10 Energizing High Protein Vegan Breakfast Recipes You’ll Love

In recent years, there’s been a huge push by a lot of companies to convince us that we’re protein-deficient, especially those who follow a plant-based diet.  

While much of this is media hype, ensuring you’re eating enough protein is important. In this episode of the Vegetarian Zen podcast, we share some high-protein vegan breakfast ideas to help you start your day with a protein-packed meal containing zero animal products. 

We discuss some of the benefits of getting adequate protein in your breakfast, share some great sources of vegan protein, and, of course, we share some recipe ideas from some of our favorite websites. 

Vegetarian Zen is reader-supported. When you buy through links on our site, we may earn a monetary commission. Additionally, the information presented is for educational purposes only. Always consult with your doctor. Learn More.

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Benefits of a High protein breakfast

Starting your day with a breakfast high in protein isn’t just a tasty choice; it’s a smart one for several reasons. Here’s why incorporating a high-protein meal into your morning can transform your day, especially for those embracing a vegan lifestyle:

  • Keeps you feeling full longer One of the top perks of a high-protein breakfast is its ability to keep you feeling full and satisfied well into the day. This means you’re less likely to find your hand in the cookie jar before it’s even lunchtime.
  • Meets daily protein requirements For vegans and vegetarians, hitting that protein target can be challenging if you’re not putting some thought into it. A protein-rich breakfast ensures you’re well on your way to meeting your daily needs right from the start.
  • Supports gut health Protein isn’t just for muscles; it’s also crucial for your insides. By aiding in tissue repair and growth, including that of your gastrointestinal tract, a high-protein diet contributes to a happier, healthier gut.
  • Boosts weight management efforts If shedding or maintaining weight is on your agenda, you’ll be happy to know that a high-protein breakfast can help manage appetite and reduce cravings. This makes it easier to stick to a healthy eating plan and achieve your weight goals.
  • Stabilizes energy levels Eating protein in the morning helps ensure a steady energy supply to prevent that dreaded mid-morning energy slump. On days I’ve started out with coffee and nothing else, I end up crashing before I even get out of the gate! When I eat a little protein (nut butter on toast, oatmeal, etc) with my coffee, I can say goodbye to the coffee crash and hello to sustained energy until my next meal.
  • Improves focus and cognitive function A lesser-known benefit of a high-protein breakfast is its impact on brain function. Protein helps produce neurotransmitters that are essential for cognitive processes like focus and memory.

By incorporating beneficial protein into your morning routine, you’re not only nourishing your body; you’re setting the stage for a day filled with energy, focus, and overall well-being. As we dive into the best high-protein vegan breakfast recipes, keep these advantages in mind.

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Sources of Plant-Based Protein for Vegans

When following a vegan diet, getting enough protein can sometimes be a concern. However, there are plenty of plant-based sources of protein to help vegans meet their protein needs, especially at breakfast time. Here are some delicious and nutritious options to consider:

  • Tofu Tofu is a versatile and excellent protein source that can be used in a variety of breakfast recipes such as scrambles, burritos, and smoothies. It is a great source of protein and can help keep you full until lunchtime.
  • Seeds Chia seeds, flaxseeds, and hemp seeds are packed with protein and can easily be added to oatmeal, yogurt, or smoothies for an extra protein boost.
  • Nuts Nuts like almonds, walnuts, and peanuts are excellent vegan protein sources and have the added benefit of providing healthy fats and fiber. Add them to your breakfast cereal or smoothie, or spread nut butter to your toast for a satisfying and nutritious meal.
  • Legumes Beans, lentils, and chickpeas are excellent sources of plant-based protein and can be included in breakfast recipes like bean burritos, lentil pancakes, or chickpea omelets.
  • Whole grains Whole grains like quinoa, barley, and oats are not only rich in protein but also provide essential nutrients like fiber and vitamins. Incorporate them into your breakfast dishes for a wholesome and filling meal.
  • Vegan Protein Powders Vegan protein powders are a convenient and effective way to get plant-based protein. Nuzest is our go-to source for a clean (minimal ingredients)  vegan protein powder. Steer clear of powders with a ton of ingredients and “whey,” as this is derived from dairy.
brown nuts on white ceramic bowls

Meal Prep Tips for Busy Mornings

Even though we work from home, Larissa’s and my mornings are still pretty busy. Ruthie (our pup) demands her walks earlier in the day and our client work always awaits!

When it comes to busy mornings, having a plan in place can make all the difference in ensuring you start your day off right with a nutritious and satisfying meal. Here are some meal prep tips to help you breeze through your mornings:

  • Plan ahead Take some time at the beginning of the week to plan out your breakfasts. This could involve prepping ingredients, making overnight oats, or even batch-cooking a big pot of vegan protein oatmeal to portion out for the week.
  • Prep the night before If mornings are hectic for you, consider prepping as much as you can the night before. This could include blending smoothie ingredients and storing them in the fridge or assembling your yogurt bowl with all the toppings ready to go.
  • Use mason jars Mason jars are a great tool for meal prep, especially for things like overnight oats or smoothies. Simply layer your ingredients the night before, pop a lid on, and grab it on your way out the door in the morning.
  • Batch-cook your protein Protein is key to keeping you full, so consider batch-cooking tofu, tempeh, or lentils at the beginning of the week to add to your breakfasts. This way, you can simply heat and add them to your meal in the morning.
  • Mix and match Don’t be afraid to mix and match ingredients to create different breakfast options throughout the week. For example, you could use the same base each day (for example, yogurt and chia seeds) but switch up the toppings (different fruits and nuts).

By incorporating these meal prep tips into your routine, you’ll have a delicious and protein-packed breakfast ready to go, even on the busiest of mornings. Happy prepping!

High Protein Vegan Breakfast Recipes

1. Tofu Scramble with Vegetables

Let’s start with a delicious recipe from our friend, Toni Okamoto at Plant-Based on a Budget. We interviewed our friend Toni in episode 428 of the podcast.

Toni’s delicious tofu scramble is a clever twist on a breakfast classic, mixing firm tofu with seasonings and whichever veggies you have on hand (perfect for those fridge-clearing days). This vegan take on scrambled eggs is rich in micronutrients, is missing the cholesterol found in traditional eggs, and is packed with antioxidants and protein to keep you full and energized for the long haul.

If you enjoy a more moist scramble akin to soft scrambled eggs, Toni’s recipe features an intriguing optional “secret ingredient”: polenta! Its creamy texture and soft consistency enhance the flavor, texture, and satiety factor of this tofu scramble.

tofu scramble

2. Protein-Packed Pancakes

Pancakes have always been a beloved, cozy breakfast choice, ideal for any season. But let’s face it, they’re not typically known for their nutritional value. This is where Nuzest comes in! Their Protein Pancake recipes are about to change your mornings, offering a delicious, protein-packed start to your day. Now, indulging in pancakes doesn’t have to be a guilty pleasure!

pancakes

Crafted with straightforward ingredients and requiring minimal prep time, these recipes promise to revolutionize your breakfast routine.

Rather than including just one of their tasty pancake recipes, we’re hooking you up with 15! Each recipe in Nuzest‘s pancake collection offers a unique twist, ensuring you have plenty of options, whether you’re cooking for a crowd or prepping meals for the week.

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3. Overnight Oats with Almond Butter and Seeds

Overnight oats with almond butter and seeds emerges as a stellar option for a high-protein vegan breakfast. This dish is not just a time-saver for hectic mornings but also a nutritional powerhouse, especially when it comes to plant-based protein. Overnight oats are soaked, not cooked, preserving their nutrients to the fullest. When combined with almond butter and a variety of seeds—like chia, flax, or pumpkin—you’re not only getting a hearty dose of protein but also a wealth of vitamins, minerals, and fiber. This combination ensures a slow release of energy, keeping you full and energized well into your day.

Nora Cooks, one of our go-to resources for amazing recipes, has a great recipe you can get here.

2 small jars containing overnight oats with blueberries and mint leaves. two spoons and scattered oats and blueberries on the table around the jars

4. Green Smoothie Bowl

We LOVE bowls! We love them so much we wrote a book about them! Why do we love them so much? Because they’re:

  • Easy to make
  • Easily customizable
  • As healthy as you want them to be

Green smoothie bowls are a vibrant and energizing choice for a high-protein vegan breakfast. Tailored for those seeking nutrition and convenience in their morning routine, smoothie bowls are rich in plant-based protein and stand out as nutritional champions. Here’s a great recipe from another one of our go-to recipe sites, Minimalist Baker.

5. Vegan Breakfast Burrito with Black Beans and Avocado

If you’ve followed us for a while, you know that one of my absolute favorite cuisines is Mexican. That’s why I LOVE a great breakfast burrito.

This Vegan Breakfast Burrito with Black Beans and Avocado recipe from Love and Lemons is a great choice for anyone seeking a satisfying, high-protein vegan breakfast. Ideal for mornings when you crave something savory and filling, this breakfast burrito is a testament to the delicious possibilities of plant-based cuisine. For an added kick, how about some pico de gallo? Click the link for my simple recipe.

6. Vegan Greek Yogurt Bowl with Berries and Pumpkin Seeds

A simple 3-ingredient high-protein vegan breakfast, this Vegan Greek Yogurt bowl calls for your favorite plant-based yogurt with your favorite berries and 1-2 tbsp of pumpkin seeds.

Kite Hill is a great go-to dairy-free option. Drizzle with agave for some sweetness.

  • 1 cup vegan Greek-style or other vegan yogurt (Forager brand is one of our faves)
  • 1 cup mixed berries or banana
  • 1–2 tbsp pumpkin seeds
  • drizzle of maple syrup or agave
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7. Berry White Bean Smoothie

Beans in a smoothie? Yes! Hear me out. When you add cooked white beans to a smoothie, you won’t be able to taste them! Why add them? Because they’re packed with protein and fiber. They’ll add a subtle creaminess while the mix of berries provides a sweet and tart flavor profile. This smoothie is a great option for those looking to add more protein to their breakfast routine without sacrificing taste. Here’s a recipe from Nutriciously.

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8. Protein-Powered Oatmeal

I’ve loved oatmeal for breakfast since I was a kid. For me, there’s nothing better than a hot bowl of old-fashioned oatmeal in the morning. It wasn’t until I got older that I realized how healthy it was. However, oatmeal on it’s own doesn’t pack a ton of protein. That’s where we can get some help from Nikki at Nikki Vegan.

Her vegan oatmeal recipe incorporates protein-rich ingredients: natural peanut butter, soy milk (feel free to substitute your favorite nut milk such as almond milk or even coconut milk); fresh fruit; and pumpkin seeds. Check out the recipe here. You’ll also find the grams of protein for each ingredient.

Serve with a slice of toasted whole-grain bread with vegan butter and you’ve got a hearty high-protein vegan breakfast!

9. Tempeh Scramble

For those who enjoy a savory breakfast, a tempeh scramble is a perfect choice. Tempeh is a fermented soy product with a firm texture and nutty flavor. It’s also packed with protein, making it an excellent substitute for scrambled eggs. There are plenty of tempeh scramble recipes out there, but here’s one from Well Vegan to get you started. It combines crumbled tempeh sautéed with seasonal vegetables and spices. For an added savory and cheesy flavor, try adding some nutritional yeast.

10. Tofu Breakfast Sandwich

If you’re looking for a hearty and protein-packed breakfast, try a tofu breakfast sandwich. Tofu, when seasoned and cooked properly, can be incredibly flavorful and satisfying.

This recipe from It Doesn’t Taste Like Chicken is made with thick slices of smoky, marinated tofu on an English muffin. Mashed avocado (one of my faves!) and ripe tomato help make for a delicious and hearty breakfast.

By incorporating these high-protein vegan breakfast options into your morning routine, you can start your day off right with a nutritious and satisfying meal. Whether you prefer savory or sweet, there are plenty of options to choose from that will keep you fueled and energized until lunchtime.

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