8 High Protein Meals<< Go Back
Protein is an essential part of a healthy diet and maintains optimal health. It allows you to have energy so that you have the fuel to go to the gym or have energy to run around with the family.
The best thing about protein is that it is a great to have as part of your diet; especially if you are trying to shed some weight off for this summer.
Here is a quick guide that outlines the importance of protein and some recipes that you can have as meals.
What is Protein?
Protein is a part of a dietary component that is made up of organic compounds that are broken down into amino acids which are important for the body to repair muscles tissue, hair, antibodies and much much more.
There are 20 amino acids that the body needs and the body can only develop 10 of them on its own. Therefore, it is important to get the other 10 from the food that you eat.
Protein is broken down into 2 kinds of proteins, complete and incomplete.
Complete proteins come from animals like chicken, fish, beef, turkey etc. They help you get the other 10 amino acids that your body cannot develop on its own.
Incomplete proteins are found in plant based foods. They also contain the amino acids that your body needs but must be eaten at higher quantities.
What is the Best Source of Complete Proteins?
The best form of complete proteins is naturally raised, fed organic foods and are wild. The best source of protein can be found in the following:
- Wild Fish
What is the Best Source of Incomplete Proteins?
Incomplete proteins are plant based and do not contain as much protein as meat. Therefore, this means that you need eat large amounts and quality plant based produce that contains protein.
How Much Protein Do you Need?
How much protein you need really depends on your age, gender and how active you are. For teenage boys and active men it is recommended to have three daily servings of proteins which is a total of seven ounces.
For children ages 2 to 6 and women are suggested to have two daily serving of protein which is six ounces.
Older children, teen girls, active females and most men need two daily servings which are equal to six ounces of protein per a day.
Too Much Protein?
Moderation is the key, with regards to anything you do and/or consume. Therefore when you eat too much protein there can be severe side effects.
For example, you can become tired, weak and experience painful headaches. Also you can experience bad breath, hair loss, dry mouth and constipation.
If you continue consuming too much protein over a long period of time you can experience your liver not being able to break down the protein which can result in the buildup of toxins that can result to death.
Too Little Protein?
Having too much protein can be dangerous and also having too little protein can cause an issue. This can result in decrease in muscle mass, hair and skin problem. Also it can weaken your immune system which will make it harder to recover from being sick or a surgery.
High Protein Meal Ideas
1. Bean Salad with Bacon and Chives
- 6 slices of bacon
- 3 cans cannellini beans, rinsed
- 3 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
- 3 tablespoons whole-grain mustard
- 3 tablespoons olive oil
- 3 tablespoons chopped fresh chives
- Cook the bacon in a large skillet over medium heat until crisp
- Crumble, cover and set bacon aside at room temperature
- Toss together the beans, vinegar, oil and mustard and season with ½ teaspoon of salt and pepper
- Refrigerate up to 8 hours
- Just before serving add the chives and bacon
Source: Real Simple
2. Bacon and Jalapeno Egg Sandwich
- 1 piece turkey bacon
- 1 whole grain English muffin, spilt
- Cooking spray
- 1 large organic egg
- ¼ ounce reduced-fat cheddar, shredded
- ½ small jalapeno, thinly sliced
- 2 thin slices of red onion
- 1 thick slice tomato
- 4 -5 sprigs fresh cilantro
- Warm a skillet over medium heat. Cook the bacon until crisp. Set aside.
- Place muffin, cut-side down, in skillet. Press to toast and set aside.
- Coat skillet with cooking spray.
- Cook egg about 30 seconds. Sprinkle with pepper and cheese. Cook until set.
- Transfer egg to muffin half. Top with bacon, jalapeno, tomato and cilantro.
3. Kale Quinoa Bites
- Unsalted butter
- 2 ½ cups cooked quinoa, at room temperature
- 4 large eggs, beaten
- Scant ½ teaspoon fine grain sea salt
- 1 small onion, finely chopped
- ½ cup of crumbled feta
- 1 clove garlic, minced
- 1 cup very finely chopped kale
- ½ cup shelled edamame
- ¾ cup breadcrumbs
- Preheat oven to 375 F, with a rack in the top third.
- Butter mini- muffin tins, and line with a strip of parchment paper in each indent.
- Combine the quinoa, eggs and salt in a medium bowl.
- Stir in onion, feta, garlic, kale and edamame.
- Stir in most of the breadcrumbs and let sit for a few minutes.
- Fill the prepared muffin tins with the quinoa mixture, pressing the mixture down and sprinkling with the remaining breadcrumbs.
- Bake for 25 – 30 minutes or until backed through and deeply golden crusted.
- Remove the quinoa bites from the pans after a few minutes.
- Enjoy wither hot, or at room temperature spread with salted avocado and lots of chopped chives.
Source: 101 Cook Books
4. Shrimp Tacos with Sweet & Tangy Slaw
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 lime, juiced
- ¼ teaspoon ground cumin
- ¼ teaspoon paprika
- ¼ teaspoon red pepper flakes
- 1 pound medium shrimp, peeled and deveined
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- 8 corn tortillas
- 1 batch of coleslaw of your choice
- Combine olive oil, lime juice, cumin, paprika and red peppers in a small bowl.
- Combine shrimp and spice mixture in a zip-top plastic bag and seal. Let stand for 15 minutes.
- Remove shrimp from bag.
- Heat a grill pan over medium heat.
- Sprinkle shrimp with 1/8 teaspoon salt
- Arrange half of shrimp in a pan; grill 2 minutes on each side or until done.
- Remove from pan. Keep warm. Repeat process with remaining shrimp.
- Place shrimp evenly in warm tortillas and the coleslaw.
5. Tuna and White Bean Salad
- 2 cans chunk light tuna in water, drained
- 1 can white beans or chick peas, drained and rinsed
- 1 red bell pepper, diced
- ¼ cup red onion, diced
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 lemon, juiced
- Optional: parsley, tomatoes and cucumbers
- Mix ingredients and chill in the refrigerator for at least 4 hours.
- Serve on a bed of greens
6. Sesame-Ginger Pork Patty with Grilled Pineapple
- 3 tablespoons reduced-sodium soy sauce
- 2 scallion, chopped
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 tablespoon minced fresh ginger
- 2 tablespoons sesame oil, divided
- 1 pound of ground pork
- 1 tablespoon rice vinegar
- 4 pineapple rings, ¼ inch thick
- 4 cups watercress, tough stems removed
- 1 cup shredded carrot
- Preheat grill to medium-high
- Combine soy sauce, scallions, garlic, ginger and 1 teaspoon sesame oil in a small bowl.
- Place pork in a medium bowl. Add half of the sauce mixture to the pork and gently combine without over mixing.
- Form into 4 patties, about 3/4 inches thick. Add the remaining 1 teaspoon sesame oil and vinegar to the remaining sauce mixture and set aside.
- Oil the grill rack. Grill the burgers, turning once, until an instant-read thermometer inserted in the center registers 155°F, 4 to 5 minutes per side.
- During the last 3 minutes of cooking, add the pineapple rings to the grill and cook, turning once, until dark grill marks appear.
- Combine watercress and carrot in a large bowl. Toss with 2 tablespoons of the reserved sauce. Divide the salad among 4 plates.
- Top each portion with a pineapple ring and a burger. Drizzle any remaining sauce on top.
Source: Eating Well
7. Lentil-Edamame Stew
- 1 cup dried lentils
- 3/4 cup frozen shelled edamame (green soybeans)
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 1/2 cups minced red onion
- 3 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 (14.5-ounce) can diced tomatoes, undrained
- 6 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
- 1 tablespoon chopped fresh parsley
- 1 tablespoon chopped fresh mint
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
- 1/8 teaspoon ground red pepper
- 1/8 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- Dash of ground cloves
- Place lentils in a large saucepan; cover with water to 2 inches above lentils. Bring to a boil; cover, reduce heat, and simmer 20 minutes or until tender. Drain well, and set aside.
- Place edamame in a small saucepan; cover with water to 2 inches above edamame. Bring to a boil; cook 2 minutes or until edamame are tender. Remove from heat; drain well.
- Heat oil in a Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Add onion, garlic, and tomatoes to pan; sauté 6 minutes or until onion is translucent, stirring often.
- Stir in lentils, edamame, juice, and remaining ingredients. Cook 2 minutes or until thoroughly heated, stirring often.
Source: My Recipes
8. Noodles with Roast Pork and Almond Sauce
- 1/2 teaspoon canola oil
- 1/2 pound pork tenderloin, trimmed
- 1/2 teaspoon salt, divided
- 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
- 8 ounces uncooked fettuccine
- 1/4 cup almond butter
- 2 1/2 tablespoons low-sodium soy sauce
- 2 tablespoons rice vinegar
- 1 tablespoon minced peeled fresh ginger
- 1 1/2 teaspoons chili garlic sauce
- 1 cup thinly sliced green onions
- 1/3 cup finely chopped fresh mint
- Preheat oven to 425°.
- Drizzle oil in an ovenproof skillet. Sprinkle pork with 1/8 teaspoon salt and pepper; place pork in pan. Bake at 425° for 10 minutes.
- Turn pork over, and bake an additional 10 minutes or until a thermometer registers 155°. Place pork on a cutting board; let stand 10 minutes. Shred pork into small pieces.
- Cook pasta according to package directions, omitting salt and fat. Drain pasta in a colander over a bowl, reserving 2 tablespoons pasta water; keep pasta warm.
- Combine almond butter, 2 tablespoons pasta water, remaining salt, soy sauce, and vinegar, ginger, and chili garlic sauce.
- Divide pasta evenly among 4 bowls; top evenly with sauce, pork, onions, and mint.
Source: Cooking Light
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