Protein Rich Vegan Foods That Can Help You Hit Your Nutrition Goals
September 21, 2023
Vegans and Vegetarians may have a more difficult time finding easy sources of protein. Luckily, there are many high protein plants that can be added to recipes and give vegans and vegetarians a tasty source of protein. Here are 10 protein rich vegan foods that you can use in your cooking to give you the daily recommended value of 46 grams per day if you’re a woman or 56 grams for a man.
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Firm tofu is the top choice for vegan protein sources. Tofu has more than 43 grams of protein per cup. Other types of tofu, such as soft tofu and fermented tofu, also offer lots of protein per serving. Tofu comes from soybean milk that has been simmered and pressed into blocks of firm protein. It can be deep-fried, stir-fried, baked, boiled and battered. It makes an excellent meat substitute for vegans and vegetarians.
The next highest option for protein rich vegan foods is the lentil. Lentils have 17 grams of protein in each cup serving. The lentil is widely used in Indian and African dishes. You can create stunning vegan curries, spicy stews and side dishes with this versatile legume. For other options, check out our list of high protein beans.
You can also drink your protein with a 16-ounce glass of soymilk. One glass contains 14 grams of protein. Opt for the unsweetened version to avoid adding extra sugar to your diet. You can swap out cow’s milk in your cereal for soymilk for a vegan-friendly breakfast. Additionally, any type of cake, biscuit or bread recipe can be made vegan by using rich soymilk instead of regular milk or cream.
4. Green Peas
Other tasty legumes that qualify as protein rich vegan foods are green peas. One serving of cooked green peas offers more than eight grams of protein. Green peas can be enjoyed as a side dish to your main course or they can be pureed for green pea soup. Other delicious green pea recipes are peas and carrots, pea salad or pasta with green peas.
5. Squash or Pumpkin Seeds
For a salty snack that you can nibble on in between meals, consider using squash or pumpkin seeds. These seeds also provide more than eight grams of protein per one-ounce handful. The most popular way to prepare squash or pumpkin seeds is to roast them in the oven for a few minutes and sprinkle them with salt or other seasonings. They come out crispy and savory and can satisfy your craving for protein rich vegan foods. Want to eat the fruit instead of just the seeds? Check out our list of high protein fruits.
If you want a whole grain option that packs a powerful protein punch, try some quinoa on your plate as a side dish. Quinoa has more than eight grams of protein in each one-cup serving. It also has five grams of fiber, which may help lower your risk of developing high cholesterol. This grain is also an excellent source of magnesium. For other substitutes for quinoa, check out our list of high protein grains.
7. Peanut Butter
No list of protein rich vegan foods would be complete without the classic ingredient, peanut butter. Peanut butter has about seven grams of protein per two-tablespoon serving. Most popular brands of peanut butter also have lots of sugar, so it’s best to choose a natural peanut butter product that has to be stirred. Peanut butter can be added to your favorite Thai food recipes, eaten on its own in a sandwich or part of your desserts.
Some vegetables can also be sources of protein rich vegan foods (check out our list of high protein vegetables for more options). The best option is leafy green veggie spinach, with five grams of protein per one-cup portion. Spinach gives you color, Vitamin A, Vitamin C, iron and folic acid in your diet. Try adding spinach to your smoothie for a burst of protein and flavor.
9. Sweet Corn
The next veggie to add to your plate for protein is sweet corn. Sweet corn provides four grams of protein per serving, which is one cup. Corn on the cob is another yummy option for this vegetable. Sweet corn can be enjoyed as a summer dinner side, part of a salad or as a base for a soup. Corn is also packed with Vitamin C and antioxidants.
Mushrooms are another example of protein rich vegan foods. One cup of mushrooms has three grams of protein. There are different varieties of mushrooms you can try to incorporate into your cooking. If you’re looking for a burger substitute, portabello mushrooms offer a meaty, tender taste as the protein source in your sandwich. Mushrooms can also be added to pasta, salads and other recipes.
Vegans can get the most out of their diet with the meal planner tool from Prospre. Vegan food doesn’t have to be lacking in protein. You can design a weekly menu that satisfies your cravings for protein rich vegan foods with easy meal planning that helps you meet nutritional guidelines and keeps you satisfied.
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