If you follow us on Instagram, you know I’ve been sitting on this recipe for a while now with ample excitement.
I’d been pondering how to make this recipe work for weeks, and after finally giving it a try, I’m SO pleased with the results.
If you’re plant-based or trying to eat more that way, this vegan breakfast “sausage” is going to satisfy that savory morning protein craving like no other. Let’s do this!
This recipe does require more ingredients than I typically use, but it’s for a good cause. Every spice adds another layer of flavor to make these undetectably vegan “sausages!” The simple factor comes with the 1-bowl prep to save on dishes and clean up time.
The base of this “sausage” is tempeh, which mocks the texture of sausage perfectly. For a brief history on the origin of tempeh, learn more here!
Next comes a mixture of smoky, sweet, and spicy seasonings like smoked paprika, cayenne pepper, thyme, and nutmeg. Vegan Worcestershire sauce adds a “meaty” flavor, while a bit of oil adds moisture. Garlic and onion add texture and even more flavor.
The fun part is the mixing, which I recommend doing with your hands. You can also do this in the food processor, but I prefer mixing in a bowl so you get more of a chunky mixture and less of a puree. Plus, using your hands is more fun – trust me.
I highly recommend cooking these on the stovetop for a crusty outer edge and a tender middle. But I also tried baking these and it works as well if you’re trying to avoid or cut back on oil. Either way, these “sausages” are a major win!
I hope you all LOVE this sausage! It’s:
Crisp on the outside
Tender on the inside
Easy to make
& SO delicious
These are the perfect breakfast companion for things like my Masala-Spiced Tofu Scramble, Breakfast Hash, Simple Tofu Quiche, and Crispy Hash Brown Haystacks. They could also work well in Biscuits and Gravy or other breakfast entrées!
And for a brief history on the origin of sausage, check out this article!
If you try this recipe, let us know what you think! Leave a comment, rate it, and don’t forget to tag a photo #minimalistbaker on Instagram so we can see. Cheers, friends!
Spicy Tempeh Breakfast Sausage
- 8 ounces tempeh*
- 1/4 medium white onion (diced)
- 4 cloves garlic (minced // 4 cloves yield ~2 Tbsp)
- 1 tsp organic brown sugar or coconut sugar
- 1/2 tsp sea salt
- 1 tsp ground black pepper
- 1 1/2 tsp dried sage
- 1 1/2 tsp dried thyme
- 1 1/2 tsp smoked paprika
- 2 Tbsp fresh chopped rosemary
- 1/8 tsp ground nutmeg
- 1/4 tsp ground cayenne pepper
- 1/4 tsp red pepper flake (plus more for spicier sausage)
- 2 Tbsp vegan Worcestershire sauce* (I like Annie’s brand or this GF brand!)
- 1 Tbsp avocado, grape seed, or olive oil* (or other neutral oil // plus more for cooking)
- 1 pinch allspice (optional)
- 1/2 tsp dried marjoram optional
- Finely chop tempeh and add to a mixing bowl (or a food processor) along with remaining ingredients.
- Mix with clean hands (or pulse in the food processor) until very thoroughly combined. The texture should resemble sausage.
- Taste a small amount and adjust flavor as needed, adding more cayenne pepper or red pepper flake for heat, salt and pepper for overall flavor, brown sugar for sweetness, or paprika for smokiness.
- Cover and refrigerate for at least 2 hours, preferably 24 hours, and up to 3 days to allow the flavors to develop.
- When ready to cook, line a 1/3 cup measuring cup with plastic wrap or parchment paper and fill with "sausage." Fold plastic wrap or parchment over the top and pack down. Then gently remove and set on a clean plate. Press down to form a 1/2-inch thick disc. Repeat until the mixture is used up – about 5 "sausages" (amount as original recipe is written // adjust if altering batch size)
- Heat a large skillet over medium heat. Once hot, add 1-2 Tbsp oil (or enough to coat the surface) and add only as many patties as will comfortably fit in the pan. Sprinkle with a bit more salt and pepper. (If trying to cut back on oil, see notes for baking instructions.)
- Cook for 3-4 minutes or until the underside is browned. Then gently flip (they can be fragile) and cook on the other side for 3-4 minutes more or until the underside is browned.
- Serve immediately. Store leftovers in the refrigerator up to 3-4 days or in the freezer up to 1 month. You can also make patties ahead of time (up to 1 month), freeze (uncooked), and then thaw before cooking.
* If cutting back on oil, you can bake these at 375 degrees F (190 C) on a parchment-lined baking sheet for 20-30 minutes or until golden brown and semi firm on the edges.
*Nutrition information is a rough estimate calculated with 2 Tbsp oil (for mixing and cooking) per 5 sausages.