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Tempeh Rocks!

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Tempeh Rocks!

How to make astounding Thai Rainbow Salad with Tempeh! Today’s #LunchBreakLIVE guest is Portlandia animal activist extraordinaire Dani Rukin! Join in the partaaay! #JaneUnChained#VegFestLA#VeganAF
LBL Dani Rukin Food (2) 4:7:17

RECIPE:   Rainbow Thai Salad with Crunchy Tempeh and Peanuty Dressing

*Serves 3-4 as an entrée (or 5-6 as a side)
*Leftovers store well in the refrigerator up to 4-5 days, though best when fresh.
[Credit to author, Minimalist Baker, and she re-created it from Prasad, a popular vegan restaurant in Portland (I renamed it, re-formated it, partially modified it, and tweaked it with my own writing style)] RAINBOW THAI SALAD

    • 6 ounces vermicelli (or similar) noodles (I like brown rice noodles or Thai rice noodles)
    • 2 whole carrots, “ribboned” with a vegetable peeler or spiralizer
    • 2 green onions, finely chopped
    • 1/4 cup chopped cilantro
    • 2-3 Tbsp chopped mint
    • 1 cup loosely packed spinach, chopped
    • 1 cup thinly sliced red cabbage
    • 1 red bell pepper, thinly sliced


    • 1/3 cup + 1 Tbsp salted creamy peanut butter (or any kind of nut butter)
    • 3 Tbsp tamari (or Bragg’s Liquid Amino)
    • 3 Tbsp maple syrup
    • 1 lime, juiced (3 Tbsp)
    • 1 tsp chili garlic sauce, 1 red Thai chili minced, or 1/4 tsp red pepper flakes
    • Water to thin (1/4 cup)


  1. Cook noodles according to package instructions, rinse, drain, and set aside to cool.
  2. In a large serving bowl, add cooked and cooled noodles, carrots, green onions, cilantro, mint, spinach, cabbage, and red bell pepper and toss loosely to combine. Set aside.
  3. Make dressing by adding peanut butter, tamari, maple syrup, chili sauce (or chili or red pepper), and lime juice to a small mixing bowl and whisk to combine.
  4. Add warm water a little at a time until a thick but pourable sauce is achieved.
  5. Taste and adjust seasonings as needed, adding more maple syrup for sweetness, chili sauce (chili or red pepper) for heat, lime juice for acidity, or tamari for saltiness. Set aside.
  6. Add 1/2 of the tempeh and 1/2 of the sauce to the salad and toss. Then top with remaining tempeh and sauce. Serve immediately.

*Super tasty, filling, and perfect for topping noodles, rice, salads, or adding into spring rolls or wraps, and whatever else you can think of!

See Also

    • 8 ounces tempeh


    • 2 Tbsp salted creamy peanut (or almond, or any kind of nut butter)
    • 2 Tbsp tamari (or Bragg’s Liquid Amino)
    • 3 Tbsp maple syrup
    • 2 Tbsp lime juice
    • 1 red Thai chili, minced/crushed (or sub 1/4 tsp red pepper flakes)
    • 1.5 Tbsp sesame oil (if avoiding oil, you can leave it out and add a little more lime, tamari, and maple syrup)


  1. Rinse, pat dry, and cut  tempeh into thin, bite-size pieces. I like slicing the tempeh in half lengthwise then cutting into small triangles. (The smaller the pieces, the better they can soak up the marinade.) Set aside.
  2. Mix marinade by adding chili, sesame oil, peanut butter, tamari, lime juice, and maple syrup. Whisk to combine. Taste and adjust flavor as needed, adding more crushed chili for heat, maple syrup for sweetness, lime juice for acidity, or tamari for saltiness. No need to hold back – you want this tasty!
  3. Add the cut up tempeh to the marinade and toss to coat.
  4. Cover and refrigerate for at least 2 hours, preferably 24 hours. The longer the marinade, the deepwe the flavor, but I’ve also marinated tempeh for as little as 15 minutes and it still soaked up the marinade enough to be flavorful.
  5. While marinating, toss occasionally to ensure even coating. (TIP: just before baking, drizzle with a little more maple syrup and tamari for extra flavor.
  6. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F, line a baking sheet with parchment paper, add tempeh, and keep any leftover marinade to brush/coat the tempeh once baked.
  7. Bake for 22-30 minutes or until caramelized and deep golden brown. Remove from oven and brush/coat with any remaining marinade.
  8. Best when fresh, but you can store leftovers covered in the refrigerator up to 3 days.
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