Meat-Free Sources of Protein

By |2018-10-15T17:16:11+00:00October 15th, 2018|

Looking for fresh ways to get your protein in without the meat? Good news! There are lots of places to find high-quality protein that don’t involve meat, poultry, or fish. In fact, even 100% plant-based foods can provide plenty of protein, in addition to other valuable nutrition.

Vegetarian diets sometimes get a bad rap for being low in protein. But the reality is, there are plenty of protein-packed options you can work into a meal rotation to break the monotony of chicken breasts. Many of these swaps can be either added to common foods like pastas, salads, or soups to boost the protein, or even be used in place of meat in your favorite recipes. Check out our list below to see how much protein you can get from non-meat sources!

In addition to being high in protein, these foods provide other important nutrients as well. For example, edamame, lentils, and quinoa are also excellent sources of dietary fiber. Soybeans, and products made from them like tofu and tempeh, contain valuable nutrients including iron and calcium. Hempseed is a plant-based source of Omega-3 fatty acids, important for everything from heart health to brain health. Dairy products like milk and cheeses are excellent sources of calcium. And, you can get your daily dose of gut-friendly probiotics from foods like yogurt and kefir. This list is by no means exhaustive, but a good snapshot of the range of vitamins, minerals, and other important compounds that non-meat sources of protein contain.


Feeling inspired yet? For more ideas on delicious ways to use these foods, visit our recipes section in the media library.

About the Author:

Lauren is a Registered Dietitian Nutritionist based out of the NYC metro area. Her passion for improving lives through good nutrition was born early on, when she experienced first hand the positive impact of healthy eating. After completing formal training, Lauren went on to earn a certificate of training in Adult Weight Management through the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. In addition to writing, Lauren also provides individual nutrition counseling and teaches nutrition classes through the VHPGO portal. When she isn’t busy encouraging healthy habits in her VHP clients, she focuses on her toughest clients: her spouse & three daughters.