Vegan cucumber tempeh sandwiches are cute, crustless, and crunchy. Tempeh makes a high-protein vegan meal and cream cheese adds tang to these easy, satisfying sandwiches. 

Since so many people are making lunch at home these days, I thought it was time for an upgraded WFH sandwich recipe.

This cucumber tempeh sandwich is a perfect way to level up workday lunches. It might look pretty and cute on the outside, but under that cucumber topping is a layer of smoky, crispy, and protein-packed tempeh that will keep you satisfied all afternoon.

This is a sandwich that makes you feel as good as it looks!

How to Make Cucumber Tempeh Sandwiches

This is a fun and easy recipe to whip up for lunch between meetings. All you need to do is slice the cucumber, marinate and cook the tempeh, and assemble your sandwich.

Slicing Cucumbers for Sandwiches

To get the pretty layered look on top of your sandwich, you’ll need to slice your cucumber pretty thin. The easiest way to do this is with a mandolin. Slice the cucumbers lengthwise to get nice transparent ribbons.

If you don’t have a mandolin, you can achieve a similar look by peeling the cuke into ribbons with a vegetable peeler.

Smoky Tempeh

The flavor and protein in this vegan sandwich come from the smoky marinated tofu. To make the marinade, you’ll need:

  • Coconut aminos. This ingredient is plant-based and gluten-free. You can also substitute them with gluten-free soy sauce.
  • Maple syrup. This helps caramelize the tempeh when it cooks. You can sub coconut sugar or agave.
  • Smoked paprika. To enhance the smoky flavor and add a touch of spice.
  • Garlic powder. This helps add to the savory taste of your crispy tempeh sandwich.
  • Liquid smoke. This one is optional, but I recommend it to really add a layer of smokiness to the sandwich. Remember that a little goes a long way when you’re using liquid smoke!

Assembling the Vegan Cucumber Tempeh Sandwich

When you have your cucumber ribbons and smoky, crispy tempeh piece, you’re ready to assemble the sandwiches. Here’s how to do it:

  1. Toast the bread. You can use any kind of bread you like for this recipe, including gluten-free if necessary.
  2. Spread one piece of toast with vegan cream cheese. Add the cucumber slices in a diagonal pattern, overlapping them slightly to create a nice design. Cut off any excess cucumber.
  3. On the second piece of toast, layer sliced avocado, crispy tempeh, and alfalfa sprouts. Stack everything together and enjoy!

Vegan Sandwich Filling Ideas

If you’re out of avocado or sprouts, you can easily fill this healthy veggie sandwich with other ingredients, like:

  • Shredded carrots
  • Shredded purple or green cabbage
  • Pickled onions
  • Lettuce or other greens
  • Sliced tomato
  • Zucchini ribbons

More Vegan Lunch Ideas

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cucumber tempeh sandwich on a white plate

Vegan Cucumber Tempeh Sandwich (vegan, gluten free)

  • Author: Remy


This vegan cucumber tempeh sandwich is a pretty, high-protein and easy to make lunch with smoky, crispy tempeh, cream cheese and avocado.


  • 2 slices bread (gluten free), toasted
  • 1 mini cucumber
  • 34 oz tempeh, sliced
  • 12 tbsp coconut aminos
  • 1 tsp maple syrup
  • 1/2 smoked paprika
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/4 tsp liquid smoke (optional)
  • 1/2 ripe avocado, sliced
  • vegan cream cheese or soft cheese of choice
  • alfafa sprouts
  • salt and pepper to taste


Prepare your cucumbers

  1. Using a mandolin, make thin cucumber strips lengthwise. Set aside and pat excess moisture away if needed.

Season your tempeh

  1. Slice tempeh into thin strips.
  2. Whisk together coconut aminos, maple syrup, smoked paprika, garlic powder and liquid smoke if using.
  3. Add tempeh to a nonstick pan and sauté until sauce is absorbed and tempeh is golden on both sides. Start with half of the seasoning and add more as needed.

Assemble your sandwich

  1. Spread a generous amount of vegan cheese on a slice of toast. Layer cucumber slices diagonally across the toast, on top of the cream cheese. Use kitchen scissors or a knife to trim excess cucumber hanging off of the edges.
  2. Stack sliced avocado, tempeh and alfafa sprouts on the other slice of bread and top off with your cucumber layered piece of toast. Season with salt and pepper if desired and enjoy!

Filed under: Basics, Eat, Gluten Free, High Protein, Main Dishes, Oil Free, Snacks

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BY Remy • April 16, 2021

Vegan Cucumber Tempeh Sandwich (gluten free)

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Hi there, I’m Remy! Welcome to Veggiekins Blog, home to nourishing vegan + gluten-free recipes and tips to live your best balanced and holistic life. I’m a human on a mission to empower you to be well and be kind to your mind, body and soul with the healing power of plants.

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COPYRIGHT © 2020 Veggiekins   ☼   Website by Sunday Stories