Tempeh Bacon Recipe | Vegetarian Times Skip to main content

Tempeh Bacon

This simple recipe can be assembled the night before and prepared in the morning for a weekend breakfast or brunch. Or use it for a delicious tempeh BLT with baby greens and perfect cherry tomatoes. The tempeh strips can be left marinating in the fridge 2 to 3 days. Just be sure to eat the bacon as soon as it's cooked—otherwise, it may lose its crispness.



Ingredient Line: 
1 8-oz. pkg. tempeh, sliced into 24 very thin slices
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¼ cup low-sodium soy sauce
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2 Tbs. apple cider vinegar
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1 tsp. light brown sugar
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½ tsp. ground cumin
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½ tsp. ancho chile powder
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2 tsp. liquid smoke, optional
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1 Tbs. canola oil


1. Lay tempeh slices in 2 13- x 9-inch baking dishes. Bring soy sauce, vinegar, brown sugar, cumin, ancho chile powder, and ½ cup water to a boil in small saucepan. Boil 1 minute, then remove from heat, and stir in liquid smoke, if using. Pour over tempeh slices. Let cool, then cover and chill 2 hours, or overnight.

2. Preheat oven to 300°F. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper. Carefully transfer tempeh slices to prepared baking sheet, and discard marinade.

3. Brush slices with canola oil, and sprinkle with paprika, if desired. Bake 10 to 15 minutes, or until beginning to brown. Flip tempeh slices, brush with oil, and bake 5 to 7 minutes more, or until crisp and dark brown.

Nutrition Information: 

2 g
Total Fat: 
1.5 g
Saturated Fat: 
0.5 g
1 g
0 mg
31 mg
0 g
0 g
Makes 24 slices

Comments on this Recipe

If you wanted to use tofu, try freezing then defrosting it. It takes on a texture very much different from its original feel. Almost like seitan, and it has no problem holding together.

I've just joined this site & am loving it! I am marinating my Tofu as we speak (yes tofu) & can hardly wait to try it!!! :-)

Can I use tofu for this recipe instead of tempeh? I currently live in Italy, and tofu is the only thing available to me here!

You probably can't get away with using tofu because it's so delicate. Tempeh is very firm so you're able to slice it thinly without it falling apart.

Extra firm tofu can be sliced very thin. Depends on the brand. The Mori-nu stuff or the blocks in water won't work

12 oz block of any tofu sliced somewhat thinly (8 slabs) and microwaved becomes remarkably sturdy and absorbs flavors much more than frozen or pressed tofu. it would be ideal for this recipe.

I had forgotten how much I loved this recipe until I pulled it out last night and made us "B"LT sandwiches for lunch today. It was fantastic! My carnivore husband devoured it!

If I want a firm textured tofu for Fajitas or stirfrys I dry it out in between two non stick grill plates. Either pre-frozen or fresh. It works very well. Having trouble obtaining Liquid Smoke but looking forward to trying the recipe when I locate some on my first batch of homemade tempeh .

This recipe is the best tempeh bacon recipe I've used. It's better than the store bought at a fraction of the cost! Thanks VT!

I fried it in earth balance vegan butter, and I also added maple syrup to the pan, and it came out much better than without the syrup.

I didn't have brown sugar so I used maple syrup and it worked out great

This recipe was so easy! And it tastes exactly like the store-bought stuff I usually pay too much for. This is going to be a staple in my kitchen from now on!

This is delicious and very tasty, my wife made this and put it on pizza. Absolutely, the best 10/10 for sure! Quite easy to make, prepare it the day before and allow to marinate well

OMG this is so good and so close to real bacon without being from an animal. The taste of bacon was the only thing I missed from when I was non-vegetarian. I will never miss it anymore. I found something much better plant based. My carnivorous husband loved it too!! I am so excited!!! I didn't put cumin and it was great!!

Beautiful recipe. Love it!Thank you very much.

need to make this ahead of time...has anyone tried re-baking it or nuking it to regain the crispness just before serving?

Has anyone left it to marinate more than overnight?