The 3 Best Proteins for Vegan
Whether you’ve been a vegan for years, or you’re just beginning your new vegan lifestyle, it can be difficult to know what varieties of food to put on your plate every day.
It’s important to cover all of your daily essential dietary needs, but finding foods with vital nutrients, such as protein, isn’t as easy as grilling up a chicken breast. How can a person on a vegan diet have access to efficient protein through plant-based foods? The good news is, it’s actually much easier than you may think to find your daily sources of protein within a vegan diet. Forego the expensive powders and supplements, and rely on protein-rich foods that are easy to access (and much cheaper).
One of the easiest vegetables to access (and cook), Spinach has always been one of my favorite foods and it is also an excellent source of protein. Okay, so you won’t turn into Popeye The Sailor Man when you eat spinach, but the leafy green veggie serves up a powerful dose of protein, iron, Vitamin A and Vitamin C. A cup of spinach is roughly five grams of protein, so you can count on this side dish to keep you full during the day.
While almonds probably wouldn’t make the best meal, it’s important to contribute to your daily protein intake with snacks, too! One cup of almonds has about thirty grams of protein, and almonds also happen to be a good source for healthy fats. Eating an entire cup of almonds is a little excessive, but munching on a small handful of almonds is a smart way to give yourself energy to power through that workout or even that long, afternoon meeting.
Quinoa has taken the food world by storm, and it’s really quite difficult to walk through a grocery store without seeing it on a shelf – for good reason, too! Many believe quinoa is a grain, but it’s actually a seed. One cup of cooked quinoa has about eight grams of protein, and it makes a great substitute for where you may use rice. Quinoa is so versatile, and it can do much more than sit as a side dish on your dinner plate. The seed makes a great filler in vegan burgers and meatballs, acting as a tasty glue to hold other ingredients together.
While there are many other vegan sources of protein (really, we could go on and on), there are plenty of simple options that you may have overlooked. Everyday vegetables, seeds and nuts are easy ways to cover all your protein needs without over-doing it; but, if you’re looking for additional protein, there are options to add to your prepared meals. Hemp seeds are available to sprinkle over meals, and they go great on smoothies. Pumpkin seeds are also a great protein-rich food to add to a meal. Try it an oatmeal topping. Chia seeds, which are growing in popularity, are perfect for sprinkling over meals to give that extra punch of protein. Remember, protein is plentiful and easier than you may think to find within a vegan diet, so don’t go overboard!