One of the biggest worries of many who embark on a vegetarian lifestyle is protein. Where to get protein, whether a plant-based protein is the same as animal-based protein, whether vegetarianism will leave you deficient in protein, and many other protein-centered questions usually float around the minds of new or soon-to-be vegetarians. If you’re worried about your protein intake as a vegetarian, fear not! There are many high protein vegetarian meals out there, and we’ve compiled a list of 6 of the best ones.
6 of the Best High Protein Vegan Meals You’ll Ever Find
1. Quinoa Broccoli Bowl
Commonly renowned as a superfood, quinoa is not only high in fiber and vitamins, but also in protein. A cup of quinoa has about 8 grams of protein. Broccoli, though not extremely high in protein, is also a widely used protein source for many vegetarians. Combining both quinoa and broccoli into a yummy, protein-packed bowl provides 11 grams of protein.
Take a cup of cooked quinoa and sautée it with diced red onions in olive oil, making sure to add salt to taste. Put the quinoa in a bowl and top with steamed broccoli. Add your favorite sauce and any other vegetarian toppings you would like for an easy, protein-rich lunch bowl.
2. Saucy Moroccan-Spiced Lentils
One cup of lentils alone has an impressive 18 grams of protein. Adding lentils as a side to any dish is a great way to incorporate more protein into your vegetarian diet. One of the tastiest lentil-based recipes is Saucy Moroccan-Spiced Lentils.
Take one cup of green lentils, rinsed, and boil them in two cups of water. You can also use one cup of rinsed, well-drained canned green lentils. While the lentils are boiling, blend 3 cloves of peeled garlic, half of a medium onion, one large bell pepper, 2 tablespoons of tomato paste, 1 and a half tablespoons each of coconut sugar, sea salt, paprika, cumin, coriander, ground ginger, turmeric, cayenne pepper, and 1 and a half tablespoons of apple cider vinegar together to make the sauce.
Mix the sauce really well until it’s smooth and creamy. Add the sauce to the cooked lentils and salt to taste.
3. Vegan Quesadillas
Going vegan doesn’t mean you have to miss out on all the fun, exotic foods that you used to enjoy. Take these vegan quesadillas, for example. With 9 grams of protein, you’ll wonder why you never tried them sooner.
All you’ll need to make these protein-packed quesadillas is one onion, one red pepper, one cup of sweet corn, two large tomatoes, olive oil, four flour tortillas, and one cup of vegan grated cheese of your choice. Chop the red pepper, onion, and tomatoes. Put one flour tortilla on an oiled, hot grill and add half of the vegan grated cheese. Wait until the cheese begins to melt, then add half of the chopped vegetables. Cover with another tortilla and grill for one to two more minutes, pressing down on the top tortilla to form a quesadilla. Repeat the same process with the other two tortillas and the rest of the ingredients.
4. Acai Granola Bowl
Half a cup of granola contains about six grams of protein. By making a simple and filling acai granola bowl, you can have a delicious, vegan meal with loads of protein. You can also up the protein content by blending in a vegan protein powder with the acai.
Take a serving of your favorite brand of frozen acai purée and put it in a blender or food processor. Add almond milk, vegan protein powder and some honey or another sweetener of your choice. Blend until smooth and pour into a bowl. Top with half a cup of quality, low-sugar granola for a high protein meal. (please replace with a vegan option).
5. Vegan Chilli
Beans are a wonderful source of plant-based protein. Adding a textured protein meat substitute can also boost the nutritional content of a bean-based dish. This vegan chili is made with a medley of flavorful vegetables, canned beans, and vegetable protein. Containing 12 grams of protein, it’s a regular feature on many vegan, high-protein menus.
In a large pot, sautée one whole chopped onion and four cloves of minced garlic. Add a whole can of beans, a can of diced tomatoes, a cup of frozen corn, the juice of one lime, two cups of tomato juice, and then paprika and salt to taste. Cover the pot and bring the mixture to a boil. Reduce the heat to bring the chili to a simmer. After 20 minutes, add the textured vegetable protein and cook for another three to five minutes. Just like that, you’re ready for a mouthwatering, protein-packed experience.
6. Avocado Toast With Black Beans on Ezekiel Bread
Black beans are a protein powerhouse, and though not all vegetarians choose to incorporate them in their diet, there are many who do. With about 10 grams of protein per a quarter cup of black beans, two grams of protein per avocado, and four grams of protein per slice of Ezekiel Bread, a simple serving of this avocado toast contains a whopping 16 grams of protein.
Drain and rinse a quarter cup of canned black beans, salted or unsalted. Take two slices of the Ezekiel bread and place them in the toaster until they’re warm and slightly crispy. Add half of the quarter portion of black beans on one slice of the bread. Do the same for the other slice. Then top each egg with half of a medium avocado. Sprinkle with salt and pepper and you’re ready for a protein-rich, meat-free meal. (please replace with a vegan option).
Supplement Your Protein Intake
As we’ve seen, there are numerous high-protein meal options for those who choose to lead a vegan lifestyle. Sometimes, a lack of time and energy could make it difficult to prepare a protein-rich meal. If you often find yourself in this situation, adding a protein powder to your favorite drinks or smoothies could be the key. Visit us today at Common Sense Herbs, where we offer a raw vegan protein powder that is ideal for vegans and vegetarians looking to boost their protein intake. Check out our vegan protein powder as well as our other selection of holistic herbal products.