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how to get protein as a vegetarian

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How to Get Protein as a Vegetarian


If you’ve recently switched to a vegetarian diet or are considering such a move, one of your biggest concerns might be “how will I get enough protein”? Despite popular belief, there are ample sources of protein for vegetarians— you just need to know where to find them. In this article, we’ll explore some excellent vegetarian protein sources and how you can incorporate them into your meals.

The Importance of Protein

Protein is a vital nutrient needed by the human body for growth and maintenance. Proteins are made up of amino acids which are the building blocks of our muscles, skin, enzymes, and hormones. When your diet lacks amino acids, your body’s repair, maintenance and growth processes may be hindered.

Getting Your Protein from Plant-Based Sources


Lentils are not just a vegetarian’s best friend but a fantastic source of protein too. Cooking one cup of lentils offers about 18 grams of protein. Lentils also pack numerous other nutrients such as fibre and iron. They are a great addition to soups, salads and stews.


Quinoa is known as a superfood for good reason. It’s one of the few foods that contain all nine essential amino acids, making it a complete protein. A one-cup serving of cooked quinoa provides approximately 8g of protein. Quinoa is versatile and can be used in salads, wraps or as a rice substitute.

Nuts and Seeds

Nuts and seeds such as almonds, peanuts, chia seeds, and flaxseeds are high-protein snacks that vegetarians can enjoy. Not only are they a rich source of protein but they are also packed with heart-healthy fats, fibre, and antioxidants. Incorporate them into oatmeal, salads or enjoy a handful as a snack.

Tempeh and Tofu

Both tempeh and tofu are soy-based products, known for their high protein content. They are great meat alternatives, with tofu containing about 15g and tempeh around 20g of protein per half-cup. Their versatile nature makes them a foundation for many vegetarian recipes including stir-fry, grilling, and baking.

Vegetables and Fruits

While fruits and vegetables may not be as high in protein as the other foods listed, they still contain a significant amount of protein in addition to other nutrients. For instance, a single medium artichoke or one cup of green peas each contain about 8 grams of protein.


Maintaining adequate protein intake as a vegetarian might require some adjustment, but it is both viable and delicious. By incorporating a variety of plant-based proteins into your diet, you can be assured that your body is receiving the necessary nutrients it needs to function optimally and that your vegetarian lifestyle is healthy and balanced.