Eating meat-free can be a rollicking good adventure. However, it can sometimes be difficult to get the nutrients you need from veggies.
Some essentials, like protein, are simply easier to find in meat. Does that mean you have to give up on your lifestyle?
Absolutely not. You can get all the protein you need from completely vegetarian sources. And it doesn’t have to be boring, either.
Healthline reports that you need to be eating around 0.36 grams of protein for every pound you weigh. This means that if you weigh 150 pounds, you would eat around 54 grams of protein a day.
So how do you cook up a mess of great food that packs a protein punch like this? We’ve got you covered with 5 vegetarian protein meals that will satisfy you to the max.
You won’t be feeling hungry after these. Each of them contains the 15-30 grams of protein that dieticians recommend eating in a meal.
Vegetarian Protein Meals: Easy, Fast And Delicious
These vegetarian protein meals are simple to cook and chocked full of all the energy you need.
1. Cottage Cheese And Oatmeal Pancakes
Get your blender at the ready, because it’s about to make your life a whole lot easier. Get these ingredients together for a breakfast bonanza you can count on from Spoon University.
- ½ banana
- 6 tbsp egg whites (feel free to buy some of the prepackaged kind of you’re in a rush)
- 1 tsp baking powder
- ½ tsp vanilla or almond extract
- ⅔ cup oatmeal
- ⅓ cup cottage cheese
- ¼ cup milk
- Pinch cinnamon
Blend everything together until you have a smooth batter-like mixture. Spoon it into the skillet (along with some sizzling butter or oil) and cook for two minutes on each side.
This is truly the breakfast of champions, weighing out to a whopping 27 grams of protein per serving.
2. Spinach And Gouda Omelet
This omelet by Beach Body on Demand uses egg whites, cheese, and spinach to give you all the protein you need.
- 3 egg whites
- 1 tsp oil of choice
- 2 tbsp shredded gouda
- 2 cups spinach
- ¼ cup corn kernels
- Salt and pepper
Whisk the egg whites together as you flash-fry the spinach and corn in the oil. Then remove them and pour in the egg whites slowly.
Once the egg whites set (don’t stir them), add the rest of the ingredients. Cook 2 or 3 minutes, then fold the omelet gently. Voila! 22 grams of protein.
3. Brussels Sprouts Grilled Cheese With Pear
This grilled cheese by Self kicks it up a notch with full-spectrum flavors.
- 2 slices bread (use whole-grain)
- 3 cooked brussels sprouts, sliced thinly
- 1 tsp olive oil
- 1 oz goat cheese, soft
- ½ medium pear, sliced thinly
- 1 oz grated parmesan
Spread the goat cheese on the bread. Then arrange the brussels sprouts and pear slices evenly. Sprinkle the parmesan on top, then brown the sandwich on each side in the oil.
This melty madness contains 28 grams of protein!
4. Corn And Black Bean Salad
This salad is presented to you by the American Diabetes Association, so you know it’s full of the goodness you need to fuel up your day.
- 15 oz black beans (use the canned version to make it quick)
- 1 cup canned corn
- ½ red bell pepper, diced
- ¼ cup chopped cilantro
- Juice of 1 lime
- 1.5 tbsp olive oil
- Garlic powder, cumin, cayenne as needed
- Salt and pepper to taste
Mix everything together in a large bowl. Eating the whole yield gets you 24 grams of protein and 3 cups worth of salad. However, you can easily split it up to have a lighter lunch.
5. Spicy Spinach And Hearty Lentil Soup
- 1 onion, chopped
- ½ cup spinach
- 2 stalks celery, diced
- 2 diced carrots
- ¼ cup olive oil
- 2 cups lentils (dry)
- 15 oz canned tomatoes
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- Salt and pepper to taste
- 8 cups water
- 1 tsp cayenne
On the bottom of a big pot, sauté the fresh veggies (minus the spinach) in the oil until everything is tender. Then add the water, lentils, tomatoes, and spices. Cook for around an hour or until the lentils are tender.
At serving time, throw in the spinach and cook for just a minute. If you like, add a bit of vinegar for an extra-spicy kick. This delicious stew serves 6, with 18 grams of protein in each serving.
Vegetarian Protein Meals Make A Healthier, Happier You
Cooking with vegetarian protein sources like beans, cheese, and eggs means ingesting less heavy meat and lighter foods.
You may be making the switch to eating a vegetarian diet for good, or you may only want to add a few vegetarian protein meals a week.
Either way, these meals are a great way to save yourself time and energy in the kitchen. And you won’t have to sacrifice protein to do it.