When considering high protein diets, such as the popular Paleo or Primal Diets, a person might naturally choose poultry, fish or other lean meats as part of that diet. Often over-looked are high protein vegetarian foods.
Animal protein sources have the complete set of essential amino acids we need to produce protein. The body alone cannot produce all the amino acids we need. The fact that animals are the prime source of protein might seem problematic to vegetarians, but the truth is that there are plenty of high protein vegetarian foods available.
Learn about high protein vegetarian foods for weight loss and a vegan powder with amino acids, “Vegan Protein Powder for Weight Loss.”
High Protein Vegetarian Foods List
Eggs and Dairy Products
Whether or not you will eat eggs and dairy depends largely on the type of vegetarian diet that you follow. Semi-vegetarian and pescetarian diets allow for the consumption of eggs, as well as some animal or fish meats. Among pure vegetarians, lacto-ovo vegetarians eat eggs and dairy products, but no meat, poultry or fish. As for me, I follow a Pescetarian Paleo Diet: wild-caught fish, eggs, and nuts/seeds are my protein sources. I do not eat dairy.
Eggs are a good source of protein. The average egg has 6 grams of protein and 5 grams of unsaturated fat. Organic eggs are your best bet.
If you like yogurt, then Greek yogurt is a good choice. It is lower in sugar and has more good fats than most conventional yogurts.
The milk byproduct whey also has ample protein. Each scoop contains about 25 grams. Unflavored whey has no additives, and adding cocoa powder gives it a great taste.
Although I’ll never eat soy, fermented types of soy such as tempeh are a safer bet than the processed types. Tempeh is also high in protein with 30 grams per cup.
Tempeh is made from cooked and fermented soybeans and molded into a patty. It is similar to a veggie burger and can be prepared in quite a few ways.
A half a cup of the soy product tofu contains about 10 grams of protein. Tofu is versatile and can be added to stir fry, pasta sauces, soups and salads.
Nuts, Seeds, and Nut Butters
Pecans, cashews, almonds and walnuts are high protein vegetarian foods, as are sesame seeds and sunflower seeds. These are better suited as a snack because of their high fat and calorie content.
One ounce of cashews has 4.4 grams of protein, one ounce of sesame seeds has 6.5 grams of protein, 2 ounces of walnuts have 5 grams of protein, and 2 tablespoons of almonds have 4 grams of protein. Nut butters are also good sources of protein but be alert for additives and sugar when reading the label.
Living larger than ever,
My Bariatric Life