We’ve all heard that breakfast is the most important meal of the day, and often most breakfast options aren’t vegan (due to animal-based milk and possibly honey in cereals and butter on toast). However, there are many different vegan options that are packed full of nutrients. Take the opportunity to maximize the content of whole foods in each meal, especially at breakfast time. In conjunction with this, breakfast needs to be as easy and delicious as possible (particularly when on the run). A way to do this is to prepare your breakfast the night before (soaking your chia pudding overnight, for example) or freezing fruit overnight to use for smoothies in the morning.
These are ideal to start your day off. You can start with a fruit smoothie, which is a favorite with almost everyone, and, after you've developed the smoothie habit, start adding spinach or kale to make a green smoothie. Green smoothies are particularly good for increasing your energy levels; they give you a healthy serving of raw greens. Everyone cringes at the thought of putting greens in their smoothie until they try it. Start off with small amounts of greens, maybe 1/2 cup of baby spinach in a 16 oz. drink, and before long you'll find yourself throwing large handfuls into the blender and wanting more.
It is imperative that these smoothies are to your taste, otherwise the motivation to incorporate them in your diet will diminish. On the other hand, there needs to be a healthy balance of maximizing nutritional content and increasing the taste appeal. Texture is also a very important factor in these smoothies; investing in a quality high-speed blender gives a smoother texture that is particularly important when using kale. Using frozen fruit offers a cold, smooth consistency without diluting flavors with ice and enables most of the preparation to be done ahead of time by chopping up fruit and storing it in the freezer.
This is often overlooked as a breakfast idea but, contrary to popular belief, it can be a fully satisfying option (and especially convenient if you find yourself at someone else’s house for breakfast). If you enjoy the accompaniment of yogurt, soy and coconut yogurts are usually available to purchase, or try making homemade coconut yogurt using acidophilus powder or another probiotic. There are many recipes online for making vegan yogurt.
Throw some sliced almonds or a little vegan granola into your fruit salad for some added nutrition and a satisfying crunch.
We are all well acquainted with oatmeal, but raw versions of foods (including oats) can offer higher levels of nutrients and add variety to your diet. Adding your own fruits (fresh or dry) is a great way to help reach your intake for the day, and you can also add seeds and nuts, plus either homemade or store-bought non-dairy milk (almond, cashew, or soy). A spoonful of agave nectar can sweeten the cereal if the fruit doesn't make it sweet enough for you.
This is a great way to get the omega-3s you need for the day. To assemble it quickly, combine chia seeds with a liquid of choice (coconut water or plant-based milk), fruit, and some agave nectar to taste, if you wish. Let it soak for around 10 minutes (perhaps next to you in your car on the way to work). It becomes a similar consistency to tapioca pudding and can taste just as good (with a much higher nutritional content).
You need good fuel first thing in the morning, because you have been fasting all night. Having a healthy vegan breakfast is ideal to kick start your metabolism and set you up for a high-energy day.