A Vegan Alternative to Scrambled Eggs (+ Tempeh Bacon)

March 20, 2014

Every other Thursday, Gena Hamshaw of the blog Choosing Raw shares satisfying, flavorful recipes that also happen to be vegan.

Today: A vegan answer to scrambled eggs that fits perfectly into a breakfast burrito -- plus tempeh "bacon" to go alongside. Who says you can't have it all?

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I always assure people that eating more meatless meals doesn't have to feel foreign. Instead, it simply requires extending and deepening your focus on the vegetable dishes you already know and love, like pasta, or salad, or bean chili. You don't need to find complex replacements for meat; allow vegetables, grains, and legumes to do the talking, and you’ll be on your way. 

Every now and then, though, there’s a non-vegan dish that I’m dying to replicate with plant-based ingredients -- like scrambled eggs. It turns out that extra-firm tofu, crumbled and stir-fried, can make a tasty, satisfying alternative at breakfast. It is as versatile and easy to modify as traditional egg scrambles, and if you add a little bit of turmeric to the mix, it even takes on that characteristic yellow hue.

If you’re skeptical, I get it. I was, too. But once you make this scramble at home, I guarantee you that it’ll become one of your favorite ways to eat tofu -- and possibly rise to the top of your favorite breakfast list.

More: Add this quinoa porridge to that list, too. 

If the scramble alone isn’t hearty enough, feel free to wrap it up in a burrito, along with some greens, avocado, salsa, and other fixings -- I like to top mine with some salty, crispy marinated tempeh (a.k.a. "tempeh bacon”) for the full breakfast experience. No matter what, select an extra-firm tofu for the recipe; silken tofu and soft tofu have too much moisture to crumble.

Vegan Tofu Breakfast Scramble 

For the Tofu Scramble

1 tablespoon olive oil
1 cup onion, diced
1 clove garlic, minced
2 cups of diced or sliced vegetables (use whatever you have on hand)
One 14- to 16-ounce block of extra-firm tofu
2 tablespoons tahini
1 tablespoon low-sodium tamari
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
1/2 teaspoon turmeric
1/4 cup nutritional yeast
3 cups baby spinach
1/4 cup fresh parsley, minced black pepper to taste

For the Tempeh Bacon

1/4 cup low-sodium tamari
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
2 tablespoons maple syrup
1 teaspoon smoked paprika
1/2 teaspoon chili powder
One 8-ounce package of tempeh, sliced thinly into strips

See the full recipe (and save and print it) here.

Photos by James Ransom

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The Food52 Vegan Cookbook is here! With this book from Gena Hamshaw, anyone can learn how to eat more plants (and along the way, how to cook with and love cashew cheese, tofu, and nutritional yeast).

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Gena is a registered dietitian, recipe developer, and food blogger. She's the author of three cookbooks, including Power Plates (2017) and Food52 Vegan (2015). She enjoys cooking vegetables, making bread, and challenging herself with vegan baking projects.


christina August 8, 2014
I am desperately looking for a soy-free alternative to eggs. I miss them so much and I don't tolerate soy very well. My poor grits are lonely!
[email protected] March 20, 2014
What sort of bread is this? Looks WONDERFUL!
HalfPint March 20, 2014
That looks like lavash.
Kate March 20, 2014
This is gorgeous. I don't know that I've seen a more appealing tofu scramble!