Tempeh Stir Fry makes for an easy Asian themed healthy dinner ready in under 30 minutes. Made with Gailan and mushrooms, topped with a creamy spicy tahini sauce. Gluten Free and Vegan.
Tempeh stir fry – ever heard of it? Ever heard of tempeh for that matter? I first discovered tempeh years ago when living in DC and actively spending a large portion of my paycheck at the grocery store. I needed to test out this new enticing and strange sounding ingredient. It wasn’t until this year though that I saw tempeh thrive in it’s native environment – Indonesia.
For those not familiar with it, tempeh, like tofu is a soy based product, but this one is fermenting cooked soybeans and then forming the mixture into a firm, dense cake. By itself tempeh has a strong nutty taste that can seem a bit dry, but it happens to be excellent at absorbing other flavors making it perfect in an Asian stir fry recipe.
It holds up a lot better than tofu due to it’s firmer structure, making it an even better faux meat substitute in vegan dishes.
I’ve loved it every since my first bite in DC, and after spending a month in Indonesia I really got to see how much the locals love to cook with it and how well it pairs with a rich peanut based dressing.
In this tempeh stir fry instead of a peanut dressing I opted for a tahini dressing with a splash of tamari, chili garlice sauce (my all time favorite being this one), sesame oil and a bit of honey to balance out the saltiness.
Once the tempeh is nicely browned and crisped up in a bit of oil you can just dip it into the tahini sauce directly, or you can take this dish to the tempeh stir fry level by adding in some veggies.
I’m normally all about my shiitake mushrooms in Asian stir fry recipes (as in my vegan soba noodle stir fry with shiitakes and snap peas) but this time I had some button mushrooms on hand so opted to use those. And have you ever heard of Gai lan? This is also known as Chinese broccoli and is a leaf vegetable with thick green leaves and thick long stalks. I saw some at my nearby Wegman’s and knew it would be perfect for this tempeh stir fry.
It has that broccoli-esque flavor but instead of florets you get that taste in the long leaves themselves. It cooks up quickly and blends perfectly with the hearty mushrooms and nutty tempeh.
Each of these three component of the tempeh stir fry are cooked separately in a wok, but as is the norm in stir fry recipes everything cooks quickly. Then you combine all the ingredients and serve drizzled with the creamy tahini sauce. I love to drizzle a bit of Sriracha as the finishing touch too.
Overall this vegan tempeh stir fry makes for a super easy 30 minute weeknight dinner that is nutty, rich and earthy all in one dish.
- 8 ounce package gluten free tempeh cut into one inch by 2 inch rectangular strips
- 3 tablespoons olive oil divided
- 8 ounces shiitake or button mushrooms halved and thinly sliced
- 8 ounces gailan or regular broccoli trimmed of the 1 inch ends and cut into 2 inch segments
- 1 tablespoon minced ginger
- 1 tablespoon garlic minced
- 3 tablespoons tahini
- 1 tablespoon chili garlic sauce
- 2 tablespoons tamari
- 1 tablespoon sesame oil
- 1 tablespoon maple syrup
- Heat 2 tablespoons oil over medium high heat.
- Cook tempeh until browned on each side, and remove from pan.
- To the same pan add 1 tablespoon oil and mushrooms, and cook for a few minutes. Remove from pan.
- To the pan add gailan, ginger and garlic. Cook for a few minutes.
- Add mushrooms and tempeh to the pan and mix.
- In a small bowl combine sauce ingredients until smooth.
- Serve tempeh stir fry drizzled with sauce.
- Garnish with Sriracha
You can replace the button mushrooms with shiitake mushrooms and use broccolini or broccoli in place of the Gailan.