Top 10 Vegetarian Protein Sources

Whether it be for the argued health benefits, religious or moral reasons (etc.) many people nowadays decide not to eat meat, or meat based products. This can make meeting your daily protein requirements tough.

However, don’t panic. There are many vegetarian protein sources which are great tasting and widely available!

1. Quinoa

Quinoa (pronounced keen-wah, for the record!) is arguably one of the greatest protein (and carbohydrate) sources for vegetarians. It’s couscous like consistency makes it highly versatile for use in salads, casseroles and many recipes, as can be found in The Zone.quinoa

Quinoa is also high in iron, fibre and magnesium, which makes it the perfect wholefood.

Macros (100g):

Protein – 14g

Carbohydrates – 64g

Fat – 6g

2. Chia

Chia seeds have grown in popularity as of late, due to their high omega 3 content – higher than any other plant based food. Their consistency when mixed with liquid makes them excellent in recipes, especially as a substitute for eggs.chia seeds

They are also packed with iron, zinc, and calcium, as well as lots of antioxidants.

Macros (100g):

Protein – 17g

Carbohydrates – 42g

Fat – 31g

3. Soy

Soy beans are a great addition to any salad, recipe and are great to snack on too! There are lots of products which derive from soy beans, such as tofu.

Whilst many debate over it’s suggested hormonal side effects, it remains one of the greatest sources of protein for vegetarians. Why not try Soy Protein Isolate?

Macros (100g):

Protein – 36g

Carbohydrates – 30g

Fat – 20g

4. Quorn

Mycoprotein, more commonly referred to as Quorn is a meat substitute which derives from a type of fungus.

Most Quorn products are not vegan friendly, since they often use egg whites, however for vegetarians it is an excellent meat substitute due to the macro-nutrient ratios – and great taste! Often available in chunks, ‘minced pieces’ and ‘burgers!’quorn protein

Macros (100g):

Protein – 14.5g

Carbohydrates – 4.5g

Fat – 2g

5. Beans

There are dozens of varieties of beans, from black beans, to pinto beans. They make an excellent salad, and can be combined with other food such as rice to make a tasty dish high in protein and complex carbs.

The macros listed are for black beans.

Macros (100g):

Protein – 22g

Carbohydrates – 62g

Fat – 1.4g

6. Hempseed

Hempseed is an excellent source of protein, high in magnesium, zinc, iron and calcium. It contains large amount of all nine essential amino acids, as well as fatty acids such as omega 3!

They are most commonly consumed in supplement form. The macro-nutritents for the Myprotein Hemp Protein are:

Macros (100g):

Protein – 50g

Carbohydrates – 26g

Fat – 12g

7. Nuts

Nuts, such as almonds, peanuts, cashews etc. are all excellent sources of protein. They can also be bought in the form of nut butters.

The macro-nutrients for peanuts are as follows:

Macros (100g):

Protein – 26g

Carbohydrates – 49g

Fat – 16g

8. Chickpeas

Chickpeas are highly versatile legumes, packing essential amino acids with a high protein content.

They are also used to make hummus, which is a great topping/dip for any snack!

Macros (100g):

Protein – 19g

Carbohydrates – 61g

Fat – 6g

9. Green Peas

Great tasting, one of your fruit and veg additions and low in calories!green peas

They don’t have as much protein as some of the other items on the list, but for a vegetable, they have excellent macro-nutrient ratios:

Macros (100g):

Protein – 1.8g

Carbohydrates – 7g

Fat – 1.2g

10. Vegetarian/Vegan Supplements

Many of the protein sources listed here can be bought in supplement form, soy, hemp, pea protein etc. These offer higher a protein content than the raw forms, and are quick, easy and convenient to consume.

We also offer a Vegan Blend, of soy, hemp and pea protein, which will really help you reach your daily protein goals. The macro-nutrients are as follows.

Macros (100g):

Protein – 82g

Carbohydrates – 4.7g

Fat – 5.5g


BONUS: Check out our Vegan and Vegetarian recipes for extra ideas… Enjoy!




Writer and expert