Vegan Tempeh Tacos have a meaty texture and bright, fresh, spicy flavor! Vegetarians, vegans, and even meat eaters will fall in love with this meatless take on tacos.
I’m always a tiny bit embarrassed when I share a Mexican recipe.
I have zero Mexican heritage/knowledge/acquaintances and therefore have no idea what Mexican food should actually taste like. I just kind of do my Scandinavian/Midwest thing making very unspicy food with what I consider Mexican ingredients and think it’s the most delicious thing ever.
So today let’s just try to own who we are and eat the food we love, mmmkay? Come on this ride with me!
These Vegan Tempeh Tacos are SO GOOD. Tempeh is my new obsession, which started with BBQ Tempeh Stuffed Baked Potatoes (yes, that is a thing) and has since expanded into my Healthy Vegan Lettuce Wraps, Vegetable Egg Rolls, and my Tempeh Buddha Bowls.
What is tempeh?
Tempeh is a fermented soybean product. Ground tempeh has a really meaty texture but is entirely plant based and sometimes gluten-free (check your specific brand).
When mixed with spices, served in crispy tortillas, and topped with all the fresh goodness of summer you’ve got one unbelievable vegan dinner.
What makes these the best tempeh tacos?
As I mentioned, the tempeh has a meaty texture, the avocado lends a bit of creaminess, and the radish salsa I shared earlier in the week makes the tacos fresh and crunchy.
If you’re really into mouthfeel (is that too scandalous a word for this blog??), don’t skip the fried tortillas! That extra little step holds it all together with some chewy gluten-free goodness.
Tips for customizing vegan tempeh tacos:
- Use the tempeh mixture as a filling for burritos, a topping for salads, or wrap up in a taquito to bake or fry
- Increase the chili powder and add a dash of cayenne pepper to increase the spice and up the heat
- Add some crumbled cotija or shredded jack cheese and sour cream if choosing not to keep this vegan
- Use store-bought crunchy or flour tortillas to save time
- Top with your favorite homemade or store bought salsa
If you make this recipe, be sure to leave a comment, rate it, or tag #theliveinkitchen on Instagram!
Vegan Tempeh Tacos
For the Tempeh
- 8 ounces tempeh
- 2 tablespoons vegetable oil, , plus more for the tortillas
- ½ onion, , chopped
- ½ red bell pepper, , chopped
- 2 tablespoons chili powder
- 1 tablespoon cumin
- 1 teaspoon corn starch
- 2 teaspoons salt
- 2 teaspoons onion powder
- 1 ½ teaspoons garlic powder
- 1 teaspoon ground coriander
- ½ teaspoon ancho chili powder
- 3 tablespoons tomato paste
- 4 tablespoons water
For the Tacos
- Corn tortillas
- Avocados, , sliced
- Red cabbage, , sliced
- Fresh cilantro
- Radish Salsa
- On the large holes of a box grater, grate the tempeh. Set aside.
- In a small bowl combine chili powder, cumin, corn starch, salt, onion powder, garlic powder, ground coriander, and ancho chili powder. Add the tomato paste and water and mix thoroughly. Set aside.
- Heat 2 tablespoons olive oil in a large pan over medium heat. Once hot, add the onions and peppers. Cook, stirring frequently, 3-4 minutes until softened. Add the grated tempeh and spice mix and stir to coat everything in the spices. Allow to cook, stirring occasionally, until heated through.
- Meanwhile, heat 1 teaspoon olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Once hot, add a corn tortilla and swirl it around in the oil. Let cook 1-2 minutes per side or until beginning to char and crisp. Remove from the pan, add more oil as necessary, and continue with as many tortillas as desired.
- To assemble the tacos, add a spoonful of the tempeh mixture topped with avocado, cabbage, cilantro, lime juice, and radish salsa.