Recipe: Besan Scramble (High Protein Soy-Free Gluten-Free Vegan Power Breakfast!)

February 12th, 2014 - filed under: The Food » Recipes


Vegan high fashion magazine, outdoor dining, and a big beautiful besan scramble = perfection!

First off, I want to say Thank You to everyone who has donated to my Earth Day 2014 efforts! We have met our fundraising goal, I can hardly believe it, so thank you thank you thank you! I wish I could thank each and every one of you publicly, but I understand that some people appreciate their anonymity. So I’ll just say I hope you read this, and I hope you know how much I appreciate your support. Now I just can’t wait to get out there and do this thing!


So! Last year I shared my amazing discovery of Pudla (via Miss Kittee), the savory pancake made from chickpea flour – or besan, as it’s traditionally called. I had fallen madly in love with this high-protein vegan breakfast that wasn’t based around soy, gluten, or protein powder, and I was so happy to share it with all of you.

The feedback I’ve gotten since then has been so awesome, and I’m happy to say that pudla love abounds out there in Internet land. And a few months after we started dating, Jeremy had the idea of creating sweet pudla. So we did.


A few weeks ago I was making a savory pudla for Jeremy and I, and in my rush, I tried flipping it too early. And it fell apart! Luckily we’re not too fussy with our food, so I just kept going, trying to piece it back together into some assemblage of pancakiness. Which didn’t work out so well, so I just said whatever and decided to scramble the sucker.

Best. Decision. Ever.

Because obvi, the yummiest part of a pudla is the crispy crust. The inside is not as good, especially if there’s any undercooked besan in there, which Kittee describes so accurately as “tasting of dirty toenails”. You want all that besan good and crispy, so what better way to maximize the crisp, than to scramble? Right?!



You will need:

–> 1/2 cup besan (chickpea flour)
–> juice from half a lemon
–> 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
–> salt to taste (I use a large pinch or more)
–> spices! I like turmeric, cumin, garlic powder, and smoked paprika. But you can add anything from oregano to dill to harissa. Whatever floats yer boat.
–> water, enough to make a pancake-like batter

You can also use whatever veggies you have around, like mushrooms, kale or spinach, olives, cilantro, bell peppers – again, whatever you like.


In a mixing bowl, combine the besan, lemon juice, baking powder, salt, and spices. Add enough water to make it the consistency of a wet pancake batter (it doesn’t really matter much, this recipe is ridiculously forgiving). Set aside.


Chop all your veggies and then in a hot pan with a bit of oil, sauté the ones that will need sautéing, like onions, mushrooms, zucchini, etc. All of this really is to preference, so feel free to play around with it.


Pour in the batter . . .


And combine. Also, add any other veggies that didn’t require sautéing, like olives, tomatoes, fresh herbs, etc.


Continue to scramble every few minutes, making sure the bottom doesn’t get too brown. It’s done when all the batter is cooked through.

Treat it like any other scramble, topping with salsa, cheese, avocado, fresh herbs, green onions – whatever you like.


This meal has eclipsed pudla as our very favorite brunch, and we make it pretty much as often as possible. I hope you enjoy it as much as we do!

  • coconutandberries

    Besan scramble sounds much better than “chickpea flour scramble” which is what I’ve been calling this. Such a useful protein-rich option to have when I don’t have beans cooked or tofu/tempeh on hand. Yummy too! I’ll try the b.powder next time.

  • Susan McNamara

    Oh I’m definitely doing this. I didn’t care for the pancake style because of the aforementioned tonail flavor (clearly I undercooked it) :)

  • Kim H.

    This might be a silly question: Do you know if this recipe will work just as well in another type of pan? I don’t have any cast iron… :(

  • Meredith

    Ok, so I made the pudla, I get the dirty toenail reference if it’s undercooked, but what about it tasting like iron? I just kept thinking it tasted like blood! Did I do something wrong? Either way, this looks delicious!

  • mark e

    I found that I am not put off by the taste of the undercooked pudla at all! Even tasted the raw batter. It did not strike me as dirty toenails. Lucky me, I guess? But I’m excited to try this version!

  • bohemianmatka

    I’ve made Miss Kittee’s pudla recipe (or ‘that poo-dah-la stuff’ as my husband calls it!) many times since your post… love it, just one of those awesome super simple recipes that you can make while still half asleep and it helps me clean out the fridge of various veggies that need to be eaten up. I will have to try this variation soon!

  • bohemianmatka

    I agree, the raw batter isn’t that bad. I’m not put off if
    my pudla cake has an undercooked spot.

  • Elizabeth

    I’ve never successfully flipped a pudla, so mine end up a scramble every time! Still delicious though, I love how quick and easy they are to prepare, and the endless possibilities of ingredients you can throw in there. Thanks for turning me on to these!

  • Emily

    This looks SO delicious! Thanks for sharing this recipe :)

  • Sayward Rebhal

    Haha, yeah “besan” is my fake fancy. ;-)

  • Sayward Rebhal

    Let me know if you like it this way better! I do think the flavor is quite different. I’m all scramble all the way now!

  • Sayward Rebhal

    No silly! I’ve definitely done pudla in other pans. Anything cast iron or nonstick will work best, since it does tend to get sticky. But yeah, you definitely don’t need cast iron.

  • Sayward Rebhal

    Hmm, I don’t really get an iron-y taste from the pudla. Did you cook it in cast iron? I know that will impart some iron into the finished food.

  • Sayward Rebhal

    You are lucky! ‘m not, like, totally disgusted by it or anything, but I definitely get where the toenail reference comes from. ;-)

  • Sayward Rebhal

    That’s why I love it too! It’s my absolute favorite “clean out the crisper” recipe. Pudla and veggie juice made with all the odds and ends – tastes great together and get’s rid of EVERYTHING!

  • Sayward Rebhal

    You’re welcome! Let me know if you try it, yeah?

  • Sayward Rebhal

    You’re welcome Elizabeth! They really are just the perfect breakfast aren’t they? So versatile.

    If you do continue on the pudla train (instead of switching to scrambles), I find that cutting them in half before flipping, and then flipping one half at a time, really helps the success rate. ;-D

  • Mike

    This looks delicious! Can you give an idea of how much of each spice you put in?

  • jmegirl

    Hi Sayward, I know you met your goal for Earth Day, but I wanted to make a contribution anyway. My bf and I are going to spend 4 days in SB during that weekend for a mini vacation. I hope to see you! I made Kittee’s pudla recipe when you posted about it almost a year ago and we love it! Thanks for sharing.

  • Sayward Rebhal

    Thank you so much, I will definitely put your donation to good use for the event! And yay, I will be there all day both days so please stop by, I would LOVE to meet you!

  • Sayward Rebhal

    HI Mike, I really just eyeball it but I’d say, 1/2 teaspoon cumin, 1/4 teaspoon turmeric, 1/4 – 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder (depending on my mood, and if I’m also using fresh garlic) and a liberal sprinkling of smoked paprika. Hope that helps!

  • monique

    I enjoy my besan scrambled too. I think I’ve only once (maybe twice) successfully flipped a pancake of any sort, so it’s a good thing I like the scramble. And like you I like all the crispy bits. This is my go-to recipe when I fly in the door at the end of the day and I’m hungry hungry hungry. Bon appetit!

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  • Hala

    I have grown really fond of Besan (I actually first came across it browsing this blog, thank you very much (-: )

    I have a question though, how exactly is the texture of the scramble supposed to turn out? Closer to an scrambled egg/dough-ey type? or dryer/crispy and bready?

    I can’t seem to perfect the texture before some of the batter starts sticking intensely to the pan, making it difficult to get it off. My final result ends up a bit doughey (still delicious, don’t get me wrong…) Any advice?

  • Christa

    Ha!! This is how I’ve been making ‘pudla’ for the last year, ever since you introduced me to chickpea flour. Both my husband and myself have fallen in love with it – it’s so perfect for all the right reasons – cheap, filling, high in protein, uses up leftovers and delicious. But this whole time that I’ve been making it, I’ve maybe gotten it to flip like a pancake once or twice. So instead, I just scramble up the disaster and eat away. Deelish!

  • Sayward Rebhal

    I do it drier/crispier, because I don’t like the flavor of undercooked besan. It’s not totally tough like bread crumbs or anything. I also should say that I add a LOT of veggies, so they make up a lot of the texture in the dish.

    There is definitely some sticking that occurs, even int he cast iron. I just use a spatula and scrape it up and keep scrambling. The sticky bits taste great! If it’s too doughy with overly cooked sticking bottom, then I’d say cook it longer at a lower heat. That will help it to cook more evenly.

    Hope that helps!

  • Janet Meeks

    Just tried this recipe. I wasn’t so sure as I was making it…didn’t look so much like yours, but it really turned out to be quiet tasty. Do you consider this 2 servings or one?

  • Ilana

    I was making oatmeal for breakfast this morning (literally, it was cooking on the stove) when I opened my fridge and saw the chick pea flour and remembered seeing this recipe during my insomnia-induced internet crawl last night. I’ve made similar things in the past because I really like the crispy edges, but this time I thought to just keep scrambling and scrambling it… oh. so. good. I don’t think I’ve ever commented before and it made me need to come tell you thanks for breakfast. <3

  • Sayward Rebhal

    It’s one big one for me, but it could serve two less hungry folks, I suppose. ;-)

  • Katie

    I had never heard of pudla or besan scrambles before I discovered your blog a few days ago. I had leftover chickpea flour from when I attempted making mini muffin “omelets” (total disaster because I undercooked them and they were gooey and gross in the middle) and I thought I would never use chickpea flour again!
    But I made this tonight and it was delicious!! Definitely a new favorite meal. I think I actually used too many veggies though, because it was mostly veggies with a few pieces of scramble here and there :P but tasty nonetheless!!

  • Katie

    OR maybe my skillet was too large because the batter only covered a very small portion of my veggies…hmm

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  • Chelsea

    I have been meaning to make this for months and today I finally did. My secret agent lover man watched while I made it and he was quite skeptical. I’m not the best chef. I didn’t have enough oil in the pan and it stuck all over and I was beginning to get disheartened that it looked nothing like yours. My scrambled bits didn’t get very crispy and I garnished with avocado and kalamata olives in an attempt to salvage the dish. My guy sat down with it and started before I was done scraping the pan and he exclaimed “Huh! This is actually pretty good!” Success!! Next time: more oil in the pan, more water in the batter, and double up the recipe! Thanks!!

  • Sayward Rebhal

    Yay! So glad it worked and your lover man loved it! Success indeed. =)

  • Chelsea

    To amend: I tried it again it is still stuck and never became crispy. It was just doughy globs. Since they were seasoned well it wasn’t that big of a deal. What am I doing wrong? I am using a cast iron skillet with olive oil. The first time my dough was thick and the second time watery. Medium high heat. Any tips?

  • Sayward Rebhal

    I’d say you need to cook it on lower heat and for longer. Use a metal spatula to scrape the bottom and keep it from sticking, but you might need to “scramble” it for 15 minutes or so. Not constantly, of course. Like, stir . . . come back a few minutes later, stir, come back a few minutes later, etc. It’s not getting a chance to cook all the way through, so turn the heat down and let it cook for more time. That’s my best guess!

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  • katiemae

    Does this recipe work if my flour is chickpea and fava bean?

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  • Anne241

    I think that would work just fine!

  • Anne241

    I have a gift for you all:
    - add 1/4 cup of nutritional yeast
    - replace some of the water with 1/4 cup of coconut milk.
    Creamy creamy cheesy cheesy omnomnomnomnomnom :-)

  • Sayward Rebhal

    I haven’t tried it myself, but I’m betting it would.

  • Patricia Jane Belle

    Bless you Sayward.

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  • Claudia


  • Claudia


    I’m making the pudla my go-to recipe whenever I want a
    substantial breakfast other than my usual steel cut oatmeal, it was that good.
    My partner thought it tasted a bit grainy, as if not completely cooked; I
    didn’t. Should I have made a thinner batter? I made it thick but pourable as Kittee had suggested in her original post. There wasn’t much visible batter; it just covered the vegetables so it didn’t look like a “scramble” as in the picture. Quite a bit stuck to the bottom of the pan and browned, the way it would when I was still making scrambled eggs and hadn’t oiled the pan enough. Since it was a gooey coating on top with the veggies, in my opinion it was cooked. Is it possible I had too many vegetables relative to batter? Any suggestions on how mine could have looked heartier? (Always nice to serve it to the wary that way.)

  • Toni Dill

    Just got around to making this. Gosh seemed to take forever to cook. My batch ended up ooey gooey. It tasted ok. So started on my sons batch, and started to get PO’ed. I dunno if it’s my pan or what, but things were getting black on the bottom, yet it wasn’t cooking the batter, but it’d stick to the spatula and I’d tap the spatula to get it off and it went everywhere lol. So I started pressing it down like you do a veg patty to get it to brown, and that did the trick! I’d press on it, flip it, chop it a bit with the spatula, and repeat. It was very filling, and my autistic 13 year old actually ate it and liked it!

  • Toni Dill

    I’m going to try popping it in the oven like a fritatta

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  • Lara

    Hi, I haven’t tried this yet but my hubby had scrambled egg and English Muffin and I am looking for something equally good.

    Here is a suggestion–Have a link where you can print just the recipe. What I have to do is copy everything, put it in a Word document, delete most of the pictures, print it out to take to my kitchen. It is great when recipe sites have that function for those of us who still like to work off paper in the kitchen.