lentils-for-baby

Top 7 Sources of Plant-Based Protein

lentils-for-baby

We all know that meats are a great source of protein, but did you know that you can actually find protein in pretty much any plant-based food? Some plant-based sources even have as much protein as a serving of meat, and often for a fraction of the cost.

 

Going completely vegan for a meal (and we don’t mean eating pasta!) can be great for your wallet and waistline. Although meats provide some nutrients that aren’t as abundant in plants (i.e. vitamin B12), eliminating meat, cheese, and other animal based products from a meal can quickly cut calories while also increasing your antioxidant and phytonutrient intake–assuming you are eating more vegetables (& nuts, seeds, legumes, etc) instead.

 

When you eat a varied diet and include a wide range of fruits, vegetables, nuts, seeds, legumes, and whole grains, you are guaranteed to get enough protein without thinking twice about it. However, it can sometimes be difficult to make sure our diets are well-rounded, especially when trying to avoid major food groups such as meat and dairy.

 

In order to help you plan your next meal and diversify your plate, here at Real Nutrition we have put this chart together of our top 6 favorite sources of plant-based protein. We challenge you to incorporate some of these ingredients into your meals this week! Try the two recipes below if you need a little inspiration.

 

Top 6 Sources of Plant-Based Protein:

 

Serving Size Protein
Tempeh 3oz 18g
Lentils ¼ cup dry (½ cup cooked) 12g
Edamame ⅓ cup, shelled 11g
Oats ½ cup dry (1 cup cooked) 7g
Almond Butter 2 tablespoons 7g
Quinoa ¼ cup dry (½ cup cooked) 6g
Kale 2 cups, chopped 6g

 

Chocolate Cherry Smoothie: 15g Protein

Makes 1 serving.

 

Ingredients:

1 banana

6 cherries

1 tablespoon almond butter

1 large handful kale

½ serving Garden of Life Raw chocolate protein powder

1 cup water

Ice cubes, optional

Cinnamon, to taste

 

Instructions:

  1. Add smoothie ingredients to blender, except cinnamon, and blend.
  2. Add more water until desired consistency is reached.
  3. Pour into preferred container (ie glass, bowl, etc) and top with cinnamon.

 

Mediterranean-style Superfood Salad: 12g Protein

Serves 2 (or 4 as a side dish portion)

 

Ingredients:

½ cup cooked quinoa

½ cup cooked green lentils

4 cups chopped kale

½ lemon, juiced

1 ½ tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

¼ cup chopped black olives

1 roasted red pepper, chopped

Salt & pepper, to taste

 

Instructions:

  1. Place kale, lemon juice, and olive oil in a bowl and massage kale with your hands for about 2 minutes until kale is wilted and soft. (Option: Do this step ahead of time and place massaged kale in the fridge for an hour or more to let the kale marinate).
  2. Add remaining ingredients to the massaged kale and toss to mix together.
  3. Store leftovers in an airtight container for up to 4 days.