Tuesday, April 30, 2019

The Ultimate Non-Meat Protein Guide!

Hey cupcakes! As I continue on my zero waste journey, I have often thought about trying to stop eating meat. 🥩 It is obviously much more sustainable to not support the meat industry, but whenever I try to avoid them I never get enough protein and end up feeling really sick. To fix this, I thought you all would appreciate a post dedicated to some meat alternatives - by writing this, I hope to inspire myself (and others) to stop eating as much meat. 😃 Let's jump right into it!

1. Chickpeas - I am a sucker for some tasty garbanzo beans. If necessary, I would be able to eat a whole can of these by myself... 😝 You can also buy them dried in the bulk bins, and they are super easy to rehydrate and cook with. You can use the beans as a substitute for meat or as a side dish. My favorite way to eat them is with a bit of balsamic vinegar on top!

2. Tofu - I used to love tofu when I was younger, but then I just stopped eating it for some reason. Now, I absolutely love it again! Tofu has a lot of protein in it, and it can definitely be cooked in a way that doesn't make it soft or tasteless (which are the two major complaints I hear about it). If you are lucky, some international grocery stores actually sell fresh tofu without plastic, so you can bring your own container to be totally zero waste! 🎉

3. Lentils - These are a great meat substitute because they are extremely cheap to buy in bulk bins and aren't super tricky to cook. There are a lot of international recipes that already use lentils instead of meat, so check out Pinterest for some inspiration! 🍲

4. Seitan - This food was a total mystery to me until I tried some this year, and it is actually pretty good! It is made of wheat gluten and can take the place of chicken, beef, or pork in a lot of recipes. While the texture is a little off from the texture of meat, if you season it well it is a really nice substitute! You can also make your own seitan to challenge yourself in the kitchen.

5. Other Beans - Even though chickpeas are my favorite, there are many other beans that can be used to substitute meats. The best burger I have ever eaten was made of smashed kidney beans (and some other vegetables), so I would definitely recommend stocking up on beans in the bulk bins as well. Cheap and delicious!

6. Nuts - While you can't really use almonds in place of chicken in a stir fry (or maybe you could I don't know!), nuts are a great source of protein. I used to absolutely hate the texture of nuts, but I have been pushing myself to eat more of them... And I am starting to really like them! 🥜

What other ingredients do you use as a source of protein?? Comment below and don't forget to follow The Chic Cupcake to never miss another post!


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  1. i always reach for lentils if i don't know what to cook! there are a lot of easy and healthy recipes to do with them!


  2. This is such a helpful post! I never know quite what to reach for but I know I need more protein in my diet.

  3. This so awesome, I am trying to go Vegan and have been looking for protein substitutes, so thank you for this helpful post!


  4. Love this! I study human biology and it's crazy how many people didn't realise that protein doesn't only come from meat haha.
    El xx

  5. Great list! I always reach for beans or lentils when I'm looking for some meat free protein.


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