Top 10 Vegan Sources of Protein

Written by Daisy Whitbread, MScN
Powered by USDA Nutrition Data
Top 10 Vegan Sources of Protein

Veganism is a diet that avoids all foods from animals. This includes meats, seafood, cheese, milk, and eggs. Most vegans are often concerned with getting enough protein, and all the essential amino acids.

Several companies have gone into business creating fake meat products using soy and seitan (wheat gluten). This list avoids listing such foods sticking instead to natural whole and healthy foods.

Whole and healthy vegan sources of protein include tofu, beans, lentils, soymilk, green peas, nuts, seeds, whole grains, peanut butter, spinach, sweet corn, and mushrooms. The daily value (%DV) for protein is set at 50 grams per day. This is a general target meant for most people.

For more vegan sources of protein see our lists of beans, grains, nuts, vegetables, and fruits high in protein.

Top 10 Vegan Sources of Protein

A block of tofu

#1: Firm Tofu

Protein
per Cup
Protein
per 100g
Protein
per 200 Calories
43.5g
(87% DV)
17.3g
(35% DV)
24g
(48% DV)
Medium soft tofu provides 40% DV per cup.
Soft tofu provides 36%DV per cup
1 cup of tempeh provides 67% DV.

Note: The amount of protein in tofu can range between 4.8g (10% DV) to 17.3g (35% DV) per 100 gram serving (or a little less than 1/2 cup). See the nutrition comparison of 10 common tofu brands. To find more, use the detailed nutrient ranking of all vegan foods high in protein.

Looking for a brand with this much protein? Try House Foods Tofu.

Lentils

#2: Lentils

Protein
per Cup
Protein
per 100g
Protein
per 200 Calories
17.9g
(36% DV)
9g
(18% DV)
15.6g
(31% DV)

More Beans High in Protein (%DV per cup)

Lentils (36%), White Beans (35%), Split Peas (33%), Pinto (31%), Kidney Beans (31%), Black Beans (30%), Navy Beans (30%), Chickpeas (Garbanzo) (29%), and Lima beans (29%).
See more beans and legumes high in protein.
Soymilk

#3: Unsweetened Soymilk

Protein
per 16oz Glass
Protein
per 100g
Protein
per 200 Calories
14g
(28% DV)
2.9g
(6% DV)
17.5g
(35% DV)
Green Peas

#4: Green Peas

Protein
per Cup Cooked
Protein
per 100g
Protein
per 200 Calories
8.6g
(17% DV)
5.4g
(11% DV)
12.8g
(26% DV)
Squash and Pumpkin Seeds

#5: Seeds (Squash and Pumpkin Seeds)

Protein
per 1oz Handful
Protein
per 100g
Protein
per 200 Calories
8.5g
(17% DV)
29.8g
(60% DV)
10.4g
(21% DV)

Other Nuts and Seeds High in Protein %DV per oz

Peanuts (14%), Almonds (12%), Pistachios (12%), Sunflower Seeds (11%), Flax Seeds (10%), Chia Seeds (9%), and Cashews (9%).
See more high protein nuts.
A bowl of quinoa

#6: Quinoa

Protein
per Cup
Protein
per 100g
Protein
per 200 Calories
8.1g
(16% DV)
4.4g
(9% DV)
7.3g
(15% DV)

Other Whole Grains High in Protein %DV per cup cooked

Cornmeal (20%), Kamut (20%), Teff (20%), Whole Wheat Pasta (18%), Buckwheat (11%), Brown Rice (11%), and Barley (7%).
See the list of whole grains high in protein.
Peanut Butter

#7: Peanut Butter

Protein
2 Tblsp
Protein
per 100g
Protein
per 200 Calories
7.7g
(15% DV)
24.1g
(48% DV)
8.2g
(16% DV)
A Bowl of Spinach

#8: Spinach

Protein
per Cup Cooked
Protein
per 100g
Protein
per 200 Calories
5.3g
(11% DV)
3g
(6% DV)
25.8g
(52% DV)

Other dark leafy greens high in protein (%DV per cup cooked)

Collards (10%), Mustard Greens (7%), Swiss Chard (7%), and Kale (5%).
Yellow Sweet Corn

#9: Sweet Corn

Protein
per Cup Cooked
Protein
per 100g
Protein
per 200 Calories
4.7g
(9% DV)
3.3g
(7% DV)
7.6g
(15% DV)
White Button Mushrooms

#10: Mushrooms

Protein
per Cup Cooked
Protein
per 100g
Protein
per 200 Calories
3.9g
(8% DV)
3.6g
(7% DV)
27.5g
(55% DV)

Other Mushrooms High in Protein %DV per cup cooked

Portabella (8%), Shiitake (7%), Oyster (6%), Morel (4%), Crimini (4%), and Enoki (3%).

See All 200 Vegan Foods High in Protein

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Top 10 Vegan Foods High in Protein

More Protein Rich Foods for Vegans

FoodServingProtein
#1 Dry Roasted Soybeansper cup81% DV
(40.3g)
#2 Nattoper cup68% DV
(34g)
#3 Tempehper cup67% DV
(33.7g)
#4 Soybean Sprouts1 cup18% DV
(9.2g)
#5 Asparagusper cup cooked9% DV
(4.3g)
#6 Guavasper cup8% DV
(4.2g)
#7 Artichokes (Globe or French)in a medium artichoke8% DV
(4.2g)
#8 Raisinsper oz2% DV
(0.8g)

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Data Sources and References

  1. U.S. Agricultural Research Service Food Data Central

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