As a meat eater it’s easy to find various forms of protein in the supermarket. But where do you begin to find protein when you are a vegetarian, and I don’t mean the body builder type protein either.
I will say the options are limited, but this is where the cooking creativity comes into play. The proteins available are plant based or soy based proteins. You want to balance these out because some people say eating too much soy protein can become unhealthy. I’m not 100% sure about that, but you ca find studies online about eating too much soy protein.
Here are a few protein options for vegetarians, based on a 1 cup serving:
- Legumes – ~ 7.9 grams
- Quinoa – ~ 8 grams
- Nuts & Nut Butter (raw or roasted) ~5-6 grams per ounce
- Beans – ~ 13 grams
- Chickpeas/Garbanzo Beans ~14 grams
- Tempeh or Tofu ~ 30-40 grams
- Edamame (boiled) ~ 20 grams
- Leafy Greens ~ 2 – 8 grams depending on type
- Hemp ~ 10 grams per 3 tablespoons
- Chia sees ~ 7.4 grams per 2 tablespoons
- Sesame, sunflower & poppy seeds ~ 5.4 – 7.3 grams per quarter cup
- Seitan – 36 grams per 1/2 cup
- Soy Milk – 4 grams per cup
- Almond, Rice, and Hemp Milk – 1 gram per cup
- Unsweetened Cocoa Powder – 1 gram per tablespoon
Now keep in mind, these are estimated grams of protein, but you can see with a combination of fruits, vegetables and non-dairy items you can really stack up the protein levels and not have to worry about a protein deficiency in your vegetarian diet.