As it’s Veganuary this month I thought I would share a couple of my favourite plant-based protein sources. I’m not vegan, but I am consciously trying to reduce my carbon footprint on our planet by including more plant-based meals into my diet. And maybe you are reading this considering giving up meat, or you are vegan yourself and wondering how to get enough protein from eating a plant-based diet.
There is no denying protein is essential for a healthy body and mind, but in recent years there is a massive hype in the wellness space about protein, ultimately it comes down to a balanced and nutritious diet over all macronutrients.
It’s long been believed that in order to grow big and strong we need to include protein into our diets through animal products, and this does not need to be the case. Some of the worlds most record-breaking athletes, and sport personalities are vegan.
Here are a couple of my favourite sources of plant-based protein:
1. STEEL CUT OATS
I couldn’t start my list any other way, and absolutely staple in my cupboard. And a breakfast dish I will never get tired of, or at any meal for that matter. So versatile and easy to incorporate, either through smoothies, porridge, pancakes… Not only are they a great source of protein, but steel cuts oats have a lower glycemic index than rolled oats (Glycemic index refers to how much a food raises your blood sugar)
1/2 cup of oats (40g): roughly 6.75 grams of protein
2. EXPLORE CUISINE, MUNG BEAN PASTA
Ever since I was little, pasta has always been on the menu in our household and I’m all for it. And with a whopping 24g of protein, this brand of pasta is definitely worth a try, it definitely is not the cheapest on the market but I have often found it on sale at Tesco. Since removing Gluten from my diet, I struggled to find a pasta alternative I actually enjoyed the taste, and these hit the spot every time!
22.6g pero 100 gram serving
3. TOFU AND TEMPEH
Tofu a classic in every vegan restaurant I find now, and it’s incredible the things they can achieve with it. From fake “meat”, tofu scrambles, vegan cheese, the possibilities are literally endless when it comes to Tofu creations. I tend to avoid genetically modified soy and any nasty added ingredients, however if soy doesn’t sit that well with you another great alternative is Tempeh, made from fermented soybeans, making it a lot easier to digest.
Tofu: 8g per 100 gram serving
Tempeh: 19g per 100 gram serving
What I love about quinoa is how versatile it is, and super easy to incorporate into most of your weekly meals. I like to meal prep quinoa on rice on Sundays, to add to my salads for the week. Quinoa is high in protein, with all the essential amino acids, for this reason it’s an excellent protein source, with more protein than most grains.
1 cup = 8g
5. PEANUT BUTTER
No list in my books would be complete without Peanut Butter. Not only is it valued in my diet for its high protein content. But I simply can’t get enough of the flavour and it’s versatility. From classic PB and jam sandwiches, curries, cupcakes, to baked oats. PB on toast anyone? With two tablespoons packing over 8 grams of protein, it’s an easy way to incorporate protein into your meals.
25 grams per 100 gram serving
Whether you’ve vegan or thinking of going plant-based, there are so many great ways to incorporate more protein into your diet, without relying on the same four or five foods. Not included on the list, are other great alternatives such as, Chickpeas, lentils, legumes and beans that pack great sources of protein. However with my IBS y simply can’t stomach these.