Are you looking to find some vegetarian protein sources that will help you build muscle? Then here is a list of the top 22 vegetarian protein sources.
Protein is probably the most important macronutrient for muscle gain as it contains the essential amino acids required to build muscle.
In addition, it can help you with your weight loss, improve your brain functions, and stabilize your blood sugar levels.
If you want to know more about what protein is, the benefits of a high-protein diet, and how much protein you need when you work out, check out this post.
Now that you know the importance of protein, let’s look at some of the best vegetarian protein sources that you can find.
Dairy is one of the good protein sources that can be quite beneficial to vegetarians. In addition to protein, it also provides a good source of calcium and fat.
1 Greek yogurt
Greek yogurt is a strained yogurt that makes it thicker than regular yogurt. This also increases it’s protein content.
In addition to high protein, you also get the benefit of probiotic bacteria that is good for your stomach as well as some good calcium.
Protein content: 100 grams of greek yogurt contains 10 grams of protein.
2 Swiss cheese
Among the available cheese, Swiss cheese contains a high amount of protein content. You might be familiar with this type of cheese as it appears to have holes in it.
Protein content: 100 grams of Swiss cheese contains 27 grams of protein.
3 Cottage cheese
This type of cheese is produced by pressing curd so that it is drained and individual curd remains.
Regular cottage cheese can contain a high amount of salt so try to go for a low-salt version.
Protein content: 100 grams of cottage cheese contains 11 grams of protein.
Milk is another good source of protein that also contains good calcium and fat. It has a good biological value which means it contains a good amount of the essential amino acids.
Protein content: 100 grams of milk contains 3.4 grams of protein.
Beans are one of the good protein sources that are a stable bodybuilding meal. They contain loads of fiber, are low in calories, and can help prevent heart disease and cancer.
5 Kidney Beans
Kidney beans are a good source of protein for vegetarians that can be combined with whole grains to create a wholesome meal.
They are a great source of fiber and very low in calories.
In addition, they provide protection against heart disease, cancer, and diabetes.
Protein content: 100 grams of kidney beans contain 24 grams of protein.
Tofu is produced by curdling soy milk and extracting the liquid from it.
It is a good protein source that provides all eight of the essential amino acids. This can be very useful for vegetarians as most plant sources do not contain all of them.
In addition, tofu is also a good source of iron, calcium, and minerals such as manganese, selenium, and phosphorous.
Protein content: 100 grams of tofu contains 8 grams of protein.
Tempeh is created by culturing and controlled fermentation of soybeans.
It is also a vegetarian source of protein that contains all eight of the essential amino acids.
Tempeh is a good source of fiber and vitamins such as B12.
In addition, it is a good source of minerals such as potassium, iron, magnesium, and calcium.
Protein content: 100 grams of tempeh contains 19 grams of protein.
Lentils are a good source of protein for vegetarians that do not take as much time to cook as beans.
In addition to protein, they also provide a good source of fiber and minerals such as copper, potassium, and phosphorus.
Protein content: 100 grams of lentils contain 9 grams of protein.
Chickpeas are another delicious source of proteins that can be used in a variety of recipes.
They are high in protein and fiber like the others in the legume family.
They also contain minerals such as iron, phosphorus, manganese, magnesium, etc, that helps to improve heart health, reduce blood pressure, and the risk of cancer.
Protein content: 100 grams of chickpeas contain 19 grams of protein.
Peanuts while being delicious also contain loads of nutrients. They are high in monounsaturated fat that is good for heart health.
In addition, they provide vitamin E, niacin, and manganese. They are also high in protein content and antioxidants.
Protein content: 100 grams of peanuts contain 26 grams of protein.
11 Peanut butter
Peanut butter contains a good amount of fiber and protein that will help keep you full and avoid hunger cravings.
It also contains vitamin E that acts as an antioxidant and prevents aging.
It has magnesium that helps bone growth, potassium that helps in muscle building, and vitamin B6 that boosts immunity.
It provides all the benefits of peanuts and so protects your heart, lowers risk of blood pressure, and cancer.
Protein content: 100 grams of peanut butter contains 25 grams of protein.
Almonds similar to peanuts contain a good amount of monounsaturated fats that improve the heart health.
They contain a good amount of protein and fiber that will help you keep full and avoid hunger cravings.
Almonds contain a good amount of antioxidants that help to slow down the aging process and provides protection against diseases like cancer.
Almonds have a high content of magnesium that can help lower blood pressure levels.
Protein content: 100 grams of almonds contain 21 grams of protein.
Cashews contain a good amount of proteins and fiber. They also contain a lot of vitamins that are beneficial for your overall health.
They contain magnesium that will help lower blood pressure and keep your bones healthy.
They lower the risk of diabetes and cancer.
Like other nuts, they contain monounsaturated fats that will help keep your heart healthy.
Protein content: 100 grams of cashews contain 18 grams of protein.
Pistachios are a good source of protein like many other nuts.
They contain a good amount of antioxidants that slow down the aging process.
They have the ability to reduce the bad LDL cholesterol and thus improve the health of your heart.
They contain a good amount of copper that can help your body absorb iron and prevent problems like anemia.
They also help to regulate blood glucose levels and thus reduce the risk of diabetes.
Protein content: 100 grams of pistachios contain 20 grams of protein.
15 Whey protein
Whey protein consists of the essential amino acids that are rapidly absorbed by the body.
It is a byproduct that is formed during the creating of cheese from milk.
It is widely used as a protein supplement and added to protein shakes, meal replacements, and protein bars.
It can be considered as one of the cheaper sources of protein for those who follow a high-protein diet along with weight training.
Protein content: 100 grams of whey can contain around 25-30 grams of protein.
Edamame is prepared by boiling immature soy beans in their pods.
It is a good source of proteins, fiber, vitamins, and minerals.
The fiber in edamame can help in digestion and prevent bloating.
It contains antioxidants and vitamins that can help slow down the aging process.
Edamame contains minerals such as phosphorus, iron, manganese, magnesium, etc. that can help with bone health and reduce the risk of osteoporosis.
Protein content: 100 grams of edamame contains 11 grams of protein.
Seitan is a vegetarian meat substitute made from wheat gluten.
It has a high content of protein and contains eight of the essential amino acids.
It is rich in iron and can help your blood pressure levels. However, do take care as it also sometimes is high in sodium content that can adversely affect blood pressure.
Protein content: 100 grams of seitan contains 16 grams of protein.
18 Chia seeds
Chia seeds are another one of the super foods. They have one of the highest contents of fiber found in plants.
They contain loads of antioxidants, vitamins, and minerals. They also have a decent amount of protein.
Due to their high fiber content, they will keep you full, protect your gut, and help prevent colon cancer.
They also contain Omega-3 fatty acids that are very beneficial in lowering LDL cholesterol and improving HDL cholesterol that will protect your heart.
They have good anti-inflammatory properties that will protect you against several forms of cancer and aeging diseases.
Protein content: 100 grams of chia seeds contain 17 grams of protein.
19 Sunflower seeds
Sunflower seeds are another good source of protein.
They also contain folate and vitamin E that help to improve heart health.
Vitamin E also acts as an antioxidant that prevents free radicals and prevents several diseases that affect the brain.
Sunflower seeds also contain magnesium that is known to improve bone health and also mood.
It also contains selenium that is also an antioxidant and helps in thyroid hormone metabolism.
Protein content: 100 grams of sunflower seeds contain 21 grams of protein.
20 Pumpkin seeds
Pumpkin seeds are also a good source of protein.
In addition, they contain a good amount of magnesium that helps improve heart and bone health.Protein content: 100 grams of sunflower seeds contain 21 grams of protein.
It also helps to lower blood pressure and insulin resistance that can lead to type 2 diabetes.
It is rich in antioxidants that will help lower the risk of brain diseases.
It is also rich in fiber and protects the prostate in men.
Protein content: 100 grams of pumpkin seeds contain 19 grams of protein.
21 Flax seeds
Flax seeds are high in fiber that is beneficial for your gut and keeping you full for longer.
They contain a good amount of Omega-3 fatty acids that are good for your skin and hair.
They can help reduce cholesterol levels and hence protect your heart.
Flax seeds are high in antioxidants that provide anti-aging, hormone balance, and cellular health.
Flax seeds also help protect from various cancers such as breast, prostate, and colon cancer.
Protein content: 100 grams of flax seeds contain 18 grams of protein.
22 Cocoa powder
Cocoa contains phenethylamine that helps elevate the mood and act as a natural antidepressant.
It contains flavonoids that act as antioxidants that slow down aging and protects against various diseases.
Cocoa also lowers cholesterol and so reduces the risk of heart disease, lowers blood pressure, and reduces the risk of blood clots.
Protein content: 100 grams of cocoa contains 20 grams of protein.
I hope you now know the top 22 vegetarian protein sources that you can use in your muscle building journey.
What vegetarian protein sources do you use and find beneficial? Do let me know.