Raise your hand if breakfast is your favorite meal!
Me, me, me, especially on weekends. I also loved going out for breakfast. Now I often make this versatile vegan scramble at home.
Most restaurants don’t have many, if any, vegan breakfast options outside of oatmeal and almond milk (if available). So what can a vegan cook for breakfast?
With six years as a vegan under my belt, I really enjoy making different types of scrambles at home – potato, cauliflower, tofu, whatever. And you can make breakfast wraps from any scramble; just stuff it in a whole wheat wrap, heat it up and eat it.
As you can see, there’s more to a vegan’s breakfast than just whole wheat toast with vegan butter. If you love your cereal, then a simple, plant-based cereal like Cheerios should be in your cupboard because it’s made from 100% whole grain oats.
Oatmeal (rolled or steel cut) with plant milk and dried fruit is an easy option (look for overnight oats). There are different types of rich and creamy plant milks, such as soy, almond, oat, and coconut.
Take a look at the dairy section and you will be surprised. These products are gaining more and more shelf space, and they come in unrefrigerated boxes on the shelf for easy portability.
Find vegan breakfast recipes
I have vegan cookbooks that always have a breakfast section and I’ve found many recipes that are much tastier and healthier than those served in a restaurant. I would suggest investing in vegan cookbooks with at least 300 recipes. This way you will find recipes for French toast, breakfast sandwiches, pancakes and waffles, wraps and breakfast casseroles.
One of my cookbooks has a vegan version of the Peanut Butter Banana French Toast that Elvis Presley used to eat, and it’s delicious. You see, as a vegan you can always have vegan versions of comfort foods like French toast and pancakes.
If you’re more digital, search the internet for vegan recipes. You will find all kinds of options.
Our local grocery stores and co-ops share vegan recipes on their websites. Some vegan products have a section on their website with recipes for use with that specific product. Join a local vegan group on Meetup or ask your vegan friends how they find the best recipes.
Finding Egg Substitutes
Let’s talk about eggs, because I’m sure you might be thinking, “How do you make breakfast without eggs?”
I have good news. There are egg substitutes. For a vegan egg substitute, look for JUST Egg, a plant-based, cholesterol-free product found at your local grocery store or co-op.
JUST Egg is made from mung beans and turmeric. They cook like eggs, taste like eggs and you can use them in your baking recipes.
I am not joking. You can make your own scrambled egg or omelet with JUST Egg. And now there’s JUST Egg Folded (frozen section) that you can put in the toaster and enjoy for breakfast.
Can you say eggs florentine, breakfast sandwiches and even egg salad for lunch? The possibilities are endless and their website has plenty of recipes, so check it out.
There are options for vegan sausage and bacon, as these also come in plant-based versions. Look for the vegan symbol on the packaging if you want to make sure it’s truly plant-based.
Brands such as Tofurkey, Lightlife, Field Roast and Beyond Meat have great alternatives. And take this Whole Wheat Toast and Vegan Butter. Then, toss some potatoes on the side and you’re set!
Use of Versatility
Tofu or other vegetables instead of an egg substitute increase your breakfast options. Many scrambles can be made ahead and reheated in the morning, so go crazy.
This recipe is my favorite. My wonderful friends share their best recipes with me and I with them.
That’s how this recipe came to me. A friend was kind enough to take tons of notes on the page she gave me, which gives you lots of extras for the recipe.
Add-ons make this jam much better and fuller, so get creative and add your favorites. You also don’t need to change the amount of tofu to match the amount of vegetables.
If you want a simple scramble, eliminate the complements and add your sides. Or there is a Southwestern Tofu Scramble listed at the end of the recipe. You see, it is versatile.
Every time I do this jamming, I do it differently depending on what I have on hand. You can also. It freezes well and reheats easily, so enjoy. Breakfast is served!
(makes 4 servings)
1 teaspoon vegetable oil (optional)
1 tablespoon diced onions (or use 1 teaspoon dried)
1 teaspoon minced garlic
1 package firm tofu, drained but not pressed because you want liquid
1 tablespoon of tamari
¼ teaspoon turmeric
¼ teaspoon paprika
1 tablespoon dried parsley
Pinch of oregano
Pinch of salt, if using
A pinch of pepper or use pepper after serving
¼ teaspoon lemon juice
1 tablespoon nutritional yeast
Supplements (quantity is a personal choice):
Chopped mushrooms and/or tomatoes, quartered zucchini, sliced black olives, one red, green, orange or yellow pepper
1 teaspoon curry powder
½ teaspoon cumin
1½ teaspoon chilli powder
1 tbsp dill
1 tbsp coriander
1 bunch of fresh spinach (add once the tofu is hot and almost cooked, then cook 1-2 minutes longer or frozen which can be added with the vegetables)
¾ cup frozen corn and/or peas
Southwestern Tofu Scramble: Use chili powder, cumin, salsa, frozen corn, and black olives only in plain scramble
Heat the skillet over medium heat and add oil if using, followed by the raw onions. Cook for about 2 minutes. (If using dried onions, add the garlic and cook for about 2 minutes.)
Break up the tofu by hand in the pan and add all the spices. Cover and cook for 3 minutes. Extras can be added afterwards, cover and cook until the vegetables are tender. Remove the lid and boil some liquid. Add lemon juice and nutritional yeast and stir. Serve immediately.
Cindy Gewecke is employed by a CPA firm and resides outside of Cedar Rapids.
This article originally appeared on Iowa City Press-Citizen: Vegan breakfast tips, plus a tofu scramble to get you started