This roundup of 29 high-protein vegan breakfast recipes will get your morning started right. Many are easy, no-cook, make-ahead breakfast recipe options that also taste DELICIOUS! There’s a good mix of sweet and savoury options, so you’re sure to find something no matter what you’re craving.
Why is protein important at breakfast?
Protein is extremely satisfying, and helps to slow down blood sugar rise. As a registered dietitian, I place a lot of importance on including protein at every meal… and it can be transformative at breakfast! If you’re the type to scarf down a muffin or some cereal and a vanilla nonfat latte in the morning, perhaps you’ve experienced how hungry you can get (so soon!) after breakfast?
When you skimp on the protein – and particularly when you’ve got a lot of refined flours and sugars – your blood sugars soar and then crash just as quickly. It’s a myth that plant-based recipes are low in protein. Protein is not synonymous with meat! There are plenty of higher protein plant foods to keep you energized.
It’s a surefire path to carb cravings, unstable energy levels and maybe even overeating. Getting adequate protein helps you jump off the blood sugar roller coaster. This is super important for all of us because of the effects blood sugars have on cravings, energy levels, and inflammation. So, while breakfast is a great start, enjoying higher protein lunch and dinner meals is a good idea too.
Nuts, seeds, legumes and grains all have protein, but the trick is ensuring you eat enough. A tiny sprinkle of quinoa just won’t cut it, or keep you satiated. When you eat a whole foods, plant-based diet it can feel like you are eating a lot of food… and it’s because whole plant foods are nutrient-dense, not calorie-dense (except for seeds and nuts!).
So instead of eating an 800 calorie muffin, you can pack in a nice big breakfast bowl that will keep you going for way longer.
I love it, and recommend that you buy non-GMO or certified organic tofu. As long as you aren’t allergic to it, tofu is a healthy food that’s also a low FODMAP protein option for folks on a plant-based diet.
To shake up your breakfast routine, try these awesome high protein vegan breakfast recipes. And if you’re looking for more great recipes and breakfast inspiration, check out some of my favourite plant-based cookbooks!
Vegan Breakfast Smoothie and Smoothie Bowl Recipes
This vegan breakfast burrito recipe is the perfect way to start your day! Think black beans, sweet potatoes, spinach and more, for plenty of fibre and protein to set you up for success. A terrific plant-based breakfast, these breakfast burritos are made without tofu, and take just 30 minutes to make. Recipe yields 6 breakfast burritos, and they freeze wonderfully!
Start your day energized, feeling full and ready to go! These yummy high protein overnight oats are made without protein powder yet they pack in a whopping 27 grams of plant-based protein! Vegan, gluten free and low FODMAP option.
Looking for an easy, 15 minute lunch to keep you energized? This Mediterranean Hummus Toast is packed with plant-based protein and fibre to keep you going for hours. It takes just ten minutes to make but it feels special. This serves 2 as a standalone meal, or 4 with a side dish
These might just be the most delicious oats you’ll ever make! This vegan apple pie oatmeal is topped with cinnamon and swirled with a five-ingredient tahini caramel sauce that is so delicious your head might explode. As written, the recipe has about 12 grams of protein per serving but you could easily boost that by doubling the hemp hearts.
By Well and Full. Love this recipe… but it’s not actually high protein on it’s own. It’s a common myth that quinoa has a lot of protein! So why is it on here? Because it looks super yummy, and if you stir in 1/4 of hemp hearts just before it’s done cooking, and divide it into two portions, you’ll get your 15+ grams of protein.
This vegan breakfast sandwich is packed with healthy, nourishing ingredients. Made with chickpea flour “eggs,” vegan cheese, spinach, sprouted grain bread, and more, this is an amazing savory plant-based breakfast. It’s quick and easy to make too — you just need 20 minutes!
This filling, fibre and protein-packed chickpea scramble takes less than ten minutes to make and will keep you energized all morning long. Brunch it up by serving with roasted potatoes, fresh fruit and all the fixings!
From Running on Real Food. Love this idea… I would substitute 100% whole grain wheat or rye flour (try a blend of brown rice and GF all purpose if you’re gluten free) and unsweetened almond mylk for the water.
By Minimalist Baker. This hash packs in greens, comforting and filling sweet potatoes and plenty of protein. If you need a higher protein breakfast, just boost with hemp hearts! 3 tbsp of hemp will get you to about 25g of protein total.
High Protein Vegan Breakfasts: Strawberry Pineapple Smoothie
Prep Time: 5mins
This roundup of 29 high-protein vegan breakfast recipes will get your morning started right! Many are easy, no-cook, make-ahead options just like this yummy strawberry pineapple smoothie. This sweet and creamy smoothie takes just 5 minutes to make. It's also low FODMAP so it's a great choice for whenever you're feeling a bit bloated, or if you're following a low FODMAP diet for IBS.
1bottlevegan liquid probiotic, I use Bio-K+ blueberry
High Speed Blender
Place all ingredients in a high-speed blender, with a couple of ice cubes if you want it extra frosty, and blend until smooth, about 1 minute.
This smoothie has about 10 grams of protein from the hemp hearts.If you need more protein at breakfast, and you’re not worried about keeping it low FODMAP, make it with unsweetened organic soy milk instead of water for an extra 8-9 grams of protein! It will also make the smoothie extra creamy.Confused about protein? Find more sources of plant-based protein here.
Get this silky parsnip soup into your rotation while it’s still soup season 🥣
Yes, I said parsnips. Keep an open mind: it’s time to give carrot’s awkward cousin another look. 😜
We may have spring on our mind but we are a loooooong way from spring harvests here in Canada so we have to use a little ingenuity to turn the contents of our root cellar into something that is spring in spirit.
You know how some blended vegetable soups are kind of heavy? This one isn’t because the parsnips blended with hemp hearts to make the dreamiest, cloud-like cream soup. ☁️
Did I mention it’s low FODMAP? Because #IBSawareness month is just around the corner…or maybe 2023 is finally kicking into high gear and your (my!) gut isn’t happy about it, ahem, it will be happy about this soup.
I’ve tucked a few other gut-friendly ingredients in here, like prokinetic ginger and fermented miso (which we add at the end to keep all the goodies vital!)
You just chop, roast and blend and in 30 minutes (with plenty of downtime to scroll ha!) you’ll have a delicious, nourishing soup that’s even cute enough to serve guests.
Recipe at desireerd.com/recipes or via the link in my bio. 👋 If you make this, please take a minute to leave a comment and star rating on my blog post! It helps SO much and costs you free.99 ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
Whole grains are awesome. But what if white rice is your ride-or-die?
Here’s the thing: many dietitians – myself included – were taught to counsel folks to swap brown rice for white rice because white rice “isn’t healthy”…even though white rice is a staple food for many cultures.
🍚 I really like brown rice…but white rice doesn’t deserve its bad rap…because A) rice isn’t a super high fibre food even in its whole form and B) unless we are eating rice all by itself, what we pair with rice will add nutrition and alter our blood sugar response to it.
When it comes to blood sugars, we need to consider a few things:
1️⃣ how much of the carbohydrate-containing food we are eating. Is it 2 cups? Or a ½ cup?
2️⃣ the ability of that carbohydrate to raise blood sugars, it’s glycemic index
3️⃣ factors that moderate blood sugar rise, AKA fat, fibre, protein and acid
4️⃣ factors that moderate our blood sugar response, AKA stress, lack of sleep, disease state
If you love white rice and have no issues with your blood sugars, or you generally get enough fibre, this convo is over. Enjoy your rice!
But, if you have a low fibre diet, don’t eat a lot of whole foods or your blood sugars aren’t where they should be, you can still enjoy white rice if you don’t like brown rice.
You might eat a smaller portion. Or ensure that you eat rice alongside high fibre, high protein foods like a lentil dal or tofu and greens.
Wellness has a weird obsession with hating on simple foods like rice, tofu or tomatoes. Don’t buy into it!
(For all my nutrition nerds, my GI data came straight from the U Sydney GI database and the rice nutritionals are Canadian Nutrient Data File Food Codes 4523 + 4497)
Think plant-based eating is expensive? Try these budget swaps 💵
Groceries aren’t getting any cheaper, and as a dietitian, one of my first budget-friendly nutrition tips is to eat more plants. Plant staples like dried beans and whole grains are much less expensive than meat and dairy…but that doesn’t mean all plant foods are inexpensive.
In fact, some of my most beloved groceries, like cashews and maple syrup, are downright expensive.
So, I wanted to offer a few budget-minded swaps to help you save money as you eat more plants.
Cashews >>> Sunflower seeds: did you know you can make creams with sunflower seeds? Just soak for 12 hours and blend! They need a bit of brightening up so you might adjust the acid, salt or garlic powder in your favourite cashew cream recipes
Beyond meat >>> lentils: yes, I’m going to rep for lentils again. They’re SO delicious and SO versatile and like pennies per serving. Use them in place of veggie ground in most recipes!
Protein powder >>> soy milk and peanut butter: Soy milk has 7-8 grams of protein per cup and peanut butter has 6 grams of protein per 2 tbsp. So use both for your smoothie and you really don’t need a $50 protein powder!
Boxed baby greens >>> frozen spinach: have you ever wilted down spinach? It disappears!! Buying frozen spinach is a STEAL because you’re getting concentrated greens for use in smoothies, sauces and stews. No, you can’t make a salad with it. Buy field greens for that.
Granola >>> rolled oats: it couldn’t be simpler to make your own granola. And a big bag of oats goes A LOT farther than a bag of granola.
Homemade peanut butter is ridiculously easy to make. And very, very good. 😋
True story: as a kid, I actually hated peanut butter and jam sandwiches. And yet, by the time I was a teenager, I had fallen hard for peanut butter’s savoury charms…so much so that I used to travel with it.
Peanut butter is a near perfect food in my opinion. It’s delicious. Filling. Works as well in sweets as it does in savouries. I mean, have you ever met a food that wasn’t made better by peanut sauce?
It’s also super nutritious: just two tablespoons of natural-style peanut butter has 7.5g of protein and 2.5g of fiber, along with plenty of iron, zinc and folate.
And you should totally make your own peanut butter. It’s so easy and deeply flavorful. All you need is peanuts and a strong food processor or blender. Use dry roasted, salted peanuts and in about 5 minutes all your peanut butter dreams come true.
I don’t have a huge freezer, but punches above its weight class in keeping produce out of the compost.
Like when I forget about the giant container of spinach I bought in a week where I’m cooking other things for work. Or the herbs I bought for a Reel and didn’t finish 😖
So once a week, get into the habit of checking out your produce situation and freezing whatever is near the end of its life:
🥬 Prewashed spinach or baby kale can get transferred to a freezer bag…or if you’re lazy like me, just throw it into the freezer it its original packaging. Use in smoothies, pesto or stews (add at end of cooking).
🌱 Herbs can be turned into pesto, or just pureed with a bit of water and lemon juice and frozen into cubes that make flavour boosters for sauces, soups and stews.
I also loving cooking beans from scratch but it’s time consuming, so I will make a big batch (enough for a month) on the weekend while I watch a movie or something and freeze them.
First on a baking sheet, then transfer to a freezer bag. That way, anytime I need beans, I just scoop out what I need because they aren’t all stuck together and give them a quick thaw in hot water before use.
The information on this site is intended as educational only and cannot replace one-on-one consultation with a registered dietitian.
We respectfully acknowledge that we live and work on the ancestral and unceded lands of the Coast Salish peoples–Sḵwx̱wú7mesh (Squamish), Stó:lō and Səl̓ílwətaʔ/Selilwitulh (Tsleil-Waututh) and xʷməθkʷəy̓əm (Musqueam) Nation.