Tempeh Lettuce and Tomato Sandwich
Print Recipe Add to Collection
5 from 2 votes

Tempeh Bacon Lettuce and Tomato Sandwiches

See the Notes for air fryer instructions.
Prep Time10 mins
Cook Time10 mins
Total Time20 mins
Course: Breakfast, Sandwich
Cuisine: Air-Fryer, Vegan
Servings: 4
Calories: 121kcal
Author: Susan Voisin


  • 1 8-ounce package tempeh (any variety will do)
  • 1 cup warm vegetable broth
  • 2-3 tablespoons soy sauce (I used 2 but use more if you like your tempeh saltier)
  • 1 teaspoon Liquid Smoke
  • 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon chipotle chili powder or smoked Spanish paprika


  • Slice the tempeh about 1/4-inch thick. In a flat, microwavable baking dish (or a large skillet) arrange the tempeh slices in a single layer. Mix the remaining ingredients and pour over the tempeh. Pre-cook either in the microwave or on stovetop.
  • For microwave cooking, cook on high power for 3 minutes. Turn or rearrange any pieces that were not covered by broth and microwave on high for 2 minutes. Then cook at 50% power for 3 more minutes. Allow the tempeh to stay in the broth until you’re ready to pan fry.
  • For stovetop cooking, bring the broth to a boil and reduce heat to a simmer. Simmer for 10 minutes, turning the tempeh halfway through to make sure each piece gets equal time in the broth. Remove from the heat and allow it to sit in the broth until you’re ready to pan fry it.
  • Heat a large non-stick skillet. (If it isn’t very nonstick, you may have to wipe it with a few drops canola oil or use cooking spray.) Put it on medium-high heat until hot, and then remove the tempeh slices from the broth and put them in the pan in a single layer. (I did this in two batches.) Cook until brown, and then turn. When they are almost brown on the second side, add a few tablespoons of the simmering broth to the skillet and allow it to evaporate. (This adds more flavor.) Remove from skillet and serve immediately.
  • Cajun Tempeh option: Sprinkle the tempeh with Creole seasoning just before you turn it for a spicy treat.
  • For sandwiches, spread bread with your choice of condiments (I use vegan mayo and spicy mustard). Arrange lettuce and tomato (I used yellow ones) on bread and top with strips of tempeh. One package of tempeh will make about 4 sandwiches.


To cook in the air fryer, after precooking, preheat the air fryer to 350-360F. Place the tempeh in the basket. Cook for 3 minutes. Rearrange tempeh and cook until crispy, checking every minute or two. Careful: Tempeh can overcook quickly.


Serving: 1serving | Calories: 121kcal | Carbohydrates: 7g | Protein: 11g | Fat: 6.5g | Sodium: 438mg