I’ve always loved BLT sandwiches, ever since I was a little girl, except I made them with those fakin’ bacon bits that could not be remotely good for you. For some reason though, we always had them in my house and I always ate them. Well I’ve grown up (a little) and even though I get slightly nostalgic when I see them in the store, I quickly stop, stare and walk away.
Now I’m reaching for the tempeh! I’ve always been pretty intimidated with tempeh and I’m not quite sure why. Most likely because I haven’t always had the greatest success with it, but that is definitely not the case here. This tempeh bacon was on point and super simple to make. It reminded me of the “man-candy” my husband sometimes makes at home; sweet, sticky, spicy and smokey all at the same time. I actually think I preferred this version to my tofu bacon I’ve made a couple of times. The tempeh just seems to soak in the flavors of the marinade, making for a more flavorful result.
This salad came about because sometimes you just don’t want a sandwich, but you do want all the same flavors, except in something a little lighter and fresher. I have so many cherry tomatos from my garden still, so I used these, but any tomato will suffice. I also like to add cabbage to most of my salads because it adds a crunchy texture next to the spinach. And the addition of the avocado? Well because everything tastes better with avocado and I absolutely love it!
- 1 cup chopped spinach
- 1/2 cup sliced cabbage
- 1/2 cup halved cherry tomatos
- 1/2 an avocado, cubed
- 1 tsp cocunut oil
- 3 slices of thick cut tempeh bacon (see recipe below)
- Generous amount of ranch dressing
- Marinate 3 slices of tempeh for about 10 minutes
- While tempeh is marinating, prepare all the salad ingredients, add to bowl and set aside
- Prepare ranch dressing while marinating and set aside
- Once everything else is prepped, heat coconut oil in a non-stick pan on med-high heat Add tempeh, flipping a few times all while adding the rest of the marinade. The tempeh should start to get dark brown, sticky and really aromatic.
- Once your tempeh has soaked up the remaining marinade in the pan and there’s a good sear on the outside, cube it up and add to your salad. Top with ranch dressing and enjoy!
For the “bacon” marinade:
- 2 tsp black strap molasses
- 1/4 tsp crushed red pepper
- 2 tsp GF soy sauce
- 1 tsp liquid smoke
Combine all ingredients and mix together-pour over tempeh