source of protein for vegans
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Finding the right source of protein for vegans is one of the common concerns people face while following a vegan or vegetarian diet.

We all know that amino acids are the building blocks of proteins. While your body can make some of them, we have 9 essential amino acids that have to be obtained through your diet.

The reason animal products like beef, fish, dairy, and eggs are considered complete proteins is that they contain enough of every one of these essential amino acids.

Many protein sources from plants are too low or missing one or more of these essential amino acids. Hence they are considered incomplete protein sources.

For vegans, it is very difficult to obtain all the essential amino acids from a single type of plant. Hence you need to incorporate a variety of high protein and healthy fat food sources to get all the required nutrients.

Here is the list of 10 nearly complete protein sources for vegetarians and vegans that are suitable for ketogenic diet.

Firm Tofu

FIRM TOFU

Protein
per cup

Protein
per 100g

Protein per 200 Calories

43.5g

17.3g

24g

More Tofu High in Protein

  • 20g per cup of medium soft tofu
  • 18g per cup of soft tofu
  • 34g per cup of tempeh (fermented tofu)

Note: The amount of protein in tofu can range between 4.8g to 17.3g per 100 gram serving (or a little less than 1/2 cup).

Lentils

lentils

Protein 
per cup

Protein 
per 100g

Protein per  200 Calories

17.9g

9g

15.6g

More Beans High in Protein

  • 17.4g per cup of large white beans
  • 16.3g per cup of split peas
  • 15.4g per cup of pinto beans
  • 15.2g per cup of black beans
  • 15g per cup of navy beans
  • 14.7g per cup of large lima beans
  • 14.5g per cup of chickpeas (garbanzo beans)
Unsweetened Soymilk

Unsweetened Soymilk

Protein 
per 16oz Glass

Protein 
per 100g

Protein per  200 Calories

14g

2.9g

17.5g

Green Peas

Green Peas

Protein 
per cup Cooked

Protein 
per 100g

Protein per  200 Calories

8.6g

5.4g

12.8g

Squash and Pumpkin Seeds

Squash and Pumpkin Seeds

Protein 
per 1oz Handful

Protein 
per 100g

Protein per  200 Calories

8.5g

29.8g

10.4g

Other Nuts and Seeds High in Protein

  • 6.9g per 1 oz handful of peanuts
  • 6g per 1 oz handful of almonds
  • 6g per 1 oz handful of pistachios
  • 5.5g per oz of sunflower seeds
  • 5.2g per oz of flax seeds
  • 4.7g per oz (~2 tbsp) of chia seeds
  • 4.3g per oz of cashews
Quinoa

Quinoa

Protein 
per cup

Protein 
per 100g

Protein per  200 Calories

8.1g

4.4g

7.3g

Other Whole Grains High in Protein

  • 9.8g per cup of kamut
  • 9.8g per cup of teff
  • 7g per cup of whole wheat pasta
  • 5.9g per cup of oatmeal
  • 4.4g per cup of grits
Peanut Butter

Peanut Butter

Protein 
2 Tbsp

Protein 
per 100g

Protein per  200 Calories

7.7g

24.1g

8.2g

Spinach

Spinach

Protein 
per cup Cooked

Protein 
per 100g

Protein per  200 Calories

5.3g

3g

25.8g

More Dark Leafy Greens High in Protein

  • 5g per cup of cooked collard greens
  • 3.5g per cup of cooked mustard         greens
  • 3.5g per cup of cooked Swiss chard
  • 2.5g per cup of cooked kale

Note: Cooking reduces the water content of the greens, allowing you to eat more greens and protein per cup.

Sweet Corn

Sweet Corn

Protein 
per cup Cooked

Protein 
per 100g

Protein per  200 Calories

4.7g

3.3g

7.6g

Mushrooms

Mushrooms

Protein 
per cup Cooked

Protein 
per 100g

Protein per  200 Calories

3.9g

3.6g

27.5g

More Mushrooms High in Protein

  • 4g per cup of cooked portobello
  • 3.5g per cup of cooked shiitake
  • 3g per cup of oyster mushrooms
  • 2g per cup of morels
  • 2g per cup of cremini
  • 1.5g per cup of enokis

Note: Cooking reduces the water content of mushrooms, allowing you to eat more mushrooms and more protein per cup.


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