10 Vegan Breakfast Ideas (Compilation #24)

 Life isn't always beautiful. But breakfast sometimes is. After my last inadvertently beige-themed compilation, I decided to make a point of eating more varied shades for a while. There is still the occasional appearance of beige here, but I shook things up with a lot of colors this time. 

This compilation also reflects my commitment to clearing out my COVID pantry. Facing down my pantry means I need to find ways to get through some of the more unusual shelf-stable foods I bought when having things delivered, a lot of which seem to be more breakfast-like than anything else. I'm trying to be gentle with myself as I work through it all, because I know that psychologically I was responding to unknown possibilities as best I could. Not every meal has to be unfamiliar, but I do need to be consistent in my efforts to get through things. 

As usual, most of these are sweet, but there are some savory options here, too.

1. Cardamom-Toasted Millet Breakfast Bowl with Blackberry Compote (Gluten Free)

One of the new-to-me things I had purchased was millet, so I decided to try this millet breakfast bowl recipe from Dolly and Oatmeal. I cut it down to one serving because I was a bit afraid of not liking it, and also because I didn't have that many blackberries around. This was pretty good! Cardamom is always nice, and the millet had a pleasant nutty flavor. I won't make such a small quantity next time, though, because it's pretty tough to cook this quantity of millet. Next time, I'll cook the whole half cup and make my way through the leftovers.

2. Raspberry Smoothie Bowl (Gluten Free)

By this point I think I am addicted to smoothie bowls. It's so lovely to have that moment in the mornings when I arrange toppings in soothing patterns. This one uses the recipe from Choosing Chia. I'm glad I bought frozen raspberries this time instead of mixed berries. You've got to branch out. Also, they make such a lovely fuchsia shade that contrasts beautifully with fresh blueberries. Aside from appearances, this also tastes good. The raspberry flavor really comes through. This doesn't really do anything to address the COVID pantry, but that's okay because it's worth it.

3. Buckwheat Pancakes with Bananas, Maple Syrup, and Vanilla-Cinnamon Yogurt (Gluten Free)

Buckwheat isn't wheat, and it doesn't have gluten, so it may be a good option for you if you avoid pancakes and miss gluten. I bought it in a season I was afraid that I was going to run out of all-purpose flour and have no way of getting any, and then for whatever reason just held onto it (along with an assortment of other unusual flours). Now was the time to face myself and my buckwheat.

It looks a bit strange when you whip up a batter with it, but don't be frightened by the strange, gray gloop you'll have. Just cook it up and serve yourself a nutty little pancake stack (or pile, as it seems I did more than stack mine). I used this recipe from Running on Food, and in order to meet my personal nutritional goals, added a high-protein non-dairy yogurt flavored with vanilla and cinnamon and some sliced bananas. I rarely put syrup on my pancakes these days, but maple syrup went so well with all this I drizzled some over the top rather than the stewed berries I was contemplating. There is always next time for stewed berries!

4. Sausage Scramble

Though this is likely good in casserole form, we (the royal we, that is) are not making breakfast casseroles in the summer around here. One Saturday morning I woke up late and decided I would be as happy with brunch as both breakfast and lunch in a day, so I pulled this together. To make a sausage scramble, cook some onions and bell pepper (I used red because that's what I had) in olive oil, then cook some frozen veggie sausage crumbles in with the veggies according to package directions. (I used Wegmans Don't Be Piggy sausage, which is why I didn't flag this as gluten free, but if your sausage is gluten free, this would be a gluten free breakfast.) After the sausage and veggies are cooked, push them off to one side of your nonstick skillet and cook 1/4 cup of JUST Egg mix in the empty part of the pan. When it's almost ready, mix everything together with a sprinkling of non-dairy cheese.

I had this with a hash brown patty, half an avocado, and some grape tomatoes. This is about twice the amount of food I eat at breakfast most of the time, but it was fine for two meals in one. And maybe, if you're a person with a larger appetite than mine (most people are), this is a good idea for you on a regular day.

5. Cinnamon Amaranth Porridge (Gluten Free)

I remember buying amaranth on one of my last trips to the grocery store before spending over a year alone in my apartment. As I recall, that night they were out of tofu, beans, and quinoa, and even though I didn't know what exactly I'd do with it, I bought amaranth because I knew it was a complete protein. I used it a few times for breakfast porridge and forgot about it for some reason. As I continue to try to empty out my cupboards, though, I need to get through things like this. It's a good thing amaranth doesn't go bad quickly!

This recipe is from Food and Wine; it's easy to veganize by swapping out the butter for margarine. Amaranth makes a creamy porridge and is considered a complete protein. I topped my porridge with bananas and strawberries. This was really filling and has a nice cinnamon taste. 

6. Orange Blackberry Granola Toast

I shared this toast recipe with you a while ago--pretty, simple, and with a good variety of textures and flavors, if you're in the mood for something surprising with your tea. This is pretty light, so I'd have it with soy milk or hot cocoa made from soy milk, or just another slice of toast with peanut butter and bananas, to meet my own nutritional targets. You do what's best for you, though. This has nothing to do with a COVID pantry, either, but I'm sticking to the notion that not everything really needs to be a COVID pantry meal so long as I'm making consistent progress and not buying anything that adds to the accumulation.

7. Buttery Farina

I've given all sorts of farina ideas and recipes to you, but one of the most delicious ways to eat farina is also the most straightforward: Just make it buttery. Cook your farina in the milk of your choice--I use soy milk for the protein--with a little salt. When it's done top it with a pat of your favorite vegan butter or margarine. (This is Earth Balance.) A side of fruit salad helps balance everything out here. If you want a sweeter porridge, you can add maple syrup or a sprinkling of brown sugar (or both), but if you're into a more savory version, like the one shown here, this is great as it is.

Farina sort of counts as a COVID pantry thing and sort of doesn't. It's in the pantry, and I did have it delivered when I wasn't going out. At the same time, I'd eat it anyway and it's not something that poses that much of a challenge. From that perspective, this might just be the lowest-hanging fruit, but sometimes that's all I can ask of myself.

8. Veggie Bacon and "Eggs" Breakfast Fried Rice

A lot of cultures eat rice in the morning; although the meals were not Asian in theme at the time, my childhood involved a lot of rice-based breakfasts, because rice is cheap. But I've only recently discovered the joy of breakfast fried rice. Here I started with Sweet Earth veggie bacon and some JUST Egg scramble but you could use any veggie bacon and any scramble of your choice--chopped mung bean omelet, tofu scramble, etc. This is a delicious, savory way to get a start on your day. Mine isn't gluten free because of the bacon I chose, but you could easily make this gluten free with tempeh bacon instead.

9. Tropical Coconut Oatmeal with Pineapple and Chia Seeds (Gluten Free)

This was roughly guided by a recipe at Emile Eats. Oatmeal is endlessly versatile, and I think I put some sort of oatmeal on every one of these breakfast compilations. When a can of pineapple sat in my pantry daring me to have another solo adventure in the kitchen, I made a few plans with it. You've already seen my pineapple fried rice adventure, but here's the morning oatmeal adventure! This was one of the most pantry-heavy of my meals--literally everything that is in it comes in shelf-stable form. Some of it is stuff I always keep on hand, COVID or no, but the canned pineapple was definitely a pandemic purchase. I'll save this recipe for the next time the world ends. It was pretty great. I'm glad I took the time to toast my coconut flakes in the pan before I cooked the oatmeal.

10. Cherry Almond Smoothie (Gluten Free)

Though I put spinach in this, which I think made it more a deep brown than a vibrant red, I am not sorry. It was delicious and an almond butter swirl on top made it somewhat prettier, plus the spinach meant I got some veggies in the morning. I found this recipe at Ambitious Kitchen and used fresh cherries rather than frozen; I think frozen cherries would make this next-level good, but I still really liked this. I didn't use quite as much spinach as directed to use--maybe 1/4 what was suggested--because I didn't have that much on hand, but I'm convinced that whoever took the photos for that blog post was taking pictures of something without any spinach in it at all (it's far too pink). It doesn't matter, genuinely. The almond extract gave this an extra punch of almond flavor, and the almond butter brought enough protein to the table for me not to feel I had to have anything else (although I did have a slice of toast, and then felt overly full--this smoothie was definitely enough for a complete meal for me). I have asked myself what made pandemic-shopper-me buy almond extract of all things, but now I know how delicious it can be in smoothies, so look out world!


  1. I have a hilarious amount of amaranth in my pantry because I kept finding packets of it on incredible clearance sales so I kept buying it because it is normally really expensive. I am definitely going to make that porridge.

  2. Oh, I love the idea of breakfast fried rice! Going to have to experiment with this one.


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