Full English (vegan) breakfast

Full English breakfast, vegan style

When I moved to this side of the pond, I was introduced to the Full English breakfast, vegan style.

A full English breakfast is typically sausages, bacon, hash browns, eggs, baked beans, mushrooms, tomatoes and toast, along with coffee (or tea) and fruit juice. Anyone partaking of this cholesterol extravaganza will usually be able to hear their smaller arteries slamming shut partway through the meal.

Vegan versions are fairly widely available, though they’re usually abbreviated to hash browns, baked beans, mushrooms, tomatoes and toast. If you’re lucky, vegan sausages will be available, and if the gods are smiling down on you, vegan bacon will also be on the menu.

This morning, I decided to make my own version of the full English vegan breakfast. Homemade breakfast sausages, hash browns, tofu scramble, baked beans, mushrooms, tomatoes and toast, along with coffee and fruit juice. I haven’t experimented with homemade bacon (yet), and couldn’t find any in the shops, so that wasn’t included.

The tofu scramble used the same recipe as the one I’d made last week (except I was out of lemons and therefore lemon juice, but I couldn’t say I noticed a difference).  The breakfast sausages had been made the day before. I tried a new recipe for hash browns, and it was the most successful yet, though it does require precooking the potato the day before. The beans were organic ones from a jar, and the mushrooms and tomatoes were simply fried with a bit of vegan margarine and seasoned with salt and pepper.

Needless to say, it was delicious, and I’m happy to report that not only were no arteries closed during the meal, but my karma survived brilliantly. What more could one want on a cold February morning?

Seitan breakfast sausages

British American
30g ground almonds 5 tablespoons
250g tofu 9 ounces
1 tablespoon soy sauce 1 tablespoon
1 vegan chicken-style bouillon cube 1
(enough for 2 cups water)
3 tablespoons rapeseed (canola) oil 3 tablespoons
34g finely chopped onion 1/4 cup
1 tablespoon nutritional yeast 1 tablespoon
1 teaspoon minced fresh garlic 1 teaspoon
1-1/2 teaspoons dried sage leaf 1-1/2 teaspoons
1/2 teaspoon dried marjoram 1/2 teaspoon
1/2 teaspoon dried basil 1/2 teaspoon
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano 1/2 teaspoon
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper 1/2 teaspoon
1/2 teaspoon salt 1/2 teaspoon
1/4 teaspoon dried thyme 1/4 teaspoon
1/4 teaspoon fresh (or dried) rosemary 1/4 teaspoon
160g vital wheat gluten flour 1 cup + 3 tablespoons

1. If you’re starting with whole almonds, grind them in the blender first while it’s still clean and dry, then remove and set aside.

2. Crumble the tofu into the blender. Put the bouillon cube into a glass measuring cup and add a couple of tablespoons of boiling water; stir to dissolve the cube. Add soy sauce to measuring cup, then add enough water so the mixture equals 100ml (6-1/2 tablespoons). Add this to the blender.

3. Add remaining ingredients to blender EXCEPT gluten. Blenderise until completely smooth. Empty into a large mixing bowl.

4. Add gluten and mix well, until you have a uniform soft dough.

5. Divide dough into 12 or 16 pieces, depending on how big you want your sausages. (I made 12 this time.) Roll each piece into a sausage shape. Wrap each sausage in parchment paper and then in either aluminium foil or cheesecloth. Lightly twist the ends together if using foil, or tie them with string if using cheesecloth.

6. Bring water to boil in a pot that has a steamer insert. Arrange wrapped sausages in your steamer insert. If using foil, arrange with seam side down as this reduces the likelihood of a foil blowout. Packing the sausages tightly in the steamer also reduces this chance. I arranged six sausages on the bottom of the steamer insert, then another six at a 90 degree angle on top of them.

7. Steam for 40 minutes over gently simmering water. If you’ve arranged your sausages in two layers, switch their positions halfway through the cooking time (bottom ones on top and top ones on bottom). Turn heat off and let cool.

8. To cook, gently pan fry until golden.

Can be frozen for future use (leave them wrapped and place in a plastic freezer bag).

Makes 12 to 16 sausages.

Homemade hash browns

Plan ahead, as the potato needs to be pre-cooked the day before.

British American
170g floury potato 6 ounce
1 tablespoon minced fresh onion 1 tablespoon
1 small garlic clove, minced (optional) 1
to taste salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
olive oil for frying

1. The day before, steam potato (unpeeled) for 20 minutes, until tender (some firmness in the center is okay). Cool, then refrigerate in a plastic bag overnight.

2. The next day, grate potato using a coarse grater, discarding any large pieces of skin. Put in a large bowl. Add minced onion, garlic (if using), plus salt and pepper to taste. You can also season with herbs.

3. Heat a large cast iron skillet over medium-low heat. Add a tablespoon or so of olive oil. Form potatoes into three patties and fry until golden brown, then carefully flip and fry the other side. Keep in a warm oven if not eating immediately.

Makes 3 patties, enough for 2 or 3 servings.


  1. That looks so so sooo good. Your blog always makes me hungry and makes me wish every day was a weekend, which is when I do love a good breakfast. Yum. On a side-note, my husband and I are huge fans of “Coronation Street” and sometimes there is food we wonder about–now thanks to you I know what both a “butty” and a “full English” are! 🙂

  2. Trepidation and elated joy whenever you have a new post….trepidation because I know you’re gonna just make me go insane with your food!

    And today what do I see? Wallace and Gromit mug! Bring on the Bun Vac 6000!

    Felis, babe…honestly do you live in my mind? Earlier I looked at my canned of baked beans and I was just thinking of a full English breakfast and whaddaya know….”full english (vegan) breakfast : Thrifty Living on my google reader.

    I really ought to move in at this point.

  3. CM – I used to watch Corrie too, when I lived in Vancouver. I’ve only seen it a few times here though… I guess because I’m living the English life, I don’t find watching it on telly quite so fascinating! 😀

    denny – Bun Vac, lol… I LOVED Curse of the WereRabbit! One of my favourite movies ever. And did I not mention that I’ve been working on perfecting my “denny mind-reading device”?

  4. Please tell me after you ate that amazing breakfast you crawled back into bed with the Sunday Times crossword puzzle or something…. surely you couldn’t move! That English breakfast looks stupendous, and I, too, had always wondered what it would look like if it were something I could eat.

  5. A good old English fry is my staple Saturday morning breakfast! Sets me up for the whole weekend. Thanks for the hash brown recipe – never tried making those myself!

  6. Hi there, just stumbled upon your blog – great recipes! I LOVE a full (vegan) English, especially in winter. Nothing like it! Just a random question: where do you get the wheat gluten from? I accidentally bought two huge packets of wheat starch in a Chinese supermarket the other day, thinking starch and gluten were the same thing… Incidentally, if you have any recipes including wheat starch, they’d be much appreciated! 🙂

  7. I never really liked the English fry up, but whenever I would be at Heathrow, there usually was no other menu options. I like this vegan version, way more healthy.

  8. Claire — Actually we usually eat breakfast pretty late on the weekends, and we had errands to do which couldn’t wait as it was Sunday (most shops close at 4pm on Sunday). So unfortunately, no leisurely crossword puzzling etc that day!

    Ulrike — I got the wheat gluten from Low Carb Megastore, and it’s also available from The Flour Bin. (Note that the size at Low Carb Megastore is 1kg, whereas at The Flour Bin it’s 500g.) There are lots of interesting things at Chinese supermarkets, aren’t there? I’ll have to have a look for wheat starch and see exactly what it is first!

    Dia — ya, the vegan version is filling, but doesn’t make you feel too full or bloated.

  9. Yum. This reminds me of a Scottish breakfast. Such goodness!

  10. yum! I loved eating english bfast while I was visiting a friend in England. I’ve made it a couple of times since, but it can be a lot of work. mainly making sure stuff finishes at the same time so it’s all hot.

    If I don’t have lemons, I tend to use apple cider vinegar instead. I don’t know why.

  11. haha yay! More Wubbit Lub. The bunnies were so adorable. It was a great movie..no IT IS!

    “denny mind-reading device”?

    hahahahahaahhaahahah good one babe, good one!


  12. Hi Felicity,

    I’m going to try these sausages this weekend!!

  13. Clever sausage recipe! Thanks for sharing. It’s on the menu with pancakes in the morning.

  14. I’ve tried all sorts of nice wheat gluten recipes (inc. my own, try it with loads of garlic and smoked paprika in, then knead grated cookeen through it, and air-cure for a week or so.. nice chorizo!) but your recipe here is by far the best. Nicely done!

    For a cheap UK gluten supplier see here: http://www.veggiestuff.com/acatalog/vital-wheat-gluten-flour.html#aNUV9999

  15. Can I recommend the addition of sweetcorn fritters? Open a can of sweetcorn, keep the water and bung in a bowl. Add enough flour (a couple of table spoons) to make a light batter. Bit of vegan Worcester Sauce. Heat some sunflower oil in a pan and spoon in dollops of the mixture about the size of your hash browns. Amazing.

  16. I love the look and sound of the sausages but I am a gluten free vegan. Any ideas for substitution for the gluten flour?

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