There are a plethora of reasons to indulge in more meat-free meals: they’re often cheaper, lower in calories, and better for the environment, and so much more! Protein is so important for our brain function, workouts and recovery, and our health in general. The term, “complete protein” refers to amino acids, which are the building blocks of protein. Since our body cannot make certain proteins on its own, we have to eat them. But you don’t need to eat meat to get these complete proteins – you can get them through plant-based foods as well!
You can add in protein throughout the day, especially in snacks. A little here and there throughout the day, especially at breakfast to regulate blood sugar, can be a great way to get your protein in.
Try these 15 complete vegan protein recipes from the Food Monster App and taste just how satisfying plant-based protein can be!
With 8 grams per cup, this gluten-free seed-like grain is a fantastic source of protein, magnesium, antioxidants, and fiber. And it tastes especially delicious in this Quinoa Tabbouleh With Lemon Garlic Dressing recipe! It’s got super ripe mini cherry tomatoes, diced cucumbers for crunch, and aromatic chopped parsley, mint, and green onions. The combination makes for a perfectly flavorful and fresh salad.
Lentils are a protein favorite, especially those on vegetarian and vegan diets looking to pump up the protein quickly and deliciously. These Curry Lentil Patties are absolutely delicious and filled with chickpeas, brown lentils and topped with tahini sauce.
Chia seeds contain benefits such as Omega-3 fatty acids, antioxidants, and fiber, their valuable characteristics were even harbored by the Aztecs. Since the flavor is mild, you can sprinkle them onto any dish to add nutrients and protein! This Chia Pudding with Blueberries recipe is sweet and nourishing.
Not only does this dish contain lentils as a protein, but quinoa and hemp as well. The next time you’re craving pasta, opt for this Lentil Quinoa Hemp Seed Meatballs recipe. These go great with pasta, in a sub, or can be eaten on their own – they’re that good.
Buckwheat is also a great complete protein and can be used in so many different ways, like in these Activated Buckwheat and Hempseed Blender Pancakes! Buckwheat allows for better mineral absorption than other grains due to its low phytic acid levels. What better way to eat them than in a pancake?
A non-breakfast option that allows the use of buckwheat is this Fennel and Harissa Stuffed Buckwheat Panzerotti! Panzerotti is an Italian savory pocket of dough similar to a calzone. The stuffing is made with fennel, dried tomatoes, olives, and harissa to spice things up a bit.
Soy is a source of complete protein and often the keystone component of a vegan diet. It’s often enjoyed in tofu or in original soybean/edamame form! This ‘Eggy’ Tofu Scramble paste makes tofu taste like an ‘egg!’
This Cilantro Edamame Burger also contains lots of soy! Protein-rich edamame along with fresh cilantro, carrots, and broccoli slaw, come together in these beautifully vibrant burgers.
Black beans are one of the richest sources of antioxidants. It’s also one of the healthiest beans of all beans and legumes. They’re also super easy to incorporate into every dish! These made-from-scratch Cuban-Style Black Beans are spiced with garlic, onion, cumin, and oregano.
These Sweet Potato and Tofu Breakfast Tacos With Spicy Black Beans have two proteins; black beans and tofu (soy) combined in the ultimate taco recipe. If you’re craving something savory for your morning meal, these are a great way to start the day.
Pumpkin seeds have more to offer than meets the eye. They provide zinc and vitamin E for our bodies. This Bright Beet Salad With Quinoa and Toasted Pumpkin Seeds recipe contains both quinoa and pumpkin seeds! The whole thing is drizzled with a lemony dressing that will rock your socks.
This Pumpkin Cannelloni with Almond Sauce isn’t exclusive to the winter time! Tender cannelloni is filled with savory pumpkin puree and topped with a creamy almond sauce. This is definitely a dish you want as the center of your holiday table!
Although just shy of being complete protein sources on their own, barley and lentils are a perfect pairing. This Curried Mushroom Barley Lentil Soup with Spinach Soup is rich with umami, the flavor that makes foods savory, complex and deeply flavorful!
Seitan is another good source of soy! These Seitan Pita Pockets With Vegan Tzatziki Sauce have all the yummy veggies in the pocket, and you my friend, have yourself a light and healthy dinner! Keep in mind, that you can use virtually anything for the pockets.
This Pumpkin and Kale Steel-Cut Oatmeal With Sausage recipe is a perfect way to get complete protein for breakfast. The pumpkin puree adds creaminess and just a tiny bit of earthy sweetness, just enough to counter the saltier kale and sausage!
If you’re interested in getting extra info on this topic, take a look at 5 Easy Ways to Be Sure You’re Getting Enough Complete Protein. Also, for more recipes using these ingredients mentioned, take a look at the Food Monster App, which is available for both Android and iPhone, or check us out on Instagram and Facebook. You can discover new recipes every day to provide some inspiration for a healthy plant-based lifestyle.
Lead image source: Lentil Quinoa Hemp Seed Meatballs