Can You Freeze Tempeh?

Q. I am trying to replace a few of my weeknight meat dishes with some vegetarian deals instead, and have recently discovered tempeh. Tempeh is a fermented soy-based food that is easy to digest and is a great substitute for the meaty texture that is often missing from vegetarian dishes. I really enjoy it. Unfortunately, the rest of my family disagrees and won’t touch it. That means that I’m often left with a large amount of tempeh leftover after using it in a recipe. While I can use up some of it before it turns, I can’t use all of it and end up throwing some away almost every week. I would like to stop doing that, so I need your help. Can you freeze tempeh?

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A. First, congratulations on trying to eat healthier! To answer your question, yes you can freeze tempeh. Tempeh stands up well to freezing, both before being cooked and after, so you have a few choices on how you prefer to freeze it.

To freeze before cooking, it can simply be stored in its original packaging until you need it. If the tempeh has already been opened, then you can freeze it by wrapping it tightly in a double layer of plastic wrap, ensuring that no parts are exposed to the air. Then, place the package in a freezer bag that you then seal, label, and date. You could also portion your tempeh out as soon as you purchase it, freezing it in individual serving sizes using the method described above. Then, you only need remove the serving size you need. To use frozen tempeh, remove from the freezer and allow it to thaw in the fridge. Then, unwrap it and use in your favourite recipe.

You could also choose to cook up all your tempeh in one go, and then freeze the cooked dish for later consumption. To freeze a cooked tempeh dish, allow the dish to cool completely first. Then, freeze it in individual serving sizes by placing it in appropriate sized freezer safe containers. Seal the containers completely, then label and date them. Cooked or uncooked frozen tempeh will keep approximately 3 months in the freezer. To use frozen cooked tempeh, remove the dish from the freezer and defrost in the fridge or the microwave. Reheat using your preferred method, and enjoy. Keep leftovers refrigerated for up to 48 hours. It is not recommended to refreeze previously frozen tempeh.

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