We are flexitarians, bioscientists, community builders, and have created Beanlife to make good food for the fun of it. Home experiments with fermentation brought tempeh in our lives - we love it because it’s delicious, and just as much for what it represents: an aspiration to a lifestyle with good protein. For us, the good protein is plant based, ideally organic, artisanal rather than industrial, and locally made. A diet based on bean proteins enables us to eat, buy and produce locally, and make our small contribution to help our planet thrive again.
Ever since we discovered tempeh, we cannot believe it is so uncommon in Belgium. Some people call it the best kept protein secret in the world. Not anymore.
For us, it is important to have plant based foods accessible in everyday meals.
Tempeh helped us diversify our diets when we were looking to transition to a lifestyle with less meat, but also with foods higher in protein and tastier than tofu, or cheaper than seitan. We discovered that eating peas is nothing like eating pea tempeh. And pea tempeh doesn’t taste anything like black bean tempeh. You see where we’re going with this? Infinite permutations and taste in one food.
In the kitchen, having a super versatile food makes magic. We can prepare tempeh in whatever shape we like (slices, cubes, minced), season or marinate it for extra aromas. It cooks fast (5-10 mins), because the beans are pre-cooked in the fermentation process.
Where we are now and where we are going:
Our mission is to make tempeh the everyday good protein food in Belgium.
Beanlife is launching its first product, the soybean tempeh, a signature tempeh worldwide. A second product is in development - a circular tempeh made from soybeans and revalued hazelnut fibres. We produce at the lovely Proef! Lab in Schellebelle and are due to move into our own production space as soon as we can.
To achieve our mission, we are committed to:
Excellence: provide high quality products based on a delicious taste and texture. As a ‘live’ food with live microorganisms, tempeh is a unique product that mixes science and crafts to offer possibilities for very different palettes.
Produce sustainably for a circular economy: source the beans through local suppliers (Belgium or nearby) and organic cultivation methods; incorporate underused food streams in an original product and reduce waste; preserve the tempeh fresh and not process it more than absolutely needed, to avoid change in the original artisanal taste. Fresh freezing is needed to ensure the stability of our products.
Innovate together with our community: build partnerships with culinary partners, exchange ideas and feedback, and try new things.
Our future plans are to launch new products based on a variety of beans, toppings and flavours. We experiment a lot with black beans, peas, chickpeas, with cereals, seeds, and herbs mixes. We have worked in innovation for as long as we’ve known ourselves, so we are aware that the possibilities are endless: more products, less packaging, less waste, more allies to shape the future.
We warmly invite you to the Beanlife adventure:
Get your tempeh and give us feedback so that we can adapt new products to your taste.
Share with us your own BeanStory in an email. We will offer you a gift surprise as a reward!
Come to a BeanLab event and tasting in our production space. We advertise them on our social media pages.
See you soon,
Noemi & Winnie, living the beanlife