Tempeh Vegan Club Sandwiches

Tempeh Vegan Club Sandwiches

Someone recently asked me – when do you use tempeh? I responded with, “when I’m tired of tofu and chickpeas… that’s when it’s tempeh time :)” To be honest, no one really knocks down my door begging for more tempeh recipes, but since that interview, I’ve had tempeh on the brain. Its texture is so wonderfully meat-like but it only tastes as good as what’s around it. Time to marinade!

Tempeh Vegan Club Sandwiches

The marinade I created is a smoky mixture that includes tamari, maple syrup, ground cumin, and smoked paprika. When you first mix this together, the flavor is going to be very (very) salty and pungent, but since plain tempeh starts out with literally ZERO flavor, it’ll all balance out in the end. I bake the tempeh with most of the marinade, while reserving the excess to pour onto the strips post-bake for extra flavor. Since we’re not dealing with raw meat, it’s ok to reuse your marinade like this.

Speaking of things that aren’t bland, we’re partnering with eureka!® Organic Bread on this post. (You might remember this springy edamame sandwich from last year!). Their bread is seriously tasty. It’s vegan, non GMO, and full of good-for-you grains and seeds. Most importantly, it’s soft, chewy and delicious. Whenever I used to bring home other “healthy” breads, Jack would always give me a sideways glance because so many of them often taste like cardboard. But we both really love the taste and texture of eureka! Organic’s Breads – their Top Seed® and their Sweet Baby Grains® (pictured in this post), are our favorites.

Tempeh Vegan Club Sandwiches Tempeh Vegan Club Sandwiches

Instead of mayo, I slathered this sandwich with 2 flavorful spreads. The first is a lemony garlic white bean spread. The second is a sun dried tomato spread that I made by blending half of the original white bean spread with a few sun dried tomatoes.

I stacked my sandwiches with peppery watercress, crisp cucumber slices, and ripe avocado slices. You can see that there are some carrots up there in my prep photos but once I started building my sandwich since I got a little carried away with avocado slices and they didn’t fit. Obviously, feel free to build your sandwiches however you like!

Tempeh Vegan Club Sandwiches

5.0 from 4 reviews
Tempeh Vegan Club Sandwiches
Serves: 4 sandwiches
Smoky Marinated Tempeh
  • 1 (8-ounce) package tempeh, sliced into about 15 slices
  • ¼ cup tamari
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 tablespoon rice vinegar
  • 2 tablespoon maple syrup
  • ½ teaspoon ground cumin
  • ½ teaspoon smoked paprika
  • Freshly ground black pepper
White Bean & Sun-Dried Tomato sandwich spreads
  • 1 (15-ounce) can white beans
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • Juice of 1 medium lemon
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 3 to 4 sun-dried tomatoes
  1. Make the tempeh marinade. In a small bowl, whisk together the tamari, olive oil, rice vinegar, maple syrup, cumin, paprika, and several grinds of pepper. Place the tempeh in a shallow dish and pour the marinade on top. Gently flip the tempeh pieces to make sure all sides are coated with the marinade. Marinate in the fridge for at least 30 minutes.
  2. Make the sandwich spreads. In a blender or small food processor, make the White Bean spread by pureeing the white beans, olive oil, lemon juice, garlic, salt and pepper. Blend until smooth, adding 1 to 2 tablespoons of water if necessary to blend. Set aside half of the puree. Make the Sun-Dried Tomato spread by adding the sun-dried tomatoes. Blend again, adding 1 to 2 tablespoons of water if necessary to blend. Chill the spreads until ready to use. Alternatively, just make 1 spread by pureeing everything at once, including or omitting the sun-dried tomatoes, as desired. Chill until ready to use.
  3. Preheat the oven to 425°F and line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Remove the tempeh from the fridge and place the strips on the baking sheet, reserving the remaining marinade. Bake for 20 minutes. Remove from the oven and drizzle the remaining marinade onto the tempeh slices.
  4. Assemble 4 sandwiches with the bread (toasted if you like), spreads, tempeh, watercress, tomato, cucumber, and avocado.

This post is sponsored by eureka! Organic Bread. All opinions, images and words are my own. CLICK HERE to find a store that carries their breads near you.

If you make this, let us see! Tag your photo with #loveandlemons on Instagram.


  1. I have had tempeh in my fridge for a month and now I know what to do with it! Clubs are one of my favorites and I love a veggie version idea. So delicious!

  2. dana from minimalistbaker.com on said:

    This sandwich is a thing of beauty. STUNNING!

  3. Bri on said:

    For that tempeh marinade, liquid smoke is also your friend. 🙂

    • I bet! I will have to try it one day. I just assumed most people wouldn’t have it on hand (since I never have it on hand, ha!), and I just love what smoked paprika adds 🙂

  4. Buffy from begoodorganics.com on said:

    Ha – so true jeanine about people asking for tempeh recipes – it never happens to me either! But I absolutely love it. Have you tried marinating it in liquid smoke? So delicious – gives it even more of a bacon flavour (I did a recipe with it a while back here http://bit.ly/smokeytempeh

    Anyway, love your recipes, and photos. Always stunning. And you’ve inspired me to get tempeh back on the menu this weekend. x

    • Hi Buffy, thank you! I will have to try the liquid smoke 🙂

      • Buffy from begoodorganics.com on said:

        Definitely! Works really well also with eggplant, mushrooms, to make smoky ‘meat-like’ textures and flavours.

        Have an awesome weekend (it’s Friday 11am here in NZ so clearly I’m already thinking about it!)

        x Buffy

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  8. Hanne from sunnysidehanne.com on said:

    I am a closet tempeh lover. My family never orders it at restaurants yet they eagerly gobble it when I make it for dinner. (At least I think they do) Marinating it and making a sandwich is a wonderful direction to head with Tempeh. All those textures and flavors make for a grand sandwich. Good job.

  9. Noah from westhandphoto.com on said:

    Hi! I stumbled upon your recipes today and can’t thank you enough. So many new things to try! I grew up in Japan but have lived happily in Austin for the last 10 years.

    My question is: Where do you recommend grocery shopping in Austin for these ingredients? Your produce looks amazing! I live in the Zilker neighborhood.

    • Hi Noah, I usually go to either Whole Foods, Central Market or Wheatsville Coop!

      • Noah from westhandphoto.com on said:

        Same here haha. Thanks!

  10. Melanie M Turner on said:

    This sandwich is SO freaking delicious! I had it for lunch yesterday and couldn’t stop exclaiming about how tasty it was while eating it …. And after eating it. I may have told everyone I know. 😉😋

  11. Abby Smith on said:

    I love this recipe. I turned mine into collard wraps and they were divine! Thanks for the deliciousness.

  12. Diana on said:

    Made this tonight. It was excellent! Will definitely be making this again.

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  14. Aidan on said:

    Hey Jeanine!

    Another awesome looking recipe. I’m just wondering: I’m on a bit of a “make ahead” kick lately. Do you think the tempeh would benefit – or I guess, more importantly, would it be detrimental to the tempeh – from setting it up to marinate in the fridge the night before?

    Thanks so much!


    • Hi Aidan,
      Yep, you can marinate it ahead of time!

      • Aidan on said:

        SO GOOD! Although, I was also a little overambitious with my sandwich stuffings and it was almost too big for my mouth. I made it work, though. Definitely making a mental note of this tempeh recipe – I think it would be lovely crumbled on top of a salad, as well.

        Thanks again, Jeanine!

  15. Starfish425 on said:

    This is a great recipe. Its really quick and easy to make and is very rich in flavor! I use a safe plastic toothpicks instead of the regular ones and a cute Whale toothpick holder on the side for added charm!

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  17. Kacy from library.uonbi.ac.ke on said:


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  20. Megan on said:

    This is sooo good!! I also added a little bit of chipotle pepper hot sauce to the mayo which was pretty good

    • Hi Megan – I’m so glad you liked it!! I’m in love with creamy chipotle things, I bet that was delicious!

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