The Best Protein Sources for a Plant-based Diet

Shivani K ·
The Best Protein Sources for a Plant-based Diet

Best Plant-based Diet Sources for High Protein

How do you like your food? Vegetarian or non-vegetarian were the only two questions we had to answer. Now all kinds of labels have burst into the scene - gluten-free, no-carb, keto, paleo, vegan and the list goes on. We can find more options in the grocery aisle than ever. Although each of these diets lacks in some or the other major food groups and don’t make up for a balanced diet. A vegan diet has repeatedly proven to be the healthiest diet of all.

There is a common misbelief that a vegan diet is protein deficient. But against traditional belief, there is a myriad of non-meat and plant-based protein options that match up to the same protein from animal sources. Regardless of all the rumours about lesser protein in plants. A plant-based diet helps to lower the risk of heart disease, obesity, cholesterol and several other health benefits. Now let’s get to the bottom of the best protein foods for vegans.

Why is Protein a Must for Every Meal?

Protein makes up the major component of a balanced diet and the source it comes from does not make a difference in the quality of protein. You can read about the differences in animal vs plant protein here. There is a mountain of products in the market that promise to give you your daily protein fix. But what is it all about, anyway? Why do I need to give so much emphasis to this?

Protein is the building block found in every cell. A long chain of amino acids together makes up a protein. The goal is to incorporate all the amino acids, especially the essential amino acid group, through food and supplements. The sequence of these amino acids respectively results in repairing cells, immunity, transporting molecules, healthy growth and development. It’s time to look at some vegan protein food list.


Best Plant-based High Protein Food Items to Include in your Diet

Over the past few years, there’s been a huge resurgence of vegan and vegetarian lifestyles and more and more people have questions about getting enough protein. For those following a full-time vegan routine, it is important to keep a check on the protein you are taking, since chicken and meat sources are not a part of your daily diet. Plant-based diets do have considerable protein, but you can only gain all the amino acids sequences by adding complementary foods that complete the protein chain. A high vegan protein diet would include one cup of tofu, beans and pulses, a handful of nuts and seeds, 2-3 spoons of nut butter, 5 portions of fruits and vegetables every day.

Soya Products

Soya derivatives like tofu, tempeh, edamame and even soya milk are the first options you need to be looking at for extracting protein from a vegan diet. Our nutritionist recommends having at least 2 servings of soy every day. You can add soy milk to your cereal, make Indian curries out of tofu, stir-fry tempeh for delicious snack recipes or make salads out of steamed edamame beans. Soy foods are naturally cholesterol-free and low in saturated fat. They are popular for their benefits in maintaining blood pressure and heart health.


Another go-to superfood for beefing up is lentils! Red, brown, green, yellow, black - they come in a variety of colours and are so quick to prepare. 100 g of lentils provides an average of 9g of protein, along with protein, they are also rich sources of several minerals and fibre. Like other legumes, they lack certain amino acids, so pairing them with wheat or rice can undock missing amino acid patterns.


We have seen enough benefits of oats for their contribution to healthy fibre and energising carbohydrates. Amazingly, oats can be a great substitute for getting your daily protein intake. One cup of cooked oatmeal contains 5.9 g of protein. One chief property that makes it an excellent substitute is that it contains all the 9 amino acids, making it a complete protein.

Green Peas

These protein-rich, versatile and delicious ingredient is totally worth considering in your protein food list. They don’t require much preparation and can be added to any of your dishes, be it soup or a main course; they go with everything. Peas need to be added with other plant-based protein foods to give you the entire set of amino acids. The good news is that you don’t have to get all your amino acid sequences in one sitting. Having oats for breakfast and then having peas for your lunch would do the trick, too.


You can find this ancient grain in white, red, black or mixed varieties. Even though we typically think of them as carbohydrate sources, they can sneak protein into your diet. This pseudo-grain has a high concentration of protein compared to any other. One cup of cooked quinoa provides 8 g of protein. It is also the least allergenic of grains. It is nutritionally dense, gluten-free and possesses gut-friendly bacteria.

Peanut Butter

Peanut butter is one of the mouth-watering foods that is often praised for its high protein content. You can slather it on veggies, slap it on bread slices and have it or just straight up lick it from the spoon. There is no question it tastes delicious! One serving of peanut butter provides 7 g of protein along with an abundance of healthy fats and carbohydrates.

Hemp Seeds

With 20 amino acids, 9 essential amino acids and 2 semi-essential, hemp makes up a complete protein. One of the food with multiple benefits, from detoxification to increased energy, this superfood is hugely untapped and underrated. They have the highest amount of edestin protein compared to every food. Edestin is a digestible protein that aids in the optimal absorption of vitamins and minerals in the body.

Isn’t it amazing how there are so many options for plant-based proteins? There is no worry about how much protein you are getting any more, with these foods added to your diet chart. These plant bases provide apple protein with no cholesterol or saturated fats.

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