Lemon Thyme Risotto with Tempeh and Peas

Somehow, after a week of a pretty rigid menu plan, I ended up with two blocks of tempeh left over.

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Hmmm…. Well, I could do my tempeh sloppy joes again but that doesn’t sound appealing. Well, then there was that really delicious Sesame Tempeh Quinoa business. But that only made 2-3 servings. I’d like more leftovers than that…

[Insert Google Here]

Lemon Thyme Risotto with Tempeh and Peas

Inspired by this recipe.

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  • 1 Tbls olive oil
  • 8  ounces tempeh, cut into 1/4-inch cubes
  • 4  cups chicken broth
  • 3 tablespoons  butter
  • 1  tablespoon  olive oil
  • 1  cup  finely chopped onion
  • 7 cloves of garlic, sliced
  • 1  cup  Arborio rice
  • 1  cup  dry white wine
  • 2 cups frozen peas
  • 2  teaspoons  grated lemon rind
  • juice from two lemons
  • 1 Tbls thyme


Heat a medium nonstick skillet with oil over medium-high heat. Add tempeh; sauté 4 minutes or until golden brown. Remove from pan.

Heat butter and oil in a large saucepan over medium-high heat until butter melts. Add onion; sauté 2 minutes or until tender. Add rice; cook 1 minute, stirring constantly. Add wine; cook 1 minute or until liquid is nearly absorbed, stirring constantly. Add broth, 1/2 cup at a time, stirring constantly until each portion is absorbed before adding the next (about 20 minutes total). With the last 1/2 cup, add the frozen peas. When all the broth is used and rice is tender, stir in thyme, rind and juice. Remove from heat. Top with tempeh.

Oh risotto, how I love thee. It always starts the same – with the butter, olive oil, onions, garlic, rice, wine, and broth. And the stirring. It ends the same too – delicious, creamy, and in my tummy.

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Start by browning the tempeh.

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Remove from pan. Then melt the butter with some olive oil.

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Like my new butter dish? (Thanks, Santa!)

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And then the onions – the more the merrier.

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Then the rice and garlic go in to the pan.

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Stir, stir, stir!

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Add the wine. Resist the urge to take a swig.

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Or not.

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And then the broth.

And more broth.

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Then more broth.

With your last 1/2 cup of broth, add the peas.

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When the peas are warmed through, add the lemon juice and rind and thyme.

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Stir, stir stir! When all the liquid is absorbed, stir in tempeh.

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Omit the tempeh, and you still have a fabulous risotto. It almost seems more like an after thought for some added protein. And if you omit the butter and just use olive oil, this recipe is completely vegan.

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Risotto in Tuscany – what more can you ask for?

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8 Responses

  1. I don’t know that I’ve ever had tempeh…But it looks really good!

  2. I have a confession, never heard of or seen tempeh, what the heck is it? Of course if it’s in risotto it’s gonna be good.

    • It is usually soy based. It has a sort of nutty flavor to it. It is less processed than tofu is so a lot of the time it is seen as a “healthier” option.

  3. I’ve never seen gluten free tempeh. I’ll have to look out for it.

  4. Oooh I like your new butter dish! Not as much as the risotto, though! This sounds delish!

  5. What a gorgeous combination, I bet this is just delicious!

  6. Looks like you had a blast making this one. 🙂 Looks so good!

  7. As usual, this looks amazing.
    Makes me crave tempeh so bad 😉

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