Chopped/Vegan – Brunch edition: Breakfast sandwiches and pancakes


I always have a hard time choosing between sweet or savory at brunch, so with my first attempt at Chopped/Vegan, I did a savory dish and a sweet dish. The four required ingredients were: butternut squash, popcorn, fresh rosemary, and apricot preserves. Both dishes include all four ingredients.

Chopped Savory

Tofu breakfast sandwich with homemade bacon and butternut squash mayo on rosemary popcorn bread; side of roasted rosemary potatoes and butternut squash

Breakfast sandwich:

Rosemary popcorn bread (veganized from this recipe)

  • 1/3 cup boiling water
  • 1/3 cup cold almond milk
  • 1/2 tablespoon dry yeast
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1 1/3 cups popped popcorn (whole kernels only)
  • 1/3 teaspoon salt
  • 1 tablespoon Bob’s Red Mill egg replacer; 3 tablespoons water
  • 1/8 cup vegan margarine, melted
  • 2 1/3 cups bread flour
  • 1 tablespoon fresh rosemary, finely chopped


1. Combine water and milk in a large bowl. Stir in yeast and sugar and let them “work” about 10 minutes.
2. Run popcorn through a blender or food processor until it is the consistency of cornmeal. Add popcorn and salt to the mixture in the bowl.
3. Then add egg replacer and cooled melted margarine and gradually work in flour. If you don’t have a machine, knead the mixture well by hand.
4. Let dough rise (usually 25-30 minutes). Punch it down then let rise once more.
5. Roll into shape and place in greased bread pans. Let rise until doubled in size. Bake at 350 degrees F for 35-40 minutes or until loaf is golden brown. Remove from oven and butter the crusts (margarine the crusts?).

This bread is amazing! Why don’t I bake bread more often?

Vegan Bacon from No Meat Athlete


  • 1/2 cup dried adzuki beans or other small red beans
  • 1/3 cup hulled wholegrain buckwheat (not buckwheat flour)
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1 teaspoon hickory liquid smoke
  • 4 teaspoons nutritional yeast
  • 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 1 tablespoon Braggs Liquid Aminos (May be substituted with soy sauce)
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 2 teaspoons tomato paste
  • 1 teaspoon coconut oil
  • 2 teaspoons maple syrup


  • 1 block extra-firm tofu: drained, pressed & cut into 6 tofu steaks
  • 1/4 apricot preserves
  • 1 tablespoon Braggs Liquid Aminos
  • 1 tablespoon nutritional yeast
  • 1/2 cup of veggie broth

Whisk together all ingredients (except tofu). Place tofu in marinade and set aside for 30 minutes to 1 hour. Fry in cast-iron skillet until brown and crispy.

Butternut squash mayonnaise:

  • store-bought vegan mayo or tofu mayo (How it all Vegan has a good recipe)
  • butternut squash puree
  • cinnamon to taste

Puree ingredients in a food processor or blender.

Put it all together: two pieces of tofu, 3 slices of bacon, some wilted kale & bread with butternut squash mayo.

Roasted rosemary potatoes and butternut squash:

  • 2 medium potatoes
  • 1/2 butternut squash
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 3 cloves of garlic
  • 2-3 teaspoons fresh rosemary
  • salt to taste

Combine all ingredients in a baking pan; roast at 400 F for 45-50 minutes.

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Chopped Sweet

Butternut Squash Pancakes with rosemary-apricot syrup and bacon caramel corn

Butternut squash pancakes:

modification of pumpkin pancakes from Vegan Brunch (sub butternut squash puree for pumpkin puree and omit maple syrup)

Rosemary-Apricot syrup:

  • apricot preserves
  • water
  • arrowroot powder
  • fresh rosemary

Bring apricot preserves and water to a boil in a small pot; whisk in arrowroot powder. Add rosemary and simmer for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.

Bacon Carmel Corn (veganized from here)

  • 4 slices of homemade vegan bacon (see above)
  • 2 1/2 cups popped popcorn (plain)
  • 1/4 cup packed brown sugar
  • 2 tbsp margarine
  • 1 tbsp light corn syrup
  • 1/8 tsp baking soda
  • 2-3 tablespoons toasted, chopped pecans

1. Place the bacon, popcorn, and chopped pecans into a large bowl and toss them together.

2. In a small saucepan, combine the brown sugar, margarine, and corn syrup and stir them together over medium heat. Once the sugar and margarine have melted, stop stirring and insert a candy thermometer.

3. Continue to cook the sugar until it reaches 238 degrees F (114 C) on the candy thermometer, which should only take 3-4 minutes.

4. Once at the proper temperature, remove the pan from the heat, add the baking soda, and stir vigorously. The sugar mixture will foam up, so be careful during this step.

5. Pour the foamy sugar over the popcorn mixture in the bowl and quickly stir everything together, making sure the popcorn, nuts, and bacon are coated with caramel.

6. Spread the popcorn out over the prepared baking sheet. Bake it for about 20-30 minutes, stirring every 10 minutes to distribute the caramel. Watch this carefully so it doesn’t burn.

7. Once it is golden brown and crunchy, take the popcorn out of the oven and allow it to cool completely. Store Bacon Caramel Popcorn in an airtight container at room temperature for up to a week.

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