This flavorful vegan frittata combines the texture of scrambled tofu–a little bit browned and crumbly–with the cohesiveness of an omelet. Incredible!
When I was living on my own for the first time, a friend’s mom gave me a battered, 1960’s edition of The Joy of Cooking, and for the next year I taught myself to cook by following its often dated but always instructive recipes. I was particularly fascinated by the chapter called “Eggs, Souffles and Timbales,” and though I don’t remember making any timbales, I learned to cook eggs in most every other way, from poached and over easy to omelets and quiches and simple souffles.
After I became vegan, I didn’t so much miss the taste of eggs as I missed putting what I’d learned to use. Silly me. It took me years to figure out that so many of the egg dishes I loved best, the omelets, quiches, and frittatas, were easy to duplicate using tofu. This frittata is my most realistic and delicious eggsperiment (sorry!) yet.
I wanted to combine the texture of scrambled tofu–a little bit browned and crumbly–with the cohesiveness of an omelet, so I started this frittata off by browning regular, extra-firm tofu before adding shredded zucchini. While that was cooking, I blended up silken tofu with seasonings and a thickener and then mixed the two together and baked. The results were amazing, if I say so myself.
One thing: I baked my frittata in a pie pan because I didn’t have a non-stick skillet the right size. If you have a medium-sized (about 9-inch), oven-safe skillet that you trust to be non-stick, you can skip the pie pan and bake right in the skillet. But if you’re not sure about the non-stickness of your skillet, don’t risk it or most of your frittata may wind up stuck to the pan. And that would be a real shame because you’ll want to devour every bite.
Vegan Zucchini Frittata
- 2 shallots minced
- 1/2 14-ounce package extra-firm tofu not silken, coarsely crumbled
- 1 pinch black salt (kala namak) optional
- sprinkle of salt and pepper
- 1 tablespoon minced fresh oregano packed, or 1 tsp. dried
- 1 medium zucchini about 10-12 ounces, shredded
- 1 12.3-ounce package lite firm or extra-firm silken tofu drained
- 1/4 cup water or non-dairy milk
- 3 tablespoons nutritional yeast
- 4 teaspoons cornstarch
- 1 teaspoon tahini
- 1 clove garlic
- 1/4 teaspoon turmeric
- 3/4 teaspoon salt
- generous grating of black pepper
- 1 pinch black salt optional
- Cut a circle of parchment paper to fit an 8- or 9-inch pie pan. Spray pan with non-stick spray and place parchment in bottom. (Spray helps keep sides from sticking; skip this step at your own risk.)
- Preheat oven to 400.
- Heat a non-stick skillet. Add the shallots and cook, stirring, until they begin to soften but not brown. Add the crumbled tofu, black salt, and a sprinkle of salt and freshly ground pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally, until tofu begins to brown in places. Add oregano and zucchini and continue to cook until zucchini softens, about 5 minutes.
- While the zucchini cooks, blend all remaining ingredients well in a blender. When zucchini has softened, remove the skillet from the heat and pour in the contents of the blender. Quickly stir well and pour into the prepared pie pan. Be sure to scrape out any tofu that becomes stuck to the skillet. Smooth the top and place in the preheated oven. Bake for 25 to 30 minutes, or until center is set and top is not yet browned.
- Loosen the frittata around the edges. Place a serving plate on top of the pie pan, and using pot holders, carefully invert the pan so that the frittata falls onto the plate. Slowly peel off the parchment paper from the top. (Use a knife to scrape off any tofu the clings to the paper as you pull it away.) Serve hot, cold, or at room temperature.
Nutritional info is approximate.
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AshleyJune 19, 2011 at 10:00 pm
This is a really wonderful recipe! I just made it for fathers day and it turned out so wonderfully/ was entirely gobbled up! I didn’t have any tahini on hand so I just added a bit of hummus. Thanks for the great recipe, I will definitely be making it again!
Kate MJune 20, 2011 at 11:30 am
Just made this last night and it was amazing! My family is Italian and we have a family recipe that incorporates spaghetti into a frittata recipe, in your experice is it possible to use the same base and add different ingredients?
SusanVJune 20, 2011 at 1:02 pm
I’m glad your family liked it. I think that as long as you don’t add too much, you should be able to incorporate spaghetti or any other ingredient. Have fun!
Katie B.June 20, 2011 at 5:43 pm
I doubled it and must have added too much nutritional yeast. We still liked it and I’m sure we will love it more next time!
sonyaJune 23, 2011 at 5:58 pm
Just made this and it was wonderful! I used 3/4 of a block of superfirm tofu (because that is how much was in the fridge). I didn’t have zucchini so i substituted yellow squash and arranged a few mushroom and tomato slices on the bottom to make it pretty. It held up well in the lunch box the next day too. This is definitely going into regular rotation at my house.
I used the parchment paper as directed but I wonder, if I use my Misto, do I need the paper?
Healthy&HomemadeJune 24, 2011 at 2:00 pm
It’s crazy how much this looks like a frittata with EGSS! I love tofu, it sounds delicious.
Karen FaivreJune 25, 2011 at 4:23 pm
Susan, I made this frittata and it totally rocked! And then I made a wrap with the leftovers. Yummy!
IanJune 26, 2011 at 11:49 am
I just had a vegan brunch and served this. There were no vegans in attendance and only one vegetarian. Everyone loved it. One person said after eating it, “Wait! There’s no eggs in this!?” And another said “This tastes like eggs, what did you put in it to make it taste like eggs?”
Thanks for the great recipe!
MelissaJune 26, 2011 at 7:28 pm
This looks amazing! I miss some of these classic Italian style dishes since becoming a vegan. I’ve been using nutritional yeast for all of my Italian cheese needs though! I will really need to try to make this (or have my mom try to make it) Thanks so much 🙂
FionaJune 30, 2011 at 4:59 pm
Overall, my family and I really liked the flavor of this frittata. The texture was still a bit soggy for us though. I cooked it for 22 minutes, so next time I would try a bit longer and it will probably stiffen up a bit. However, I would like to point out to other readers that this recipe is really low in calories, even for people like my Mum and I, who are on Weight Watchers. (This was 3 points for 1/4 of the frittata, and we usually spend about 10 points on the dinner meal.) So while it would be a perfect recipe for someone who wants something light or doesn’t have many points/calories left but still wants to feel like they are eating a full dinner, it wasn’t really enough for even my Mum and I on Weight Watchers, let alone my fiance and my Dad, who do physical work most of the day. They had to majorly supplement the dinner with other foods. It’s not a criticism of the recipe, just to let others know that they should consider preparing something along with this recipe unless they want something really light.
SusanVJune 30, 2011 at 5:01 pm
That’s a good point, Fiona. I always serve this with plenty of side dishes like hash browns, toast, and other vegetables. It is indeed very light.
EleanaJuly 6, 2011 at 7:05 pm
Hi, this recipe looks wonderful! I don’t usually eat began but my son is allergic to eggs so this is perfect for our family. I am guessing from some comments that the addition of the nutritional yeast gives a cheesy flavor? Is that the only reason for that ingredient it does it do something else? I guess I’m asking, can I leave it out or put real cheese instead? Thanks. I’m looking forward to exploring your blog & finding more great stuff!
EleanaJuly 6, 2011 at 7:06 pm
Sorry for the typos. I’m on my phone.
SusanVJuly 6, 2011 at 8:43 pm
I haven’t tried it with cheese instead of nutritional yeast, so I can’t say for sure, but my fear is that it may throw off the moisture balance and cause it not to firm up. Nut. yeast is a flavor enhancer, and it’s different than actual cheese. Give it a try–you may find you like it!
AndriaJuly 6, 2011 at 10:46 pm
This looks amazing – how well does it hold up as left overs? I can understand if you’ve never made it to the leftovers stage, but thought i’d ask 🙂
SusanVJuly 6, 2011 at 11:16 pm
Sorry–we always eat every bite. But I have it on good authority that they hold well and even taste good cold.
RuthJuly 8, 2011 at 4:04 pm
Hi, I just found your beautiful and delicious looking blog. Wow, talk about a ton of cooking here! Thanks for sharing it all.
In loving appreciation
Ruth from Texas
mJuly 12, 2011 at 9:25 am
I recently gave up eggs and this looks really good; however, silken tofu grosses me out so bad. i like tofu but typically buy the firm or extra firm…the soft texture of the other just does not work for me. could i make this w/o it? or a substitute?
thanks – great blog
BadaJuly 20, 2011 at 5:00 am
I made this tonight, I was really amazed at how frittata-like it was as so was my omni husband, he even said he can’t wait to take it to work tomorrow to show all his mates an eggless frittata!!
You’re really very clever!
Get Skinny, Go Vegan.August 5, 2011 at 9:09 am
What is it about the black salt that gives the eggy quality??
SusanVAugust 5, 2011 at 9:16 am
It’s the sulfur content, which can actually taste bad if you add too much–like rotten eggs!
annieAugust 10, 2011 at 12:14 am
I can’t wait to try the frittata!! It looks gorgeous and so delicious. MMM!
LainaAugust 10, 2011 at 4:53 pm
Wow! Made this today and absolutely love it. It will be a top ten easily. I didn’t have a shallot so I used onion powder……..while I was at it I added some garlic powder as well. I also added a little green bell pepper and mushrooms. Next time I’ll use red for the color contrast.
Instead of salt, I sprayed some braggs liquid aminos for a little sodium flavor. Once it was done I flipped the pie plate over and peeled off the parchment paper.
I wanted to mention that the best way to peel the paper off is the same way you’d peel those abnoxious price stickers off of glassware. Start in one section and go slowly using a knife to help scrape the frittata away from the parchment paper. That’s how I did it and it worked perfectly.
Also, I hated using only half of the tofu block. I made some of the Creamy Zucchini and Basil Soup of yours today as well, so I cubed the other half of the tofu and added it to the soup. No waste. I’m sure I would have left it in the fridge and it would have gone bad before I got to it. I’m taking this camping with me. I hope it tastes good after it’s been refrigerated. I guess I’ll find out soon enough. 🙂
Thanks, Susan, for all the wonderful recipes you share with us. You are so appreciated!!!
eva @5fruitsNveggiesAugust 11, 2011 at 12:45 pm
made this last night with some summer squash we had from my MIL’s garden….
it was lovely!
i took your advice in making sure my zucchini mixture was dry so the frittata would set…so i took out the widest saute pan out to increase surface area of evaporation of steam…..i did use a ton more zuccchini and it worked out just fine….and in anticipation of a watery mess (which i usually somehow end up with) i opted out of adding the water/extra liquids in the skilken tofu blended mixture because silken tofu is naturally so moist…i did add more nutritional yeast (but i personally love the flavor of the stuff)….i did not use the black salt—but now looking forward to finding some based on the flavor it will add…
me and the kids loved this recipe–it’s going into the keeper files..i am looking forward to using this recipe as a base for adding other veggies like broccili!
ShannonAugust 17, 2011 at 1:41 pm
I made this for dinner last night and though it was terrific! So satisfying and yummy! Thank you for this recipe.
KhlarisseAugust 22, 2011 at 7:40 am
Susan this was delicious! Thanks for the recipe. I have a few questions though: how much black salt is too much? This is my first time cooking with it and I literally put a pinch in and got an initial “eggy” smell but couldn’t taste or smell it after it was all cooked. Also the sides of the frittata browned nicely (without parchment) but the whole thing for me wasn’t as firm as I wanted and it stuck to the parchment paper even when I carefully peeled it back. Should I have just left it in the oven longer? I was afraid that would’ve made the sides burn. Will definitely try again!
SusanVAugust 22, 2011 at 7:56 am
The black salt is definitely a “to taste” thing. I can’t stand more than a pinch of it, but I’ve seen other people’s recipes where they measure it by the quarter teaspoon. If you like a more pronounced flavor, go for it!
It sounds like you didn’t give it quite enough time if it wasn’t firm enough, but next time you might try increasing the starch a little just to make sure that didn’t cause the problem. The sticking parchment paper sounds normal. I have to peel it back very slowly and carefully–I think there’s a previous comment where someone describes exactly how she does that.
mrsfAugust 22, 2011 at 1:29 pm
I can’t believe this isn’t made with eggs…you are making this so easy to transition from vegetarian to vegan…would love to see your holiday menu’s as thanksgiving is approaching and would like to get ideas early to be as vegan as possible that day. Keep it coming and thank you! : D
LisaSeptember 3, 2011 at 11:50 pm
Hi Susan, this was delicious (and will be again for lunch tomorrow)! I have tried so many vegan frittata recipes and have been disappointed each time , but this recipe is a keeper! Thank you 🙂
Lianne95519September 8, 2011 at 4:01 pm
Thanks for a very clever dish. Mine worked great except the zucchini was bitter. I used a medium sized one and shred it in my food processor. Is that just to be expected sometimes or did I miss something. Can you suggest another veggie? Otherwise it was beautiful and I ate it anyway.
Thanks for your help and I am a new fan of this site. I have been Vegan for almost 2 months. You have helped me make the switch with ease.
SusanVSeptember 8, 2011 at 5:16 pm
Hi Lianne, Congrats on making the switch! I think you must have gotten a bad zucchini. They’re usually very mild, but the small ones are usually better so maybe using 2 of them would work. Just about any veggie you can shred will work, especially fast-cooking ones ones like zucchini. Also, spinach would make a great frittata.
ChristineSeptember 22, 2011 at 4:03 pm
This recipe was so delicious! I’m making it again this weekend. Thank you.
GabyOctober 10, 2011 at 2:27 pm
This is sooooooooo delicious! Thank you for sharing these AMAZING recipes. I have discovered I love cooking thanks to you 🙂
PJDOctober 12, 2011 at 1:03 pm
This was stupid delicious. I didn’t have any black salt but it still worked really well! It’s especially tasty the next day.
Kat SnyerOctober 19, 2011 at 1:56 pm
About how many cups is 10-12 oz. of shredded zucchini? I have three GIGANTIC zucchinis from the garden (each one is about two feet long) so I have been combing the Interwebs for zucchini-laced items to cook. This looks fabulous btw can’t wait to try it!
SusanVOctober 19, 2011 at 2:45 pm
It will probably only take a third of one of your giant zucchini’s–whatever looks close to a medium zucchini.
traceJanuary 21, 2012 at 10:25 am
i’ve made this twice now for my carnivorous family and my husband actually prefers it over the egg frittatas i used to make. if you knew my husband your jaw would be on the floor. anyway – thanks for sharing w all of us your great recipes and tips. 🙂
MarshaFebruary 6, 2012 at 5:25 pm
This recipe looks delicious, but my daughter can’t digest corn. Any suggestions for a cornstarch substitute? Do you think flour would work as well?
Susan VoisinFebruary 6, 2012 at 6:12 pm
You can use the same amount of potato starch. I haven’t tried it with flour. Good luck!
NinufarApril 2, 2012 at 12:01 pm
Of course go w/what Susan V recommends first — I just wanna add that arrowroot starch and tapioca starch can serve some of the same functions.
VibekeFebruary 9, 2012 at 6:50 pm
Oh Susan, this is so good! My clients love it too!
KristinApril 2, 2012 at 10:54 am
Ok, the frittata looks AMAZING. Even though I’m still fearing tofu at this point. Had a horrible tofu experience once and I just can’t bring myself to play around with it….
But what I’m mostly curious about is WHAT are you drinking? It looks amazing!
Susan VoisinApril 2, 2012 at 11:04 am
It’s been a while, and I’m afraid I don’t remember what the drink was! But it was definitely just a 100% juice or juice blend that I buy for my daughter.
And you should definitely give tofu another try!
Kristy @ Tips on Healthy LivingApril 11, 2012 at 1:28 pm
My friend made this for Easter brunch and I made her share the recipe. It is AMAZING! Truly gone in 60 seconds, because everyone had seconds immediately. Thanks for a great frittata alternative.
LyzMay 6, 2012 at 7:21 am
I made this today and was disappointed after all the great comments, so I’m thinking I must have botched it somehow. It didn’t set up well even though I left it in the oven for the maximum recommended time – I should have drained my zuchini shreds I think before putting them in the pan. And I didn’t have any black salt, so no eggy flavor, and in fact I found it really didn’t have much flavor at all. It looks really gorgeous, though, so I want to give it another try. Next time I will be sure to drain everything really well, try spinach instead of zuchini, and increase the spices. I’ll let you know how it turns out!
nicolelistonMay 9, 2012 at 7:27 am
My husband loooooves eggs. Like reallly really loves them. He used to eat an egg sandwich every morning. Since going vegan its probably what we both miss the most. I set my alarm a little early this morning and hoped I would actually get up to spend a little extra time on breakfast. Im so happy I did! We loved this! We both ate our piece on top of toast like we used to with our eggs. Thank you so much for the great recipe!
Lisa A.June 19, 2012 at 2:06 pm
Just wanted to stop by and say that since I saw this recipe on your blog, I have made it at least 10 times. My husband loves it!