Plant Based ProteinsPhoto Credit: "© [nadianb] / Adobe Stock

 

 

5 Plant-based proteins you need to know

If you’re trying to build muscle, lose weight, or feel full for longer, the first thing you’ll need is protein. The only problem is most protein seems to come from animal produce, which is expensive and negatively impacts the environment. 

What you might not know is there are plenty of plant-based proteins to enrich your diet - and we’re not talking about small amounts, either! In this article, we share the top plant-based protein foods, along with plant-based protein benefits and recipes.

What is Plant-Based Protein?

Plant Based Green SmoothiePhoto Credit: "© [kasia2003] / Adobe Stock

Plant-based protein is derived from plants rather than animal products, like cheese, eggs and chicken. It’s an excellent way to increase protein while boosting your daily fibre. People who follow a vegan diet choose plant-based protein to enhance their health. But you don’t have to be vegan to get your protein from plant sources.

Plant-Based Protein Benefits:

  • Cruelty-free
  • Environmentally friendly
  • Packed with fibre
  • Extra minerals and vitamins
  • Budget-friendly

What is the best plant-based protein?

The best plant-based protein foods have a high amount of protein. However, you also need to like the plant sources. So, when choosing a plant protein, ensure it’s one you enjoy. Below are the top five plant-based proteins.

Peas

PeasPhoto Credit: "© [volff] / Adobe Stock

The tiny green pea is one of the most protein-packed vegetables. So, when putting greens on your plate for vital vitamins and minerals, add a serving of peas for extra protein. But you don’t just have to eat garden peas. Here are a couple of alternative options:

  • Yellow Split Peas - These dried peas are part of the legume family and are easy to mix into soups, stews and broths. They contain 8.3 grams of protein per 100 grams so you can double up on protein and fibre.
  • Green Split Peas - These peas contain a whopping 23 grams of protein per 100 grams. Like yellow split peas, you can stir them into soups and curries.

Nuts and Seeds

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If you’re on a health and wellness journey, you’ll know that nuts and seeds are essential for your diet. They are bursting with antioxidants, containing vitamins E, A, C, iron and magnesium. Below are our top picks for protein-packed nuts and seeds.

  • Almonds - Sweet, nutrional almonds are abundant in protein, with 21 grams every 100 grams.
  • Walnuts - The crumbly, bitter-sweet walnut is a stunning superfood, hitting all nine essential amino acids. You will find 15 grams of protein in every 100 grams of walnuts.
  • Chia seeds - These tiny black seeds are classed as a superfood and are bursting with amino acids, omega-3, and 20 grams of protein per 100 grams.
  • Pumpkin and sunflower seeds - You can’t go wrong with these super-power seeds. Pumpkin seeds provide nearly 25 grams per 100 grams, and sunflower seeds are a close second, coming in at 20 grams. You can sprinkle these crunchy bites of goodness over salads, Greek yoghurt and porridge for a plant-based protein breakfast.
  • Hemp heart seeds - Hemp hearts are the seeds of hemp plants with the tough husk removed. They have a light taste and contain an immense 30 grams of protein every 100 grams.

Tempeh

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Tempeh is fermented soybeans abundant in probiotics, which upgrade your gut health. You will find over 15 grams of protein in 100 grams of Biona Organic Natural Tempeh. And that’s not to mention the incredible health benefits of tempeh.

Lentils

Bowls of lentilsPhoto Credit: "© [sebra] / Adobe Stock

Lentils are legumes that improve blood flow, heart health and energy. We love the 100% Organic Red Lentils, with 24 grams of protein per 100 grams. Keep them in your cupboard and quickly add them to soup, stews and curry dishes for a significant protein boost.

Chickpeas

ChickpeasPhoto Credit: "© [Nedrofly] / Adobe Stock

Chickpeas are small and pale brown, with a light nutty flavour. They’re soft when raw or cooked but turn hard and crunchy when dried. Their fleshy texture and high protein content (21 grams every 100 grams) make them an excellent meat replacement in any dish.

You can also get Chick Pea Flour, which is finely ground chickpeas. Switch 25% of your normal flour for chickpea flour in hummus, falafel, pizza crusts and bread recipes.

Best plant-based protein powder for building muscle

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Plant-based protein powder is excellent for building muscle without relying on dairy or animal products. The healthiest plant-based protein powder does not contain added sweeteners or fillers. You will also experience different plant-based protein flavours depending on the plant you choose. 

We have some of the best plant-based protein powders in the UK. Check out our top Grape Tree recommendations:

  • The British Hemp Co Protein Powder - Hemp is one of the most abundant plant-based sources of protein you can get. It contains an extraordinary 52 grams per 100 grams, making it a surefire way to hit your protein intake.
  • Organic Chia Seed Protein Powder - Instead of spilling tiny chia seeds across your kitchen counter, switch to softly ground chia seed powder. Stir a scoopful into shakes and use in baking for a protein punch.

Bowl of plant based foodsPhoto Credit: "© [Natalia Sarkar] / Adobe Stock

  • Organic Pumpkin Protein Powder - Made from dried and milled pumpkin seeds, this delectable pumpkin powder has 60 grams of protein for every 100 grams. You can’t beat that. Whether you want to build muscle, satisfy hunger cravings or simply get additional plant-based protein into your diet, this one is a winner.
  • Grape Tree Pea Protein Powder 500g - We had to finish with our premium-quality pea protein powder containing (wait for it) 80 grams of protein per 100 grams. You heard us right. If you follow a plant-based diet, this protein powder is one to look out for.

Plant-based protein ideas

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If you’ve selected your favourite plant-based protein but need inspiration on how to use it, look no further. We’ve curated a handful of ways for you to start.

Plant-Based Protein Breakfasts

  • Plant-based protein shakes
  • Plant-based protein bars
  • Plant-based protein porridge 

 

Plant-Based Protein Recipes