What should you eat when the craving strikes for scrambled eggs, but you prefer to keep your diet plant-based? Why not try a vegan scrambled egg?
No, we don’t mean a tofu scramble (though those are pretty darned delicious), we mean a packaged mix that replicates scrambled eggs made by The Vegg out of Stroudsburg, PA. While commercial egg replacers are nothing new, they’re really only designed to be used in place of eggs in baking recipes as opposed to being eaten alongside some toast and a big glass of juice.
But, The Vegg founder Rocky Shepheard wanted to change all of that, and The Vegg Scramble was born. Already a trailblazer with their Vegan Egg Yolk, the company has been providing a plant-based alternative for the umami taste of eggs in cooking since 2011. With its ability to be mixed into a vegan hollandaise, French toast or even some chickpea flour for an omelette-like dish, the product was still along the lines of other replacers in that it couldn’t really be used alone though.
Now, with their scramble, consumers can whip up a plate of scrambled eggs without, you know, eggs. When asked why he decided to create a plant-based scrambled egg, Shepheard told One Green Planet, “I had already created the yolk in 2011. Tofu is a super white replacer, so I though I’d create tofu from a mix and put the two together.”
Better whip up some coffee, cuz this breakfast is ready to rock.
It sounds simple, but it’s actually far from it. Innovations like these take not only inspiration, but money as well. That can be a bit trickier to come by.
“From the inception of the yolk mix to the ultimate scrambled eggs, I’ve done it all on the few thousand dollars donated by Compassion Over Killing, A Well-Fed World and VegFund and about 15 thousand dollars of my savings,” Shepheard says of getting the product off the ground. “I tried to secure investors, but had no luck.”
Still, the product came to be and is available now on their website for pre-order (the product officially launches April 22nd, 2015). The taste comes largely from nutritional yeast and black salt, and boasts a nutritional profile that rivals eggs for both protein as well as vitamin B12 content. It’s also a fraction of the calories and zero fat, non GMO and sourced from mostly certified organic ingredients.
Ooohhhh, show me your RDAs…oh, yeah….
Manitoba Egg Farmers/The Vegg
Shepheard says of the product, “I am a firm believer in organic and GMO-free and strive to attain that goal in all my products. Unfortunately, one ingredient still cannot be sourced as organic…fortified nutritional yeast. Although on a positive note, the fortified nutritional yeast is very nutritious a very good source of B12, important for vegans.”
The product will only be available on the website for the time being, at Shepheard’s cost no less, due to the high price that both producing and distributing it would incur. The fact is, compassionate and sustainable products need support if we want to see them become more readily available on the market, a direction that trends are already proving to take.
Hampton Creek, the creators of the egg-free sandwich spread Just Mayo have been notably working on a sustainable scrambled egg product for years, with huge funding from the likes of people like entrepreneur Li Ka-shing. Artisanal vegan cheeses are popping up online and in store fronts in both Los Angeles as well as New York City while a vegan butcher shop is slated to make its debut this year in Minneapolis, Minnesota.
Clearly, it’s what all the cool kids are doing
When asked what kind of message he’d like to share with consumers, Shepheard said, “Just for those who have a great idea and want to make a difference, please realize you can do it if you have the raw determination.” Supporting companies that further that cause sends a big message that we as consumers want better for animals, the earth and ourselves. Now, somebody start dicing up some veggies. We’ve got a scramble to enjoy.
Image Credits: The Vegg