Starting your day with protein is super important to boost energy levels, jumpstart your metabolism, and keep you full and focused for the day ahead.
More and more people are turning to plant-based eating, and for good reason. Studies show that plant-based diets may reduce BMI, blood pressure, blood sugar, and cholesterol levels (1).
However, just because you are not opting for eggs in the morning, does not mean your protein intake should plummet.
Here are some tasty high-protein breakfast ideas that are completely vegan.
1. Tofu and veggie scramble
No eggs? No problem!
Making a tofu scramble is a tasty high-protein breakfast option that nearly mimics the vibe of scrambled eggs.
Even if you’re short on time, this can be whipped up in just fifteen minutes.
Tofu makes for a seriously satisfying breakfast as well since just 8 ounces provides a whopping 20 grams of protein.
Of course, feel free to choose whatever veggies suit you best, but here’s one way to make a tasty breakfast scramble:
For the Scramble -
- 8 ounces of extra firm tofu
- ¼ cup minced onion
- ¼ cup chopped peppers
- ¼ cup chopped mushrooms
- 1 handful of spinach
- 1-2 teaspoons of olive oil
- ½ teaspoon of garlic powder
- ¼ teaspoon of turmeric
- Salt and pepper to taste
For Serving (optional) -
- Finely chopped parsley or cilantro
- Hot sauce
- Press your tofu with paper towels or a clean kitchen towel to get rid of excess water. Expel water by placing a heavy object such as a pan on top.
- Let sit for about 10-15 minutes for the best results. You can do this the night before to save time!
- In a medium skillet, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add the veggies and saute for about 5 minutes.
- Crumble the tofu with a fork so it crumbles into bite-sized pieces.
- Add the tofu to the pan and combine with the veggies. Add garlic powder, turmeric, salt, and pepper.
- Top with fresh herbs and hot sauce, and serve with sliced avocado and whole-grain toast for a delicious, high-protein, balanced meal.
2. Blueberry Maple Protein Oatmeal
Oatmeal is a classic breakfast staple. But have you ever thought about ways to take your oatmeal to the next level?
One cup of cooked oatmeal has only about 6 grams of protein which is not necessarily adequate to meet daily protein needs.
Plus, consuming adequate protein in the morning is super important for overall satiety for the rest of the day.
Consider making protein-packed oatmeal by giving your standard oatmeal a boost.
Try this blueberry maple oatmeal recipe that will keep you full and help you meet your protein needs, as it provides about 28 grams of protein.
- ½ cup of old fashioned rolled oats
- 1 cup of water
- 1 cup of blueberries
- 1 tsp real maple syrup
- ½ tsp cinnamon
- 2 scoops of Naked Rice
- 1-2 tbsp of chia seeds or sliced almonds
- Bring 1 cup of water to a boil in a small saucepan. Reduce the heat to low and then pour in the oats. Let the oats cook for about 5 minutes, until soft.
- Stir in the protein powder, cinnamon, and maple syrup.
- Top with blueberries and other toppings of choice.
Pro-tip: To make this dish taste a bit more like blueberry pancakes, sauté the blueberries in a saucepan with 1-2 tablespoons of water for about 10 minutes before adding to the creamy oatmeal.
3. Peanut Butter and Banana Chia Seed Pudding
If you’re a fan of the peanut butter-banana combo, this vegan breakfast is for you.
Chia seed pudding is underrated and one of the easiest and most nutrient-dense breakfasts you can have.
Chia seeds also provide a plethora of health benefits.
For one, chia seeds are rich in omega-3 fatty acids, which help reduce inflammation, and may even reduce cholesterol and triglycerides (2).
What’s more, chia seeds are high in fiber which is great for digestion and blood sugar control.
The following breakfast contains about 15 grams of protein.
- ¾ cup of unsweetened non-dairy milk
- 2 tablespoons of chia seeds
- 1 scoop of Naked PB
- 1 sliced banana
- 1 tsp honey
- ½ tsp cinnamon
- Other toppings (optional): cacao nibs, shredded coconut
- Whisk together milk, chia seeds, honey, cinnamon, and powdered peanut butter. Keep whisking until all components are combined.
- Let the mixture sit for 5 minutes, and then stir well again.
- Let sit in the fridge for at least 30 minutes, or even better, overnight.
- Top with sliced banana and other toppings of choice.
Pro-tip: Choose unsweetened soy milk to boost the protein content of your meal, as soymilk is the only non-dairy milk that is a complete protein.
4. Avocado Toast with Crispy Chickpeas
No list of breakfast options is complete without an avocado toast recipe.
Bring your avocado toast to the next level by adding a plant-based protein on top, such as chickpeas. Try this high-protein (and high-fiber) avocado toast that is topped with crispy chickpeas.
Opt for a whole grain bread with no added sugar and minimal added ingredients.
Here are even some bread options on the market that are specifically formulated to provide more protein in each slice.
The following breakfast provides about 20-25 grams of protein.
- 1-2 slices of whole-grain bread
- ½ an avocado
- ¼ of a lemon
- ½ cup canned chickpeas, rinsed and drained
- ½ teaspoon garlic powder
- Pinch of ground cumin
- ¼ teaspoons turmeric
- 1 tablespoon of olive oil
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. In a small bowl, toss chickpeas with olive oil, garlic powder, cumin, turmeric, salt, and pepper.
- Transfer chickpeas to a baking sheet and bake for about 20 minutes until crispy.
- While the chickpeas are in the oven, toast the bread and mash the avocado with a fork.
- Add a squeeze of lemon to the avocado mash, along with a pinch of salt and pepper.
- Top the toast with the avocado mixture, and add the crispy chickpeas on top.
5. Super Green Protein Smoothie
Lastly, a great way to increase protein intake when following a plant-based diet is to add protein to your smoothies.
Besides boosting protein intake, smoothies are a great way to pack in lots of fruits, veggies, vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants to fuel your body with the nutrition it needs.
Smoothies are also super quick to make which makes them perfect for busy mornings.
The following nutrient-dense green smoothie recipe is not only delicious, but it’s nourishing, filling, and provides about 30-35 grams of protein.
This recipe includes pea protein as its main protein source, and research suggests that pea protein may in fact promote increased muscle growth, perhaps more so than whey protein (3).
- ½ green apple
- 1 kiwi, peeled
- ½ cup frozen pineapple
- ¼ of an avocado
- 2 handfuls of spinach or kale
- 2 tablespoons of hemp seeds
- 2 scoops of Naked Pea Protein
- 2-3 ice cubes
Directions: Simply blend and enjoy!
Clearly, there are many ways to ensure a high-protein breakfast when following a vegan diet.
If you are not following a strict vegan diet but are interested in incorporating more plant-based meals into your diet, breakfast is a great place to start as there are so many delicious and creative ways to have a filling, balanced, and protein-rich breakfast.