General Tso’s Tempeh (healthy + vegan)

General Tso’s Tempeh?!


Sticky sweet sesame general tso’s tempeh that makes for the perfect addition to dinner if you’re trying to make a healthier version of an asian take-out classic. I honestly didn’t try tempeh for the first four years of being vegan and I had to try it multiple times before I actually liked it. It has now become one of my favorites!

Pan fried (without oil), made without any MSG, no refined sugar, and 100% plant-based. Chinese food is often fattening, caloric, heavy and high in sodium. Make this vegan WFPB version of general tso’s tempeh and your dreams will come true.

This recipe is:


✔️WFPB friendly

✔️Oil-free optional

✔️Gluten-free (if you get GF tempeh)

✔️100% yummy


The Trader Joe’s tempeh is my personal favorite (the ingredients are super clean) but any brand will do.

For this recipe of general tso’s tempeh, I like to cut the tempeh into cute little triangle shapes but you can cut it anyway you like, get creative!

As a health coach, I highly recommend tempeh as opposed to a processed vegan meat alternative but it is made with whole grains and is fermented.

Fermented foods are amazing for gut health!

The first step is grilling the tempeh in a pan until it’s golden brown on both sides. I use a non-stick pan so that I don’t have to use any oil.



Perfectly Sweet 




General Tso's Tempeh

Pair with white or brown rice or even on top of quinoa for the yummiest combination. Garnish with green onions and serve with a side of broccoli or any veggies you like.

General Tso's Tempeh

Sprinkle the General Tso’s Tempeh with some sesame seeds and OMG, how delicious does this look?! I promise it is just as tasty as the picture makes it seem. We made this for my boyfriend’s non-vegan dad and he gobbled it up. Total score!

Isn’t it so satisfying when you make something vegan for a meat-eater and they genuinely enjoy it? It gives me life! Impress your family and friends with this recipe.

General Tso's Tempeh

I mean…are you drooling yet?!

My boyfriend loves pairing his tempeh with rice. My favorite is to have the tempeh with either brown rice or quinoa and a ton of veggies. One of my number one tips as a plant-based health coach is to make at least half your plate veggies at dinner.

General Tso's Tempeh

General Tso's Tempeh

Share the Love

Pin this on Pinterest, share the link on Facebook, post your creation on Instagram and be sure to tag me @healthygirlkitchen. I would love to see all of your asian creations!

When you make this recipe, I want to hear what you think! Be sure to comment and report back on how it turned out. Also, I know you will LOVE it as much as I do.

General Tso's Tempeh

General Tso's Tempeh

Sticky, sweet, sesame coated general tso's tempeh is  vegan, WFPB friendly, oil-free optional and only takes 10 minutes to make. This high protein, plant-based dish is a great healthy asian alternative to your favorite take-out food. 
prep time 5 minutes
cook time 10 minutes
total time 15 minutes

the ingredients

  • 1 package tempeh I used an 8 oz package
  • raw sesame seeds to sprinkle on top
  • green onions garnish

General Tso's Sauce

  • 1/2 cup coconut aminos
  • 2 tbsp rice vinegar
  • 1.5 tbsp potato starch can sub arrowroot or tapioca starch
  • 1 tbsp maple syrup
  • 1 tsp toasted sesame oil or sesame paste
  • 1 tsp ginger powder
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • red chili flakes optional for spice


  • Cut tempeh into triangles and grill in a pan on medium to high heat on golden brown on each side (about 3-4 minutes per side)
  • While tempeh cooks, add all the sauce ingredients into a bowl and whisk together. 
  • When the tempeh is totally done cooking, turn the stove down to a low simmer and add the sauce. Make sure to coat the tempeh evenly in the sauce. 
  • Continuously combine the tempeh with the sauce - you will notice it will almost immediately start to thicken. 
  • Once the tempeh is evenly coated, remove from heat and serve! 
  • Sprinkle sesame seeds on top and garnish with green onions. 

If you liked this recipe, you will absolutely LOVE my avocado pesto pasta! 

In good health,


Danielle Brown

Hi! I’m Danielle Brown, the face behind HealthyGirl Kitchen! I share easy, approachable plant-based recipes that are not only healthy but taste amazing. Follow me on Instagram, TikTok, and Facebook for free vegan meal ideas, recipes and healthygirl tips.

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  1. Andrea T. says:

    I had some steamed tempeh for BBQ tempeh when I happened upon this recipe. My lucky day !! My taste buds are still dancing. I love heat and chili flakes were a great addition.5 stars

  2. Janice says:

    Another amazing recipe! This is going in our regular rotation.5 stars

  3. Pat says:

    TJs tempeh is not GF. It has barley. Are there any brands without gluten? Thanks.

    1. Danielle Keith says:

      There are many kinds of tempeh that are gluten free! Light life has a gluten free one, and so does the brand “hempeh”

  4. Lexie says:

    My sauce never thickened was I supposed to wait to add the cornstarch at the end instead of mixing it in with sauce ingredients?
    Everything tasted good though.