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Protein Rich Food for Vegetarians by Priyanka ,  Feb 13, 2013
The average sedentary adult should have 40 grams of protein per 100 pounds of body weight. This statistic also includes those that are vegetarian, and there are many foods that do not contain meat that are great protein sources for vegetarians. 
It is generally said that a vegetarian or vegan diet is low in protein. The fact is that the protein foods like pulses (peas, beans and lentils), nuts, seeds and grains in a vegetarian diet are packed with proteins, these are foods high in protein. The vegetarians can meet their requirement of protein easily if they eat a variety of protein rich foods in amounts providing them enough calories to maintain their weight. Almost all vegetables, beans, grains, rice, tofu,nuts and seeds contain protein. Note that protein in pulses is 27% of calories, in nuts and seeds 13% and in grains 12%. On the other hand, food like fruits, sugars, fats and alcohol are low in protein.
Whole grains are a great source of protein, but the queen of whole grains when it comes to protein content is quinoa. Unlike many sources of vegetarian protein, quinoa contains all of the essential amino acids, making it a "complete protein". Just one cup of cooked quinoa contains 18 grams of protein, as well as nine grams of fiber. Other whole grains, including whole grain bread, brown rice, barley are all healthy protein-rich foods for vegetarians and vegans as well.
Protein content:
One cup of cooked quinoa provides about 18 grams of protein.

All beans, lentils, and peas are an excellent vegetarian and vegan source of protein, so eat whichever one you like! Black beans, kidney beans, Indian dhal, vegetarian chili, split pea soup and chickpea hummus - pick one and watch the protein grams add up. Soy is a bean as well, but because soy and its derivatives are such a popular source of protein for vegetarians, it merits it's own entry below.
Protein content: One cup of canned kidney beans contains about 13.4 grams of protein.
Soy-based foods are a protein source for vegans. Soy foods include tofu, tempeh, edamame, soy milk, cheese or yogurt. Many meat substitutes, such as veggie burgers, are made from soy. Soy milk, cheese and yogurt are used as a substitute for dairy products. Rice or almond dairy substitutes are also available, but can be lower in protein. Harvard School of Public Health recommends not going over board on soy, and consuming two to four servings per week of soy meat alternatives. Soy provides all the essential amino acids, and is considered a complete source of protein.
Eggs also contain all of the essential amino acids. While eggs shouldn't be eaten everyday, they're a wealth of nutrients your body will thank you for including vitamin B12. It's also one of few foods with naturally occurring vitamin D. The good thing about eggs is while it shouldn't be eaten everyday due to its cholesterol content, as a vegetarian you still get way less cholesterol overall than your omnivorous counterparts. I generally eat eggs about 2 - 3 days out of the week.

Nuts are great sources of protein, especially almonds. Nuts are a great addition to cereals and salads or all alone as a snack. About 20 percent of a raw almond is protein, not to mention it's extremely rich in vitamin E.

Much like almonds, sunflower seeds provide a great amount of protein--even slightly more than almonds. It too is a great source of vitamin E, with one serving supplying nearly triple the amount you need per day. The seeds are great on salads, sandwiches and any foods that may need a boost of nutty flavor.

Coucous is a great alternative to rice, which is great since rice is a "base" food for vegetarians (a "base" food is one you build your meal around, just as meats, poultry and fish are often base foods in omnivore meals). It's actually made from semolina, which comes from wheat. Couscous can provide as much as 15 - 20 grams of protein a serving.

Goji berries are native to Europe and Asia and are becoming more well known in the U.S. and Canada. Their growing popularity isn't for naught though, the berries are very nutritious! Goji berries can be eaten in granola bars, juiced and added to salads. The goji berry has 13 grams of protein per 100 grams of berries.
Peanut butter is a high source of protein as well. 30 grams of peanut butter contain 7.5 grams of protein. Although peanut butter is a food that is higher in fat, when added to a vegetarian diet in moderation, it will help to meet the daily recommendation of protein.

Although at the bottom of the list, dried apricots are also an option that is high in protein. An 8 ounce serving of this dried fruit provides 5 grams of protein. Dried apricots are low in fat and cholesterol and are a great protein option for vegetarians.

Last but not least is a fruit that is high in protein. Avacado is a protein rich food that provides about 5 grams of protein per 8 ounces mashed. This fruit is great added to any vegetarian diet.

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