Indonesian Tempeh with Green Beans and Crushed Peanuts Recipe | Vegetarian Times Skip to main content

Indonesian Tempeh with Green Beans and Crushed Peanuts

In Indonesia, tempeh skewers, served with a spicy dipping sauce, are a popular snack food sold by street vendors. Here, we’ve taken the same ingredients and flavors of the snack and turned them into a saucy entrée that is delicious over rice noodles.



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3 tsp. vegetable oil, divided
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1 8-oz. pkg. tempeh, such as SoyBoy 5 Grain
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3 Tbs. low-sodium soy sauce, divided
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¾ lb. fresh green beans, trimmed and cut into thirds
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⅔ cup light coconut milk
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1 8-oz. can sliced water chestnuts, rinsed and drained
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2 Tbs. peanut butter
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3 cloves garlic, minced (1 Tbs.)
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2 tsp. dark brown sugar
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1 tsp. chile-garlic sauce, such as Huy Fong
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¼ tsp. ground cloves
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2 Tbs. crushed dry-roasted peanuts


1. Heat 1 tsp. oil in wok or large nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add tempeh, and sear 3 minutes on each side. Add 1/2 cup water and 4 1/2 tsp. soy sauce. Cook tempeh 5 minutes more, or until all liquid has been absorbed, turning occasionally. Transfer to plate, and cool until easy to handle. Crumble tempeh by hand until no large chunks remain.

2. Heat remaining 2 tsp. oil in wok over high heat. Add green beans; stir-fry 4 minutes or until beginning to brown. Add 3 Tbs. water, and simmer beans 4 minutes, or until crisp-tender. Add coconut milk, water chestnuts, peanut butter, garlic, brown sugar, chile-garlic sauce, ground cloves, remaining 4 1/2 tsp. soy sauce, and crumbled tempeh; stir-fry 2 minutes. Garnish with crushed peanuts.

Nutrition Information: 

9 g
Total Fat: 
12 g
Saturated Fat: 
3 g
21 g
0 mg
309 mg
6 g
3 g
Serves 6

Comments on this Recipe

I made this as just a green bean dish over rice. Tripled the sauce and green beans. Was awesome!

I'd never used tempeh before and wasn't sure what to expect. This dish was great! My husband and I both enjoyed it. It was easy to make but I'm not sure that I would say it serves SIX! Maybe we're big eaters but as a main dish it wouldn't serves six, not in this household.

I made this for myself and my husband. He loves peanut butter, but didn't really like this. I thought it was good, but not good enough to replicate when there are recipes for tempeh with more "pow".

This turned out wonderfully, although I did make a few changes: we don't like sweet, so I left out the sugar, and I cut back on the peanut butter to 1 TBS to save a bit on fat. At the very end, I stirred in some mashed roasted acorn squash which made it even creamier and added MORE than enough sweetness. I do agree with the other commenter about the serving size - there's no way this serves 6! I split it into 3, but served it over about a 1/2 cup+ of the squash...

My family did not like this. When scanning the recipe before deciding to make it, I somehow missed the cloves. If I had noticed them I am not sure I would have gone ahead. But I made the recipe as written. The clove taste is very strong. If you like a strong taste of cloves then this recipe is for you. However, we are not partial to it and so I had to do a lot of doctoring up with other curry spices to mask the flavor.

Delicious! Contrary to some of the other comments I thought this recipe was great as is. I did not find the clove overpowering at all, it added to the flavour in a great way. Will definitely be making this again.