Made from cooked, fermented soy beans and originating from Indonesia, tempeh packs a nutritional punch. With more protein than tofu since it uses the whole bean and high in fiber, calcium, and iron, tempeh is ideal for vegetarian and vegan cooking. What distinguishes tempeh from tofu, you may ask? Where tofu is made from the curds of the bean, tempeh is formed from the whole bean – hence the greater health benefits. It took me a while to decide what to make with it – tempeh “bacon” is often raved about – but I opted to use it in the slow cooker.

Smoky Slow Cooker Tempeh With Sweet Potato [Vegan]

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  • 18 ounces tempeh, cut into thick slices
  • 20 ounces sweet potatoes
  • 7 ounces green beans
  • 2 red onions, cut into eights
  • 4 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 3tbsp olive oil
  • 2tbsp tomato purée
  • 2tsp smoked paprika
  • 1tsp ground cumin
  • 8 ounces vegetable stock
  • 1tbsp  vegetarian Worcester sauce
  • Plenty of black pepper


  1. Heat two tablespoons of the olive oil in a pan, or the slow cooker insert (if suitable), over a medium heat. Add the onions, garlic and spices and fry for a few minutes until the onions begin to soften.
  2. Removed the onion mix from the pan and place to one side. Add the remaining olive oil to the still-hot pan (without washing the pan – you want to retain any leftover spices). Once hot, add the tempeh.
  3. Cook the tempeh for approximately ten minutes until it is browned on each side.
  4. Return the onions to the pan, along with all other remaining ingredients. Mix well and transfer to the slow cooker – it is important to do it this way round so that the flavors from the pan are transferred to the final dish.
  5. Cook on high for four hours or low for eight to ten hours.


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