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4 Vegetarian Proteins That Aren’t Tofu or Tempeh

By November 11, 2016Eat, Nutrition

When people think of vegetarian proteins, the first things that come to mind are tempeh, tofu, and other various fake-meat and soy products. While these choices can be satisfying and in many cases helpful for people transitioning to vegetarian and vegan proteins, having tofu two to three times a day can get really old. So here are a few alternate protein sources to keep your diet varied.

1. Hemp seeds. These delicious, nutty seeds are packed with nutrients, with over 25% of their calories coming from protein. Not only are these seeds a perfect and easy source of protein, but they’re filled with essential omega-3 fatty acids, which can do wonders for your skin, and are rich in vitamin E. Hemp seeds are perfect for sprinkling over oats, smoothies, salads, and more, adding a great texture to whatever you’re eating. 

2. Almond butter. Peanut butter is commonly praised for being a great source of vegetarian protein and fat, but have you ever tried almond butter? The smooth and creamy texture, plus 8 grams of protein per serving makes an incredible topping over oatmeal or a perfect snack when smothered on a banana (or if you’re like me, spread over a chocolate chip cookie). 

3. Black bean pasta. Bean pasta?? Is that a joke? Yeah, I was asking that too at first. Trust me when I say I was very skeptical when I purchased my first box of vegetarian black bean pasta, especially since the only two ingredients were black beans and water. But let me tell you, this pasta tastes amazing. Better yet, it’s both vegan and gluten free for those with dietary restrictions. With 25 (!!!) grams of protein per serving, you can indulge in a huge bowl of pasta knowing that you’re getting a huge portion of high-quality veggie protein in too. 

4. Greek yogurt. This one might sound obvious, but the vegetarian protein in Greek yogurt is definitely underrated. With up to 22 grams of protein per serving, there are tons of uses for Greek yogurt – yogurt and honey with fruit, overnight oats with Greek yogurt, or if you’re feeling something savory, a greek yogurt and avocado sauce. With all the different ways you can eat Greek yogurt, you just can’t get bored of it. 

So next time you’re feeling bored of the same old proteins, give one of these a shot – they’re versatile, packed with nutrients, and most importantly, delicious! Tag @gofitu and use the #fituniversity when you try these out!

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Author Julia DeCecco

Julia is a second year Dietetics major with a minor in Disabilities studies at the University of Delaware. She is passionate about healthy living and helping people be the best that they can be. When she is not in the kitchen working on her healthy culinary creations, you will find her in the UD pool with the club swim team. Check out her healthy food Instagram @peanutbutterbliss.

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