Gochujang tempeh

Gochujang tempeh

gojuchang tempeh bowl

Happy New Year everyone! Hope you are well and excited about tackling another year on this Earth – let’s make the most of it while it lasts, shall we? 😉 In all seriousness, the current affairs are so so bleak that I am trying to make a real effort this year not to get too sucked into a news vortex as it always leaves me feeling angry and helpless and it’s not doing my mental health any good.

That’s my New Year’s resolution this year. And sugar…Both Duncan and myself are cutting down this month as we overindulged over Xmas and found ourselves addicted to sweet stuff. It’s been 2 days so far and I have surprisingly had minimal cravings, which is just a miracle. I’m focusing on making it stick, one day at a time…

I’m on also having braces put on in two weeks time, ouch – I apologise in advance if the blog sees a sudden surge of soups and baby food – so eating less sweet stuff is probably what I will be inclined to do anyway once cleaning my teeth starts taking half an hour each time. Instead of focusing on pain, a great deal of which is involved I know, I am trying to think of this a a way to foster better eating habits. I shall report back.

So while I can still have real food, here is a satisfying dinner recipe inspired by Korean flavours. It’s chunks of tempeh, which is a healthy soy product made of fermented soybeans for those of you who are new to this, either baked (healthy but still nice) or fried (not as healthy but twice as nice 🙂 ) and then coated in a spicy sweet Gojuchang marinade. I paired them with rice and a sour winter slaw, but stir-fried greens will work just as well if thinly cut veggies feels like too much work on a weekday. Enjoy and have a lovely weekend, while I will relax painting my living room ceiling, at last 🙂 .

gojuchang tempeh prep

gojuchang tempeh marinating

gojuchang tempeh slaw

gojuchang tempeh lunch

gojuchang tempeh side

30 min
60 min
30 min
60 min
  • 400 g / 14 oz fresh tempeh
  • 2-3 tbsp high smoke point (I use rice bran) oil, optional
  • 4 tbsp Gochujang (Korean chilli paste)*
  • 2 tsp rice wine vinegar
  • 2 tbsp soy sauce or tamari (for GF version)
  • 2 tsp toasted sesame oil
  • 2 tbsp maple syrup (or sugar dissolved in soy sauce)
  • approx. 2 tbsp natural vegan yoghurt (I use The Coconut Collaborative), optional
  • 1 small garlic clove, finely grated
  • 1 tsp finely grated ginger
  • cooked rice, to serve
  • 2 tbsp toasted and crushed peanuts, to serve


  • 2 small carrots, julienned
  • 15 cm / 6″ daikon / mooli, julienned
  • 10 radishes, cut into matchsticks
  • 10 sugar snaps, cut very finely
  • small wedge of red cabbage, shredded very finely
  • small bunch coriander, chopped finely
  • 1 spring onion / scallion, chopped very finely (green part saved for garnish)
  • 2 tbsp seasoned rice wine vinegar
  • 2 tsp toasted sesame oil
  • salt, adjust to taste
  1. Cut the tempeh block in half (or more parts if necessary) and steam or simmer it in water for 15 minutes to improve its taste and to make the tempeh marinate better. Allow it to cool down.
  2. Tear the tempeh into small-medium chunks with your hands. You could also cube it, but I prefer the organic shape and it’s easier to make too.
  3. If you would rather BAKE your tempeh, heat up the oven to 200° C / 390° F and spread the tempeh on a paper-lined baking tray. You may want to coat it in a oil first, but that’s not necessary. Bake for about approx. 18 minutes, flipping the pieces to the other side 10 minutes in. It’s ready when it’s browned in places.
  4. If you would rather FRY your tempeh, heat up 2 tablespoons of oil in a small pan. Once the oil is hot, add tempeh chunks and allow it to fry (without stirring) until browned on one side. Once golden-brown on one side, give it a stir and allow it to brown on the other side. Lift it out of the oil with a fork or a slotted spoon and place on a plate lined with a paper towel. Sprinkle with a generous amount of salt and set aside.
  5. Mix all the marinade ingredients (starting from Gochujang paste) together in a bowl. Adjust the seasoning to taste, if you want a little less heat, incorporate a bit of vegan yoghurt into the mixture, otherwise, add a tablespoon (or so) of water to loosen the sauce a little.
  6. Set 2 tbsp of the marinade aside and coat all the tempeh in the rest. Make sure all the pieces are evenly coated. Set aside for as long as you can (overnight is ideal, but you can also prepare the dish straight away if you need to).
  7. Spread the marinated tempeh (save the marinade for brushing on more) on a baking tray and put in a 200° C / 390° F oven for about 10 minutes. Drizzle with extra marinade and serve on top of the cooked rice and with a side of slaw, sprinkled with peanuts and spring onions.


  1. Place all the slaw ingredients (apart from the green part of spring onion) in a bowl.
  2. Stir seasoned vinegar, toasted sesame oil and salt through it and set aside for at least 20 minutes for the vegetables to soften and take on the vinegar flavour.

*Ensure you get a gluten-free brand if making this for someone intolerant to gluten.

**The marinade is meant to be quite sweet as it is complimented by a sour tasting slaw, so if you decide not to make the slaw, you may want to add a touch more vinegar to the marinade.

17 g
14 g
3 g
23 g
32 g
*per serving
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11 reviews, 24 comments
so just checking. 1) bake the tempeh 2) marinate tempeh 3) rebake tempeh with marinade on it?
    Almost, you bake it, GLAZE it and bake it for a little longer. Hope this helps. Ania
This is such a lovely meal. The tempeh is delicious (even if you don’t have tons of time to marinade). Will definitely be making often.
    I'm so happy to hear that, Brooklynn, thank you. And thank you for taking the time to review - that means a lot. Ania
Does the slaw store well for next day leftovers? And is it possible to marinate too long? Say I marinate all the tempeh, bake half one day, and bake the other half the following day?
    Hi Olivia,
    The longer you marinate the better so there is no issue here. The slaw on the other hand (cut vegetables in general) is best eaten fresh. You could get away with prepping a day in advance and storing in an air-tight container, but do not salt or stir any dressing through as it will make the veggies weep and wilt. Hope this helps! Ania
Be careful with the quantity for the Gochugang. The spiciness must vary with the brand. I made it way too spicy for me to eat. My son loved it and will finish it for me. The four stars is the rating he gave it.
    Hi Eileen,
    This dish is supposed to be spicy although I don't think it is overly so and no one else has commented about it being too hot. If you enjoy only a little bit of spice, feel free to adjust the amount to your liking (in fact, I mention it in the step 5 of the method). Glad your son enjoyed it. Ania
Great recipe!
    Thank you, so nice to hear that! x Ania
Amazing recipe, a little taste of Seoul. I used tofu instead of tempeh and it worked. Thanks!
    Thank you, James! I'm so happy to hear that you enjoyed this dish and that it brought back some happy food memories for you. I really appreciate this review, thank you. Ania
Absolutely delicious! I forgot to bake the tempeh before adding it to the marinade, so ended up baking it a big longer at the end. It was nonetheless a success; we loved the texture and combination of flavours. The coleslaw also accompany this meal perfectly. Thank you Ania!
    Thank you, Sabrina! I'm so happy to hear that you enjoyed this dish and thanks so much for taking the time to let me know - I really appreciate it! x Ania
Really delicious; amazing flavours and a great way to add some real taste and texture to tempeh. Thanks!
    Great to hear that you enjoyed it, Andy. And many thanks for taking the time to review - I really appreciate it. Ania
Theodore Juriansz:
This was absolutely delicious, a very easy recipe to follow! I am always looking for ways to keep my partner interested in my vegan cooking and he said this was the best so far!
    Yay! Thank you for your kind words, Theodore! I'm delighted to hear that your non-vegan partner enjoyed this dish too. It's so much easier and more fun to eat vegan together. Ania
Anna Perzanowska:
Hi Ania,
It looks so great but unfortunately I couldn't get anywhere gochujang paste- is there any option to substitute this main ingredient?
Thank you,
    Hi Ania,
    There is nothing like it really so perhaps use a different kind of spicy condiment instead, like sambal oelek (adjust to taste) and some cornstarch to thicken the sauce. Ania
made this tonight - tasted amazing!
    Thanks Ella, I'm so glad to hear that! And thank you for letting me know! Ania
Tanya G:
I made this for dinner a while ago, and will be making it again tonight... It was super tasty and flavoursome!
I didn’t have seasoned rice vinegar, so I subbed it for apple cider, and it worked just fine. The slaw would make a lovely side all on its own.
Thank you for another great vegan recipe. Your blog is one of the things that helps to keep me inspired and motivated in my plant-based eating. ❤️
    Aw, thanks so much for your kind words, Tanya! I am delighted to hear that my blog is making a tangible difference to your life! x Ania
I made it for dinner tonight! It was totally amazing. Thank you!
    Great to hear, thanks so much! x Ania
Tracey Meadows:
Hi Ania
Can I use this with tofu instead?
Thanks for a very delicious sounding recipe and look forward to trying it out
    I am pretty sure that tofu will work well too - here is a similar recipe with tofu and peanut sauce if you want to check it out. Hope that helps! Ania
Thanks!!! Will make this soon!
Hi there
Am I baking this after I steam it , and then baking it again with marinade? So twice baked?
    Yes, exactly! You can skip the 2nd bake if you prefer, but I like it better with. Ania
I’ ve joined ‚braces club’ 2 months ago and it will get better! No worries :) thanks for this recipe! Soft and easy to eat ;)
Cant wait to get tempeh and prepare this!
    Aw, thanks for reassurance! I hope I am not going to want to rip them all off as soon as they start to hurt...;P Awesome and I hope you'll enjoy it! x Ania
Where is Malaysia:
Hi Ania. It looks really great. Can I do this? I am not sure. Thanks.
    :) I am sure you can!
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