5 Best Meat Alternatives

Choosing to pursue a meat-less lifestyle has generated some popularity over the last decade or so. The diet that was previously frowned upon by the public is now available at commercial restaurants and grocery stores. Even popular fast food chains have a veggie option with high protein snacks for vegan or vegetarian customers.

Previously misunderstood as a diet consisting only of fruits and vegetables, veggie-friendly companies have produced meatless options that taste almost like the real thing!

Researchers are coming up with new findings daily on healthy protein alternatives that aren’t sourced from meat. Now, more than ever, it is easier to live as a vegan or vegetarian.

If you’re considering attempting this lifestyle, there are many options available that can substitute for meat. What’s awesome is that they are items you are probably quite familiar with.

1. Beans

Beans have been the “meat” of veggie burgers for years! Whether you prefer black, pinto, or kidney beans, these high in protein jewels are an awesome meat replacement.

Containing virtually no fat, beans are a tasty source of fiber and iron. Beans come in a variety of shapes, sizes, and colors. Their unique properties can add variety and texture to your dishes.

Varying in calorie count, you can expect white beans to be higher in calories, 153 and Mung beans to be only 8!

2. Mushrooms

Believe it or not, many “burgers” use mushroom as a patty substitute. Mushrooms are so versatile in flavor, they can complement virtually any dish. Chopped, baked, pan seared, or eaten raw, they open the door for creative freedom.

Containing only 15-calories in raw form, mushrooms are low in calories but guaranteed to suppress hunger. Packed with B15 vitamins, these fungi assist with stress and energy conservation.

Mushrooms, however, are quite low in protein. In fact, four cups of raw mushrooms only equate to seven-grams of protein. Ideally, mushrooms are like a texture substitute for meat as they have a thick and juicy consistency.

3. Quinoa

Although an official member of the grain family, quinoa can provide high protein snacks. Weighing in at 8-grams per cup, the opportunities for versatile dishes are endless.

One of the many fears associated with choosing a meat-less route is that you won’t receive the needed amount of iron.

Despite the misconceptions, quinoa is packed with 2.8-milligrams of iron. Chicken, at almost 4-ounces, only stores one gram!

The versatility of quinoa is also noteworthy. It can garnish a salad, accompany fruit during breakfast, or be eaten alone.

4. Chickpeas

The mother of hummus! Chickpeas may be small, but they are packed with high protein snacks. In fact, one serving equates to two large eggs! Chickpeas are excellent sources of fiber, folate, vitamin B, and other soluble minerals.

Women can benefit from chickpeas as they are hormone regulators. The high levels of B12 can assist with menopause and period cycles.

Although chickpeas are high protein snacks, be careful on the amount you eat as one serving is a whopping 270-calories! In moderation, chickpeas can be an awesome substitute for meat.

5. Almonds

Rich in antioxidant properties, almonds can help to curb hunger by keeping you satisfied. In addition, almonds are awesome for cardiovascular health, by helping to prevent heart disease and stroke.

Although used as a snack between meals, almonds are high protein snacks. 100-grams of almonds equate to 21.1-grams of protein!

Talk about a viable substitute. Almonds can be mixed in smoothies, yogurt, or even alone.

By making the switch from meat to substitutes, the journey may initially seem overwhelming.

Through research, an open mind, and a little creativity, the opportunities for meals are endless. Utilizing viable substitutes will help you to remain full and satisfied while living meat-free!


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