Protein is a necessary part of everyone’s diet but we often get into a rut of eating the same lean meats over and over again. That’s all well and good but there are actually a lot of other protein sources that you can mix into your diet to both keep you interested and also to introduce other nutrients into the diet as well. How much protein each person needs will vary based on your body type and activity level but is generally about 15-20% of your total calories. Here are some good source of protein options that don’t come from meat.
Black beans are a very good source of protein, and they even become a more complete source of protein when you add something like cheese or avocado. The fiber in beans also makes them a very filling choice so you stay full until your next meal.
Green peas are a surprising source of protein that is easy to incorporate into the diet. If you don’t like them on their own you can always get creative with them in dishes like a guacamole fusion dish.
If you’re a fan of drinking smoothies than grinding some chia seeds up into them just be an easy protein boost. They also have the potential to boost your energy levels so they are a great addition to the morning meals. Chia seeds also work really well on oatmeal and in yogurt.
Cottage cheese might not sound too exciting on its own but it is easy to work into some simple recipes or mix with some chopped fruit. It is a high protein choice that is generally quite low in fat.
Not all yogurt is created equal. Greek yogurt actually has twice as much protein as regular yogurt because it has had the whey drained out of it and it is in a more concentrated form. The thick and creamy texture actually makes it a good choice for substitutions in recipes. Use Greek yogurt anywhere you would normally use sour cream like on a potato. It’s both healthy and delicious.
Whether you opt for peanut butter or almond butter that delicious creamy spread is going to give you a great punch of protein. Nut butters are high in fat but it is healthy and filling for you in reasonable serving sizes. Mix them into your smoothies, eat on an apple, or make a little sandwich for any meal. Just be sure to either grind your own or to get a natural kind that doesn’t have added sugars or preservatives in it. Without preservatives the butter will settle and a layer of oil will appear on the top but that’s a good sign. Simply pour it off or mix it back in.
Quinoa is a great alternative to oatmeal for breakfast if you want to switch things up or as a filling side dish for your dinner. It is a great protein source for a grain item.