5-Spice Tempeh Salad with Avocado Ranch Dressing


5-Spice Tempeh Salad with Avocado Ranch Dressing

As an integrative dietitian and empowerment coach with 20+ years of experience, my main goal is to help women age well, feel confident in their bodies, and create the healthy lifestyle they desire and deserve.
danielle omar

A quick vegetarian weeknight dinner or light lunch, this super tasty warm tempeh salad is big on flavor and nutrients!

5-Spice Tempeh Taco Salad -- super easy, vegetarian and gluten free meal!

I keep trying to get you to try tempeh! Is it working?? This warm salad is super flavorful and so easy to make. I love tempeh because it provides a heartiness to your plate that is sometimes missing when you eat a mostly plant-based diet. It’s also a great source of fermented protein and you know I’m a huge fan of fermentation.

What is tempeh? Tempeh is made from soybeans that have been naturally fermented by a process that binds them into a cake-like form. The process of fermentation makes tempeh a much healthier choice over highly processed soy foods like soy milk, soy burgers, TVP, soy dogs, etc. Because fermented soy is much more easily digested, you get more of the good stuff in soy into your body! Getting more of those important isoflavones into you will help decrease inflammation and lower blood pressure.

I like to crumble it up a lot as I did today in this 5-Spice Tempeh Salad with Avocado Ranch Dressing. You can also slice it, toss it in a marinate and sauté it but that way requires a few more steps. Both ways are delicious!

5-Spice Tempeh Salad with Avocado Ranch DressingI love a warm salad in the winter! This dish will satisfy your taste for tacos and the creamy avocado ranch dressing packs a ton of flavor. I had some mung bean sprouts on hand so I used them as the base and it added a nice freshness to the salad, along with the sliced cherry tomatoes.

5 spice tempeh taco salad

5-Spice Tempeh Taco Salad -- super easy, vegetarian and gluten free meal!

5-Spice Tempeh Salad with Avocado Ranch Dressing


  • 1 ripe avocado
  • 1/4 cup fresh cilangro chopped
  • 2-3 tbsp water
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 clove garlic chopped
  • 1 tsp miso paste
  • 1 tsp Dijon mustard
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tsp onion powder
  • pinch of salt
  • 1 cup black beans drained and rinsed
  • 1 handful mung bean sprouts
  • 2 leaves boston bibb lettuce
  • 8 oz tempeh
  • 3-4 cherry tomatoes diced
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tbsp chili powder
  • 1 tsp smoked paprika
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 1 tsp turmeric
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • pinch of salt
  • 1/2 cup water or vegetable broth


  • Blend salad dressing ingredients in a blender until smooth. Set aside.
  • Heat olive oil in large saute pan over medium heat. Add crumbled tempeh and let cook for 3-4 minutes or until tempeh is browned. 
  • Reduce heat to low. Add all the spices to the pan and mix well to coat the tempeh. 
  • Then add the black beans and the water/broth and let simmer on low for 3 minutes more. 
  • Lay two leaves of lettuce onto a salad plate. Top with sprouts. Spoon tempeh mixture onto sprouts. Top with cherry tomatoes. Drizzle with avocado dressing. Toss everything around a bit with your fork and enjoy.

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