Whole Story

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Have You Tried Tempeh?

By Alana Sugar, October 22, 2012  |  Meet the Blogger  |  More Posts by Alana Sugar

Italian-Style Spaghetti Squash with TempehYou’re probably familiar with foods made from soybeans like soy sauce, tofu and soymilk, but have you ever tried tempeh?  It’s an Indonesian soybean food with an earthy flavor and a meaty, tender texture very similar to mushrooms.  The beans are cracked, cooked, then cultured for 18-24 hours, after which the soybeans bind together into a cake-like structure. Culturing transforms the soybeans into a more easily digestible food, loaded with protein, vitamins, minerals and enzymes.

Because tempeh is made from the whole soybean, it contains all of the bean’s naturally occurring vitamins, minerals, antioxidants and fiber. The hearty flavor of this versatile plant protein makes tempeh an ideal vegetarian ingredient and a good substitute for meat in many recipes. 

These days, it’s easy to find a wide array of tempeh flavors and types, including plain, grilled or barbecued. Sometimes grains such as wild rice, amaranth, brown rice or quinoa, or sesame seeds and sea vegetables are added to the soybeans before fermentation for a variety of flavors and textures. Try tempeh in soups, stews, sandwiches, Asian dishes, salads and stir-fries, or with noodles, rice, potatoes or hamburger-style on a bun with all the trimmings.  Enjoy these tempeh tips and recipes: 

Remember, tempeh’s flavor is a little unique if you’re not used to it. Consider trying marinated tempeh burgers or tempeh “bacon” to start, or marinate with any number of our delicious marinades and barbeque sauces. 

Have you tried tempeh? Got a favorite recipe? Let me know. 


Category: Food & Recipes




ana luisa spagui says ...
10/22/2012 11:02:24 AM CDT
Leesha says ...
Tempeh is absolutely awesome! My fave is throwing it in a sandwich after marinating it overnight in bucket loads of BBQ sauce and minced garlic! Top with crispy baked and seasoned kale chips, garlic aioli, horseradish hummus and any other veggies/condiments you like, and you have the best sandwich in town! If you don't believe me, come over for lunch! haha. Oh btw, are there any job openings at whole foods? I would love to be a part of the team!!! :)
10/22/2012 11:04:28 AM CDT
Kevindra Prianto says ...
I'm from Indonesia and yes,Tempeh is a very delicious and also affordable food! We usually deep frying Tempeh until become like a chips for condiment or snacks,or also we love to braised them with the mixtured paste of Ketjap Manis (Indonesian Soy sauce),Palm Sugar,Tamarind,Lime Juice, Shallots,Garlic,Galangal,Coriander Seeds and White Pepper. After we braised it, we lifted the Tempeh from the braising liquid and deep fry them until caramelized and sticky. We called this as Tempeh Bacem. The end result would become a sweet,sour,savoury finger licking-good Tempeh. =D =D
10/23/2012 11:17:45 AM CDT
linda says ...
I need to know if you carry Molinari Italian Dry Salem. I live west of Ft Worth and am looking for places who may carry it.
10/26/2012 11:11:43 AM CDT
Gayle Kirma says ...
Hello, I ate a tempeh product called "soyboy" which is gluten free and was hooked on it. Do you carry this product, or can you order it? It's based in New York. OR, do you carry a gluten-free tempeh product in your store? Thank you so much for whatever you can offer. I'm ovo lacto vegetarian and MUST eat gluten free. Gayle
11/03/2012 11:36:18 AM CDT
Montay White says ...
I can never find tempeh when I shop at your store ,what section would it be located in, what are the different brands that you carry, and is their a 365 brand of tempeh.
09/12/2014 5:31:19 PM CDT
Nikki - Community Moderator says ...
@MONTAY - The exact location in the store will differ. Most locations will feature it in the Dairy cooler along with other vegan meat alternatives. Check with your local store to see what varieties they offer. At this time, we do not make a 365 tempeh option.
09/15/2014 1:41:51 PM CDT
Tom Reddy says ...
Great emails on recipe ideas - please keep them coming... Tom
02/13/2016 8:59:42 PM CST