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New to tempeh? Let’s get acquainted: a soy product with a nice chew to it, it’s the perfect blank slate for whatever smoky, sweet or spicy flavours you want to infuse it with.

You will need

Serves 3

  • 400 g packet tempeh, rinsed and drained
  • 1 teaspoon smoked paprika (see tip)
  • 1 teaspoon brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup soy sauce or tamari
  • 3 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
  • Rice bran oil, for pan-frying

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5 mins to prep

8 mins to cook

  1. Step 1

    Slice the tempeh lengthways into thin strips, then place in an airtight container

  2. Step 2

    In a small bowl, whisk together paprika, sugar, soy sauce, garlic, olive oil and vinegar, then pour over the tempeh. Close the container and toss the tempeh slices around until nicely coated in the sauce mixture.

  3. Step 3

    Leave to marinate in the fridge for at least an hour, or overnight if possible, for maximum flavour.

  4. Step 4

    When you’re ready to serve, heat a few tablespoons of rice bran oil in a frying pan over medium-high heat, then fry the tempeh slices until well browned. They’re now ready to enjoy straight out of the pan, or to star in other recipes.


For a more Italian-style flavour, dice the tempeh instead of slicing it, then replace the smoked paprika with 1 teaspoon ground fennel, 1 teaspoon chilli flakes and a pinch of ground dried sage. Fry until golden brown, then add to a tomato and baby spinach pasta sauce.

Hot tip!

Liquid smoke can be used instead of the smoked paprika. It has a strong flavour, so start by adding just a couple drops, and increase the amount to suit your taste.

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