Vegan breakfasts: 15 of the best to start your day out right
What are some great vegan breakfasts? Some people say that finding great things to eat for breakfast that are also vegan is a bit of a challenge, but it needn’t be! Going completely meat and animal product free is harder than people think. Often, you will start out OK, then you realise that cravings are a real problem and that you also need to be very organised to make sure you don’t just end up with fruit salad every morning.
I was vegan for about a year and I urge everyone to try it. Given the chance, I would forego meat for tofu any day. Funnily, when I was vegan, the thing I craved most that I couldn’t get was stuff with a creamy texture – I really missed cottage cheese, fetta, yoghurt and the like – and even though there are vegan substitutes they are often highly processed, very expensive and often hit-and-miss with taste.
Veganism is growing in popularity. There is a great, comprehensive article in the Guardian on how veganism has now gone mainstream. The article says, “Veganuary was launched in 2014, with 3,300 people signing up; by 2016, there were 23,000 participants, then 59,500 in 2017, and a staggering 168,000 this year – and these are just the numbers that signed up officially online.”
Those are incredible figures, and it was also revealed that “…notably, 84% of this year’s registered participants were female, while 60% were aged under 35.”
15 amazing vegan breakfasts to try
I am a huge advocate for breakfast. I believe that a good breakfast sets you up for the day, and gives you the energy you need to succeed in your tasks. I simply don’t understand people who delay eating until half way through the day, or even later for that matter. Some people say they feel nauseous in the morning, but I have a solution for that too. Awesome vegan breakfasts can be made with a little prep!
One thing to note with breakfast is that you have to find a routine that works with your life. Often we are most busy in the morning, and most tired, so we need to find options that are satisfying, quick, healthy and easy. Some of the ideas below take a bit of effort, and some are slap-dash quick. Here are 15 of the best vegan breakfasts you can make. Try them all!
Let’s start with the most obvious, and favourite breakfast of so many vegans, scrambled tofu. To make this, buy “soft tofu” (not firm) from your local supermarket or Asian grocery, and scramble it on medium heat in a frypan with a little vegetable oil. Add your favourite spices and maybe some seeds for crunch. It’s one of my fave vegan breakfasts.
I could eat tomato sandwiches every day, all day and be happy about it. Choose bread that you adore, make sure you use a vegan “butter” like Nuttelex, add a favourite fresh herb such as basil, and use a sandwich or jaffle press to get them all toasty and hot. Use fresh, firm tomatoes for the best results.
Avocado and pesto on sourdough
Pesto is not strictly vegan but I do have a great recipe for homemade vegan pesto. The combination of avocado and pesto is a total winner, especially when you team it with excellent sourdough. My local sourdough maker is so awesome, he is only open half the week and often sells out of bread. I think it takes him days to make a batch.
Yes, you can buy vegan baked beans (many of your favourite brands already are) or you can make your own batch on the stove. Add tomatoes, spices and herbs, and salt and pepper to taste. You can vary the types of beans you use; traditional baked beans call for navy beans. You could also make a version with chickpeas, or even lentils. Try different things for your vegan breakfasts.
Veggie fry up
Grab some fresh tomatoes, baby spinach, mushrooms and even potatoes and make a big veggie fry-up. This could even be made quite healthy or unhealthy, depending on how much of a hangover you have! I like HP sauce but “is HP sauce vegan” is a question we’ve debated before. The best way to check is to look at your local bottle’s ingredient list.
Puff pastry (store bought) is often vegan! Yes, really! It’s always a good idea to check your local packs but many brands of puff pastry here in Australia are vegan-friendly. Mix some fresh corn kernels with some parsley, vegan cheese and plant-based milk and wrap them up into little triangles, and bake on a moderate heat for 20 minutes. It’s one of the vegan breakfasts I love the most.
Vegan Anzac slice
Here in Australia, we remember the ANZAC heroes who died during World War I with marches on April 25th, Anzac Day. We also enjoy Anzac biscuits and Anzac slice, which can be made vegan, and a little healthier than their biscuit counterparts. Here’s a great recipe for Anzac slice and all you have to do is substitute the butter for a vegan spread like Nuttelex.
Pancakes and maple syrup
Google “vegan pancake recipe” and you will come up with dozens of options. Basically use: plain (all-purpose) flour, sugar, baking powder, salt, water and oil, and flip pancakes in a frying pan. Honey is not vegan as it is an animal product, so lots of vegans use maple syrup, which is a plant product. Again, you can use a bit of vegan “butter” to get the flavours happening.
I absolutely love potato rosti and I have tried making it dozens of times. I find it a little challenging but The Boyf is a total star at it, and nails it every time. All you do is boil potatoes, let them cool, grate them, shape them into “pancake” shapes and fry in a fry pan. Serve with tomato relish, or any vegan condiments you fancy.
In Australia, we have a favourite bread called damper. Its very basic, requires no yeast and is super easy to make. The basic recipe is 3 cups self-raising flour, a pinch of salt, 80g of vegan “butter”, chilled and cubed, and 3/4 cup of water, then add a handful of fresh herbs like marjoram, thyme and chives. Mix, knead, shape into a ball and bake at 200 degrees Celsius for about 30 minutes.
Grab your favourite vegan wrap bread, top with tomato paste, chopped capsicum, onions, mushrooms and vegan cheese and bake in the oven for 15 minutes. Once removed, top with rocket, and drizzle with balsamic vinegar; you could also add some avocado slices too.
Peanut butter and jam on crumpets
Yep, your favourite local peanut butter might actually be vegan, so check your local labels. If not, you can easily make your own peanut butter with a food processor. Many jams these days (jellies to the USA) are vegan, some might contain gelatine, so check your local label. Like peanut butter, you can also make your own jam, and even make your own vegan crumpets, if you like.
Yes, the lovely, sweet dish known as Apple Charlotte can very easily be made vegan. Have a look at this easy recipe for Apple Charlotte and simply substitute the butter for vegan “butter” and the cream on top with something else lovely, like frozen whipped bananas or vegan meringues. Sure, it might be a little rich for breakfast, but you only live once!
Vegan super smoothie
I have a mixed relationship with smoothies and I sometimes doubt how healthy smoothies are. However, they make a great breakfast, especially for people who struggle to eat in the mornings. Make one with banana, any types of berries, ice and then add some chia seeds, as they will make the smoothie more ‘creamy’ tasting.
Vegan banana bread
I have a great, foolproof vegan banana bread recipe which I will share with you now. It sounds complicated, but it’s really not too hard to make. I promise, when you make it, you’ll love it, no one will ever know it’s vegan and you will be lining up to make it again. Here goes:
- ½ cup brown sugar, packed
- 2 cups flour
- ¾ cups white sugar
- ¾ tablespoon bicarb
- ¾ tablespoon salt
- ¾ tablespoon cinnamon
- ½ cup soy milk
- 3 bananas, mashed
- ½ cup nuttelex
- ½ cup walnuts
How to make it:
- Preheat the oven to about 180 degrees. Lightly grease and paper a loaf pan and set aside.
- In a medium-sized mixing bowl, sift together the flour, sugars, baking soda, salt and cinnamon.
- In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the soy milk and mashed banana and Nuttelex until well combined. Add the dry ingredients to the wet, mixing until just combined (do not overmix!). Fold in the walnuts if using and pour the batter into the prepared loaf pan. Bake for about 1 hour, or until a toothpick inserted into the centre emerges clean. Allow the bread to cool on a wire cooling rack for 20 minutes before serving. Serve warm or at room temperature.
What are your favourite vegan breakfasts? Are there any that I have missed? Let me know in the comments!