Wednesday, August 5, 2015

High Protein Vegan Salad

Hi friends!

Whether you know it or not, I am not one to count calories or protein needs.  From my studies in nutrition, and several other resources like here, here, and here, protein is a macro-nutrient that is found everywhere and we don't seem to need as much as we think.

Nevertheless, as a vegan, I get asked the most infamous question more often than I'd like; "You don't eat meat?! Well then where do you get your protein?!"

That is why I am writing this post...The average adult human body needs only .8-1 gram of protein per KILOGRAM of body weight...that's kg not pound...which comes out to roughly 50-70 grams per day for the average healthy adult.
     Disclaimer:  Certain life stages or diseases do need more or less protein, but I am just speaking for      the general population here.  I am also not prescribing how much one should consume, just stating      the facts.

Now, to put that into perspective, here's a little chart for you: (The information below was found at the USDA's nutrient database and the)

FoodGrams Protein per 100g of Food
Bacon bits, meatless32
Bacon 12.5
Black beans8
Ground beef, 70/3024
Broccoli, raw3
Buckwheat13
Collard greens, raw3
Yellow Corn9.4
Edamame11

Just think about how much broccoli or black beans you would get for 100g, and how little beef or other meat!!!

As you can see, animal flesh is a very dense source of protein (and saturated fat and cholesterol) and 3 ounce portions are the recommendation.  Yes, you read that right...3 ounces...that's about the size of a standard deck of cards or the palm of your hand.  From my experience, most Americans consume 3-4 times that at each meal!

Wouldn't you rather get to fill your plate/bowl to the rim with plants?!  Well, I certainly would.

Now for the good stuff, and probably what you came here for in the first place:












High Protein Vegan Salad:
You will need:
  • 2 cups of cooked beans (if you are using canned, be sure to rinse)
  • 1 small zucchini, diced 
  • 1 green onion, chopped
  • 1 carrot, shredded and roughly shopped
  • 1 roma tomato, diced
  • 1 garlic clove (optional)
  • 1/2 of a fresh jalapeno (optional)
  • herbs and spices to taste
Simply mix all the ingredients in a bowl and serve over a bed of fresh greens (spring mix and kale are my favorites).

Nutrition Facts:
You can enjoy this entire recipe with no guilt!  Check it out, the whole recipe is 520 calories, 34 g protein, 31 g fiber (that's the recommended day's worth), and only 3 g fat!!

High Protein Vegan Salad
Nutrition Facts
Serving Size: 1 full recipe (620g)
Amount Per Serving
% Daily Value*
Calories
517
26%
Total Fat
2g
4%
Saturated Fat
0g
2%
Trans Fat
Cholesterol
0%
Sodium
65mg
3%
Total Carbohydrate
95g
32%
Dietary Fiber
30g
122%
Sugars
9g
Protein
34g
68%
Vitamin A
251%
Vitamin C
82%
Calcium
16%
Iron
64%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calories needs.

Let me know how it goes if you try this recipe!