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Tempeh, lentils, potatoes, and carrots in a tomato broth stew served with brown rice.

Tempeh Lentil Stew with Potatoes


This recipe for Tempeh Lentil Stew with Potatoes uses my foolproof method for making tempeh seriously delicious. Enjoy over brown rice. (Oil-free option.)


  • 1 8-ounce block tempeh, simmer for 3 minutes (optional)
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil or vegetable broth
  • 1 tablespoon tamari or soy sauce
  • 1 medium yellow onion, diced
  • 2 stalks celery, sliced (about ¼ cup)
  • 2 medium carrots, sliced into ½-inch coins (about 1 cup)
  • Dash of salt, plus more for seasoning
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 tablespoon fresh thyme leaves, or 1 teaspoon dried
  • 3 cups vegetable broth
  • 3 Yukon Gold potatoes, peeled, chopped into ¾-inch pieces
  • ½ cup green or brown lentils
  • 2 sprigs fresh rosemary
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 14-ounce can diced tomatoes
  • 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce (Vegan brands: Annie's, The Wizard's)
  • 1 tablespoon tamari or soy sauce
  • Freshly ground black pepper to taste


  1. Tempeh: Use your hands to break up the tempeh into large crumbles. Heat 1 tablespoon oil or broth in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Sauté the tempeh for about 5 minutes, or until golden brown. Add 1 tablespoon tamari and cook for 1 minute more. Transfer the tempeh to a plate.
  2. Aromatics: Heat 1 tablespoon olive oil or vegetable broth in the skillet over medium-high heat. Cook the onion, celery, and carrots for about 5 minutes, or until the onion is translucent. Add a dash of salt. Add the garlic, and thyme and cook for 1 minute more.
  3. Cook: Add the vegetable broth, potatoes, lentils, rosemary, bay leaves, and diced tomatoes. Cook for about 20 minutes, or until the potatoes are fork tender. Remove the rosemary sprigs, and bay leaves. Stir in the tempeh crumbles, Worcestershire sauce, and tamari. Season with salt and black pepper.


The tempeh in this recipe can be substituted for 1/2 cup more lentils.

Simmering the tempeh before using it in the recipe removes the bitterness associated with tempeh and opens up its pores so it can more readily absorb the flavorful seasonings. This step is optional but I highly recommend it. Simply place the block of tempeh in enough water to cover by about 2-inches. Bring the water to a gentle boil before reducing the heat. Simmer for about 3 minutes. Drain and set aside until cool enough to handle.

  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 35 minutes
  • Category: Main Course
  • Cuisine: Vegan

Keywords: lentils, oil-free, Tempeh, vegan