Vegan Breakfast — A Case For Plant Based
Last week I started the series on vegan cooking with appetizers and snacks. This week, we continue with vegan breakfast! 🌱
As always, keep an open mind. Try new things and don’t be afraid to experiment with new ingredients and cooking methods. Some dishes will succeed right away and others will fail miserably. Learn from what went wrong and try again! (This sounds like a lecture on life, but I assure you, it applies to plant based cooking as well 😊 )
Many vegan breakfast recipes include tofu. Ok, stop right there! I know what you’re thinking. My husband and I both used to say tofu is gross too, but now it has become a frequent staple in our diet.
The first couple of times I tried cooking with tofu were massive failures. But I did more research, figured out what went wrong, and tried different cooking methods. And now, the vast majority of times I cook with it are massive successes! I cannot stress this enough: don’t. give. up. 😍
I’ve curated a list of my favorite recipes for you to try, and I hope you enjoy them as much as I do! Some recipes are from vegan cookbooks, but I have included similar recipes found on Pinterest. I hope this leaves you feeling inspired and curious about trying a vegan diet.
I love this quiche! I like to change up the different veggies I use in this recipe every time I make it-it’s all so, so good!
This recipe uses silken tofu, which is different from regular tofu. As its name suggests, it is silkier and creamier. It contains the highest water content, but it is not pressed before using like regular tofu sometimes is. Silken tofu is often used for a creamy texture in vegan creams, sauces, salad dressings, pies, and smoothies.
Sometimes silken tofu can be found in the refrigerated section of the grocery store, but it is most often found in the ethnic food aisle in vacuum sealed, shelf-stable packaging.
My favorite way to make scrambled tofu “eggs” is to press the excess water out, then crumble by hand. Saute in a skillet for a few minutes with a little bit of olive oil, kala namak salt, and nutritional yeast.
Tofu can be “pressed” by using paper towels and setting something heavy on top of it to drain the excess water. I’ve done this, but I don’t like this method; I find it to be inefficient and wasteful with paper towels. Instead, I use a tofu press which I purchased on Amazon-I couldn’t live without it!
This omelet is soooo good! Use different roasted vegetables for a nice variety and addition of color.
Gluten-free, cholesterol free, and high in protein and fiber, chickpea (or garbanzo bean) flour makes a great egg substitute in omelets. It can be used in sweet or savory baked goods as well.
For a quick and simple option, hollandaise can be made with vegan mayo ( see my Pinterest page for more recipes). But my favorite vegan hollandaise is with either a silken tofu or cashew base.
To read more about cooking with vegan pancakes, check out this article.
My mom makes Paula Deen’s biscuits and gravy recipe (a la 14 sticks of butter, 6 pounds of sausage, 8 pounds of bacon…and a bit of exaggeration there). Pretty much everything about that recipe is now excluded in our diet, but there are some great vegan versions! It’s certainly not the same (see butter and bacon!), but it’s definitely satisfying.
My favorite vegan sausage alternative is Beyond Meat hot sausages.
This has been an interesting one to experiment with! Right off the bat: there is no replacing bacon. Accept it, and move on.
Ok, now that we’ve accepted that difficult fact, let’s find some alternatives!
Rice paper bacon is probably the closest replication you’re going to find. As long as you spread the pieces far enough apart on the baking sheet, it gets nice and crispy. The recipe I provided has great flavor and visually resembles bacon the most.
Tofu bacon is best baked then pan fried. When only baked in the oven, it develops that chewy texture that people most associate with “gross” tofu. So if that’s off-putting to you, I recommend pan frying it. Tofu best absorbs the flavor of the marinade, and it’s actually quite good!
Baking anything in the oven is usually not my friend. Eggplant bacon is evidently no exception. Maybe try thicker slices? I don’t know. 🤷♀️ I’m going to try making eggplant bacon again-at least so I can taste it next time! 😂
Surprisingly, carrot bacon is actually good! I used a vegetable peeler to shave the carrot, then tried both pan fried and oven baked.
Both retain good flavor, but pan fried (in small batches with a tiny bit of olive oil) produces a crunchier texture. If you really want some carrot bacon inspiration, watch Tabitha Brown. ❤️ You’ll love her!
Tempeh bacon is amazing! This is the one that I could eat on a regular basis. It is a great meat alternative for sandwiches especially-the tempeh bacon BLT won me over immediately!
Hey look, I baked something that didn’t burn! 🙌
These blueberry muffins were delicious! (We’ll talk more about vegan baking when we get to desserts.)
As far as I’m concerned, you just can’t go wrong with anything raspberry, and this recipe is no exception!
This recipe is so so good! It tastes just like a cinnamon roll. Even my husband who doesn’t like oatmeal enjoyed it! (I’ve converted him on tofu; my next mission is oatmeal.) 🤗
Or try plain oatmeal with soy milk and add fresh fruit. Blueberries, raspberries, and pomegranates are my favorite.
Chia seeds are a common gelatin replacement in vegan cooking. (They have this amazing ability to absorb over 10 times their own weight in liquid.)
If you like the crunchy texture of chia seeds, you’ll enjoy any jam recipes using them.
Whether you make this as plain tomato juice or a Bloody Mary, homemade is always so much better! More flavor, more nutrients, no preservatives, and easy to make with a good blender!
Store bought food
Gardein products are certified vegan and can be found in the freezer section.
Sweet Earth has a line of breakfast sandwiches and burritos.
Here you can find links to plant based breakfast patties and sausages and bacon.
And here you can find the link to vegan frozen waffles.
Try JUST Egg for a plant based egg substitute.
I previously did an article about my favorite vegan breakfast cereals, which you can read .
Health is key
As always, a whole food plant based diet is the healthiest option. However, I realize sometimes that’s not always realistic (especially when first transitioning to a vegan diet). Whatever you choose, even small changes can have a lasting impact.
Especially consider cholesterol and the common breakfast. Eggs, cheese, butter, and processed meats are among the foods containing the highest amount of cholesterol. High cholesterol can lead to high blood pressure and heart disease. But the great news is, there is no cholesterol in plant foods! 🌱
When a plant based diet gets difficult and you’re craving meat or dairy, just remind yourself of the multitude of health benefits associated with a plant based diet.
And please, keep those questions coming! I love sharing with you everything that I have learned so far in my journey. Subscribe to the mailing list, and comment below with your questions, comments, or even how much you hate tofu. No judgement; I’ve been there! 😊 And stay tuned for more vegan cooking. On Friday, lunch is served! 😉