…or anyone who wants to eat simple whole foods that build and maintain a lean physique!
The skyrocketing popularity of vegan foods (yay) means that there are more and more great, fancy, and mind-blowing vegan recipes out there for fabulous vegan breakfast foods. Of course, that’s wonderful, and we all like to prove that vegan food can kick non-vegan food’s ass any day of the week. But let’s be real: who is making beautifully arranged açaí bowls every morning?!
The fact is that our family has been eating the same breakfasts for about a decade now, whether preparing for a bodybuilding competition, losing baby weight, pregnant, lactating, growing up…because we’ve been occupied doing all of these things, we like to keep it simple!
Here are the few simple plant-based breakfast options that have worked for us for a decade:
Oatmeal in it’s infinite varieties
Typically, we buy bulk rolled oats, pour hot water over them in the morning and let them sit for a while, then eat! Derek brings his in a container to work, and the kids eat theirs when they wake up. Some of the many ways we top it to add variety and keep it interesting:
- blueberries and cinnamon
- vanilla plant milk (soy, almond, etc.) and dried berries, maybe some pumpkin seeds
- Chocolate: cocoa powder, stevia, and mashed banana – even a few vegan mini chocolate chips for special occasions
- PB&J: nut or seed butter and fruit-sweetened jam
- Peanut Butter Cookie Dough Oatmeal: walnuts, flaxmeal, powdered peanut butter, vegan mini chocolate chips, sugar free sweetener
- Apple Cinnamon: minced apples, nuts, cinnamon
There’s so many ways to spice up this cheap, simple food. An alternative grain that works for all of the same toppings is quinoa. Sometimes I prefer the drier, fluffier texture of quinoa to the creaminess of oatmeal, and it’s a great way to use leftovers. It works particularly well with dried berries, toasted nuts, and pumpkin seeds – if you have some leftover quinoa in the fridge, just reheat and top!
For a fancier oat-based breakfast on-the-go, I like these oat flour muffins from Julieanna Hever, the plant-based dietitian. The oats you have on hand can be ground up in the blender to make oat flour, which is a whole grain alternative to all-purpose flour. Some changes I make to the recipe are to use a sugar substitute (erythritol) and 1/2 or less of the chocolate chips called for. Blueberries can also sub for the chocolate chips.
Beans & Greens Shake
Yup, beans for breakfast. Derek and the kids eat oatmeal, but lately I prefer a lighter breakfast that is more hydrating after getting dried into a prune over a winter’s night . It’s also a good way to get extra nutrition in, and you really can’t taste the white beans. Remember, the more beans you eat the greater your lifespan!
Our base bean shake recipe is right here, where you can even listen to Derek’s interview about it on Bite Size Vegan. MY breakfast version, that I divide three ways between myself and the kids, usually includes:
- 2 bananas (pre-baked sweet potato works too)
- 2-4 Medjool or deglet noor dates for sweetness
- 1/3 – 1/2 cup white beans (Great Northern, navy, cannellini, white kidney)
- water or plant milk to desired thickness
- 1 ounce walnuts (optional)
- 1 Tbsp flaxmeal (optional)
- 2 Tbsp cocoa powder (optional)
- 1/2 inch chunk of fresh turmeric for anti-inflammatory properties (optional)
- fresh spinach
- frozen greens (optional)
- fresh or frozen berries
Mexican Chocolate: add 1/4 tsp cinnamon, 1/8 tsp ground ginger, 1/2 tsp vanilla extract – even cocoa nibs
Cherry Vanilla Almond: frozen cherries, 1/2 tsp vanilla extract, 1/8 tsp almond extract
Chocolate Peanut Butter: 1 Tbsp powdered peanut butter and 2 Tbsp cocoa powder
It looks like a lot, but I generally don’t put everything in there – just what is convenient.
Give these plant-based, muscle-building breakfasts a try or share your own simple plant-based breakfast ideas with us in the comments!