When I’m asked, “Do you want to do brunch?” my immediate thought is, “Is there anything for me to eat there (aside from a fruit cup)?”
Truthfully, while I typically abide by a “You can take me (almost) anywhere” mantra, brunch can be a tough one for vegans. But when it’s on, it’s on. In recent months, I’ve enjoyed some standout vegan brunches across the Southeast states—brunches too good not to share.
With the exception of End of the Line’s $15 all-star, three-course brunch (that I most recently indulged upon this past Sunday with my mom), all of these platefuls came in under ten dollars a pop. For this reason, I will go ahead and refer to the following selections as vegan brunchin’ like a boss on a budget.
Whether you are planning to stay in for brunch, or dine out this coming weekend, here’s a little vegan brunch inspiration to get your mouth watering.
Brunchin’ in Pensacola — End of the Line Café
Brunch Hours: Sundays, 11 a.m. – 2 p.m. CST
On My Plate: Brunch of the Day–tofu eggs benny florentine with hollandaise and grape tomato-basil relish over black-eyed peas and yellow grits, served with a spring salad; Not Pictured: roasted red pepper bisque; peach cobbler with vanilla cream and toasted almonds
Selling Points: Although open for lunch and dinner throughout the remainder of the week, Sunday brunch is one of this vegan café’s most notable features. The following excerpt from a write-up I did last year for Inweekly’s Best of the Coast awards sums up my sentiments toward this rave-worthy hole in the wall: “Multi-course weekly spectaculars, tempeh anyway you could dream it up, made to order cashew cheese to take home with you—and that’s only the half of it. Over the course of the past decade, Jen Knight-Shoemaker, owner of End of the Line Café has transformed her coffee shop into a full-fledged, bright, shining, organic, locally-sourced, powerhouse of a vegan restaurant, coffee bar and art space. Yes, it really is quite a mouthful! And a tasty one at that.” Owner Knight-Shoemaker also contributed to a cover story I wrote for the paper last November during World Vegan Month, titled “V is for Vegan.”
Brunchin’ in St. Augustine — Manatee Café
Brunch Hours: Open daily for breakfast and lunch, 8 a.m. – 4 p.m. EST (closes at 3 p.m. on Sundays)
On My Plate: Breakfast Burrito–scrambled tofu, hummus, sweet potato, onions, mushrooms, sprouts, avocado and salsa, folded into a whole wheat tortilla and served with home fries
Selling Points: Plant-based breakfast and lunch menu options served all day long, with a focus on fresh, organic ingredients, Manatee is certainly an establishment I plan on returning to, again and again. As I noted in my St. Augustine Spring Break post, the breakfast burrito I indulged upon immediately erased any breakfast burrito I’ve ever had, clear from my memory. You know a burrito is otherworldly when it requires zero Sriracha, salsa, picante, nothing. No dressing up needed! My burrito was washed down with a mix of fresh carrot and apple juices. They also have a killer chocolate tofu pie I splurged on during a followup visit.
Brunchin’ in Chattanooga — Sluggo’s Vegetarian Restaurant
Brunch Hours: Sundays, 12 – 3 p.m. CST
On My Plate: The Daily Grind Breakfast bowl–southern-style cheesy grits topped with creamy baked tofu scramble, fresh spinach and soysage crumbles, served with multigrain toasted bread
Selling Points: During my marathon weekend back in April, after leaving Nashville, we stopped through Chattanooga on Sunday afternoon and made it just in time to catch the tail end of Sluggo’s Sunday brunch. Since Sluggo’s flagship location in Pensacola is an all-time favorite vegan eatery of mine, I had no doubts that this brunch experience would be anything but incredible. The Sunday brunch menu is filled with so many mouthwatering options, my biggest dilemma was making a decision. Not only did I pick a winner with this bowl, the sizable helping sustained me during a leisurely Lookout Mountain hike that followed.
Details: Sluggo’s North Facebook Page
Brunchin’ in Atlanta — ParkGrounds
Brunch Hours: Open daily for breakfast, lunch and coffee
On My Plate: Breakfast burrito–tofu scramble with tomato and hash browns; salsa, hummus and guacamole on the side
Selling Points: Although my burrito and iced coffee made a welcomed start to a weekday morning travel day, the ultimate selling point was the scenery (the unleashed dogs), which is probably part of the reason I haven’t stopped thinking about this place since I left. Part coffee shop, part dog park, ParkGrounds makes it so you dont have to ever leave your pup at home when you go get coffee. Pure genius. While the pups aren’t invited on the enclosed patio area where we were sitting (I found this out after summoning one to sit in my lap) they are able to run freely in the large dog park located to the side of the building. Although not designated as a vegan eatery, this quaint coffee house tucked away, off the beaten path has plenty of items that are (or can swing) vegan, plus countless coffee selections.
Brunchin’ in Atlanta — Flying Biscuit Café
Brunch Hours: Breakfast served all day, every day (hours vary by location)
On My Plate: No, I didn’t get two meals. One plate belonged to my significant other. His Plate (top): Vegan BBQ Burrito–barbecue tofu, collard greens and mushrooms folded in a sun-dried tomato tortilla topped with salsa verde. Although technically not on the breakfast menu, this burrito sure looked and tasted brunchy to me. My Plate (bottom): Tofu Scramble–tamari-marinated tofu scrambled with red and green peppers, onions, spinach and mushrooms.
Selling Points: Despite having to wait a bit on a Sunday morning during the Fourth of July holiday weekend, the food and service definitely made it worth practicing patience. The best part about Flying Biscuit is that its diverse menu appeals to a variety of preferences. I was pleased to see not just one, but multiple vegan options on the menu, and despite being slammed, the staff took the time to answer any questions we had.
Brunchin’ in My Pajamas — At Home
On My Plate: Tofu scramble served with grits, greens, and a toasted muffin with jam
Selling Points: I don’t know about you, but there is something to be said for staying in your pajamas and enjoying the company of family or friends on a morning that doesn’t demand you dart out the door and be anywhere. For more about this particular Mother’s Day brunch spread, check out my Mum’s the Word post.
At Home Tip: Whipping up a tofu scramble is a quick, easy and filling way to get your brunch fix in the comfort of your own home, any day of the week (any hour of the day). If you are looking for a creamy, cheesy sauce to accompany your scramble, or another brunch creation, check out my cheesy sauce recipe.