One of the most common misconceptions when someone considers or chooses a vegetarian or vegan lifestyle is ‘where will you get your protein from?’. Believe it or not, vegetables are a great source of protein! With this post, I want to help take the guess work out of that for you. Like anything new, you want to have an idea or plan – and instead of looking at things you can eliminate or ‘take out’, let’s look at things you can add to ensure the protein levels that your body requires, are met.
Believe it or not, vegetables can be part of a protein fuelled dish on their own—and not just when they’re paired with a medium-rare steak or rotisserie chicken.
Whatever your reason, relying less on animal products can be a great first step in upping your intake of nutrient-rich whole foods and crowding out overly processed crap. Now, although we’re focussing on the fact that vegetables are a great source of protein, they are also a great source of a lot of things – including feeling great!
1. Organic Edamame (without any sauces are a better choice) Organic is important as well, because otherwise they can be a GMO villain, and we don’t want that. Aside from that? you can expect 18 grams in a one cup serving – perfect on their own, or add them to a salad!
2. Spinach – A delicious green and compliments a ton of dishes when it’s cooked, or toss of a spinach salad. Half a cup of cooked spinach will yield you 3 grams of protein – and in fact, when cooked, it actually increases it’s protein numbers.
3. Avocado – Now, this delicious piece of heaven even goes well on toast! Half an avocado will give you 2.5 grams of protein, great on its own as a snack, or mix it up with some guacamole (you’d love Ki’s Kitchen’s recipe) or slice it on top of a salad, always a great choice.
4. Broccoli – Not only an awesome source of fibre, its protein content is surprising, too. And you can’t go wrong with a vegetable that’s been proven to deliver cancer-fighting compounds like sulforaphane. In half a cup of broccoli, you can expect approximately 2 grams of protein.
5. Brussel Sprouts – Boiled or roasted these veggies, add some seasoning and voila! 2 grams of protein in a half a cup serving – In addition to protein, brussel sprouts pack hefty doses of potassium and vitamin K.
6. Lentils – From string beans to chickpeas, beans are an excellent source of plant-based protein. When it comes to legumes, lentils are among the winners. They contain about 18 grams of protein per cup when cooked. Lentils are also a great source of dietary fibre and contain a high amount of the micronutrients folate, thiamin, phosphorus, and iron.
7. Peas – They contain just under 9 grams of protein per cup. They’re also a good source of vitamin A, C, thiamin, phosphorous, and iron. And, the generous amounts of B vitamins and folate found in peas can help reduce your risk for heart disease.
8. Kale – Truly one of the best greens and vegetable choices out there, kale is the definition of a super food. Make it into a salad, add it to soup or blend a handful into a green smoothie. In one cup of kale, you can expect around 2.5 grams of protein.
9. Cauliflower – One of the most versatile veggies out there – at Ki’s Kitchen we often substitute it for rice, or make delicious buffalo cauliflower bites. In one cup of this gem, you can expect 3 grams of protein.
10. Mushrooms (oyster) – Not only delicious, but in one cup you can expect up to 5 grams of protein! In addition, mushrooms are rich in Thiamin, Vitamin B6, Folate, Magnesium, Zinc and Manganese, and a very good source of Dietary Fibre.
Did you know that vegetables are a great source of protein?
What are some of your favourites?
Any preference in raw or cooked veggies?
Thank you so much for reading! I hope you have found some valuable information, if so, I’d love to hear about it! Please feel free to share this post with anyone who might benefit, and comments are always welcomed and appreciated.
I look forward to connecting with you next time!
From my kitchen to yours,