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Made by Danny

Video recipe post. Available in HD.

At this point it’s no secret that I have a big place in my diet (and in my heart) for tempeh. This recipe came about maybe three years after I first started cooking tempeh and is the easiest and most fool-proof preparation I have found to date. As a result, it has become a staple meal in my household.

California Girl

It’s a recipe that has stuck with my friends too… particularly Lauha. She would frequently request me to make these tempeh burgers, so I decided to teach her to make them and have her make them for all of you in the video above.

The recipe is simple and can be customized to your liking. In a pinch, just the tempeh and onions together are a fine combo… but dress it up with avocado, hummus, heirloom tomato, fire roasted peppers and lettuce and you’ve got quite an experience.

Unlike most veggie burgers, this feels like a real burger experience. The tempeh has got a meaty firmness and the onions and tomatoes provide plenty of juiciness. It’s packed with protein and fiber and will leave you satisfied, not sickly full.

This dish also travels well. Pack up your cooked tempeh and onions separate from the bread and other ingredients. Revive the patties in the microwave, toast up your bread, slice up your avocado and you’ve got a brown bag lunch that will tantalize your coworker’s senses.

Blackened Tempeh Burgers

Blackened Tempeh Burgers

  • 1 block of Tempeh
  • 1 tbs Tamari
  • 2 tsp Chili Powder
  • 1/2 tsp Garlic Powder
  • 1 1/2 tbs Olive Oil
  • 2 Fire Roasted Red Peppers, sliced
  • 1 large Red Onion, sliced
  • 1 tsp Olive Oil
  • 1/4 cup Water
  • 1 tsp Tamari
  • 4 Slices Bread or 2 Burger Bun
  • Avocado or Guacamole
  • Heirloom Tomato or Roasted Tomatoes (see directions)
  • Organic Ketchup
  • Leaf Lettuce
  • Hummus or (vegan) Mayo
  1. Cut the tempeh in half both lengthwise and thickwise to create 4 equal pieces. Place in a steamer basket unstacked and steam for 10–15 minutes.
  2. To make the roasted tomatoes (if using), toss cherry or grape tomatoes in olive oil and place on a baking sheet. Bake at 350 degrees for 15–20 minutes, turning halfway through until soft and juicy.
  3. Meanwhile, heat 1 tsp of olive oil in a skillet over medium heat. Add the onions and cook until they start to soften. Add the water and tamari and cook until very soft and the water has evaporated, about 20 minutes. Add the peppers and remove from heat.
  4. Using tongs, carefully remove the tempeh from the steamer and place on a plate. Starting with the cut side, pour half of the tamari evenly over the tempeh and rub it in. Flip and coat the other side with the remaining tamari. Push around the plate to make sure all the tamari is absorbed. Evenly sprinkle half of the spices over the tempeh and rub in; flip and repeat with the remaining spices.
  5. Heat a large skillet or griddle over medium heat. Add the oil and coat evenly. When hot, but not smoking, add the tempeh. You should hear a nice sizzle. Cook for two to three minutes, filp and cook for another two to three minutes. A nice medium brown color should be achieved on both sides.
  6. Toast the bread slices or burger buns and top with desired toppings. Place a tempeh pattie on each slice of bread and then top with the onions and peppers. Sandwich both sides together and serve.

5 Responses to “Blackened Tempeh Burgers”

  1. Yummy! Can you list the spices you used for the blackening. I love tempeh and anything blackened!

  2. Awesome vid! Lauha is an excellent instructor, but her mouth is too small for the whole burger bite! haha I’ve never cooked with tempeh but now I want to. The burger looks righteous.

  3. These look amazing! I’m going to save the recipe!!

  4. kathy says:

    I love tempeh anything! Beautiful photos. I hope you will submit this recipe to my new “vegan finds” website:



  5. Gloria says:

    I love Tempeh burgers! A little too much oil in this recipe for me, but I can definitely omit the oil and use a spray instead. Can’t wait to try this out. Thanks for posting it as a video.

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