Portland, OR: Tofu Scramble Capital of the USA?
There is no denying that Portland is a vegan mecca. People seem to travel from around the world to sample deep fried vegan corn dogs, soft serve from Blossoming Lotus and biscuits and gravy from Vita or Paradox, among hundreds of other delicious ideas that immediately popped into your head. Well, here’s another crown you can bestow upon this city – Tofu Scramble Capital of the USA.
The Stumptown Vegans have joked about how we could spend a month eating nothing but tofu scrambles for future reviews, and have projects and podcasts up our sleeves, on top of recently being interviewed about all things tofu scramble, vegan breakfast and more on Breakfast in Bridgetown. The past few years have seen an expansion in tofu scrambles across this city, overall shifts from cubes to scrambles and a decrease in the many menus that used to say ‘sub tofu/pay more’. Why, I remember when I first talked my way into a ‘subbed’ tofu scramble with smoked tomatoes at Genie’s…
I decided it would be, well, fun, to see just how many tofu scrambles are available at different restaurants in Portland. I started making a list and couldn’t stop, and that became a table, which I’m calling a census.
Portland is home to excellent local tofu and some of the best produce in the country, and really, it’s an easy, cholesterol-free dish for any restaurant to offer during breakfast & brunch. But who’s got your favorite? Who cooks that tofu just right and has the best sides?
The Great Portland Tofu Scramble Census.
|Tofu Scramble Location||Neighborhood||Variety||Spices||Notes|
|Asaase Ital Palace cart||SW/PSU||*||*||breakfast scramble|
|Beaterville||N||pressed/grilled||Braggs||chewy and delicious|
|Beulahland||NE||scrambled||*||sub tofu for eggs|
|Blue Pig||SE||scrambled||*||sub tofu for eggs|
|Bourgeois Z Vintage||SE (outer)||*||*|
|Chaos Cafe||SE||small cubes||Yes||wholesome!|
|Cricket Cafe||SE||cubed||lots of black pepper||seriously, lots of pepper.|
|Crush||SE||*||*||‘Veganator’ + tofu, brunch|
|Cup and Saucer Cafe||various||scrambled||varies||order the special for flavor!|
|Genie’s||SE||cubed||No||sub tofu for eggs on menu|
|Gravy||N/Mississippi||scrambled||tur-mer-ic!||hot stuff, but eh.|
|Hungry Tiger Too||SE||scrambled||Yes, light, lots of garlic||small and full sized options|
|Jam on Hawthorne||SE||scrambled||Yes||sub tofu for eggs on menu|
|Juniors||SE||Big chunks||Yes, light||the first to use spice?!|
|Old Wives’ Tales||Inner Eastside||baked||Yes||interesting.|
|Paradox Cafe||SE||squares||lightly seasoned||available as a side/in #2|
|Proper Eats||N/St. John’s||scramble||Yes||tempeh scramble!|
|Red & Black Café||SE||during Saturday brunch?||*|
|Ruby Dragon cart||N/Mississippi||scrambled||Yes||tempeh scramble!|
|Schavone’s||SE||cubed||No||sub tofu for eggs|
|Star E Rose||NE||scrambled||*||daily specials|
|Stepping Stone||NW||cubed/large pieces||Ask for them (cajun)||sub tofu for eggs|
|Sweetpea Brunch||SE||scrambled, buffet serving||mild||rotating brunch items|
|The Original||Downtown/SW||*||*||foie gras fig newtons here.|
|Tube||Downtown/NW||scrambled||mild||served in tacos!|
|Virgo & Pisces||NW||*||*||*|
|Vita Cafe||NE||scrambled||Yes||tofu and tempeh scrambles!|
|Wild Abandon||SE||scrambled||No||reach for the hot sauce.|
*If you see something missing, retired or worth mentioning in this directory, please say so! There are places I haven’t managed to order a scramble yet, or I’ve blocked out of my mind.
Italics = my favorite places for scramble.
Onto some tofu scramble examples:
Superhero Scramble from Junior’s.
One of my favorite plates of food in this city (or their Vegan Potatoes + Tofu = Whoa, Yes).
Curry Scramble from Jam - on a ‘big pieces’ day!
Portland Scramble from Hungry Tiger Too. This one wears their cheesy sauce.
Greek Scramble from Hungry Tiger Too.
My go-to order here. Because I really love kalamata olives and garlic in my scramble.
Vegan Scramble from Jam Cafe & Arthouse on Hawthorne. Adore their jams and hash browns.
Check out the Everyday Dish cooking video to learn the spice mix!
Tofu Scramble Taco from Tube bar
Cricket Cafe Make-Your-Own Tofu Scramble.
Tons of black pepper – this was gigantic, but I’ve heard a friend mention theirs was tiny.
Genie’s (Subbed) Tofu Scramble – go for the smoked tomatoes! They have great roasted potatoes and an amazing cocktail menu.
P.S. I have to give my friend Bazu credit for the origin of this idea, with her post on The Great Tofu Scramble Debate. Personally, I go all three ways – scrambled mush, cubed, and the in-between. Oh, and don’t forget about baked scrambles! Not such a fan.
P.P.S. You probably make the best scramble in town.