Top 15 Sources of Veggie Protein
You can get protein from sources other than meat you know! So many natural foods contain plentiful vegetable protein: here’s the top 15:
- Spirulina : 65g of protein per 100g
Spirulina is one of the best sources of protein you can hope to get your hands on. Spirulina is a form of algae and provides twice the amount of protein as soya, as well as containing an exceptional range of animo acids. Amino acids are the building blocks of proteins and make up a large proportion of our cells, muscles and tissues. Spirulina is also used as a meat substitute in developing countries.
- Soya : 36g of protein per 100g
Gram for gram, soya provides more protein and more fibre than beef. What’s more, it’s an excellent source of essential fatty acids which help fight cholesterol.
- Hemp seeds: 26g of protein per 100g
As well as being rich in Omega 3 and vitamins A, D and E, hemp seeds are a formidable source of vegetable protein. The main vegetable protein in hemp is called edestin, which has been found to aid digestion and protein absorption.
- Pumpkin seeds : 25g of protein per 100g
100 g of pumpkin seeds provide 30 g or 54% of recommended daily allowance of protein. They’re especially rich in vitamin A B1 and B2 as well as minerals like iron, zinc, copper, potassium and calcium.
- Peanut Butter: 25g protein per 100g Despite its bad rep for being high in fat and high in calories, peanut butter is rich in zinc, phosphorous, vitamin B3 and of course protein. It’s important to buy the most natural peanut butter you can. The natural, organic brands will have a higher percentage of peanuts and will therefore contain more of the good stuff and less of the added nasties.
- Aduki beans : 25g of protein per 100g
The azuki or aduki bean is a small red mung bean most well known for its high protein content. Its often placed in the same bracket as lentils and chickpeas, and likewise can be made into a puree like humus. They’re also extremely low in fat, containing only negligible traces.
- Fenugreek : 23g of protein per 100g
Often used as an addition to spice dishes both nutritionally and flavour wise, fenugreek seeds, sprouts and grains are extremely rich in protein and in fibre. Thus, they can aid digestion and help regulate appetite, as well providing lots of calcium: 100g provides 40% of your recommended daily allowance!
- Tempeh : 20g of protein per 100g
‘Tempeh’ is of Indonesian origins and looks a little like cheese, or other similar soya based meat substitute products. It’s made from fermented soya protein and seeds. Tofu comes from a very similar soya base too, but offers a little less protein; coming in at 11.5g of protein per 100g.
- Walnuts : 20g of protein per 100g
Just like hazelnuts, almonds or pistachios, walnuts are a great source of veggie protein. What’s more they contain high levels of plant sterols which help to regulate and lower bad cholesterol. It’s important to remember however, that nuts aren’t a complete source of veggie protein and so its best to eat them in conjunction with other things on this list.
- Chickpeas : 19g of protein per 100g
Chickpeas win hands down at being the most protein rich of all the legumes, and a veggies best friend! They’re abundant in cholesterol lowering fibre, and so are linked to the reduction of heart disease and other cardiovascular diseases. And if that wasn’t enough to convince you, they’re also an exceptional source of zinc and magnesium, which both help boost your immune system.
- Chia seeds : 17g of protein per 100g
These little nutritional powerhouses originate from central America, and were the grains of choice for the Aztecs. They’re particularly abundant in antioxidants, fibre, potassium and omega 3, but are especially well known for their protein content. Recent studies have shown that consuming chia seeds enhanced exercise performance, in the same way that a sports drink can, but minus the sugar.
- Spelt : 15g of protein per 100g
Spelt is a cereal which you can just use like corn, wheat or rice, but which contains much more protein. It also offers lots of iron and copper, which are essential for the production of red blood cells and can reduce anaemia.
- Quinoa : 14g of protein per 100g
Our very own little supergrain is not only packed with vegetable protein, but also essential amino acids, fibres, minerals and fibre…all of this without gluten.
- Buckwheat : 13g of protein per 100g
This crunchy, earthy cereal doesn’t skimp on the protein and is also totally gluten free, making it the perfect health food. Especially as it’s also a source of manganese, magnesium and copper…great for the immune system.
- Oats : 13g of protein per 100g
Rich in fibre, magnesium, iron and zinc, as well as providing a satiating protein hit, oats are also known for their slimming and anti-cholesterol properties.