Crispy Baked Tempeh Fingers
Crispy Baked Tempeh Fingers- Made with whole food ingredients these crispy tempeh strips are packed with protein and iron, making them a great alternative to processed faux meat.
I’m on a mission to make everyone love tempeh. As far as plant-based protein goes, I personally think it reigns supreme. Not only is it less processed than tofu, but the added step of fermentation means it easier for our bodies to break down and absorb all of the incredible nutrients that legumes have to offer.
While soy-based tempeh might be the easiest to find, there are some great soy-free alternatives on the market. My personal favorite is a brand called Hempe which is made from chickpeas and hemp seeds. That said, I’ve tested this recipe with both soy and chickpea-based tempeh and they both turned out great.
Crispy Baked Tempeh Finger Ingredients
- Tempeh- Regardless of what your tempeh is made of, you’ll want to make sure you have at least 8 ounces for the recipe. Lightlife is my favorite brand of soy tempeh and is sold in 8-ounce packages while Hempe is sold in 12-ounce packages. So anywhere between 8 and 12-ounces is ideal.
- Chickpea Flour- To make the breadcrumbs stick to the tempeh we’re using a mixture of chickpea flour and water to create a vegan egg-like batter.
- Tamari and Vegetable Broth- A simple blend of tamari and vegetable broth create a marinade to infuse the tempeh with flavor. We’ll use a few tablespoons in the chickpea flour mixture for even more flavor.
- Panko Breadcrumbs- Panko breadcrumbs give the fingers a nice crispy texture. I haven’t tested this recipe with regular breadcrumbs or gluten-free panko but my suspicion is that it would work the same.
- Dried Oregano, Garlic Powder and Onion Powder- These three seasonings are mixed together with the panko to add more flavor to the coating. While they are not totally necessary, I recommend adding them for optimal results.
- Spray Oil- A light spritz of oil helps keep the panko from burning as they cook. If you want to make them oil-free you can just keep an eye on the fingers as they cook and remove them before they start to burn.
How to Make Crispy Baked Tempeh Fingers
- While technically optional, I like to steam the tempeh before adding it to the marinade as this step opens the pores and allows all of the flavor from the sauce to seep in. For me, this is a necessary step but if you don’t mind the taste of plain tempeh then you can skip this part.
- Slice into strips then coat in marinade and allow to sit for at least 30 minutes, or up to overnight. If you’re marinating it for a while, be sure to stir every so often and refrigerate as needed.
- Preheat your oven and line a baking sheet. Coat each tempeh finger in chickpea flour mixture then dredge with breadcrumbs and seasonings.
- Bake for 10 minutes on each side. Serve warm and enjoy!
My favorite way to eat these is dipped in this dairy-free honey mustard sauce. I’m telling you, it’s so good! If you’re not a fan of mustard, ketchup also wins here. To make a meal I’ll serve the crispy tempeh fingers with a side of broccoli and potatoes.
Leftovers hold up well when stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator and should keep for at least one week.
Looking for more delicious tempeh recipes?
- Easy Peanut Tempeh (this is my toddler’s absolute favorite way to eat tempeh)
- Sheet Pan Cabbage Tempeh with Mustard Tahini Vinaigrette (one of our favorite dinner recipes!)
- Vegan Tempeh Egg Roll Bowls
- Smoky Maple Tempeh Hash with Brussels Sprouts
- How to Make Tempeh Bacon
- Peanut Sauce Tempeh Lettuce Wraps
Crispy Baked Tempeh Fingers
- Cut block of tempeh in half then place in a steamer basket. Bring to a low boil and steam for 10 minutes.
- In a large shallow bowl, whisk together the tamari and vegetable broth as your marinade.
- Once tempeh is done steaming, set aside and allow to cool for a few minutes before handling. Slice each block in ¼-inch strips. Transfer strips to the bowl and stir until each piece is evenly coated. Allow to marinate for at least 30 minutes, or up to overnight (if refrigerated).
- Preheat the oven to 375°F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or a silicone mat.
- In a shallow bowl, whisk together the chickpea flour and water until smooth. Add the breadcrumbs and seasonings (oregano, onion and garlic powder) to a separate bowl and stir to combine.
- Place each marinated tempeh strip into the chickpea flour mixture and toss until evenly coated. Transfer to the bowl with breadcrumbs and toss until covered on both sides. Arrange on the baking sheet. Repeat this process until all of the tempeh strips are dredged and coated with breadcrumbs.
- Lightly spray the tempeh strips with oil then bake in the oven for 10 minutes on each side. Serve warm with desired dipping sauce and enjoy!