Have you ever thought about the term breakfast? I tend to think of it in terms of “breaking a fast”. Essentially when you sleep, depending on how long you sleep, you abstain (or “fast”) from food and drink for sometimes 9-10 hours. You break that fast by enjoying your breakfast.

Traditionally, after giving your body a break you want the first food entering your body to be light and easy to digest. That is why smoothies make a great breakfast, and I can’t lie to you; I home-school my son, run a media company and publish a blog, so I actually go with a salad or smoothie for breakfast because they don’t involve cooking and they’re quick. However, I have arranged this list of non-smoothie breakfast ideas from light to heavy. I hope these ideas inspire you on your journey.

1. Breakfast Parfait

You can use coconut yogurt, granola, and fruit to create a parfait. To keep this interesting, mix and match fruits as they come into season. This will increase their nutritional value significantly. I know you are thinking this is close to a smoothie, but the visual appeal alone trumps a smoothie.

2. Cereal

There are tons of vegan cereals on the market, but I personally actually still prefer Cheerios with almond milk. Yes, Cheerios are vegan. They are also inexpensive, widely available, and the taste takes me back to my childhood. Raf likes Kashi Cinnamon Harvest, and Doriyan likes a variety of organic cereals. Add fruit like strawberries, blueberries or bananas to take it up a notch. Don’t like cold cereal? Try oatmeal. Make it fancy by adding cinnamon.

3. Salad

I mentioned this at the beginning of this article, but I am sure you can tell by my Instagram that this is my other breakfast go-to. Most mornings I start my day off with a salad. It is a personal preference. I think I have become addicted to chlorophyll. Call it a quirk. I like being creative with the fruit and design.

3. Tofu Scramble on Toast with an Avocado.

Do you work out, or just worry about your protein? In my opinion, this is the vegan breakfast of champions. You can’t go wrong with this combination. The avocado alone has 20 vitamins, minerals and phytonutrients. This breakfast is packed with everything you need, including fiber and protein. Add tomatoes, cucumbers, lettuce, etc… I love a good breakfast sandwich. Every blue moon, I add homestyle fries.

4. Black Beans & Yellow Grits

This is just a combination I put together that my family happened to love. Be sure to add a slice of whole grain bread to complete the protein. Not hearty enough for you? Add tofu croquettes for extra protein. White grits come from corn and are bleached white. Look for yellow grits instead to bypass harmful chemicals used on the food.

5. Vegan Pancakes

I like to make blueberry and/or strawberry pancakes  for my family. I usually make these on Sunday, then freeze a few for the next day. This stops me from needing to prepare breakfast on Monday. What a great way to start off the week?!? Plus, my family loves pancakes. Try adding fake bacon or tofu scramble and fruit or fruit juice for a complete meal. Not into pancakes? Make your own breakfast bars, muffins, etc…

6. Leftovers

Don’t be afraid to finish up the rest of last night’s dinner for breakfast. This stops you from having to cook, and it also opens up the idea to eat whatever you like as long it fits your healthy lifestyle and is tasty. For example, the other day I started my morning with vegan macaroni and cheese with collard greens from Soul Vegetarian.