I’ve never really been a huge breakfast person, and it’s mostly because I’m not a huge morning person.
Most days, I am lucky to make it out the door merely dressed and awake, so I certainly don’t have the wherewithal to be whipping up a full breakfast at 7 in the a.m. and be dressed and awake and on time to work.
Lucky for me, there’s scrambled tofu, which can be prepared in bulk on Sunday, stays fresh in the fridge, and can be reheated and repurposed as needed all week.
If scrambled tofu every day sounds a little mundane, well, it kind of is- by itself.
But if there’s one thing tofu is good for, it’s variation; starting with a base of regular scramble, you can make breakfast sandwiches, burritos, tacos, pile-ups- whatever you’d do with eggs in your previous, omnivorous life.
You could even put ketchup on it if you’re one of those people.
So here are recipes for tofu scramble, 3 ways: basic, burrito and pile-up style- but feel free to try your own combinations and seasoning variations that suit your own tastes.
1st Scrambled Tofu Recipe : Basic Scramble
- 1 package/16 oz. extra firm, organic tofu, drained
- ½ c. nutritional yeast (if you don’t have this, it can be made without- but it’s really, really good with)
- ¼ c. water
- 1-2 T. minced garlic
- 1 T. cumin
- 1 T. extra virgin olive oil
- 1 t. Hungarian paprika (or regular, if that’s what you’ve got)
- ¼ t. turmeric
- pinch of thyme
- salt and pepper
First, on medium to medium/high heat, sauté the garlic in the olive oil until the garlic begins to brown.
With your hands, crumble the tofu in medium-sized chunks straight into the pan (I like cast iron).
Keep stirring and pushing the tofu around with a spatula as you add the cumin, paprika, thyme and turmeric.
Stir in the nutritional yeast and add water, a little at a time, if it seems dry- usually about ¼ to ½ cups.
Continue cooking and stirring, scraping the bottom of the pan with the spatula for a few minutes.
Perform a quick taste test and add salt and pepper to taste before serving.
2nd Recipe: Southwest Scramble Burrito
- basic scrambled tofu from above
- vegan sausage (I used Melissa’s Soyrizo, chorizo-style, but regular breakfast-style sausage is good too. Try Lightlife Gimme Lean)
- Flour tortillas
- Green onions
- Diced tomatoes
- Fresh cilantro
- Salsa or hot sauce
Sauté vegan sausage on high heat in a non-stick or cast iron skillet until done, according to package directions.
Microwave tortillas for 10-15 seconds until soft and pliable. Fill tortillas with scrambled tofu, vegan sausage, green onions, tomatoes and fresh cilantro.
Top with salsa or hot sauce, wrap tightly and enjoy.
Other ingredient variations: kidney or black beans, vegan Tofutti sour cream, bell peppers and onions, jalapeños, mushrooms, arugula, squash, zucchini, cheezy sauce, seitan
3rd Recipe: The Pile-Up
- basic scrambled tofu from above
- 1 bunch fresh kale
- vegan sausage
- 1 c. white mushrooms, sliced
- 2 T. extra virgin olive oil
- ½ avocado
- diced tomatoes
- green onions
Sauté the mushrooms in a cast-iron skillet with 1 tablespoon of the olive oil until tender and browned. Pull from pan and set aside.
Sauté the kale quickly in another tablespoon of olive oil until just wilted and bright green. Transfer to plate or bowl.
Top with mushrooms, scrambled tofu, vegan sausage, avocado, tomatoes and green onions.
Finish with desired condiments and serve immediately.
Other ingredient variations: beans, quinoa, polenta, brown rice, spinach, arugula, vegan Tofutti sour cream, sprouts, lentils,bell peppers and onions, jalapeños, squash, zucchini, cheezy sauce, seitan, vegan Ranch dressing
A quick note about tofu:
Pretty much everybody assumes that vegans must eat only 2 things: salads and tofu.
I really can’t stress how untrue that is.
Tofu is a staple and it should always be in your fridge and it’s really really good for a lot of recipes, but it’s not the best way or the only way to get protein and it’s not an every day kind of food.
When you’re a new vegan and you’re concentrating on substituting old food for vegan analogs, it seems like every meal should have a meat substitute, like seitan or tempeh or tofu, to feel like a meal.
That’s a great way to make the transition, but down the road, you’ll find that you don’t need the meat-like main dish anymore and you’ll begin experimenting with all kinds of creative veggie dishes that are plenty delish and nutritious on their own.