The most common concern for people adopting a plant-based diet is that they might lack sufficient protein. However, many people don’t know that there are many plant-based sources to consume the daily recommended protein intake. But there’s a catch here. Not all plant-based proteins are complete proteins. The term complete protein refers to amino acids which are the building blocks of proteins. Where animal products like fish, beef, dairy, and eggs contain enough of all the essential amino acids, plant protein sources are too low or miss some of the essential amino acids. However, you can still manage to get each amino acid by eating a varied plant-based diet.
Here are nine such plant-based sources of protein for vegans and vegetarians:
Tempeh, Tofu, And Edamame
Tempeh, tofu, and edamame come from soybeans. Soybeans are a great source of whole protein which means they provide all the essential amino acids to the body.
Edamame has a slight grassy taste; hence you need to boil or steam it before consuming it. You can eat edamame on their own, or you can add them to salads and soups. On the other hand, tofu doesn’t have much of its taste, and it acquires flavors of whatever you season/marinate with it. You can eat scrambled tofu, or you can add it to your salad. In contrast, tempeh has a nutty flavor, and you can use it in burgers, chilis, or soups.
A cup of cooked lentils has 18 grams of protein. You can use lentils in a variety of dishes like soups or fresh salads. Apart from this, lentils also contain a great amount of slowly digested carbs. A single cup of cooked lentils provides you with 50% of your recommended daily intake of fibers. Also, lentils contain a good amount of iron, magnesium, folate, antioxidants, and other health-promoting compounds.
Chickpeas And Other Varieties of Beans
Black, pinto, kidney beans, and most other beans have a high amount of protein per serving. Chickpeas are another legume with high protein content. One cooked cup of beans and chickpeas contains around 15 grams of protein. In addition to this, they are a powerhouse of complex carbs, phosphorus, folate, iron, potassium, fiber, manganese, and several beneficial plant compounds. You can enjoy beans in a cooked bowl of delicious chili or enjoy extra immunity benefits by sprinkling a dash of turmeric on roasted chickpeas.
Soy milk comes from soybeans and contains minerals and vitamins that are a great alternative to cow’s milk. Soy milk provides 7 grams of protein per cup and vitamin D, calcium, and Vitamin B-12 with that. However, to ensure that you’re getting Vitamin B12, always pick a fortified variety as the natural variety doesn’t have Vitamin B-12. Just Vegan Today