6 Best Sources of Plant-Based Protein

6 Best Sources of Plant-Based Protein

There’s a common misconception that eating a plant-based diet is difficult and requires health compromises. In particular, many believe that plant-based diets require giving up essential nutrients, such as protein - which is needed to produce neurotransmitters critical to brain production. However, there are plenty plant-based protein sources that don’t require going out of your way. Here are a few of our favorite protein-stacked foods:

Legumes (For Non-Paleo Folks)

A legume is a simple, dry fruit contained within a shell or pod, and typically contain a wide variety of nutrients. The most well-known legumes include split peas, lentils, chickpeas, kidney beans, etc.

legumes plant-based protein

Depending on the type of legume, 1/2 cup can contain 15-26 grams of protein. That equals approximately the same amount as 7 egg whites! Not only are legumes a great plant-based protein, but they’re also an excellent fiber source, and contain phytonutrients such as quercitin (holds anti-inflammatory properties).

As a wonderful comfort food, split peas have 16 grams of protein per cooked cup. They are a nutrient-dense food and are rich in Vitamin A (supports immune system & eyesight), Vitamin B (red blood cell production & assist in production of energy), potassium (build muscle & break down carbohydrates), and magnesium (necessary for energy production & keep your bones healthy).


Spirulina is an edible algae that has a high concentration of antioxidants and is roughly 62% protein making in a superior protein to meat, fish and eggs, making it one of the richest vegan protein sources of the planet. It’s a superfood that is renowned for its numerous brain and body benefits.

spirulina plant-based protein

Chia Seeds

Chia seeds are loaded with nutrients that hold many important brain and body benefits. Just two tablespoons of chia seeds hold 4 grams of protein and 11 grams of fiber. It’s a great source of magnesium, calcium, and Vitamin B6 which are great for skin, bone, and nail health.

chia seeds plant-based protein

Quinoa (For Some Occasional Carbs)

This pseudocereal is a great source of fiber, iron, manganese - among other nutrients. Quinoa provides 8-9 grams of protein per cooked cup, and is one of the few plant foods that’s a complete protein source - offering all the essential amino acids. It can even be ground into flours and used as a substitute for whole grain flours.

quinoa plant-based protein


Spinach is one of the easiest greens to add to a meal, especially considering it loses considerable volume when cooked. One cup of cooked spinach holds 5 grams of protein and 4 grams of fiber. Its benefits include reduced blood pressure levels, cancer prevention, eye health, and reduced oxidative stress.

spinach plant-based protein

It’s an excellent source of vitamins and minerals including:

  • Vitamin C - a powerful antioxidant that promotes immune function and healthy skin
  • Vitamin K1 - essential for reducing blood clots
  • Iron - helps produce neurotransmitters & replace nerve cells which assists with memory
  • Folic Acid - enhances brain function and anti-aging, and prevents hearing and vision loss
  • Calcium - essential for bone health