Tempeh is a dense cake made of fermented cooked soybeans. Crumble some, toss in a few punchy ingredients, and crisp it all up in a hot pan. It’s so nutty and satisfying, who needs croutons in this Kale & Tempeh Salad?

This recipe was developed by Kate Sherwood, The Healthy Cook. Have a comment, question, or idea? Email Kate at healthycook@cspinet.org.

Time: 20 minutes
Serves: 2


  • 2 Tbs. extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 Tbs. grated parmesan
  • 1 clove garlic, finely minced
  • ½ tsp. fresh thyme leaves
  • 1/8 tsp. + ¼ tsp. kosher salt
  • 8 oz. tempeh, crumbled
  • 2 Tbs. mayonnaise
  • 1 Tbs. tahini
  • 1½ Tbs. fresh lemon juice
  • ½ tsp. dijon mustard
  • 4 cups shredded kale and/or green cabbage
  • 2 cups cubed butternut squash
  • Freshly ground black pepper, to taste


  1. In a large bowl, whisk together the oil, parmesan, garlic, thyme, and ¹⁄8 tsp. salt. Toss with the tempeh. Sauté in a large non-stick pan over medium-high heat until golden brown, 3-5 minutes.
  2. In the same bowl (no need to clean it), whisk together the mayonnaise, tahini, lemon juice, and mustard. Toss well with the kale and/or cabbage. Add the tempeh, scraping the pan clean with a silicone spatula.
  3. Return the pan to the stove. Add the squash and ¼ cup of water, and simmer until tender, adding more water as needed, 5-7 minutes. Drain if needed. Add the squash to the salad. Season with the remaining ¼ tsp. salt and the pepper. Toss well.

Nutrition Information

Per serving (3½ cups):

  • Calories: 560
  • Total fat: 36 g
  • Sat fat: 6 g
  • Carbs: 39 g
  • Fiber: 15 g
  • Total sugar: 4 g
  • Added sugar: 0 g
  • Protein: 0 g
  • Protein: 28 g
  • Sodium: 610 mg

Photo: Kate Sherwood/CSPI.