 24 hours. We tried 24 hours, we tried 15 minutes and we like it just the same both ways. If anything the 24-hour batch was a bit of a nuisance because the peanut butter split from the tamari in our marinade. I might, might try blending the peanut marinade in our spice grinder to better emulsify it, but our original slightly lumpy fork-and-bowl approach was still a success.

We served our baked tempeh with roasted carrots and broccolini, rice and sesame-soy pickled radishes. Like Minimalist Baker, I can imagine rolling them into rice paper wraps, tucking them into sandwiches and layering them over salads. The wedges are saucy and comforting direct from the oven, and a squidgy savoury treat at room temperature. They might not convert the tempeh-avoiders (I know you're out there!); for these folks I'd start with tempeh bacon, lasagne or fried with palm sugar. But for those of us already on board the tempeh train, this is a delicious, easy way to eat more of it.

Baked peanut tempeh
(adapted from a recipe on Minimalist Baker)

1 1/2 tablespoons sesame oil
2 tablespoons peanut butter
2 tablespoons tamari
2 tablespoons lime juice
3 tablespoons maple syrup
a pinch of chilli flakes
225g block tempeh

Preheat an oven to 190°C. Line a large baking tray with paper.

In a medium-large bowl, thoroughly whisk together the sesame oil, peanut butter, tamari, lime juice, maple syrup and chilli flakes. (I might blend them together in our spice grinder next time to properly emulsify the peanut butter.)

Slice the tempeh into bite-sized pieces. Drop them into the peanut marinade and stir them together, until the tempeh pieces are evenly coated.

Spoon the tempeh pieces onto the baking tray, lying them flat and avoiding any overlap. Bake the tempeh for 15 minutes. Turn the tempeh pieces and drizzle over any remaining marinade, then bake for a further 10-15 minutes, until the tempeh is turning dark brown around the edges. Serve warm.


  1. This recipe looks nice, but I find cooking with tempeh pretty hit and miss. Do you have a brand that you like and would recommend?

    1. Hi Anon - I don't really have a favourite brand, sorry! We just pick up whatever's convenient to us at the time.

  2. I love tempeh! And I love peanut butter! I recently made a peanut butter tempeh recipe from another cookbooks that I wasn't super impressed with, so I will try this one instead.

    1. Hey Susan! Let us know how the two recipes compare. Best wishes on your quest for the One True Peanut Butter Tempeh Recipe. :D

  3. The BEST tempeh is homemade and sold at the Coburg Farmers’ Market (not every week). It’s called Take and Eat Artisan Tempeh. They may have other sale points.
    I’m cooking this recipe right now. Will let you know how I go ��

    1. Thanks for the rec, vantootie! We've got another friend in the neighbourhood who loves that brand too.

      Yes, please report back on this recipe. :)