Where Do Vegetarians Get Their Protein?
It’s the most common question I get about being a vegetarian. “Where do you get your protein?”
I know some vegetarians find it frustrating to get this question so frequently, but I actually really like when someone asks! While they might be skeptical at first, it’s a good chance to talk about protein sources other than meat. And I think most people are genuinely curious. (And if they’re not genuinely curious and just being obnoxious then ask them where they get their fiber, vitamins, and minerals.)
Since I usually share a full day of eating on Wednesday, I thought I’d go ahead and include the protein amount for each meal! It might give you some new ideas for vegetarian protein sources. In terms of how much protein I am for, it’s generally good to aim for 1g of protein for every kg of bodyweight. To make it a little easier (since we don’t typically weigh ourselves in kilograms here in the US) it’s about 1g of protein for every 2lbs of body weight. If you’re active, you should aim higher. So it’s a little different for everyone but I shoot for around 60g-70g of protein.
I’ve been on a Greek yogurt kick for breakfast. I typically have 1 cup of plain 0% yogurt with berries. I realize you can’t see the yogurt under there… because I went a little crazy on the berries. But it’s there! Protein: 20g.
I usually have a little snack in the morning. Lately, I’ve been kind of obsessed with this Special K cereal. It’s not the “cleanest” in terms of ingredients but it’s really filling and tasty.
For lunch, I usually either make a salad from the cafeteria at work or I pack a simple chickpea salad from home.
A bowl of this chickpea salad has about 12g of protein and I’ll usually sprinkle a little feta on top for some added saltiness. So all together, this lunch has about 15g of protein.
For my afternoon snack, I’ve been loving a little cheese. That probably sounds kind of weird (and admittedly it’s a slightly strange snack to just eat at my desk) but it’s really satisfying and a piece of cheese has around 7g of protein. Not bad for a little snack!
I like to switch up our dinner as often as I can but one of my favorite dinners is just an easy Mexican Quinoa Bowl.
A plate like this is packed with so many textures and flavors, it’s so satisfying but so easy. Sometimes I’ll make this Mexican Quinoa Bake if it’s not too hot to use the oven. Either way, the combination of beans and quinoa make this a protein packed dinner with about 17g of protein.
I always have a little treat after dinner. Sometimes it’s just a piece of dark chocolate or if I’m actually kind of hungry, I’ll have a scoop of Halo Top.
If you haven’t tried Halo Top, you must. It’s a healthy ice cream that actually has 6g of protein per serving! It’s a perfect way to satisfy your sweet tooth in a way that will actually fill you up!
So what’s my total for the day? 75g of protein!
Not bad for a vegetarian, right?