Vegan Tempeh BBQ Ribs - Chef Cynthia Louise
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Smokey & Vegan Tempeh BBQ Ribs

The star of today’s blog is tempeh – we will be making finger-licking tempeh BBQ ribs! My love story with tempeh had a bit of a rough beginning. I didn’t like it at all! After moving to Indonesia, where tempeh is a very common ingredient, I found a good-quality product and ever since then I use it as a great protein source.


Plant-Based BBQ Sauce That Works Wonders With Tempeh

Not many people like tempeh on its own but its beauty really shines if you pair it up with a good, flavour-packed sauce. My fav go-to marinade for tempeh is my homemade hoisin sauce that transforms a block of tempeh into BBQ ribs! 

Now, you can go to the store and buy a bottle of hoisin sauce but why do that when you can make an even better one in a matter of minutes. This sauce is so full of flavour and gets even better as days go by. What’s even more, with only one magic drop of liquid smoke or a pinch of smoked paprika, your hoisin sauce turns into a beautiful BBQ sauce that you can use to marinate tempeh and turn it into vegan BBQ ribs.

This sauce, and many more, is in my online cooking classes Let’s Eat Light & Easy. Join me and let’s cook wonderful wholefood meals together!

tempeh bbq

Tempeh BBQ Ribs!



For the Sauce:

  • 4 Tbsp Tamari
  • 2 tsp Tahini
  • 2 Garlic Cloves, grated
  • 2 Tbsp Tomato Puree
  • 4 Tbsp Coconut Sugar
  • 2 Tbsp Apple Cider Vinegar
  • A pinch of Dried Chili
  • 1 drop of Liquid Smoke

For the Tempeh Ribs:

  • 1 pack of Tempeh
  • A splash of Coconut Oil


Add the eggplant to a small pan and pour in enough water to cover the eggplant.

Bring to the boil and cook until soft and the water has evaporated. 

Drain the eggplant well. Transfer to a food processor, add the rice, spring onion, garlic, ginger, sesame seed oil, and tamari, and blend until the ingredients are combined, allowing a little texture.

Transfer the mixture to a bowl and mix in the breadcrumbs and psyllium. 

Roll the mixture into small balls (around 40 grams each) and place them in the fridge for 30 minutes to set.

Fry the balls until brown.

Serve with my homemade teriyaki sauce and garnished with coriander.


Serves: 1

Cooking Time: 10-12 mins

Marinating time: 8h

Freezer-friendly: No


Hope you liked these meatless BBQ ribs and you’ll be trying out more of my wholefood recipes. Let’s connect on Facebook and YouTube to celebrate our love for plant-based food.


With love from my kitchen to yours,

Chef Cynthia Louise xx

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About the Author

Chef Cynthia Louise is an Internationally acclaimed MasterChef, speaker, author, restaurant consultant, teacher and television presenter in wholefood, dairy-free cooking. She also has the worlds first online cooking classes focused on dairy-free plant-based whole foods with recipes that people are raving about and changing people's health, one delicious bite at a time. Chef Cynthia loves nothing more than educating people about the simplicity and vitality of a plant-based, whole foods lifestyle. Each dish is like art on a plate and her flavour combinations nourish the soul and get everyone talking.