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Plant-Based Protein For Meatless Days

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June 21, 2017 / International / By
ETG - Food For Thought

Whether you are vegan or vegetarian or you want to reduce your meat intake during summer months, you need whole foods rich in nutrients and reliable sources of protein. We created a list of plant-based proteins that can successfully replace meat in your diet but also some recipes that will show you the best way to incorporate them into menu.

Organic Edamame

Edamame or cooked soy beans are a source of protein used as an appetizer in Japanese cuisine and incorporated in numerous dishes in Hawaii, China and Korea. If you plan to buy edamame, buy the organic variety, most soy beans are treated with pesticides so only organic edamame are a healthy option for your diet.

Recipe Ideas

Butter and Garlic Edamame from Snapguide.com

Vegetarian recipe

Chile-Garlic Edamame from Food Network

Vegan recipe

Tempeh

Traditionally from Indonesia, tempeh is another soy based product high in proteins. Tempeh is considered the most nutritious soy product and it can be used in numerous types of dishes.

Recipe Ideas

Sticky Fig BBQ Tempeh from Nutrition Stripped

Vegan recipe

Tempeh Tacos from Betty Goes Vegan via Oh My Veggies

Vegan recipe

Lentils

Lentils are not only a high-protein but also a high-fiber option for plant based diets. Lentils can be used in numerous vegan or vegetarian summer dishes. You can eat lentils as a side dish, you can transform them into a hummus-like dip and serve them with chips or bread as an appetizer, you can add them to a veggie burger as a protein source or you can make a delicious soup out of them.

Recipe Ideas

Lentil Burgers from Eating Well

Vegan recipe

Lentil Soup from Allrecipes.com

Vegan recipe

Beans

Beans are another incredible source of protein for those who want to eat less meat or don’t eat meat at all. Similar to lentils, beans can be used in all kinds of vegan and vegetarian dishes. From eating them cooked and seasoned to adding them to salads or transforming them into veggie “meatballs”, beans are extremely versatile.

Recipe Ideas

Chili Jules from The Stone Soup via Eat the Globe

 

Vegan recipe

Cannellini Bean Vegetarian “Meatballs” With Tomato Sauce from Cookin’ Canuck

Vegetarian recipe

Chia Seeds

Few calories, but a massive amount of nutrients, chia seeds are recommended for people who want to lose weight but also in vegan or vegetarian diets since they are a great source of protein and an even greater source of fibers. The taste of chia seeds is somehow nutty but less nutty than other seeds, such as sunflower seeds (that are also a great source of protein, by the way). Chia seeds are perfect for a variety of breakfast and dessert recipes and they taste amazing when combined with fruits.

Recipe Ideas

Lemon Chia Seed Scones With Sweet Lemon Glaze from Margaret’s Dish

Vegan recipe

Vanilla-Almond Chia Breakfast Pudding from Daily Burn

Vegan recipe

Pumpkin Seeds

Since we are on the topic of seeds, we also have to mention pumpkin seeds here. They are also a great source of protein but also other nutrients and minerals. You can eat pumpkin seeds as a snack throughout the day or you can use them in various breakfast recipes and even transform them into a delicious pesto you can use for pasta dishes.

Recipe Ideas

Pumpkin Seed and Chocolate Chip Oatmeal Breakfast Bars from Eating Bird Food

Vegan recipe

Pumpkin Seeds Pesto from Whole Foods Market

Vegan recipe

Nuts

When it comes to nuts, most of them are rich in protein and healthy fats so you can enjoy your favorite ones as snacks or in various dishes. Cashews are perfect in both savory and sweet dishes since they are versatile, while walnuts, almonds, Brazilian nuts or pistachios are better in desserts of breakfast dishes.

Recipe Ideas

Cashew Dill Cheese from One Green Planet

Vegan recipe

Gluten-Free Vegan Pistachio Rose Water Cake from Unconventional Baker

Vegan recipe

Peanut Butter

A great source of protein and an amazing comfort food that reminds us of our childhood, peanut butter is great for breakfast alongside a banana or used in delicious vegan desserts.

Recipe Ideas

Peanut Butter Cake with Chocolate Peanut Butter Glaze from Vegan Richa

Vegan recipe

4 Ingredient No Bake Chocolate Peanut Butter Bars from Beaming Baker

Vegan recipe

Wild Rice

The nutty taste and chewy texture of wild rice makes it great for comforting and satisfying meals that are also healthy and rich in proteins. Wild rice is another versatile source of protein and it can be used in side dish and main dish casseroles, soups, stews and even muffins.

Recipe Ideas

Cranberry-Orange Wild Rice Muffins from Midwest Living

Vegetarian recipe

Broccoli Wild Rice Casserole from Smith’s Vegan Kitchen

Vegan recipe

Nutritional Yeast

Nutritional Yeast is very popular in plant based diets due to its cheesy flavor and high amounts of proteins and vitamin B12. Perfect for making sauces, dressings and more, nutritional yeast is a powder that creates a paste when mixed with water or other type of liquid.

Recipe Ideas

Seitan Scaloppine with Lemon-Olive Sauce from Fat Free Vegan Kitchen

Vegan recipe

Zucchini Pizza Boats from In Sonnet’s Kitchen

Vegan recipe

Quinoa

Quinoa is another popular choice for vegan and vegetarian diets. Usually used as a source of healthy carbs, quinoa is also high in proteins and fibers. From breakfast dishes to appetizers and healthy salads, quinoa can be used in a numerous ways in the kitchen.

Recipe Ideas

Quinoa with Corn and Scallions from Just A Taste

Vegetarian recipe

Cinnamon Toast Breakfast Quinoa from Cookie And Kate

Vegan recipe

 

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