An Italian classic, veganized! This Tempeh Mushroom Bolognese is rich, bold and comforting. A combination of meaty mushrooms and tempeh give this bolognese the texture it needs while not skimping on the protein.
Hearty and satisfying, this Tempeh Mushroom Bolognese is a big bowl of comfort. Some of our favourite recipes to veganize are the classics. Those recipes that you grew up eating and not only taste delicious, but make anywhere feel like home. Being able to bring childhood favourites to our community is one of the best feelings.
Top Tips for Making Vegan Bolognese
- Red wine is a must! Red wine is what gives bolognese it’s signature deep flavour. It doesn’t need to be expensive, anything will do. But a small amount of red wine will go a long way. This recipe is a great way to use up the final little bit in a bottle of wine.
- Marmite is the secret ingredient. Technically option, because we know its not a pantry staple for everyone, but you won’t regret the addition. To get the beef-y flavour without the beef, marmite is the answer! Just a tablespoon or two is all you need and it will take your bolognese up a level.
- The combination of mushrooms and tempeh makes the best result. The combination of the two creates that perfect meaty texture. We tried all of one of them and it’s still good, but the combination produce the best result.
- Give it time. For a deeper flavour you’ll want to give the cook time. A low and slow cook is best for flavour, but if you’re in a rush we promise it will still taste delicious.
What substitutions in vegan bolognese can be made?
- Olive Oil – Olive oil lends itself to the flavour profile, but almost any oil will do.
- Yellow Onion – Swap with shallows, white onion or red onion.
- Tempeh – A crumbled tofu or additional mushrooms will do. Or if you have access to vegan ground round, that’s a great meaty replacement.
- Cremini Mushrooms – Replace with tempeh, crumbled tofu, or vegan ground round.
- Italian Seasoning – Using the individual seasonings (like oregano, parsley, basil, garlic and thyme) is a great option.
- Red Wine – If you don’t drink alcohol or don’t have wine on hand, you can use grape juice, pomegrante juice, vegetable stock or red wine vinegar.
- Marmite – You can leave this out if you don’t have any yeast extract.
- San Marzano Tomatoes – Canned diced tomatoes are the perfect substitution.
- Chili Flakes – Hot chili powder or a little bit of hot sauce works as a substitution.
- Fresh Parsley – You can leave this out or replace with dried parsley.
- Spaghetti – Any pasta will do!
Tempeh Mushroom Bolognese
- 30 mL (2 tbsp) olive oil
- 220 g (1 medium) yellow onion
- 50 g (1 stalk) celery
- 70 g (1 small) carrot
- 227 g (1 pack) tempeh, crumbled
- 125 g (1 2/3 cup) cremini mushrooms, diced
- 2 tbsp minced garlic
- 1 tbsp italian seasoning
- salt, to taste
- pepper, to taste
- 120 mL (1/2 cup) red wine
- 1 tsp marmite, optional
- 1 28 fl oz can san marzano tomatoes
- 1 tsp chili flakes
- fresh parsley, for topping
- serve with spaghetti
- Add onion, celery and carrot to a food process and process until finely chopped. Set aside.
- Heat the oil in a non-stick skillet or dutch oven over medium heat, add the crumbled tempeh and salt. Cook, stirring occasionally, until browned and crispy - about 5 minutes. Add the onion, carrot, celery mixture and cook, stirring occasionally for about 5 minutes. Add mushrooms, garlic, Italian seasoning, salt and pepper and cook for 5 minutes.
- Add the wine and cook for about 2 minutes, until the wine reduces a bit. Add the tomatoes and marmite (if using) and bring the mixture to a simmer. As you stir mash the tomatoes (especially if using san marzano) until mostly smaller pieces. Sprinkle with chili flakes and cover the skillet with a lid, reduce the heat to low, and simmer for 20 minutes, stirring occasionally. Taste and adjust the seasonings, if needed. Garnish with parsley.
- Store in an jar in the fridge or serve with spaghetti.