10 Sources of Plant-Based Protein for Vegans and Vegetarians

The Importance of Protein for Vegans and Vegetarians

Hi plant-based friends (or aspiring plant-based friends)!

I was a vegetarian for four years but I wasn’t doing things right. I ate lots of carbs and didn’t diligently ensure I was getting enough protein. Let’s not forget, I was a student in University, drinking on the weekends, sleeping sometimes four hours a night, and walking into exams like a zombie on several occasions. I wasn’t exactly the poster model for “healthy living”.

In my current state of adulthood I feel I’ve gotten a handle on logging in sleep, cooking wholesome meals, and regularly taking my body to the gym or the occasional yoga class. With these changes in place, I’ve made the decision to experiment with a plant-based diet once again. I did some research on the protein content in popular plant-based sources. I hope this list helps you as much as I hope it helps me!

1. Straight-Up Veggies

The dreaded question from carnivores: “but how do you get protein?” Crazy fact: vegetables actually contain protein! Some vegetables contain a lot of protein. These are the top of the chart, protein-dense veggies.

Edamame
Protein: 18 g per 1-cup serving (cooked)

Peas
Protein: 9 g per 1-cup serving (boiled)

Spinach
Protein: 6 g per 1-cup serving (cooked)

Organic corn
Protein: 5 g per 1-cup serving

Potatoes
Protein: 4 g in 1 medium white potato

Avocado
Protein: 4 g per 1 avocado

Broccoli
Protein: 4 g per 1-cup serving (cooked)

Brussel sprouts
Protein: 4 g per 1-cup serving

Protein for Vegans and Vegetarians

2. Quinoa

Protein: 9 g per 1-cup serving

Protein for Vegans and Vegetarians

3. Farro

Protein: 14 g per 1/2-cup serving

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4. Nut butters

Peanut butter

Protein: 25 g per 100 g serving

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Almond butter

Protein: 21 g per 100 g serving

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5. Soy

Protein: 21 g per 1-cup serving (firm)

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6. Tempeh

Protein: 16 g per 3 oz serving

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7. Buckwheat

Protein: 6 g per 1-cup serving (cooked)

Protein for Vegans and Vegetarians

8. Lentils

Protein: 18 g per 1-cup serving

Protein for Vegans and Vegetarians

9. Beans

Black beans

Protein: 7.6 g per ½-cup serving (cooked)

Lima beans

Protein: 7.3 g per ½-cup serving (cooked)

Chickpeas

Protein: 6 g per ½-cup serving

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10. Nuts & seeds

Almonds

Protein: 6 g per ¼-cup serving

Protein for Vegans and Vegetarians

Cashews

Protein: 5 g per ¼-cup serving

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Pumpkin seeds

Protein: 5 g per ¼-cup serving

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Hemp seeds

Protein: 31 g per 100 g serving

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Chia seeds

Protein: 6 g per 2 Tbsp

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Demand Better Food with Conscious Eating Choices

After experimenting with several of these proteins I’ve realized that with a little effort, it’s not hard to reach your daily requirement of protein from plant-based sources. Soy products can really help up your intake. Not to mention, magnesium, iron, and zinc. If you plan out your diet, reaching daily requirements are attainable.

As more consumers become conscious of their eating choices, the demand goes up for vegan options and local foods. As a result, I’ve seen supply go up to meet this demand. Mainstream brands are opting for organic options and the vegan section at my local grocery store is expanding. Luckily, the options for vegan and vegetarian restaurants are also sprouting up in the city.

The restaurant voted Best New Spot in Toronto this 2017 was a vegan place called Planta. The world is changing! We can do our part by demanding better food from better places and being conscious of our buying power and what we put in our bodies. The world and our health will thank us.