Sneak 55g of Protein into your Day Without Trying Too Hard
When I started blogging, I didn’t expect to be asked about protein as much as I do. It’s awesome! I’m happy that we’re increasingly aware of the value of protein for weight loss and muscle maintenance. Still, the idea of scarfing down a steak or eight hard boiled eggs might make you feel constipated, and that’s what many of us think of when we hear “up the protein.” That’s not always the case! There’s protein in a variety of foods and supplements that can easily help you achieve your macros. Here are a few of my go-to ways to sneak extra protein in my diet.
Stir Collagen or Protein Powder into Your Morning Coffee
One serving of Tonic Collagen: 20g Protein, 80 calories
First thing in the morning, let’s get the protein started. I love putting a scoop of unflavored collagen in my coffee to harness the benefits of collagen peptides. I’ve written about Tonic Collagen in the past, but here it is again: my go-to supplement.
Gym and Tonic dissolves quickly into coffee and tastes like nothing! It’s a seamless way to score 20 grams of protein and all the benefits of collagen (skin and joint health among them).
Use code FUELINGFUNCTION for 10% off your order & free shipping.
Sprinkle Nutritional Yeast into Soup, Salad, Popcorn, and Dips
2 tablespoons of nutritional yeast: 9g protein, 60 calories
Some of you are still sleeping on nutritional yeast and, my friends, it’s time to try it. Despite sounding unappetizing and looking a little strange, nutritional yeast provides a wealth of vitamins, minerals, and protein—and it tastes really good.
Nutritional yeast has a flaky texture that dissolves easily into soups and dips. The taste is a little nutty, a little tangy, and very umami (savory). If you have trouble finding ways to use it, think of it as a replacement for parmesan cheese. That’s a good start!
Two tablespoons of nutritional yeast offers 60 calories and 9 g of protein. Best part: nooch is a complete protein with all nine amino acids the body cannot produce.
Hit the Deli Counter for Portable Snacks
2oz of turkey rolled with a thin slice of deli cheddar: 15g protein, 65 calories
If you eat meat, God bless the deli counter at your local grocery store. Why? Because deli meat and cheeses are filling, portable, and require almost no prep work. I like to roll together a thin slice of swiss or cheddar with some seasoned turkey and eat it as a mid-day snack. My husband likes to snack on salami so I’ll have them slice him some of that while I’m there, too.
Try Alternative Noodles Made of Legumes
1 (2oz) serving Banza Chickpea Pasta: 14g protein, 190 calories
Swapping out flour pasta for whole-food noodles makes a HUGE difference in healthifying your favorite comfort foods. I no longer buy noodles (ok, maybe gluten-free ones occasionally), instead I purchase pasta made of lentil flour, black beans, chickpeas, and edamame. These noodles have just one ingredient and pack between 14-16 grams of protein per serving. A few of my favorite brands are:
*POW! Black Bean Elbows are my all-time fave. They hold up really well for meal prep!
NOTICE: There will be an adjustment period. Flour pasta is delicious because it’s made of refined carbohydrates which have been stripped down of all the nutrients and fiber. These pasta noodles offer complex (slow-digesting) carbs, plus fiber, protein, and vitamins to boot. But I’ll tell you the truth: the black beans taste like black beans. The lentils taste like lentils. The chickpeas taste like chickpeas.
Work with these flavors: try pairing them with sauces that will complement their flavor like earthy pestos, tangy vinaigrette, or hearty cheese sauce.
Protein is vital for building muscle and suppressing appetite. Now that you’ve got a few of my protein hacks, apply them and let me know how it goes!