No eggs? Eggless recipes for breakfast, dinner and dessert

Each morning for breakfast, I make myself a pan of scrambled eggs. Sometimes they’re tumbled into large curds, sometimes I push and pull the beaten eggs into silken sheets. I slide them over a slice of toast, finish with a sprinkle of flaky sea salt and dig in. It’s one of the daily rituals I look forward to each morning.

And so, the current egg shortage that the country is experiencing, but particularly here in California, is affecting me pretty personally. I eat four eggs each morning — an alarming amount to most people, not at all to my friend who’s a personal trainer — so I go through at least two dozen eggs a week just for breakfast. Having to curb my consumption or change my morning ritual hasn’t been easy, but it has forced me to look to other breakfast options that don’t use eggs. Of course, there’s oatmeal or yogurt with fruit, but I’m not someone who loves either of those. And toast with nut butter and jam is one of my favorite things, but not every day.

I’ve had my fair share of tofu scrambles, but the texture is never quite right for me. The one vegan egg analogue that is as close to the real thing as I’ve ever experienced is the Chickpea Frittata With Tomatoes and Kale served at Go Get Em Tiger. Chickpea flour is mixed into a savory batter and baked up with aromatics until it’s soft set and sheers in large curds when prodded with a fork. A slice of this frittata — while not the same as my daily scramble — gets the job done very well right now.

I also love a sweet baked good for breakfast, so if you do too, try this Chocolate Chip Banana Bread With Peanut Crumble from Valerie Gordon of Valerie Confections. Ripe mashed banana gives the loaf cake the body and softness of eggs and its flavor is a wonderful complement to the chocolate and peanuts too. I use mashed banana instead of eggs in my Vegan Carrot-Banana Cake too. Even though it’s a cake with frosting, I often make the cake and leave it plain, so it’s basically a carrot cake muffin in wedge form. Both cakes keep very well for days as long as you keep them wrapped in plastic.

Of course, I’m looking to curb my egg usage at other times of the day too. When I want a sweet snack, I reach for the surprisingly large world of eggless cookies. Eggs, when mixed with sugar, are known for giving cookies their addictive chewiness, but I love that these Chocolate Chip Tahini Cookies With Halva and Cardamom from Zoë Komarin are still chewy and craveable without eggs. Tahini, instead, offers fattiness and body to the cookies, as well as a pleasant bitter edge to balance the cookie’s sweetness.

And for lunch and dinner, I’ve been craving no other salads but Caesars — their assertive dressings are the perfect partner for all the hardy winter lettuces and radicchios in season now and offer some brightness during these relentless gray and rainy days. Eggs are traditionally used in Caesar dressing to emulsify the dressing, but Lodge Bread’s Vegan Caesar Salad doesn’t need them, using tahini instead, along with miso and nutritional yeast to offer the umami missing, respectively, from anchovies and Parmesan cheese.

If you’re also looking for ways to get your fix of “eggs” without hunting for them at grocery stores around town, try these recipes out and see if any of them become part of your new daily ritual.

Chickpea Frittata With Tomatoes and Kale

This vegan frittata contains just five ingredients: chickpea flour, shallots, kale, tomatoes and olive oil. What binds it all together is a chickpea batter that needs a long bake in the oven to firm and an overnight chill to set and mellow to an egg-like taste. That wait is worth it. The next morning — and after that too — the cold loaf slices easily into neat golden squares, perfect for breakfast for the rest of the week.
Get the recipe.
Cook time: 1 hour 45 minutes, plus overnight chilling.

(Mariah Tauger / Los Angeles Times)

Chocolate Chip Banana Bread With Peanut Crumble

Neither dense nor fluffy, this deeply flavorful chocolate chip banana bread loaf has a just-right tenderness. Dark chocolate baked into the bread and crunchy peanuts on top make it extra tasty, but this bread is still great without them.
Get the recipe.
Cooking time: 2 hours.

Stacked slices of banana bread on a plate next to a piece lying on a white napkin

(Mariah Tauger / Los Angeles Times)

Vegan Carrot Banana Cake

Bananas stand in for eggs, both binding the batter and giving it body — use bananas whose peels have gone mostly black for the best flavor. Though the amount of sugar here may seem tedious, it gives the cake the best balance of sweetness for my taste. But if you want a less sweet cake, use ¾ cup total; for a sweeter crowd pleaser, use 1 cup.
Get the recipe.
Cook time: 1 hour 20 minutes.

A round Vegan Carrot-Banana Cake with a wedge cut out of it and a slice sitting on a plate nearby.

(Ben Mims / Los Angeles Times)

Chocolate Chip Tahini Cookies With Halva and Cardamom

The combination of tahini and halva candy marks these accidentally vegan cookies with an unmistakable sesame flavor. The halva candy melts while baking, forming a delicious, sweet sesame pool on top of the cookies.
Get the recipe.
Cook time: 45 minutes, plus 1 hour chilling.

A Halva Cardamom Chocolate Chip Tahini Cookie on a dark gray plate.

(Silvia Razgova / For The Times)

Lodge Vegan Caesar Salad

This totally plant-based version of Caesar dressing blends nutritional yeast with miso and tahini to make it as delicious as the original and combines lemon juice and cider vinegar to balance the richness. And as with the standard, raw garlic brightens the mix with its sharpness.
Get the recipe.
Cooking time: 15 minutes.

Lodge Vegan Caesar Salad in a wooden bowl with a wooden fork and spoon and a cup of dressing

(Mariah Tauger / Los Angeles Times)

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