Adopting a vegan diet does not mean that you have to miss out on tasty and enjoyable food.
And vegan breakfast recipes can be just as delicious – if not even more flavoursome – than many of the classic alternatives.
Firstly, what does it mean to be vegan?
A vegan diet plan avoids all foods that come from animals, including dairy products and eggs.
Instead, vegans only eat foodstuffs derived from plants, such as fruits, vegetables and grains.
Most people choose to be vegan for either health, ethical, or environmental reasons, or a combination of all three.
A vegan diet has proven health benefits over a no vegan diet.1 And it can also help you lose weight, keep your heart healthy, and lower your blood sugar levels, which in turn can reduce the risk of diabetes and heart disease.
Vegans believe that their lifestyle is also a positive way to avoid any cruelty and suffering to animals, as well as helping to reduce pollution and climate change, caused by intensive meat farming.
However, a truly vegan diet requires careful planning and a good understanding of what makes up a healthy, balanced diet.
For an idea of what this looks like you might like to refer to the NHS’ Eatwell Guide2 .
The risk of not planning your vegan diet properly is that you may miss out on some of the essential nutrients your body needs, including calcium, iron, and vitamin B12, which are usually best found in dairy and protein foods.
What does it mean to eat vegan food?
A vegan diet is plant-based and includes plenty of fresh fruits and green, leafy vegetables such as broccoli, cabbage, okra, and spinach. Not to forget legumes such as beans, lentils, and peas.
Nuts, especially unblanched and unroasted varieties, seeds, as well as dried fruit, such as raisins, prunes, figs, and apricots make really good vegan snack options during the day.
A 30g portion of dried fruit counts as one of your Five A Day.
Nut butter also makes great spreads and is a good substitute for normal butter.
Whilst calcium-fortified plant milk made from soya, for example, helps vegans achieve their recommended dietary calcium intake.
Tofu is often found in many vegan meals since it provides a versatile, protein-rich alternative to meat, fish, poultry, and eggs.
What can I eat as part of a vegan breakfast?
There are a good reasons why breakfast is the important meal of the day – and why it is one meal you should not miss out on.
Breakfast sets you up for the rest of the day and, depending on what you eat, can keep you full for the rest of the morning.
Fortunately, there are plenty of easy and healthy ways to whip up the first meal – vegan style.
Here are our top five:
What could be simpler? Toast is delicious topped with sliced avocado or lashings of your favourite nut butter.
There are plenty of vegan bread recipes but most loaves of bread are suitable for vegans.
To make sure your bread is vegan, it is important to know what to look for on the packet.
Almond, cashew, or homemade vegan peanut butter are packed with protein and will help keep you satisfied all morning long.
For added flair, top with berries and drizzle with vegan honey.
2. Acai Bowls
These are a popular, plant-based breakfast idea that allow you to load up on essential vitamins and nutrients.
Acai berries are found on palm trees in Brazil and are great for a summer morning pick-me-up.
Simply pour a generous amount into a bowl and top with fruit, granola, coconut pieces, and almond butter.
3. Egg substitutes
The best thing about the rise in popularity of veganism is that nowadays, nearly everything has a vegan substitute – even a typical breakfast fry up.
Crumbled tofu can be surprisingly similar to a normal scrambled egg.
Simply sauté the pieces with nutritional yeast, diced veggies, and spices for an excellent protein profile and similar mouthfeel.
There are plenty of tasty vegan cereals and milk alternatives available in the supermarkets, but few things beat the taste of a homemade granola mix.
Start with a base of gluten-free rolled oats and then customise it by tossing in your favourite dried fruit, nuts, or seeds.
For added flavour, combine a generous dousing of coconut milk, or sprinkle a dusting of cinnamon powder and your cravings will be satisfied until lunchtime.
Smoothies are packed full of protein, fats, and fibre in all the right ways and you can go to town with flavour profiles.
Stick to green ingredients like apples, kiwi fruits, and matcha for an energising drink in the morning.
Or perhaps add a tropical twist with some pineapple and mango mixed with bananas and strawberries.
For a deliciously sweet and nutritious treat, why not try a blend of Medjool dates and banana with some vegan chocolate?
Aim for about three cups of combined fruits to get a decent amount cup full.
Last Updated: 29th October 2020