Highest Protein Beans: My Top 10 Picks for a Protein-Packed Diet

Looking to boost your protein intake? We’ve rounded up the top legumes that pack a powerful protein punch, great source of vegan grams. From chickpeas to black beans, these plant-based superstars, rich in legumes, are not only delicious but also loaded with essential nutrients, ideal for vegan eating and promoting gut health.

Whether you’re a vegetarian, vegan, or just seeking healthier options, these high protein legumes are versatile and perfect for any meal.

highest protein beans
Discover the Top 10 Highest Protein Beans

Ready to revamp your vegan menu with these protein-packed legumes, beans? Scroll down for reviews of our top picks and start incorporating these highest protein beans into your diet today!

Key Takeaways

  • Include a Variety: Incorporate a variety of high-protein beans like soybeans, lentils, black beans, kidney beans, chickpeas, navy beans, peas, pinto beans, lima beans, and mung beans in your diet for a well-rounded protein intake.
  • Experiment with Recipes: Try different recipes using these beans to keep your meals interesting and flavorful while benefiting from their protein content.
  • Plan Balanced Meals: Plan balanced meals by including beans as a protein source along with other nutrients like vegetables, grains, and healthy fats for a wholesome diet.
  • Explore Plant-Based Proteins: Explore plant-based protein options like beans to meet your protein needs if you follow a vegetarian or vegan diet.
  • Monitor Portion Sizes: Be mindful of portion sizes when consuming beans, as they are calorie-dense, and moderation is key to maintaining a healthy diet.
  • Consult a Nutritionist: Consider consulting a nutritionist to help tailor your diet to include the right amount of high-protein beans based on your individual nutritional requirements.

Soybeans

soy beans highest protein per g
Soy Bean contains the most protein per g

Legumes like beans stand out as great sources of protein, with a remarkable protein content that surpasses many other beans. With around 36 grams of protein per cup, soybeans are a powerhouse when it comes to protein intake. This high protein content in beans makes them an excellent choice for individuals to meet their daily protein requirements efficiently.

Apart from their impressive protein levels, soybeans also offer a wide range of health benefits. They are rich in fiber, iron, and various nutrients, making beans a well-rounded addition to any diet. Studies suggest that incorporating soybeans into your meals can help regulate blood sugar levels and lower the risk of certain health conditions.

One of the key advantages of soybeans is their versatility in cooking. They can be used in various forms such as tofu, tempeh, edamame, or soy milk, allowing people to incorporate them into different dishes easily. Whether you prefer savory stir-fries or creamy smoothies, soybeans can be adapted to suit a wide range of culinary preferences.

Including soybeans in your diet not only boosts your protein intake but also provides essential nutrients that support overall health. By incorporating these nutrient-dense legumes into your meals regularly, you can enjoy the benefits they offer while adding delicious variety to your diet.

Lentils

Lentils are a powerhouse of protein, making them an excellent choice for vegans looking to boost their protein intake. These legumes are not only rich in protein but also offer a plethora of health benefits.

  • Different types of lentils, such as green, brown, red, and black varieties, cater to various culinary preferences.
  • Lentils are packed with folate, which is essential for overall health and well-being.
  • Incorporating lentils into your diet can significantly enhance the nutritional value of your meals.

Lentils are versatile and can be used in various dishes ranging from soups to salads and curries. They are a great addition to any meal, providing a hearty and nutritious element.

  • Lentils are low in calories and high in fiber, making them an ideal choice for those watching their body weight.
  • Studies have shown that lentils can contribute to improved gut health, thanks to their high fiber content.
  • Including lentils in your eating routine can increase the percentage of protein in your diet, promoting muscle repair and growth.

Incorporating lentils into your daily meals is simple and convenient. You can add cooked lentils to salads for an extra protein punch or use them as a base for vegetarian patties or stews. With their rich nutritional profile and versatility, lentils are a must-have ingredient for anyone looking to elevate their meals while boosting their protein intake.

Black beans

Black beans are a powerhouse when it comes to protein content, offering around 15 grams per cooked cup. This makes them an excellent addition to a balanced diet, especially for those looking to increase their protein intake.

Apart from their impressive protein levels, black beans are known for their rich flavor profile. They have a slightly sweet taste with a dense, meaty texture that works well in various dishes.

When it comes to incorporating black beans into your meals, the options are endless. From hearty soups and stews to vibrant salads and flavorful dips, black beans can be the star ingredient that elevates the dish both in terms of taste and nutritional value.

Here are some recipe ideas where black beans shine:

  • Black bean and corn salad with a zesty lime dressing
  • Spicy black bean soup topped with creamy avocado slices
  • Black bean burgers packed with herbs and spices for a flavorful kick

Incorporating black beans into your diet not only adds a delicious twist to your meals but also provides you with a substantial amount of protein along with other essential nutrients. Whether you are a vegetarian looking for plant-based protein sources or simply someone who enjoys exploring different flavors, black beans are a versatile ingredient worth including in your culinary repertoire.

Kidney beans

kidney beans

Kidney beans are a powerhouse of protein, making them an excellent choice for those following a vegetarian diet. These beans are not only rich in protein but also packed with essential nutrients that contribute to overall health.

  • Protein levels: Kidney beans are known for their high protein content, which is crucial for muscle repair and growth.
  • Vegetarian diets: Kidney beans serve as a vital source of protein for individuals who do not consume meat, aiding in meeting their daily protein requirements.
  • Nutritional benefits: Apart from being a great source of protein, kidney beans are also loaded with other essential nutrients like potassium and fiber, promoting heart health and maintaining healthy blood pressure levels.

Incorporating kidney beans into your meals can significantly benefit your overall well-being, especially if you are looking to boost your protein intake through plant-based sources. The versatility of kidney beans allows them to be included in various dishes, from salads to stews, enhancing both the taste and nutritional value of your meals.

Chickpeas or Garbanzo beans

Chickpeas, also known as garbanzo beans, are a powerhouse of plant-based protein, making them an excellent choice for vegetarians and vegans. With around 15 grams of protein per cup, chickpeas are a great addition to any diet aiming to increase protein intake.

In cooking, chickpeas offer incredible versatility. They can be used in a variety of ways, such as in salads, soups, stews, curries, and even as a crunchy snack when roasted. Their mild flavor allows them to absorb the taste of various seasonings and spices, making them suitable for both savory and sweet dishes.

Rich in fiber and low in fat, chickpeas not only provide a good source of protein but also contribute to digestive health and weight management. The combination of protein and fiber helps keep you feeling full longer, aiding in controlling hunger cravings.

Whether you’re looking to boost your protein intake or add more plant-based options to your meals, chickpeas are a versatile ingredient that can elevate the nutritional value of your dishes. From creamy hummus dips to hearty chickpea curries, the possibilities with chickpeas are endless.

Incorporating chickpeas into your diet can enhance both the taste and nutritional profile of your meals while providing essential nutrients like protein, fiber, and minerals.

Navy beans

navy beans

Navy beans are renowned for their high protein content, making them an excellent choice for individuals looking to boost their protein intake. These beans pack a powerful punch with their protein-rich composition, offering a substantial amount of this essential nutrient per serving.

When cooked, navy beans exhibit a creamy texture that adds a delightful element to various dishes. This unique characteristic makes them versatile ingredients that can be incorporated into soups, stews, salads, and more, enhancing both the taste and nutritional value of the meal.

Consuming navy beans comes with a plethora of health benefits. Not only are they an abundant source of protein, but they also contain essential vitamins, minerals, and fiber. Navy beans are known to promote digestive health, regulate blood sugar levels, support weight management, and contribute to heart health due to their low-fat content.

Adding navy beans to your diet can help you meet your daily protein requirements while enjoying a delicious and nutritious food option. Whether you use them in hearty chili recipes or blend them into creamy dips, navy beans offer a convenient way to enhance the nutritional profile of your meals.

Peas (Split peas)

Peas, particularly split peas, are known for their high protein content, making them a valuable addition to any diet. With around 16 grams of protein per cup serving, split peas stand out as a nutrient-dense option for those looking to boost their protein intake.

Compared to other types of peas, split peas have a distinct advantage in terms of protein content. While green peas contain approximately 8 grams of protein per cup serving, split peas offer almost double the amount, making them an excellent choice for individuals focusing on protein-rich meals.

One popular way to incorporate split peas into your diet is by preparing a hearty split pea soup. By combining split peas with vegetables, broth, and seasonings, you can create a nourishing dish that is both satisfying and nutritious. Another delicious option is to make split pea patties or fritters, adding a flavorful twist to your meals while reaping the benefits of their high protein content.

Pinto beans

Pinto beans are a powerhouse of protein, making them an excellent choice for those looking to boost their protein intake. With approximately 15 grams of protein per cooked cup, pinto beans are a nutritious addition to any diet.

These beans are known for their earthy flavor profile, adding depth and richness to dishes. They work well in a variety of culinary creations, from hearty stews and soups to flavorful dips and salads.

Pinto beans are not only high in protein but also packed with fiber, which is beneficial for gut health. The combination of protein and fiber helps keep you feeling full and satisfied, making pinto beans a great option for those looking to manage their weight.

Whether you enjoy them in traditional Mexican dishes like burritos or use them as a base for veggie burgers, pinto beans offer versatility in the kitchen. Their mild flavor allows them to absorb other seasonings and ingredients, making them a go-to ingredient for many cuisines.

Incorporating pinto beans into your meals can help you meet your daily protein needs while adding a delicious and nutritious element to your diet.

Lima beans

Lima beans are not only packed with protein but also offer a unique buttery texture that sets them apart from other beans. These beans are a fantastic addition to your meals, providing a range of nutritional benefits.

  • With approximately 15 grams of protein per cooked cup, lima beans are an excellent source of this essential nutrient.
  • The creamy and smooth texture of lima beans makes them a versatile ingredient in various dishes.
  • Lima beans are rich in fiber, aiding digestion and promoting gut health.
  • They contain essential vitamins and minerals like folate, magnesium, and iron.
  • Incorporating lima beans into your diet can help improve heart health and regulate blood sugar levels.

Including lima beans in your meals not only boosts the protein content but also adds a delightful creaminess to your dishes. Whether you enjoy them as a side dish or incorporate them into stews and salads, lima beans offer a satisfying eating experience while nourishing your body with vital nutrients.

Mung beans

sprouted mung beans in a cup
Sprouted mung beans in a cup

Mung beans are a nutritional powerhouse, packed with protein, making them an excellent choice for plant-based diets.

With around 24 grams of protein per 100 grams, mung beans are a fantastic source of this essential nutrient.

Versatile in Asian Cuisines:

  • Mung beans are widely used in various Asian cuisines, adding a unique texture and flavor to dishes.
  • From savory soups to crispy snacks, the versatility of mung beans makes them a staple ingredient in Asian cooking.

Key Ingredient in Recipes:

  • Incorporating mung beans into your meals is easy and delicious. Try making mung bean sprouts salad for a refreshing dish.
  • For a heartier option, whip up some mung bean curry with aromatic spices for a flavorful meal that’s rich in protein.

Nutrient-Rich Profile:

  • Apart from protein, mung beans are also rich in fiber, iron, potassium, and antioxidants, promoting overall health and well-being.
  • Including mung beans in your diet can boost your nutrient intake and support a balanced lifestyle.

Based on all beans on this pages add a table with the protein content for each beans and also add a column with carbs, vitamins and fiber.

High Protein Bean Chart per 100 grams

Bean Type Protein (g) Carbs (g) Fat (g) Vitamins Fiber (g) Iron (mg) Calcium (mg)
Soybeans 36 30 20 B6, B9 9 15 277
Split peas 25 60 1 B1, B6 16 2.5 34
Mung beans 24 44 1.2 B1, B6 16 6.7 132
Kidney beans 24 63 1 B1, B6 6 6 34
Black beans 21 63 0.5 B1, B6 16 3.6 28
Pinto beans 21 64 0.9 B1, B6 16 3.6 21
Chickpeas/Garbanzo 19 35 6 B6, B9 17 4.3 49
Lentils 9 20 1 B1, B6 8 7 38
Lima beans 8 19 0.4 B1, B6 7 2.1 24
Navy beans 8 63 1 B1, B6 10 5 40

Try all varieties of high protein beans

After exploring the top 10 highest protein beans, it’s evident that incorporating these legumes into one’s diet can significantly boost protein intake. From soybeans to mung beans, each variety offers a nutritious punch, making them a valuable addition to meals for vegetarians and meat-eaters alike. Remember to experiment with different cooking methods to discover your favorite way to enjoy these protein-packed beans.

Incorporating beans like soybeans, lentils, and chickpeas into your meals not only enhances the protein content but also brings a range of health benefits. Whether you’re looking to improve your overall nutrition or simply diversify your diet, these beans are a versatile and delicious option. Next time you’re meal planning, consider adding some of these high-protein beans for a tasty and nutritious boost!

Frequently Asked Questions

What makes soybeans a good source of protein?

beans are a high-protein legume containing all essential amino acids. They are versatile, aiding in muscle building and repair, weight management, and heart health.

Are lentils a good protein source for a plant-based diet?

Yes, lentils are an excellent protein source for vegetarians and vegans. They are rich in protein, fiber, and various nutrients, promoting satiety and aiding digestion.

How do black beans benefit overall health?

Black beans are packed with protein, fiber, antioxidants, and vitamins. They support heart health, aid in weight management, regulate blood sugar levels, and boost energy levels.

Why are chickpeas (Garbanzo beans) recommended for a high-protein diet?

Chickpeas are a nutrient-dense food high in protein, fiber, and minerals. They promote fullness, aid in digestion, support bone health, and contribute to muscle repair and growth.

Can navy beans be part of a balanced diet?

Navy beans offer a healthy dose of protein, fiber, vitamins, and minerals. They help maintain steady blood sugar levels, support digestive health, and provide sustained energy throughout the day.

Sources:
https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/32917495/

Cristina C. RD LDN
Follow me!

Leave a Comment