Whether you believe the adage of “breakfast is the most important meal of the day” or not, there is a lot of nutritional potential in the first meal of the day. Not only does eating breakfast kickstart your metabolism, but some studies have even suggested that missing breakfast confuses your body’s latent ‘fasting’ mechanism that expects you to replenish blood sugar after sleeping.
As a vegan, high protein breakfasts can be harder to source compared to meat-eating equivalents. A full English breakfast, while not exactly ‘healthy’ due to the fat and salt content, contains somewhere upwards of 35g of protein.
Here at Oatein, we don’t think any diet choice should lead to missing out on one of the most important and delicious meals of the day. We’ve put together a list of protein-rich breakfast ideas for people on the go, vegans needing to up their protein and anyone looking to reduce their meat intake. Let’s get started.
Easy vegan breakfast: overnight oats
You could argue that Oatein knows a thing or two about oats. Something in our name gives it away… But, honestly, oats are an excellent food for health and satiety, making them a perfect basis for any breakfast. Oats are packed with fibre, so they limit the body’s insulin response (the rise in blood sugar that occurs after eating) - giving you longer lasting energy gains than foods that quickly spike it.
For a protein-rich breakfast, combine plain rolled oats, a choice of non-dairy milk, a handful of mixed nuts, and raspberries, strawberries, blueberries, or all three. Sprinkle in some chia seeds and, if you really want to up the protein, blend in some protein powder. Place this mixture in a plastic tub and keep it in the fridge overnight. This allows the flavours to mix and also saves the tired morning you from having to make something from scratch.
Depending on ingredients, you’ll get around 30 grams of protein from this style of vegan overnight oats. If you don’t have vegan protein powder, try mixing in peanut or almond butter.
High protein vegan breakfast: the healthy full English
A full English breakfast is a real British staple - and one that can be difficult to match when you’re following a vegan diet. It is, after all, practically the opposite of veganism: there’s bacon, eggs, black pudding and sausages.
Luckily, most brands now stock a wide range of vegan alternatives that make creating a vegan full English a lot easier. But let’s go one step further and try to make it actually healthy as well as animal-product free.
Get meat-free sausages from a brand like Richmond or Linda McCartney to replace traditional sausages. For healthy vegan bacon, buy Tempeh and marinade it with a mix of maple syrup, soy sauce and liquid smoke or paprika. Fry in minimal oil. Standard Heinz baked beans are already vegan, so you don’t need to swap those out. For an egg replacement buy tofu and then mush it up into a scrambled consistency before frying with turmeric. Add some wilted spinach and then serve with a side of toasted wholegrain bread.
Altogether, this is a protein-packed vegan breakfast that cuts out many of the ‘worst’ offenders in terms of unhealthy options.
Vegan breakfast on the go: the Oatein option
You knew we’d end up mentioning our own products, and let’s face it, can you blame us? Packed with protein and made using the same oats we mentioned above as a miracle food, Oatein’s vegan range makes for the ideal easy vegan breakfast on the go. So whether you choose a sweet, moreish Oatein millionaire crunch to combo with your morning coffee for 240ish calories with 15g of protein, or crumble an Oatein protein cookie into your morning cereal, we make healthy vegan protein snacks simple and effective.
While you can’t rely on snack products for your main meals, we’re proud of how tasty and nutritious our vegan range is and if you’re one of those people who struggles to fit breakfast in, having one of our snacks is far better than going without.
If you’re still feeling hungry, pair with a banana and you’ve got two easy to carry snacks you can enjoy on a commute or even just at a busy desk.
Simple but an acquired texture: chia pudding
Chia seeds are one of nature’s miracle foods - packed with protein, good fats, fibre and magnesium. They’re low in calories and super easy to throw in virtually any dessert type meal. But they’re also the base for an easy vegan breakfast that you can prepare in advance or make in just a few minutes on a morning.
While this may be an acquired texture for some, Chia pudding is popular for a reason. It’s easy to make, full of nutrients, and a healthy vegan breakfast to keep you fuelled for hours. To make chia pudding, all you need to do is combine one tablespoon of chia seeds for every 60ml of non-dairy milk, as well as a squeeze of a sweetener of your choice (vegans don’t eat honey, so choose maple syrup or agave for that added sweetness). For a filling breakfast you’re looking at making a batch of around five tablespoons of chia to 300ml of milk.
Once you’ve mixed them up, throw the container in the fridge and leave it overnight. For breakfast, remove the pudding and then add a topping of your choice. You can go for oats, nuts, seeds, fruit or anything else - we’re partial to some blueberries.
A classic American breakfast made healthy: vegan protein pancakes
It doesn’t have to be a special day of the year to enjoy pancakes. They’re an American breakfast tradition - but vegans can often struggle to find good pancakes in most shops. Fortunately, making your own is easier than you’d think. In fact, you only need four ingredients.
Take all-purpose flour, vegan protein powder, baking powder and some maple syrup. Mix the flour, protein powder and baking powder into a bowl. Add salt to taste. Then add your syrup and mix slowly as you add water to the bowl. You’re looking for a lumpy mixture that pours but is visibly ‘thick’.
After that, it’s a matter of pouring about a quarter of the mixture at a time into a pan and heating for a few minutes until the pancake bubbles and firms up. Remember to turn it midway through. Once done, remember you can up the protein content even higher by topping it with a nut-butter spread. You’re looking at around 15-20g of protein in this breakfast before you even add any toppings.
There you have it, five easy vegan breakfast ideas packed with protein that take a few minutes to make and deliver long-lasting energy throughout the day. Obviously, healthiness varies here - but, in general, if you’re combining low sugar, high protein and fibre-rich wholegrains, you’re on to a winning formula.
Try shopping our vegan protein snack selection now to add easy protein hacks to your cupboard for days when making breakfast seems too much hassle.