Tempeh Bolognese Sauce; Vegan + Gluten Free

When I first became vegan, I experimented  “veganizing” all my favorite dishes I grew up with as a kid. My dad was an Italian chef, and he made the best sauces and pasta dishes and I missed them when I gave up eating meat. Although I don’t eat much pasta these days, I still love the comfort of a bowl of Gluten Free Rotelli with Bolognese sauce (vegan, of course.) Here is my take on this delicious sauce. And don’t forget to add my Cashew cheese for extra creamy goodness.


  • 1-2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • dash red pepper flakes
  • 1 teaspoon caraway seeds (optional)
  • 2 tablespoons capers, drained
  • 1-8 oz. pkg tempeh, crumbled
  • 2 teaspoons Bragg’s aminos
  • 1/4 cup finely chopped sundried or oven-roasted tomatoes
  • 1/4 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 2 cans trader joe’s tomato sauce
  • 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon maple syrup
  • sea salt and pepper, to taste

In a large skillet, heat olive oil over medium heat. Saute garlic until lightly browned and translucent. Add red pepper flakes, caraway seeds and capers. Saute for another 2-3 minutes, stirring to prevent burning. Add tempeh and saute until lightly browned. Add Bragg’s to tempeh and stir to combine. Let cook for another minute. Add sundried tomatoes, oregano and tomato sauce. Stir to combine all ingredients. Turn heat to low and let simmer for about 10 -15 minutes. Add balsamic and maple syrup and cook for another 2 minutes. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Serve over prepared Gluten Free Rotelli Pasta with a dollop of cashew cheese (recipe below.) Store remaining sauce in a tightly covered container in refrigerator for up to 5 days, or freeze.


  • 1-1/2 cups cashews, soak these for 2 hours if you dn’t have a high-powered blender
  • Filtered water
  • 1/4 cup  Nutritional yeast flakes
  • 1 tablespoon tahini
  • 1 garlic clove
  • juice of half lemon
  • sea salt & pepper to taste

Place soaked cashews in a blender cup with just enough water to barely cover. Add remaining ingredients and blend until very smooth. This mixture should be fairly thick, so if it’s too thin, add some more cashews until desired consistency. Season with salt & pepper to taste. Will keep in refrigerator for up to 5 days in a tightly sealed container. DO NOT FREEZE!


Melissa Costello

Author, Speaker, Culinary Plant-Based Nutrition & Health Empowerment Coach | Cleanse Expert

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