What Is Plant Protein?

What Is Plant Protein?

If you’ve started on a quest to become healthier, you may have come across the term plant protein a couple hundred times. What, exactly, is a plant protein and more importantly, why does it matter? The fact is, the human body needs protein to thrive but there are more ways to get your fill than simply eating a burger or steak.

Many natural plant-based products also contain a good amount of protein, which is why vegetarians and vegans can still enjoy healthy, active lives. Let’s take look at some of the best sources of plant protein below.

Quinoa

It might be challenging to pronounce, but this supergrain (that is actually a seed) is gluten-free, loaded with iron, fiber, manganese, magnesium and a whole bunch of other things your body craves. Give yourself an extra boost of yummy, nutritious-packed goodness with our Roasted Broccoli Quinoa Salad. Yum!

Soy

Not only will soy meet your body’s need for protein, but it’s also been shown to be great for your heart and bones as well. It can also be used in a whole variety of ways, so you’ll never get bored with getting your soy intake.

Chickpeas

Also known as garbanzo beans, these tiny protein-packed peas are not only tasty but also delightfully versatile. Use them as a salad topper, mash them up to make your own homemade hummus dip or roast them for a wholesome, crunchy and guilt-free snack. Just one cup of chickpeas contains a whopping 12 grams of protein, not to mention fiber, folate, manganese and more.

Chia

There’s a reason experts call this seed a “superfood.” Just two small tablespoons contain 4 grams of protein. It’s also chock-full of other nutrients, vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants. Even the ancient Mayan and Aztec cultures recognized the value of the small but mighty chia.

Peas

Remember when Mom used to hound you to finish your peas? Turns out she was on to something. This popular dinnertime side dish boasts an impressive 8 grams of protein per serving, on top of its other nutrients like vitamin C, vitamin A and a host of other essential minerals. And with our convenient steam-in-bag sweet peas, loading up on your greens has never been easier!

Hempseed

This plant protein rock star has somehow managed to fly under the radar, but we know the scoop! Only three tablespoons of hempseed contain an incredible 10 grams of complete protein, not to mention omega-3. It’s great as an addition to your favorite smoothie recipe.

Rice and Beans

Move over Beyonce and Jay Z, there’s a new power couple in town and its protein-packed goodness is sure to blow you right out of the water. Rice and beans aren’t just something to enjoy on Taco Tuesday, either. In fact, the tasty combination of grain and legume provides a powerful 7 grams of complete plant protein. Try our Cauliflower Rice and Beans recipe for an extra kick of flavor.

Protein is an essential component of your body’s good health and you can find some excellent sources right in your grocer’s produce, canned or frozen food section. It’s quick, it’s easy, it’s convenient and your body will thank you!