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Today more than ever, vegan culture is on the rise. But there are still a lot of misconceptions when it comes to veganism and vegan food.
Too many people think of all the things they can’t eat when living a vegan lifestyle, as opposed to all of the delicious options that are available to them.
This is especially true when it comes to eating a vegan breakfast. Breakfast as a meal is so strongly associated with eggs and bacon, and people have a hard time imagining what a vegan breakfast could be.
The truth is, there are many delicious and creative options when it comes to vegan cooking, and breakfast is no exception.
If you want some ideas on how to put together an amazing vegan breakfast, read one. We’re detailing our tips eight tips on how you can put together a breakfast spread that tastes delicious and is vegan.
1. Rethink Instead of Replace
If you’re trying to replace or replicate the idea of an “eggs and bacon” breakfast, you’ll never be happy with a vegan breakfast. Rather than trying to replace what you’re familiar with, rethink the idea of what breakfast should be all together.
There are a lot of benefits to having a healthy filling breakfast. Breakfast kick-starts your metabolism and can help you burn more calories throughout the day. Eating vegan during breakfast is an opportunity to give your body the best fuel possible.
Think of ways to make breakfast feel familiar, even though you won’t be eating some of the traditional breakfast foods.
For example, fresh fruit is usually relegated as a side dish or afterthought to non-vegan breakfasts. When you’re eating vegan, though, you have the opportunity to make fruit the star of the show.
Use it as an opportunity to eat what’s in season and be a little adventurous. Try new fruits that you’ve never eaten before. You’ll keep your breakfast healthy and vegan and may even discover a new favorite.
2. Familiarize Yourself with Common Vegan Substitutes
Just because you’re eating vegan, it doesn’t mean that you have to give up on eating your favorite foods or cooking your favorite recipes. There are many high-quality vegan substitutes for common, non-vegan ingredients.
Getting familiar with these options will make vegan cooking a lot less daunting, and have you well on your way to making a great vegan breakfast.
Substitute regular cow’s milk for nut milk or hemp milk as a vegan alternative. For baking purposes, you can make vegan buttermilk by mixing one cup of vegan milk with one teaspoon of apple cider vinegar and letting it curdle for five minutes. You can also make vegan condense milk by combining vegan milk with silken tofu and sugar.
Cheese is also a breakfast staple, and for vegan, nutritional yeast is a great alternative.
For baking, the egg substitute you choose will depend on what the egg in the recipe was meant to do. For example, you might be making a recipe where the egg was meant to bind ingredients together. In that case, you can replace the egg with a mix of flax meal and water.
For dishes like scrambles, replace the egg with tofu. It will give you that creamy consistency and the protein boost you’re looking for.
3. Expand Your Definition of a “Breakfast Food”
One of the biggest challenges when it comes to making a vegan breakfast is a lack of imagination. If you feel constrained by what you assume breakfast should be, you may have a hard time finding recipes you love.
To prevent this, expand your thinking of what a breakfast food can or should be. Soup and salad, for example, are not typically thought of for breakfast, but there’s no reason why they can’t be eaten for the first meal of the day.
Warm grain bowls with fruit are another great breakfast option that we don’t explore as often as we should.
4. Look for Inspiration Everywhere
Vegan cooking is present in every culture and every type of cuisine. When you’re planning a menu for a vegan breakfast, take some time explore vegan eating from around the world.
You may be inspired to try new flavors or vegan ingredients that you haven’t used before.
Professional chefs who focus on vegan cooking are also great resources. Browse their social media pages or cookbooks to get a sense of the ingredients and flavor combinations that they’re trying and loving.
There may also be some recipes that you come across that sound great but aren’t vegan. Rather than getting discouraged, get inspired! Challenge yourself to make appropriate substitutions and adjustments so that you can enjoy the recipe in a vegan way.
The more open-minded you are to being inspired, the more recipes you can add to your repertoire.
5. Improve Your Kitchen Skills
When you get right down to it, making breakfast should be an enjoyable experience. A vegan meal is like every meal in that it’s only going to be as good as the chef making it.
Dedicating some time to improving your overall kitchen skills will make it easier for you make delicious vegan meals. Plus, the more confident you are as a cook, the more willing you’ll be to try new recipes that you’ve never made before.
One of the most important skills to have in the kitchen is strong knife skills. When you’re chopping and slicing ingredients, you want to be able to do so with precisions.
Start out slow, until you get a good sense of how you handle your knife and how it reacts to different ingredients. The more you practice, the more confident you’ll feel incorporating speed into your knife work.
Especially when you’re cooking first thing in the morning, you want to spend as little energy as possible and make the smallest effort possible.
Becoming a skillful cook will allow you to create delicious breakfast meals without it feeling like a chore to do so.
6. Make Use of Seasonal Produce
The best ingredients will always make the best meal, no matter what you’re cooking.
When eating vegan, fruits and vegetables will necessarily become staples in your diet. Fresh produce is a great ingredient to center a dish around, but not all produce is created equally.
As much as possible, challenge yourself to only cook with produce when it’s in season. This has a better impact on the environment – which, as a vegan, may be an issue you’re passionate about – and will also result in a tastier dish.
Produce has a better flavor when it’s fresh. You can make the exact same dish the exact same way, but using produce that’s in-season versus produce that isn’t. The in-season ingredients will always result in a more delicious end product.
7. Go Crazy with Herbs and Spices
Seasoning a dish well can have a significant impact on its overall flavor and taste. Herbs and spices are a great way to brighten a dish up and take its flavors to the next level.
When you’re making a vegan breakfast, you don’t have as many opportunities to build flavor using your ingredients alone. You won’t have animal fat, for example, or pungent cheese.
Instead, you can find creative ways to incorporate other flavoring agents. Acids like lemon juice or vinegar can amp up the flavor of any dish. Herbs like thyme and garlic can help balance the sweetness of a dish and give quick-cooking meals a depth of flavor they wouldn’t have otherwise.
Vegan cooking is all about exploration and experimentation, and herbs and spices are essential to that. Even if all the other ingredients stay the same, if you change up the herbs and spices you used, you get an entirely different dish as a result.
That’s particularly important for breakfast, when you may have staples you rely on but want to prevent yourself from getting bored with eating them.
8. Presentation Matters
Most vegans have friends or family members that don’t adhere to a vegan lifestyle. But it shouldn’t stop you from sharing a delicious vegan breakfast with those you love.
One of the best ways to convince non-vegans to enjoy vegan food is by making it look delicious. Presentation plays a huge part in that because we eat with our eyes before we ever take a bite with our mouths.
Using beautiful dishes and arranging food thoughtfully goes a long way in making food look irresistible. Even the most hesitant people won’t be able to stop themselves from digging in.
Ready to Make a Delicious Vegan Breakfast?
At the end of the day – or at the beginning of the morning, as the case may be – good food is good food.
Cooking vegan does have its own set of challenges, but nothing that can’t be overcome with creativity and practice. Once you know how to get the most out of the ingredients available to you, you’re well on your way to creating a delicious meal.
For more information or any questions about eating vegan, please feel free to get in touch at any time.