Home » Course » Entree » MIRIN & MAPLE TEMPEH STIR FRY


Tempeh Stir Fry with mirin and maple glaze is a wonderfully sweet and nutty flavored dish! Easy to make, this vegan stir fry is simple, delicious and will be on the table in 30 minutes!

top down view of mirin maple tempeh stir fry in a bowl with rice.

I happened upon a recipe by Nigel Slater, that is no longer available, for a marinade using mirin and maple and thought it would make for a delicious tempeh stir fry. And I’m happy to say was I right!

I added tamari and red pepper flakes for my own taste and to break up the sweetness with a little saltiness and heat. You could possibly even add a little grated ginger or garlic too.

All in all, I was completely satisfied with the way everything came together in taste, color and textures. It’s a simple dish that delivers in flavor, protein and other healthy nutrients that we can all use more of!

top down view of ingredients used to make maple mirin tempeh stir fry recipe.

Ingredients You’ll Need

In this recipe, tempeh is marinated with mirin and maple and then stir fried with cabbage and carrots for a delicious sweet and savory vegan main dish served with rice, soba noodles or quinoa.

Here is everything you will need:

  • Mirin: Mirin adds a mild sweetness to dishes, it’s deep body and umami flavor is great for marinades. For best results, seek out traditionally brewed rice cooking wine that doesn’t contain added sugar or synthetic enzymes, also known as Hon-Mirin. Very commercial brands use corn syrup and preservatives and are known as Aji-Mirin. My two favorites are: Eden – Mirin and Ohsawa – Organic Genuine Mirin.
  • Pure Maple Syrup: This will add a little more sweetness to the overall dish. Be sure to only use pure maple syrup, no Log Cabin or Aunt Jamima brands allowed!
  • Tamari: To offset some of the sweetness, tamari will add a nice dose of saltiness. You can also use coconut aminos, nama shoyu, or regular soy sauce. If regular soy sauce, since it’s the saltiest of the bunch, you may want to cut back just a bit, tasting as you go along so you don’t over do it.
  • Red Pepper Flakes: I used 1 teaspoon, but feel free to cut back to half of that. Alternately, add a little sriracha to the marinade for variation.
  • Tempeh: Tempeh can be found by the tofu in your local grocery store.

What Other Vegetables Can I use?

The vegetables I used just happen to be on hand from my last recipe. Feel free to use whatever vegetables you like, have handy or need to be used up. Other options are:

  • bell peppers
  • broccoli
  • sugar snap peas
  • green beans
  • sliced onion

top down view of cubed tempeh in a mirin and maple marinade.

How To Make Tempeh Stir-Fry

  • Make the maple and mirin marinade.
  • Cube the tempeh and add to the marinade for at least 15 minutes, and up to 4 hours, reserve marinade.
  • While tempeh is marinating, prep the cabbage and carrots.

side angle view of stir fried tempeh in a wok.

  • In a skillet or wok, stir fry the tempeh until slightly caramelized, about 5 minutes.
  • Add the veggies and saute for another 5 minutes, adding a little of the marinade as needed.
  • Save any leftover marinade to drizzle overtop individual serving bowls.

And now you’re ready to enjoy with a grain of choice!

top down view of freshly cooked tempeh stir fry in a wok.

How To Store Leftovers

  • Refrigerator: Keep leftovers in the refrigerator in an airtight container for up to 4 – 5 days.
  • Reheat: When ready to serve, warm up in a pan, adding a tablespoon of water or broth for moisture as needed. Alternatively, reheat in the microwave.

Serving Suggestions

top down view of mirin maple tempeh stir fry in a bowl with rice.

More Easy Stir Fry Recipes

If you try this tempeh stir fry recipe or have a question, please let me know! Leave a comment and rate it below. I love to hear what you think, or any changes you make.



Mirin & Maple Tempeh Stir Fry is an easy vegan dinner that’s delicious and surprisingly easy to throw together!

  • Author: Julie | The Simple Veganista
  • Prep Time: 15 min
  • Cook Time: 15 min
  • Total Time: 30 minutes
  • Yield: Serves 3
  • Category: Entree, Gluten Free
  • Method: stir-fry
  • Cuisine: Asian
  • Diet: Vegan


  • 8 oz package tempeh, cut into 1/2 inch cubes
  • 1 tablespoon sesame oil
  • 1/3 red cabbage, thinly sliced
  • 23 large carrots, peeled and thinly sliced diagonally
  • 23 scallions, thinly sliced
  • sesame seeds, garnish
  • cilantro, garnish, optional
  • grain of choice: rice, quinoa or soba noodles


  • 1/3 cup mirin
  • 3 tablespoons pure maple syrup
  • 2 tablespoons tamari, coconut aminos, nama shoyu or soy sauce
  • 1 teaspoon red pepper flakes, or to taste


Marinade: In a large bowl, mix together the marinade, add the tempeh and let set for at least 15 minutes, up to 4 hours in the refrigerator, turning every so often. Reserve marinade for later.

Cook Tempeh: Heat oil in a large skillet or wok over medium heat. Spoon in the tempeh, reserving most of the glaze in the bowl (set aside for later). Saute for 6 – 8 minutes, turning on each side until browned.

Add veggies: Add the cabbage and carrots to the tempeh, cook for about 3 minutes, add scallions, a spoonful of marinade and cook another 2 minutes or until desired firmness (I like mine al dente). Add a tad more marinade as needed, reserve the rest to spoon over serving bowls.

Serve: In individual bowls, add 1/3 of the stir fry with a 1/2 or so of grain of choice – White or brown rice, quinoa or soba noodles would all be great. This Cilantro Lime Rice would be especially delicious! Top with any remaining sauce, sesame seeds and few extra scallions and cilantro.

Serves 3

Store: Leftovers can be stored in the refrigerator for up to 4 – 5 days, in a covered container.

Keywords: tempeh stir fry

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  1. Erin Bedenbaugh says:

    This was delicious and easy. I multiplied it by 1.5 to make it 4 servings. I served it over brown rice. I did not completely double the maple syrup, I added waters to keep the volume of the marinade the same.

  2. Jonah Reule says:

    Toasted sesame oil or untoasted?

    1. Julie | The Simple Veganista says:

      You can use either or whatever you have on hand. Using toasted sesame seed oil will add a bolder flavor to the finished dish. Both work well!

  3. Fredericka Z. Aiken says:

    I went to your site to learn how to cook with Tempeh after years of eating Tofu. I was amazed at the other wonderful recipes I found, including your wonderful Vegan Banana Bread! It’s so much better than the one I’ve been using for so long and have customized often. Looking forward to trying new and exciting recipes from your blog!

    1. Julie | The Simple Veganista says:

      Tempeh is a bit different than tofu, but it’s a nice change and delicious once you get used it’s nuttiness. I hope you all the recipe! Thanks for sharing, Fredericka!

  4. Do you use the sesame oil to cook the tempeh? Why is the 1 tbsp sesame oil “divided”? I couldn’t find where else it is used in this recipe. Thanks.

    1. Julie | The Simple Veganista says:

      Hi Simi, yes use the oil to cook the tempeh. I removed the ‘divided’ so it’s more clear. Thanks for pointing that out! Let me know if you have any other questions. Enjoy!

  5. Anonymous says:

    Seems the Eden mirin may contain alcohol afterall (admittedly i've never used it), but they don't seem to list it anywhere in the ingredients or on the bottle (and you can't product true mirin by fermenting the rice, otherwise it's simply a very sweet sake)

    1. julie@thesimpleveganista says:

      Thank you for the information! I will have to try a mirin made the old fashioned way with rice and sake, it must have a wonderful complex flavor. Or I'll try your suggestion and add a bit of sake to with my eden mirin to see how that goes. My main concern is not using mirin with all the added sugar or synthetic enzymes. Interesting all around, thanks again! :)

  6. Anonymous says:

    Great looking recipe!

    I just wanted to clarify a couple things about Mirin and Hon-mirin though for anyone interested. The Eden mirin above doesn't contain added alcohol, so it can't be called 'hon-mirin' as Japanese define it (rather it's simply mirin, as written on its label). Hon-mirin contains methyl alcohol (if the idea of having something akin to rubbing alcohol in your product turns you off, think of it simply as a very high alcohol content shochu, AKA distilled sake, just a higher alcohol/more intensely distilled version of the same shochu that Japanese have enjoyed for centuries.)

    The point here is that the alcohol adds to the infusion of flavor (and suppresses the smell of raw fish…not an issue here), and that's why 'hon-mirin' gets its own category over regular 'mirin' (to put the alcohol to work lots of people tend to add a bit of sake if they can't find the hon (real) mirin.

    Also, hon-mirin, and mirin really should never contain any salt. Making it salty (and hence disgusting to drink) is just a way companies circumvent liquor laws in order to sell it in supermarkets. Just be sure to look at the ingredients, and keep in mind that recipes calling for salt may be using unsalted mirin.

  7. julie@thesimpleveganista says:

    Thank you for the suggestion!

  8. I saw your recipe on facebook and knew I had to try it. The sauce was amazing! For such simple ingredients they really had a great depth of flavor. I added just a teaspoon of corn starch to get the sauce to thicken and coat the noodles. Great recipe!

    1. julie@thesimpleveganista says:

      I'm so glad you liked it! The added corn starch is a great idea to thicken it up a bit…I will try that too! Thank you so much for taking a moment to share your thoughts…sometimes I wonder how my recipes are to others…so again, thank you! :)

  9. Tami@NutmegNotebook says:

    I learned a lot from this post. I didn't know anything about Mirin but saw a recipe that called for it recently. I have never steamed my tempeh before using it in dishes but read on a blog that it helps the flavor. I will have to try that the next time I use it. I've only been eating a whole foods plant based food plan since mid March so I am on a learning curve here. Thanks for your well written, detailed post and such lovely photos.

    1. julie@thesimpleveganista says:

      Thank you so much Tami! I'm glad you found this helpful…I'm still myself learning about different ingredients even after 2+ years of eating vegan. It's a whole new way of life and I love passing along what I learn. Give the mirin a try, it is truly delicious! And steam that tempeh and see if makes a difference. Thank you for stopping to share your thoughts! Cheers :)

  10. melissa @ mywholefoodlife.com says:

    This looks amazing! I am so glad I stumbled upon your blog. I just pinned a bunch of your recipes and I can't wait to try them.

    1. julie@thesimpleveganista says:

      Thank you Melissa! Your blog is wonderful and I also look forward to trying out some of your recipes. Enjoy!

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