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Tempeh Vegan Taco "Meat"

Hands down THE BEST vegan taco meat made of tempeh that is as close as possible to the real thing. You just need 3 essential ingredients and 20 minutes to make this tried-and-true vegan meat recipe!
Course Main Course
Cuisine Mexican
Keyword tempeh taco meat, vegan taco meat, vegetarian meat substitute
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Servings 4 servings
Calories 149kcal
Cost $6


  • Skillet or frying pan



  • Break tempeh with your fingers into little crumbles (see the video above for instructions) or simply grind it.
  • Heat olive oil a large skillet or frying pan over medium-high heat. Add chopped onion and sautée for one or two minutes, then add the tempeh crumbles. Let them slightly brown for about 5 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  • Add taco seasoning and water and let cook for 10 more minutes or until water is mostly adsorbed. Enjoy on tacos, tostadas, in burritos, enchiladas, fajitas or salads!



Enjoy on vegan tacos, tostadas, in burritos, enchiladas, fajitas or salads.

Cook’s Tips

  • This tempeh taco meat can be stored in an airtight jar in the fridge for about 3 days.
  • You can freeze the taco meat in an airtight bag or container for up to 3 months.
  • Add more water if your taco meat looks too dry. If you added too much water, you can always evaporate the excess letting it cook it for a minute or two longer.
  • Enjoy on vegan tempeh tacos, grilled zucchini and corn tacos, tostadas, in burritos, enchiladas, fajitas or salads.
  • For more creative recipe ideas check these 20 best tempeh recipes.

Recipe Variations

  • For this tempeh meat, you’ll need 3 tablespoons of taco seasoning, which is an equivalent to one store-bought packet.
  • Add ½ teaspoon cornstarch to create a saucy consistency for your taco meat. Mix the starch into the seasoning and add 4-5 tablespoons of water before adding the mixture to the skillet.
  • Avocado oil or other neutral oils can be substituted for olive oil. If you don’t want to use oil, add 2-3 tablespoons of water to the skillet instead.


Calories: 149kcal | Carbohydrates: 8g | Protein: 11g | Fat: 10g | Saturated Fat: 2g | Sodium: 158mg | Potassium: 254mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 175IU | Vitamin C: 1.9mg | Calcium: 66mg | Iron: 1.7mg