10 Best Vegetarian Protein-Rich Foods

10 Best Vegetarian Protein-Rich Foods

Protein is a micronutrient which helps in the growth of our body and muscles. It also helps our body in different kind of repairs of its own. Protein also cares about our skin and hair. 

Some facts about protein

Ideally, our body needs 1gm. of protein per kg of our body weight. If someone’s body weight is 60 kg and they are not more active, then their body needs 60 gm. of protein on a daily bases. However, if someone is quite active and does a workout in the gym or in the playground then he/she needs even more quantity of protein on a daily bases.

The body can consume 25 to 40 gm. of protein in one serving easily, so while considering a protein-based diet plan one must consider this fact. Another important fact while planning a diet for muscle building and weight loss is that 2:1 ratio of carbohydrates and protein respectively is considered the best.

These were all important facts about protein, now lets us start counting vegetarian protein foods

1. Tofu

It is a vegan product and it is prepared from soya milk. In one serving 100 gm. of tofu is safe and sufficient to consume. More than mentioned quantity can lead to complications such as gynecomastia (breast development in men).  Tofu is not a lean source of protein.

100 gm. of tofu contains

  • 15 gm. of protein
  • 15 gm. of carbohydrates 
  • 8gm.s of fats

Bioavailability of protein in tofu is 59. This means how easily protein is absorbable in our body. More the bioavailability means easier to digest.

2. Cheese (Milk Curd Cheese)

This variety of cheese is most commonly available in Asian countries. It is easy to prepare. Just boil cow/buffalo milk and add fresh lemon juice in boiling milk and let it boil for next few more minutes. Separate cheese from the water with the help of a strainer. Squeeze using a cloth to separate remaining water from cheese.

Like Tofu 100 gm. of Paneer is safe and enough for the body.

100 gm. of cheese contains (if prepared from toned/low-fat milk)

  • 18 gm. of protein
  • 0 gm. of carbohydrates
  • 3 gm. of fats

Bioavailability of protein in cheese is 48.

3. Legumes

Legumes are also one of the rich protein food items. Names for some legumes are asparagus beans, green beans, kidney beans, navy beans, soybeans, pinto beans, garbanzo beans, adzuki beans, wax beans and many more. The thing is which are available in your local market. 100 gm. of legumes are enough in one serving. If we talk about nutrients in legumes then 

100 gm. of legumes contain

  • 15 gm. of protein
  • 40 gm. of carbohydrates
  • 11 gm. of dietary fiber

And bioavailability of legumes is 58

4. Milk

Here we are considering cow/buffalo milk. Milk is a complete food in itself. One who is conscious of his/her diet, milk will always be considered by them. The best part of milk is its bioavailability which is 90-91. You can choose full-fat milk or low-fat milk as per your fitness goal. 500ml of toned/low-fat milk contains 18 gm. protein.

5. Peanuts

Dry roasted peanuts or peanut butter both are considered here, especially if peanut butter is prepared at home without adding any kind of sugar in it. 28 gm. of roasted peanuts or peanut butter can be consumed in one serving, which contains

  • 7 gm. of protein
  • 0 gm. carbohydrates
  • 14 gm. of healthy fats

And its bioavailability is 43.

6. Nuts

Nuts other than peanuts like almond, cashews and walnuts etc. are also a good source of protein. These can be consumed in their natural form. Nuts like almonds and walnuts give better results or we can say it becomes easy for our body to digest nuts if we consume soaked nuts for 7 to 8 hours in water.
Nutrients available in these nuts are almost equal to nutrients available in peanuts.

28 gm. of nuts makes 1 serving and contains

  • 7 gm. of protein
  • 14 gm. of fats
  • 6 gm. of carbohydrates

7. Lentils

These are an incomplete source of protein and lacks in 9 essential amino acids. But when we consume mixed lentils then they become a complete source of protein. Some names of the lentils are green grams, yellow grams, black grams, orange grams and many more. 100 gm. of lentils is enough for one serving which contains

  • 18 gm. protein
  • 40 gm. carbohydrates
  • 9 gm. of fiber

And bioavailability of lentils is 65.

8. Soya chunk

This is the best food item for those who are looking for protein. 50 gm. of soya chunks are enough in one serving. 

1 serving of soya chunks contains

  • 25 gm. protein
  • 15 gm. of carbohydrates
  • 10 gm. fats

And bioavailability for soya chunks is 59.

Now an important thing to be noticed about soya chunks is consuming more than 50 gm. can change the hormonal balance in our body. So 50 gm. of soya chunks are safe on a daily bases.

The above list of food items was written in such a manner that one who wants to consume protein with their particular health goals like muscle building and lose body fats can achieve easily. All the above-mentioned food items provide approximately 2:1 ratio of carbohydrates and protein respectively. 

We have some more food items which provide sufficient protein to our body, but the difference is that we get a little more carbohydrates as compared to above-mentioned food items. One can consider these food items as well according to their fitness goals. Those items are

9. Mozzarella Cheese

In one serving 100 gm. of cheese can be consumed and available nutrients in cheese are as follows

  • 25 gm. protein
  • 33 gm. fats (most of the available fats are saturated fats)
  • 1 gm. carbohydrates

The daily requirement of saturated fats in adults is 18-20 gm.

10. Curd

Like cheese 1 serving of curd can be up to 100 gm. The list of nutrients available in 100 gm. curd is as follows

  • 10 gm. protein
  • 6 gm. fats
  • 5 gm. carbohydrates

All above-mentioned food items are not leaned source of protein. Leaned sources are those which provide only protein with zero fats and carbohydrates. That is why some people who are working on bodybuilding use whey proteins which are leaned source of protein. Now we have a handful ingredients which are vegetarian and enriched with protein as well. We can choose any of these in our diet as per our fitness goals.