BTLT: BBQ Tempeh Lettuce & Tomato Sandwich

A twist on the classic BLT (bacon, lettuce, tomato) sandwich, made with protein-packed tempeh in place of bacon.

The trick to flavouring tempeh is to marinate it, the longer the better. If you're in a rush, 5 minutes will do, but ideally we'd want to marinate the tempeh for at least 2 hours if not overnight for maximum flavour.

Tip: the thinner your slices of tempeh, the crispier they will get, and the higher the surface area to soak up all the BBQ sauce. Yum!!

Another optional but highly recommended tip is to first boil the tempeh in water for a few minutes to soften it; this also helps to remove the bitterness, and helps the tempeh soak up more marinate.

Another science to this sandwich is in the bread. We've made the recipe a few times and the bread can make or break it, so try using something that doesn't impart too much flavour, and try a bread you really enjoy.

Watch How to Make It Here

This recipe starts at 5:39



BBQ Tempeh, Lettuce, Tomato (BTLT) Sandwich

Recipe PDF

▸ ▹ Vegan, one-pot, gluten-free, nut-free

Yield: 2-3 servings Prep Time: 10 min Cook Time: 10-15 min Total Time: 20-25 min (excluding marinating time)


2 tsp vegetable oil

1 block (250 g) tempeh

1/2 cup vegan BBQ sauce (GF if desired)

Toasted bread of choice (GF if desired)

1 small head of romaine lettuce

1 medium fresh tomato, sliced

1 avocado, sliced

1 roasted red pepper from a jar, deseeded, sliced


  1. Bring a medium pan of water to a boil. Cut the tempeh into 1/8 inch thin strips (the thinner they are, the crispier they will be!). Add the strips to the pan of boiling water and cook for 5 minutes to reduce the bitterness. Drain and pat dry.

  2. Mix the tempeh and BBQ sauce and let sit for at least 5 minutes, or ideally for 2 hours or overnight for maximum BBQ flavour.

  3. Toast your bread and prep your vegetables.

  4. Add 2 tsp of vegetable oil to a non-stick pan and once heated, add the tempeh strips and cook until golden and crispy on both sides, about 5-7 minutes. Keep on eye on it as BBQ sauce can quickly burn. Remove from heat when crisped to your liking.

  5. Top the toasted bread with some BBQ sauce, add tempeh strips, tomatoes, roasted red pepper, avocado, and lettuce. Enjoy!


  1. Storage: best if enjoyed same day, but you can store the tempeh in the fridge for up to 2-3 days.

  2. Variations: try with a pickles instead of avocado, or top with a coleslaw mix.


Did You Try This Recipe?

Let us know how it went! Comment below and share a picture on Instagram with the hashtag #pickuplimes

❤ Sadia