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Smoky Tempeh Bacon

This meatless tempeh bacon recipe gets its smoky flavor from liquid smoke and smoked paprika. Eat it alone or use it on a sandwich or salad. —Rashanda Cobbins, Milwaukee, Wisconsin
  • Total Time
    Prep: 5 min. + chilling Cook: 15 min.
  • Makes
    6 servings


  • 3 tablespoons liquid smoke
  • 1 tablespoon maple syrup
  • 2 teaspoons smoked paprika
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 package (8 ounces) tempeh, thinly sliced
  • 2 tablespoons canola oil


  • Whisk together liquid smoke, maple syrup, paprika and cumin in a 8x8-in. glass baking dish; add sliced tempeh. Gently toss to coat. Cover and refrigerate at least one hour.
  • Heat oil in large saucepan over medium heat. In batches, cook tempeh until golden brown, 2-3 minutes per side. Serve immediately.

Tempeh Bacon Tips

What is tempeh bacon made of?

Tempeh bacon is made of strips of seasoned tempeh that's crisped up in a hot skillet. Wondering what is tempeh? Tempeh is similar to tofu in that it's a vegetarian meat substitute, but it's made of fermented soybeans. This allows for easier digestion and a meatier texture.

What does tempeh bacon taste like?

This tempeh bacon recipe is super smoky, like traditional bacon, because of the liquid smoke and paprika. If you don't have liquid smoke or paprika on hand (or you'd like to add even more smoky flavor), try sprinkling on chili powder, cumin or smoked salts while you're frying.

What is the best way to cook tempeh bacon?

The best way to get crispy plant-based bacon is to fry it on your stovetop, like in this recipe. Have any meatless eaters over for brunch? Check out our vegan bacon recipe!

Research contributed by Christina Herbst, Taste of Home Assistant Digital Editor, and Rashanda Cobbins, Taste of Home Food Editor
Nutrition Facts
1 serving: 125 calories, 9g fat (1g saturated fat), 0 cholesterol, 5mg sodium, 6g carbohydrate (2g sugars, 0 fiber), 8g protein.

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