BBQ and Slaw Stuffed Pitas

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tempeh pita, tempeh sandwich, vegetarian sandwich, vegan sandwich, tempeh, kohlrabi slaw, kholrabi I get really, really excited when a recipe or dish comes out more tasty than I anticipated.  Like this one here – my BBQ tempeh & cole slaw stuffed pitas.  I think the combination of the good flavors and the initial low expectations of my food makes meals like this seem extra delicious!  A true culinary surprise.  You can usually see my excitement after the first few bites.  I perform the happy happy dance while sitting at the kitchen table followed by multiple repetitions of “this is SO good.”
kolhrabipita6 Since I’ve been working late and getting home ever later, dinner has been a random compilation of whatever I see first in the fridge (hence the low expectations).  But this BBQ tempeh and kohlrabi slaw stuffed pita turned out so wonderfully amazing – sweet, spicy barbecue tempeh (meat lovers could totally use chicken or pork loin) topped with cool, creamy, tangy coleslaw.  This sandwich is one of those dinners that most definitely required my happy dance!  I can’t even begin to describe the fireworks that your taste buds will send off!  Just…so good!
kolhrabipita5 This particular sandwich is very much open to your interpretation.  As a vegetarian, I of course chose a meat free protein.  But as a previous meat eater, I can tell you that some grilled pork loin or thinly sliced chicken breast would work well for those who prefer meat.  I used a generic store-bought BBQ sauce and marinated my tempeh in the fridge while I was at work.  It had a really great flavor.  The slaw recipe is mine – I used some shredded kohlrabi instead of cabbage and it turned out pretty amazing.  You can find the recipe for that here.  But feel free to use your favorite slaw, BBQ sauce or choice of protein.  No matter which way you go, you’ll be sure to say that it’s SO good!

BBQ Tempeh and Slaw Stuffed Pitas:


  • 1 package tempeh, sliced into 8 pieces
  • ¾ cup BBQ sauce (choose your favorite)
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 4 whole wheat pita halves
  • Optional: sliced tomatoes, onions, extra BBQ sauce
  • 2 small kohlrabi, about 2″ in diameter, shredded
  • 1 large carrot, shredded
  • ½ thinly sliced red onion
  • ¼ cup fresh parsley, roughly chopped
  • ½ cup light sour cream
  • ½ cup light mayonnaise
  • Juice of 1 lemon
  • 1 tbsp white wine vinegar
  • 1 tsp pepper
  • ½ tsp salt
  • 1 tsp Dijon mustard
  • Optional: a few dashes hot sauce
  1. In a large bowl, mix together the sour cream, mayonnaise, lemon juice, white wine vinegar, salt, pepper and Dijon mustard. Mix well.
  2. Add in the shredded kohlrabi and carrot, red onion and parsley. Toss well in dressing.
  3. Taste and adjust for seasoning.
  4. Slice tempeh into 4 pieces. Then slice those pieces in half-length wise so you have 8 thin pieces about the size of a credit card.
  5. Marinate tempeh in BBQ sauce for 1 hr or in the fridge overnight.
  6. Heat olive oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium high.
  7. Wipe off any extra BBQ sauce from the tempeh (so it doesn’t burn). Place tempeh in skillet and saute over medium high heat from about 1-2 mins per side or until golden brown.
  8. Place two slices of tempeh into each pita. Stuff in about ¼ cup coles law, slice tomatoes, onions and drizzle on extra BBQ sauce if desired. Serve immediately.

You tell me!  What’s your go-to quick weeknight meal?  What’s your favorite protein to BBQ?  Do you love cole slaw on your sandwiches?


  1. Dario

    June 3, 2013 at 11:14 am

    This is one of the best things I’ve ever eaten. No joke.

    • mewinebrenner

      June 3, 2013 at 1:27 pm

      From the silence during dinner that night…I gathered you were enjoying it!

  2. Kiersten @ Oh My Veggies

    June 4, 2013 at 6:15 pm

    Oh, I am SO putting kohlrabi in my next slaw recipe. 😀 This sounds like perfect summer food!

    • mewinebrenner

      June 5, 2013 at 7:59 am

      It really is super yummy in coleslaw! Really refreshing!

  3. Melissa @ Eat on the Run

    June 9, 2013 at 4:36 pm

    Oh yum!!! These look great!

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