The Highest Protein Grains To Help You Build Muscle
November 23, 2023
A diet rich in whole grains offers numerous health benefits. In addition to enjoying more sustained energy and reducing your risks for numerous diseases, choosing protein rich grains can also help you build muscle mass and strength when included in a high-protein diet. While most whole grains are a positive choice for your health and wellness, not all whole grains are rich in protein. If you're focusing on this nutrient to help you experience more muscle gains, opt for one of these protein rich grains.
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The Best Protein Rich Grains for Muscle Growth
Ideally, you should consume three servings of whole grain on a daily basis. These options are a tasty way to strengthen and nourish your body. For an extra boost of protein, consider preparing them with bone broth instead of water, or mix them with high-protein meats, produce, and cheeses.
Protein in 1 cup: 9.8g
Also known as khorasan wheat, kamut is a Middle Eastern grain that contains significantly more protein than most others. It provides 9.8 grams in a one-cup serving, making it one of the most protein rich grains available. It's a very nutritious option that contains magnesium, zinc, and plenty of fiber. However, keep in mind that this ancient grain does have more sugar than many other whole grains, which may be important to consider if you're monitoring blood sugar levels.
Protein in 1 cup: 9.8g
Coming in at a tie with kamut as the grain with most protein, teff provides 9.8 grams in one cup. Technically, teff belongs in the category of high protein seeds, but it is treated as a grain because of its appearance and texture, along with how it is harvested and prepared. It hails from the continent of Africa and is becoming a popular gluten-free alternative to wheat products.
Protein in 1 cup: 9.3g
Perhaps one of the healthiest options you can add to your muscle-building diet, amaranth grains are actually high protein seeds, offering 9.3 grams per cup. This option is a superfood because not only is it rich in fiber, iron, and several other nutrients, but it also contains each of the essential amino acids for the human body, making it a complete protein.
Protein in 1 cup: 8.2g
Another one of the high protein seeds on this list, quinoa provides 8.2 grams of protein in each one-cup serving. Like amaranth, it is also a complete protein and is considered a nutritious gluten-free product. It comes in a variety of types and is one of the easiest protein rich grains to find in your local grocery store.
5. Whole Wheat Pasta
Protein in 1 cup: 7.0g
Pasta is a popular food for most households, and swapping from the traditional version to a whole-wheat alternative can provide you with 7 grams of protein per one-cup serving. This type of pasta tends to have a chewier, heartier texture, especially when the noodles are broad. For an al dente bite that's similar to traditional pasta, choose long and thin noodles instead.
6. Wild Rice
Protein in 1 cup: 6.5g
Another healthier swap that replaces a starchy side with protein rich grains is upgrading your everyday white rice to wild rice. With 6.5 grams of protein in one cup, wild rice is described as nutty, chewy, and flavorful. Keep in mind that it will require a little more cooking time than white or brown rice, but the nutritious benefits are well worth it.
Protein in 1 cup: 6.1g
For a healthy dose of protein and a boost of B vitamins, millet can be an excellent choice. Enjoy one cup of millet and you'll also provide your body with 6.1 grams of protein. This gluten-free grain is sweet and mild and can be added to a variety of dishes.
Protein in 1 cup: 6.1g
Another one of the most accessible protein rich grains, couscous has become more and more popular over the past few years. With 6 grams of protein in a cup, this ingredient is prevalent in many Middle Eastern and Mediterranean dishes. It's made with the same ingredients as pasta, just in a much smaller form.
Protein in 1 cup: 5.9g
When you want to add more protein rich grains to your breakfast, reach for oats. One cup of prepared oats contains 6 grams of protein along with a healthy dose of magnesium, zinc, and complex carbohydrates. They are often recommended as part of a heart-healthy diet. Consider preparing them with dairy or nut milk instead of water for an extra boost of protein.
Protein in 1 cup: 5.7g
Like teff, amaranth, and quinoa, buckwheat is not technically a grain (although its name certainly implies it) but another member of the high protein seeds group. Buckwheat contains 5.7 grams of protein in each one-cup serving. This option is low in sugar and has also been shown to be gentler on the digestive system. It's even made the cut to be included on the list of recommended foods for a low-FODMAP diet.
How To Add More Protein Rich Grains to Your Diet
Planning out your meals to include the most protein rich choices can be challenging. Prospre has the tools you need to choose the right variety of protein rich grains so you can reach your goals to gain more muscle. Check out our meal planning app to hit your protein goal today.
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