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Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Vegetarian & Vegan Protein Sources

Protein Sources: Eggs

One large egg (about 50 grams) provides 6 grams of protein. Eggs are versatile and can be prepared in a variety of ways. A veggie omelet will boost up the nutrition level and can provide you with an additional tasty source of protein. Consider a mushroom and spinach omelet for an extra boost of colorful flavor and protein.

Protein Sources: Dairy

One cup (8 ounces) of plain low fat yogurt provides you with approximately 13 grams of protein. Don't forget, the dairy in yogurt is a great source for calcium - about 45% calcium.
Cottage Cheese
One cup (8 ounces) of plain low fat cottage cheese provides you with approximately 27 grams of protein. Add a variety of seeds for an additional punch of protein.
One cup (8 ounces) of whole milk has about 8 grams of protein.

Protein Sources: Fish

Three ounces of Atlantic Salmon has approximately 19 grams of protein.
100 grams of bay and sea scallops will provide you with approximately with 23 grams of protein.

Protein Sources: Legumes, Hummus and Sprouts

Legumes include a variety of beans as well as peas. Beans are an excellent source of fiber, B vitamins, iron and calcium. Legumes that are a great protein source include:
  • peas
  • lentils
  • kidney beans
  • garbanzo beans
  • soy beans
  • navy beans
  • black beans
  • chickpeas
Hummus is a paste made from chickpeas. One cup of homemade humus contains 12 g of protein.
Sprouts are grown from legumes and are a decent source of protein.
  • Alfalfa sprouts: 1 cup has 1 gram of protein.
  • Mung sprouts: 1 cup has 2 grams of protein.
  • Lentil sprouts: 1 cup has 7 grams of protein.
  • Kidney sprouts: 1 cup has 8 grams of protein.

Protein Source: Soy and Edamame

One cup of dry roasted soy nuts has 68 grams of protein.
One cup of soybean, curd cheese has 28 grams of protein.


A 3.5 ounce serving of edamame provides 11 grams of protein.

Protein Source: Tofu

Tofu is made with bean curd and soy. Tofu is versatile and can be prepared in a variety of ways.
  • 3 ounces of tofu contains 9 grams of protein.

Protein Source: Vegetables

Dried Tomatoes
A 1/4 cup serving of sun-dried tomatoes provides 2 grams protein.
A 1/2 cup of cooked mushrooms has 2 grams protein.
A 1/2 cup of cooked spinach contains 3 grams of protein.
A 1/2 cup of broccoli provides you with 2 grams of protein.
Brussels Sprouts
A 1/2 cup of brussels sprouts provides you with 2 grams of protein.
A 1/2 cup of sweet yellow corn will give you 3 grams of protein.
A medium artichoke contains 4 grams of protein.

Protein Source: Nuts, Spreads and Seeds

Protein: Nuts and Seeds

Nuts and seeds are an amazing source of protein. They are great as a snack or as a salad topper. You can even add them to your oatmeal, granola or smoothies. Although nuts and seeds can be high in fat they are not usually the dangerous heart clogging animal fats found in beef.

Butters and Spreads
  • 2 Tablespoons of peanut butter provides you with 8 grams of protein.
  • 2 Tablespoons of Nutella® contains 3 grams of protein.

Measurements and protein grams for nuts and seeds

Food Item
Protein Grams
Flax seeds
1 Tablespoon
4 grams
Hemp seeds
1 Tablespoon
6 grams
Pumpkin seeds
1 oz.
3 grams
Sunflower seeds
1 oz.
3 grams
1 oz.
3 grams
1 oz.
2 grams
1 oz.
3 grams
Pine Nuts
1 oz.
2 grams
1 oz.
3 grams
1 oz.
3 grams

Another List: Shows the amount of protein in various vegan foods and also the number of grams of protein per 100 calories. To meet protein recommendations, the typical adult male vegan needs only 2.5 to 2.9 grams of protein per 100 calories and the typical adult female vegan needs only 2.1 to 2.4 grams of protein per 100 calories. These recommendations can be easily met from vegan sources.
Tempeh1 cup419.3
Seitan3 ounces3122.1
Soybeans, cooked1 cup299.6
Lentils, cooked1 cup187.8
Black beans, cooked1 cup156.7
Kidney beans, cooked1 cup136.4
Veggie burger1 patty1313.0
Chickpeas, cooked1 cup124.2
Veggie baked beans1 cup125.0
Pinto beans, cooked1 cup125.7
Black-eyed peas, cooked1 cup116.2
Tofu, firm4 ounces1111.7
Lima beans, cooked1 cup105.7
Quinoa, cooked1 cup93.5
Tofu, regular4 ounces910.6
Bagel1 med.
(3 oz)
Peas, cooked1 cup96.4
Textured Vegetable Protein (TVP), cooked1/2 cup88.4
Peanut butter2 Tbsp84.3
Veggie dog1 link813.3
Spaghetti, cooked1 cup83.7
Almonds1/4 cup83.7
Soy milk, commercial, plain1 cup77.0
Soy yogurt, plain6 ounces64.0
Bulgur, cooked1 cup63.7
Sunflower seeds1/4 cup63.3
Whole wheat bread2 slices53.9
Cashews1/4 cup52.7
Almond butter2 Tbsp52.4
Brown rice, cooked1 cup52.1
Spinach, cooked1 cup513.0
Broccoli, cooked1 cup46.8
Potato1 med.
(6 oz)
Sources: USDA Nutrient Database for Standard Reference, Release 18, 2005 and manufacturers' information.
The recommendation for protein for adult males vegans is around 56-70 grams per day; for adult female vegans it is around 46-58 grams per day (see text).

Meal Choices

The beauty of the foods listed above is that they can be combined and used in multiple protein rich recipes. Soups, salads, sandwiches and wraps can become wonderful sources of protein. Get creative, stay healthy & enjoy!  :) 

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