Grilled Vegan Tempeh Banh Mi Recipe

Grilled Vegan Tempeh Banh Mi Recipe

A plant-based twist on traditional banh mi, these grilled vegan tempeh banh mi sandwiches pack a serious kick of spice. Get the recipe now!

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Get ready for summer with this Vegan Grilled Tempeh Banh Mi recipe

I love grilling season.

There’s nothing better than pouring a glass of white wine and hanging out by the grill, soaking in the warm summer night.

Especially when you have these grilled tempeh banh mi sandwiches to look forward to!

What are banhi mi sandwiches?

Banh mi is a Vietnamese sandwich that literally means “bread made from wheat” and refers to a popular street food traditionally consisting of a baguette filled with meat, pickled vegetables, cucumber, red chilies, cilantro, and mayonnaise.

While I haven’t seen it at restaurants I’ve been to, apparently the traditional banh mi also contains pork liver pate to provide a richness to the sandwich.

Bored with our traditional flavor combinations for dinner, I took on the goal of creating a healthier, vegetarian-friendly version of the banh mi.

Tempeh is the perfect plant-based protein for these vegan bahn mi sandwiches.

And I started where most meals do: the protein.

While I feel tofu is becoming more common on restaurant menus, tempeh is a vegetarian protein-powerhouse that I find few omnivores are aware of.

Tempeh grilled

What is temeph?

So what is it?

Tempeh is a protein made from fermented soy beans and sometimes also contains barley, flax, brown rice, or even oats.

What does it taste like? Unlike tofu, tempeh has a lot of texture going on and it provides a nutty flavor. I dare you to get out of your comfort zone and give it a try 😉

In addition to having a texture that holds up well to grilling, 3-oz serving of tempeh also contains around 16 grams of protein and 8% of your daily need for calcium and iron.


Panini thins make for the best bread to filling ratio

If you want to be traditional, grab yourself some baguettes; however, I wanted to reverse the bread to fillings ratio so I used Panini Thins that I found at Trader Joe’s instead.

Such a good decision as the fillings really stood out with just a slight bite of bread providing structural support. Up to you!

Go-to vegan mayo options for these vegan tempeh banh mi sandwiches

To keep these vegan, I used Chosen Foods’ Vegan Mayo.

Other vegan mayo options include:

More Vegan Summer Recipes

Grilled Tempeh Banh Mi

A vegetarian-twist on traditional banh mi, these grilled tempeh sandwiches make for a refreshing flavor change with a kick of spice.
Prep Time10 mins
Cook Time10 mins
Total Time20 mins
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Korean
Keyword: Grill, Healthy, Sandwich, Tempeh, Vegetarian
Servings: 4
Calories: 530kcal
Author: The Healthy Toast


  • 2 packages Tempeh
  • 2 Tbs lime olive oil or regular olive oil + juice from ½ lime
  • ½ cup vegan mayo
  • 2 Tbs Sriracha sauce
  • 1 cucumber sliced thin
  • 1 cup shredded carrots
  • 2 Tbs rice vinegar
  • 2 tsp minced garlic
  • Pinch salt
  • 2 Panini Slims 1/2 per sandwich or sandwich roll of choice
  • Extra Sriracha to taste


  • Slice each block of tempeh into 10 slices, so you end up with 20 total.
  • In a mixing bowl, toss tempeh with lime-infused olive oil.
  • Begin to heat grill on high. (If you don’t have a grill, you can also pan-fry the tempeh on the stove)
  • While the grill is heating up, combine sliced cucumber and carrots in a seal-able container. Add in rice vinegar, garlic, and a pinch of salt. Shake well to combine and set aside until ready to eat (this can be done up to a week ahead of time).
  • Once grill is heated, place tempeh slices over grates and allow to cook 5 minutes per side, or until grill marks appear.
  • While tempeh is cooking, prepare your sandwiches. Combine mayo and sriracha in a small bowl. Spread a decent amount of sauce onto each sandwich. Add carrots and cucumber.
  • Once tempeh is grilled, add 5 slices to each sandwich. Drizzle with extra sriracha if desired and enjoy!


Nutrition per sandwich: 530 calories, 29 g fat, 43 g carbohydrate, 12 g fiber, 23 g protein

Add a comment


  • Rachel @ Delicious Balance AvatarRachel @ Delicious Balance6 years ago

    Yum! I recently had a tofu banh mi sandwich and have been wanting to recreate it at home. Maybe I will do it with tempeh instead 🙂

    • The Healthy Toast AvatarThe Healthy Toast6 years ago

      Definitely give it a shot! It’s a great way to change up the texture 🙂

  • About Kelli McGrane Headshot

    I’m Kelli MS, RD, and my mission is to prove that eating healthier doesn’t have to be complicated or restrictive. Follow along to learn more about food and cooking, with an emphasis on breakfast and sweet treats!

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