“Where Do You Get Your Protein?”

If I hear this question one more time I will probably scream. Why is it that whenever it comes up that I eat a plant-based diet, everyone around me turns into a nutrition expert? I don’t criticize the diets of my friends and family (although maybe I should), or strangers for that matter, so I don’t understand why they feel the need to be so concerned about what I choose to eat.

My all-time favourite response to the question “Where do you get your protein?” is simply “The same place your protein gets its protein”. Makes sense doesn’t it? If animals can get protein from plants, why can’t humans? Answer: They can. Protein deficiency among vegans is actually a misconception if you eat a balanced plant-based diet. A plant-based diet easily provides all the protein that your body needs. According to the Canada Food Guide, the recommended daily allowance of protein is 56 grams for an average male and 40 grams for an average female. Protein is used to build, maintain and repair all cell structures in your body, and is a key component to metabolism.

I’ve included a list of of plant-based protein sources, which is made up of many different legumes, nuts, grains, seeds, vegetables, spreads, and other delicious foods. Many of these foods contain more protein than meat, or offer a greater percentage of protein per calorie. As you will notice from this list, almost all foods contain some protein. As long as you are eating enough calories you will likely be getting enough protein. It is so easy to include protein in your diet in an ethical, compassionate way.


  • Tempeh (1 cup) 30g
  • Lentils (1 cup) 18g
  • Edamame (1 cup) 17g
  • Chick peas (1 cup) 15g
  • Tofu (1/2 cup) 11g


  • Peanuts (1/4 cup) 9g
  • Almonds (1/4 cup) 8g
  • Cashews (1/4 cup) 5g


  • Seitan (1/2 cup) 21g
  • Buckwheat (1 cup) 21g
  • Bulgur (1 cup) 13g
  • Quinoa (1 cup) 8g
  • Oats (1 cup) 6g


  • Hemp Seeds (3 tablespoons) 11g
  • Pumpkin Seeds (1/4 cup) 8g
  • Chia Seeds (2 tablespoons) 5g


  • Spinach (1 cup) 5g
  • Corn (1 cup) 5g
  • Broccoli (1 cup) 4g
  • Mushrooms (1 cup) 4g
  • Potato (1 cup) 3g


  • Tahini (3 tablespoons) 8g
  • Peanut Butter (2 tablespoons) 8g
  • Hummus (3 tablespoons) 4g


  • Nutritional Yeast (3 tablespoons) 12g
  • Spirulina (2 tablespoons) 8g
  • Goji Beries (1/4 cup) 4g


So when the dreaded question “Where do you get your protein?” is inevitably is asked, I hope you think back to this post and are able to defend your plant-based diet!


11 thoughts on ““Where Do You Get Your Protein?””

  1. People are so quick to assume. A very large part of my diet is plant based. I love lentils, I make a protein powered lentil salad full of lemon and garlic and it satisfies (and changes) the minds of many carnivores 😊 Glad you posted this!



  2. “The same place your protein gets its protein” — this sentence made my day! I always appreciate a list that is more than tofu and nuts 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  3. It takes everything in me not to call a person stupid to their face when I am asked this question. I have to remember they have not been taught the truth in schools or at home. I remind them that protein is not the issue for me. My body has bigger issues than me getting protein. Thanks for sharing.

    Liked by 1 person

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