7 Best Vegetarian Protein Sources

7 Best Vegetarian Protein Sources

It seems like both vegetarian and vegan diets are not a temporary trend. On the contrary, there are more and more people who decide to give up eating meat or any animal products. The reasons vary: they realize the environmental impact of animal agriculture, they don’t want to live with the thought of hurting even a single animal, or they simply notice that it’s not healthy for them. Whatever their reason to switch, many of them find themselves in a pickle: how will they provide their organisms with everything they need? What about protein? They can only be found in meat, right? Well, no. There are many products and meals for vegetarians and vegans that can replace animal protein, and here are some ideas for you:

 

1. Quinoa

Quinoa is not only a rich source of protein, but it’s also a fantastic addition to every meal. It tastes a little bit like couscous, but it’s crunchier and has a slight taste of nuts. It doesn’t grow from grasses like other grains, though; it’s another advantage, as quinoa is considered as pseudocereal and is naturally free of gluten. One cup of cooked quinoa will provide you with approximately 8 grams of protein, but that’s not all; it’s also a rich source of magnesium, iron, fiber, and zinc. There are many extravagant, rich and tasty recipes, but if you’re feeling lazy, it’s enough to have some quinoa with vegetables and spices to eat a nutritious and delicious meal. Oh, and if you want to ask for it, it’s “keen-wah.”

 

2. Tofu, Tempeh, Edamame

These three products all come from soybeans, which are a whole source of protein (it means that it gives you everything you need when it comes to amino acids).

Tofu doesn’t taste of anything, which is a huge advantage, as it will absorb all the spices and flavors you choose to add to it. It’s made from soybean curds, much like cheese, in the process of pressing them together. You can add it to anything that comes to your mind: pasta, smoothie, puddings, baking, salads, sandwiches, and many, many more.

Tempeh, on the other hand, has a slightly nutty taste, but, as long as you like the combination, it can also be used in basically anything. It’s made by cooking and fermenting soybeans, which are later pressed into a patty.

Edamame are immature soybeans, they taste a little bit sweet and are best when added to soups and salads, or on their own.

Apart from being a rich source of protein, tofu, tempeh, and edamame contain a lot of iron and calcium. Edamame will also provide you with folate, vitamin K and fiber, while tempeh is an excellent source of probiotics, vitamin B, and other minerals, like magnesium.

 

3. Beans

Beans will provide you with proteins and both soluble and insoluble types of fiber. They he