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Black pepper tempeh stir-fry

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Adjust Servings:
200g tempeh, cut into small chunks
1/2 tsp Chinese five-spice, for dusting
1/2 tbsp vegetable oil
1 banana shallot, finely diced
1 red pepper, deseeded and cut into chunks
2 garlic cloves, finely sliced
1/2 red chilli, finely sliced
1 tbsp fresh root ginger, peeled and finely chopped
1/2 courgette, cut into rings
1/2 tbsp black peppercorns, crushed
1/2 tbsp dark soy sauce (reduced salt)
1/2 tbsp light soy sauce (reduced salt)
1 tbsp oyster sauce
1 tsp runny honey
1/2 tsp dried basil
1 tsp white sesame seeds, to garnish

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Black pepper tempeh stir-fry

Like tofu, tempeh is a soy-based product but with a nutty, more earthy taste. It's packed with protein and iron and lends itself to intense flavours, just like this black pepper sauce. The nasal heat comes from black peppercorns and contrasts against a sweet, sticky sauce which the tempeh soaks up like a sponge.

  • Spicy
  • 15 Mins
  • Serves 2
  • Easy





  1. In a bowl, combine the dark and light soy sauce with the oyster sauce, honey and dried basil. Add 25ml of water and mix well. Set aside.

  2. Lightly coat the tempeh in Chinese five-spice and season well.

  3. Heat the wok over a medium-high heat, then add the oil. Swirl around the edges and when it starts to smoke, add the tempeh and stir-fry for 4-5 minutes until golden all over. Remove with a slotted spoon and transfer to a plate. Keep warm.

  4. Add the shallot and peppers into the pan and stir-fry in the residual oil for 3 minutes. Toss in the garlic, chilli, ginger and courgette and cook for 1 minute more.

  5. Turn the heat down to medium and add the tempeh back to the pan with the black peppercorns. Stir-fry for a few seconds, then pour in the sauce and allow to bubble away for 1-2 minutes until sticky and glossy.

  6. Remove the pan from the heat and divide between plates. Top with a scattering of sesame seeds and serve with wholegrain rice or noodles.

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