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Try our vegan breakfast sandwiches made with homemade tempeh sausage, tofu egg, vegan cheese, and a toasty English muffin! This simple vegan breakfast staple is super delicious and requires minimal prep.
We need more savory breakfast options
I can’t be the only vegan on the planet who is sick of seeing smoothies and oatmeals from recipe blogs. As much as I want to be a sweet food eater, I’m not. I want savory food 95% of the time and that’s all there is to it.
I get it though – fruit is naturally a breakfast option for vegans while bacon and eggs simply aren’t. While we can get creative and make substitutes for these things, it does take a bit of time. If you have time on your hands and want to learn how I make a vegan breakfast sandwich with tempeh sausage patties, and tofu eggs, this is the right recipe for you.
What components are in a vegan breakfast sandwich?
My vegan breakfast sandwich resembles a sausage and egg McMuffin. For the English muffin, I ended up trying Dave’s Killer Bread’s Rockin’ Grains English Muffins. They’re really really delicious and you get a nice pumpkin seed in your bite every now and then.
For the tempeh sausage, this recipe uses a method where the tempeh is cooked in a non-stick skillet with spices to season the blend as well as water. That mixture is then transferred to a food processor and combined with flax meal to ensure the patties don’t fall apart when you cook them a second time.
The tofu egg actually follows a similar process. Instead of marinating blocks of tofu overnight, I came up with a faster way to get your flavor. Using a skillet, you’ll simmer the tofu in the marinade while basting the top of the blocks to ensure you get even coverage. Once you run out of the marinade, simply remove the tofu from the pan and pan-fry in a nonstick skillet until browned on both sides.
And lastly, the final component you need for vegan breakfast sandwiches is vegan cheese. I went with Follow Your Heart American Cheese but any of your favorite vegan-friendly cheese slices would work great with this recipe.
What ingredients do you need to make vegan breakfast sandwiches?
To make vegan breakfast sandwiches you’ll need a slew of ingredients for both the tofu egg and the tempeh sausage. Thankfully, most of the ingredients are commonplace and you should have them in your pantry already. If you don’t have all of the ingredients, don’t worry! This recipe will still be amazing. Feel free to experiment with spice combinations or other ingredients to make this into the vegan breakfast sandwich that dreams are made of.
For the tempeh sausage, you’ll need an 8-ounce package of plain tempeh, two garlic cloves, maple syrup, soy sauce, liquid smoke, vegan Worcestershire sauce, water, and a bunch of spices. All of the spices are dried… If you don’t have all of them on hand, the recipe can still be made without some of them, it just might not be as flavorful. To make my breakfast tempeh sausage you’ll need dried fennel seeds, onion powder, ground sage, thyme, and chili flakes. And lastly, you’ll need some flax-seed meal which helps the sausage bind to itself, and some oil for pan searing the patties.
To make your tofu egg, you’ll need a super firm tofu block, some water, a little bit of olive oil, and a slew of more spices. This time, you’ll need nutritional yeast, turmeric, kala namak salt, regular salt, onion powder, and garlic powder. If you don’t have access to kala namak salt, no worries! This recipe will still taste great without the ingredient but the tofu will taste less eggy.
So we have the ingredients for the tempeh sausage and the tofu egg… what else? Lastly, you’ll need some vegan English muffins and some vegan cheese slices. As mentioned above for these items I went with Dave’s Killer Bread’s Rockin’ Grains English Muffins and Follow Your Heart American Cheese.
How do you make vegan breakfast sandwiches?
To make vegan breakfast sandwiches, you’ll need a handful of kitchen tools. First you’ll need 2-3 skillets. If you have two large non-stick skillets that would be perfect, but if you’re like me and you only have one big one and one small one, I used my cast-iron skillet, a large non-stick skillet and a small non-stick skillet. Next, you’ll need a food processor and a silicone spatula. You’ll also need measuring cups and spoons, a knife, a large spoon for basting, and a spatula. If you wish to toast your English muffins, break out a toaster.
Let’s start with the tempeh sausage. First, combine all of the liquids – the water, soy sauce, liquid smoke, maple syrup and Worcestershire sauce. Then, whisk in the fennel seed, onion powder, ground sage, thyme, and chili flakes. Using a non-stick skillet, add a splash of the liquid with two cloves of minced garlic and saute for 2-3 minutes. Next, crumble the tempeh with your hands and add to the skillet along with the rest of the liquid-spice mixture. Let simmer for 7 minutes, using a silicone spatula to stir the tempeh every few minutes,
While your tempeh cooks, it’s time to make your tofu eggs. Carefully cut the tofu block into four square sized pieces. There will be some tofu leftover from the block. Feel free to submerge the excess in water and use in future recipes. After your tofu is cut, add water and oil to a measuring cup along with the nutritional yeast, turmeric, kala namak salt, onion powder, garlic powder, and sea salt. Whisk to combine.
Working two tofu pieces at a time, add half of the tofu marinade to another non-stick skillet (or if you don’t have another large non-stick skillet use a cast-iron one like me) and two tofu pieces. Bring the liquid to a simmer and baste the top of the tofu pieces as the liquid thickens and evaporates. Flip the tofu halfway through ensuring all sides have a nice yellow coating. Remove the pieces and repeat the process with the remaining two pieces of tofu.
Next, add the cooked tempeh to a food processor along with two tablespoons of flax meal and two tablespoons of water. Process the mixture until the tempeh resembles the size of Israeli couscous (Sorry I really can’t think of another size to compare this to. Just look at the photo and you’ll get an idea.). You will likely have to use a spatula to scrape the sides down a few times to achieve this.
Next, return to your skillets. Clean the skillet you used to cook both the tofu and the sausage and return to the burner. If you had to use a cast-iron skillet for your tofu egg, and have a smaller non-stick skillet, break that out. Use your hands to form four patties with the tempeh sausage mixture. Add a bit of olive oil to the pan and cook the sausages two at a time, flipping every few minutes. When one side is fully browned, flip and add vegan cheese slices to the browned side and cover until the cheese is melted.
While the tempeh sausage is cooking, it’s time to pan-fry your tofu eggs. You don’t really need oil for this step if you’re using a non-stick skillet. Simply add the tofu egg either one or two at a time depending on how large your second non-stick skillet is and flip every 2-3 minutes.
Meanwhile, toast four English muffins in a toaster or toaster oven. Once the cheese has melted on your tempeh sausages and the tofu eggs are browned, you’re finally ready to assemble your vegan breakfast sandwiches! Add the tofu to the bottom and the sausage on top sandwiched between two toasty English muffin halves. Eat immediately!
Substitution ideas and more
My vegan breakfast sandwiches are a force to be reckoned with. Here are some ideas to adapt this delicious breakfast staple to your liking.
Add an avocado: I went back and forth about whether or not to include this recipe by topping the entire sandwich with smashed avocado and ended up nixing it since this recipe calls for a lot of ingredients. If you’re looking to add some healthy fats to your breakfast, bring it on!
Make a garlic aioli: Originally, I tested this recipe with minced garlic mixed into some Vegenaise and it was absolutely delicious, but I ran out of Vegensiase when it was time to actually shoot this recipe. Adding garlic aoli to both sides of the English muffin helps with the dryness but is optional AF.
Nix the kala namak: This is probably the weirdest ingredient in this recipe. If you don’t have it, don’t use it. If you can find it for cheap, great, but I promise the recipe will still taste amazing without it.
Add sriracha: Make your vegan breakfast sandwiches spicy by adding a squirt of sriracha.
Liked these vegan breakfast sandwiches?
If you loved these vegan breakfast sandwiches and want to check out more of my savory breakfast recipes, be sure to look into…
- Bagel sandwiches with herb cream cheese
- Tofu scramble breakfast tacos
- Roasted breakfast potatoes with soyrizo
- Savory oatmeal bowls with coconut bacon
In this segment, I suggest a song for you to listen to while you make vegan breakfast sandwiches! You can even stream it right here in your browser. Today’s recipe jam is I am the Fly by Wire.
If you try this recipe, I want to hear about it! Feel free to post your creations to Instagram or Facebook and tag Hell Yes It’s Vegan or #hellyesitsvegan. I look forward to seeing what you make!
Vegan Breakfast Sandwiches
- two large non-stick skillets (or if you're like me – two large skillets, one cast iron and one non-stick and a smaller non-stick skillet)
- measuring cup and spoons
- cutting board
- food processor
- silicone spatula
- steel spatula
- large spoon
The Rest of the Sandwiches
- 4 English muffins, (I used Dave's Killer Bread's Rockin' Grains English Muffins)
- 4 slices vegan cheese, (I used Follow Your Heart American)
- Whisk together water, soy sauce, Worcestershire sauce, maple syrup, liquid smoke, fennel, onion powder, sage, thyme, and red pepper flakes until combined. Add a splash to a non-stick skillet and simmer the garlic until fragrant, about 2-3 minutes (Jump down to the tofu egg section and start cooking those as you make the tempeh sausage!)
- Crumble the tempeh with your hands into the skillet and add the rest of the liquid. Stir with a silicone spatula until combined and let simmer for 7 minutes allowing the tempeh to absorb the liquid.
- Add the tempeh to a food processor with flax meal and 2 Tablespoons of water. Pulse until mixture is combined and the crumbles resemble the size of Israeli couscous. You may have to scrape the sides a few times while processing.
- Clean the skillet and return to the stove. Working two patties at a time lightly coat the skillet with olive oil and use your hands to make the patties. Brown for a few minutes on each side and then top with vegan cheese and cover the skillet while they melt. Repeat for the other two patties.
- Whisk together water thru the sea salt. Cut tofu into four squares and save the remaining tofu for other recipes.
- Working 2 tofu pieces at a time, add half of the liquid to a skillet (nonstick if you have it if not cast-iron and then you can switch to a small non-stick to brown the pieces later on) and let the pieces simmer in the liquid for 2-3 minutes on each side. Use a spoon to baste the top of the pieces and flip halfway through to ensure the tofu pieces evenly absorb the liquid. Once the liquid is absorbed, remove the tofu and repeat the process.
- Clean your nonstick skillet (or if you're like me, break out your small non-stick skillet since the big one is being occupied by tempeh sausage) and brown the tofu pieces for a few minutes on each side.
- Toast four English muffins. Lay the bottom layer down and add a piece of tofu egg on top of each one. Then, add the tempeh sausage with melted cheese. Lastly, top the sandwiches with the remaining half of the English muffins. Serve immediately.