This toasted sandwich is a who’s who of vegan breakfast favorites. You’ve got smoky seitan bacon, eggy tofu, and melty non-dairy cheese between two slices of crispy bread, browned in a skillet.
It’s a filling meal-on-the-go. Or put up your feet and savor every last bite. Ready in about 15 minutes.
I love a good breakfast sandwich.
Melty non-dairy cheese.
All on a toasted grilled cheese-style sandwich.
It gets so beautifully crisp and golden, you wonder why you ever make plain old toast in the toaster.
Toasted sandwich for breakfast
In non-pandemic times, I often make vegan breakfast sandwiches with bagels. But these days, I’m limiting my grocery visits, sticking to staples, and one-stop-shopping. For that reason, I haven’t added in stops at the bagel bakery.
But bread is something I always have on hand. That makes it easy for a delicious toasted sandwich, encasing all of those morning staples that I adore.
We’ve been eating them on the regular, and every time they’re a delight.
Toasted sandwiches don’t require a special machine, panini press, or sandwich maker. Just grab a couple of large skillets, and you’re good to go.
What is eggy tofu?
The vegan egg aspect of this sandwich comes by way of eggy tofu.
Eggy tofu is tofu that has been seasoned with kala namak, also known as black salt. It’s a sulfurous salt that gives off an eggy taste and scent. Just one sprinkle goes a long way!
You can find black salt at Indian grocery stores or online. In Indian grocery stores, one bag is usually just a couple of dollars. And it lasts forever in the cupboard without going stale or off.
To fill out the remainder of the eggy tofu seasonings, I like to use granulated onion and nutritional yeast flakes. Freshly ground black pepper is also welcome!
If you’re in a pinch, you can use just kala namak alone, and it will work!
What kind of tofu should I use?
For eggy tofu, I recommend using vacuum-packed super firm tofu. Because it isn’t packaged in water, you don’t have to press it first. It also has a heft to it that makes it easy to slice and brown without falling apart.
You can find vacuum packaged tofu at most natural grocery stores. I usually buy mine at Trader Joe’s. It’s one of my favorite vegan Trader Joe’s products. Wildwood also makes vacuum-packed tofu.
You’ll only need about 2 ounces of tofu per sandwich. And super firm tofu comes in 10, 16, or 20 ounce packages usually. So you’ll likely have tofu left over, unless you’re making a lot of sandwiches. You can keep the leftover tofu in a covered container in the refrigerator.
If you don’t have access to vacuum packed tofu, I recommend pressing water packed tofu for at least 30 minutes to an hour before making the sandwich. Here’s a primer on how to press tofu.
Although, if you really don’t have the time or inclination, it’s not a deal breaker. Water-packed tofu that hasn’t been pressed will just be on the softer side, and may not brown as nicely. Blot it with a clean kitchen towel or paper towel to remove any excess liquid before putting it into the skillet.
What kind of vegan cheese is best?
Vegan cheese is the “glue” that holds this sandwich together.
There are so many non-dairy options out there. Be sure to use one that melts well!
For this toasted sandwich, I used two kinds of cheese – the new shredded cashew mozzarella from Trader Joe’s and Daiya cheddar block, which I shredded by hand.
You could also use a vegan pepper jack, smoked provolone, or whatever non-dairy cheese you like.
What kind of vegan bacon should I use?
Finishing out the sandwich is chewy seitan bacon. So smoky and with wonderful texture and bite.
My favorite seitan bacon is from the Herbivorous Butcher. The slices are really big, so you only need one slice per sandwich. Although, more is never a bad thing!
(Pro tip: It also makes a terrific fried green tomato BLT!)
I also like Upton’s Naturals seitan bacon. Keep in mind their slices are smaller, so you’ll want at least two or three per sandwich.
If you like tempeh, you could also do pre-made or homemade tempeh bacon instead.
How to make a toasted sandwich
Use non-dairy butter to butter four slices of bread. Set aside.
Bring two skillets to a medium heat. Drizzle one skillet with oil.
Put on slices of seitan bacon, and thinly sliced super firm tofu. Allow everything to brown, then flip. On the tofu slices, sprinkle the following:
- Kala namak (black salt)
- Granulated onion
- Nutritional yeast flakes
Then flip the tofu slices & sprinkle more on the other side. Flip one more time to set the seasonings.
On the second skillet, place four buttered slices of bread, butter side down. Top with shredded non-dairy cheese. Cover with a lid, so that it can melt.
Once the tofu & seitan bacon are browned to your liking, it’s time to move them to the melted cheesy bread.
Put on two tofu slabs and one or more slices of seitan bacon for each sandwich. Top with the remaining toasted bread slices.
Make it your own
You can make this sandwich your own by varying the toppings and/or seasonings.
If you’re not a fan of eggy flavors, use your own preferred seasoning mix like Slap Ya Mama seasoning salt.
Instead of or in addition to non-dairy cheese, add avocado. Once the bread is toasted on one side, put fresh avocado onto the slices. Then top with seitan bacon and eggy tofu.
For more bite, add slices of red onion and/or arugula to the finished sandwich.
What to serve with it
This is a really filling sandwich that is a full breakfast on its own. But if you’d like to fill it out even more, here are some tasty side dish options:
Toasted sandwich with eggy tofu and seitan bacon
- 4 slices bread
- 2 Tablespoons vegan butter
- 1/4 cup shredded vegan cheese
- 2 teaspoons organic canola oil
- 2 slices seitan bacon or more if needed
- 4 ounces super firm vacuum-packed tofu cut into thin slices about 1/4 inch in thickness
- 1/4 teaspoon kala namak divided
- 1/4 teaspoon granulated onion divided
- 1/4 teaspoon nutritional yeast flakes divided
- Slather all of the slices of bread with vegan butter on one side.
- Bring a large skillet to a medium heat. Put the buttered bread butter-side-down in the skillet. Top the bread with shredded vegan cheese. Cover with a lid, and allow the cheese to melt.
- Bring another large non-stick skillet to a medium heat. Drizzle with organic canola oil (or your preferred high heat oil). Put the seitan bacon and tofu slices into the skillet. Don't move any of it for a couple of minutes, so that everything can get nice and brown. Then flip with a spatula.
- Sprinkle the tofu slices with half of the kala namak, nutritional yeast flakes, and granulated onion (about 1/8 teaspoon over all of them on that side).
- Once the other side of the tofu is brown, flip again, and sprinkle that side with the remaining kala namak, nutritional yeast flakes, and granulated onion (again about 1/8 teaspoon across all of them).
- Flip the tofu slices one last time to seal in the spices, cooking for just about a minute more. Turn the heat off the skillet and set aside.
- Now it's time to compile the sandwiches. On one melted cheese bread slice, top with two slabs of eggy tofu and a strip of bacon (or more if using). Finish the sandwich with a toasted bread slice.Then compile the second sandwich the same way.
- Cut the sandwiches on a diagonal and serve hot.