High protein foods
High protein foods

Are you looking to add more high protein foods to your diet?

Whether you’re a meat-eater, vegetarian, or vegan, there are plenty of delicious and healthy options available. In this article, we will explore 51 delicious high protein foods that fit into every diet.

So whether you’re looking to lose weight or pack on some lean muscle, these foods will help you reach your health, fitness and self care goals in no time!

So let’s get to adding some high-protein eats to your meal plan!

Best High Protein Foods – Meats

Animal foods are a great source of complete protein. Complete proteins are proteins that contain all the essential amino acids our body needs. Lean meats in particular are a great addition to a low-fat high protein diet. Here are our favourite picks for the best high protein meats to suit all tastes!

Lean Beef

Lean Beef

Lean beef is a great way to get the protein you need without the saturated fat. It is rich in minerals including iron and zinc, as well as essential vitamins such as B12. Go for organic grass-fed options for the highest quality meat.

26 grams of protein per 100g

Lean Pork

Pork is often overlooked but it is actually high in protein and high in essential vitamins like B6 and B12. Just like beef, we recommend you skip the fat and opt for the lean meat option.

22 grams of protein per 100g


Chicken is a versatile and affordable source of lean protein. Chicken is also a good source of niacin, phosphorus, and vitamin B6. Get skinless chicken breast for the healthiest option.

23 grams of protein per 100g


Turkey is an underdog but actually contains more protein than any other type of lean poultry when compared pound for pound. Add to the fact it’s affordable and you get the same nutritional make-up as chicken, we think it’s a great way to add some variety to your poultry meals.

25 grams of protein per 100g



Salmon is an oily fish high in omega-3 fatty acids which are healthy fats known to improve brain function and reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease and cancer. It’s an overall healthy and nutritious way to get one of your recommended 2 servings of oily fish per week.

20 grams of protein per 100g


Tuna is also high in healthy fats, as well as a good source of potassium, selenium, and vitamin B12. A great option for getting your recommended 2 portions of oily fish per week.

23 grams of protein per 100g


Shrimp is an extremely lean source of high-quality protein with an impressive nutritional portfolio. Like our other seafood options, shrimp is high in omega-3 and vitamin D.

20 grams of protein per 100g

Best High Protein Foods – Isolates (Vegetarian or Vegan Diet Friendly)

Protein powders are a quick, easy, and low-calorie option for adding more protein to your diet. They can be mixed with water or milk to create a shake or smoothie, or added to food to increase the protein content. Protein powders come in a variety of forms and flavours, making them a versatile and enjoyable addition to any diet. You can typically expect around 20-25g of protein per scoop/serving, however, the protein content will vary with the brand so always check the label!


Protein Powder

Whey protein is a fast-digesting complete source of protein derived from milk. Whey protein boasts the largest array of flavours on the market and are a fan favourite for their smoothness. If you have an intolerance to dairy however we recommend one of the other options below.

Egg White 

Egg white protein powder is a dairy-free and vegetarian-friendly option. It’s a complete protein just like whey. And you get the benefits of egg whites which means it is high in a load of B vitamins.


Soy protein powder is a complete plant-based protein. It’s vegetarian or vegan diet friendly and makes a great option for someone looking to reduce the amount of dairy in their diet.

Pea and Rice

Pea and rice powders are fantastic sources of plant protein. They are hypoallergenic as they do not contain any of the 8 major food allergens (milk, eggs, peanuts, tree nuts, soy, fish, shellfish, and wheat). We recommend a combined powder so that you get a complete amino acid protein profile.

Best High Protein Foods – Eggs & Dairy Foods (Lacto-Ovo Vegetarian Friendly)

Cow’s milk

Cow’s milk is an age-old favourite source of protein. It’s delicious and healthy, providing you with plenty of calcium and vitamin D. Opt for the semi-skim or skim options to save on calories and fat. Or go lactose-free if you love the taste but not the diary.

4 grams of protein per 100mls

Greek Yogurt

Greek Yoghurt

Greek yoghurt is low in sugar and fat and is a great source of calcium. It’s perfect for snacking and a great way to add more protein to breakfast, lunch, or dinner.

6 grams of protein per 100g

Cottage Cheese

Cottage cheese is a delicious high protein cheese that is perfect for topping with or as a healthy snack. It’s packed with nutrients for good bone health like calcium, phosphorus, selenium, and B12.

13 grams of protein per 100g

Parmesan Cheese

If cottage cheese isn’t to your liking, then you may prefer parmesan for your cheesy protein boost. Parmesan tops the list when talking about high protein foods and often tops the cheese charts for flavour.

33 grams of protein per 100g


Eggs are an affordable protein. They are high in cholesterol which can affect some people’s blood cholesterol levels however, they are also nutritionally dense with lots of HDL ‘good’ cholesterol and essential nutrients like choline, vitamin A, and B vitamins.

6 grams of protein per egg

Best High Protein Foods – All Diets (Vegetarian or Vegan Diet Friendly)

Vegan mock meats

Vegan Meat

Vegan meats are made from plant foods which aim to mimic the taste, texture, and appearance of animal meats. They are made from a variety of proteins such as pea or soy. They provide many of the same benefits, such as protein and B12, but without the environmental impact or health concerns associated with meat consumption. They are available in a variety of forms textures and flavours, making them a versatile cooking option.

18 grams of protein per 100g (varies by brand)


Mycoprotein is a high-quality, vegetarian source of protein that is made from funghi. It is low in fat and calories, and rich in essential vitamins and minerals. It has a mild flavour that absorbs seasonings and makes for a great meat replacement.

15 grams of protein per 100g


Tofu is from the oilseed legume family and is made from soybean milk that has been pressed into a block. Tofu is low in saturated fat and cholesterol, as well as a good source of omega-3 and calcium. Tofu comes in a variety of flavours and firmness options which makes it a versatile cooking ingredient.

17 grams of protein per 100g


Tempeh is another oilseed legume made by pressing whole fermented soybeans into a cake. Just like tofu it’s a rich source of healthy fats and antioxidants and packs more protein to boot. It has a nutty flavour and a firm texture that makes it a popular meat substitute.

19 grams of protein per 100g



Edamame are whole soybean pods picked when they’re green and immature. As with all soybeans, it is high in protein, fibre and essential nutrients. It makes for a great snack or as an addition to salads, soups, or stir-fries.

18 grams of protein per 100g


Seitan is a high-protein plant food made from wheat gluten. It is a great source of fibre, and it’s low in fat and cholesterol. Its flaky texture and tan colour make it popular in vegan and vegetarian cooking as a meat substitute.

25 grams of protein per 100g


Lentils are a type of pulse and the world’s oldest cultivated legume. They are one of the most protein-dense sources of plant proteins and are a nutritional powerhouse with a surprising amount of potassium, fibre and folate for good heart and gut health. They come in a variety of colours and textures, which makes them a versatile cooking staple.

25 grams of protein per 100g (dried)

Fava beans

Fava beans are a pulse and boast the highest protein content of all pulses. As well as that, they are high in fibre, iron, and antioxidants. Their buttery and nutty taste makes them a popular choice in Mediterranean cuisine.

26 grams of protein per 100g of fried fava bean

Kidney beans 

Kidney Beans

Kidney beans are a part of the family of pulses. As with other pulses they are high in protein and fibre, and low in fat. A popular choice in Central American and Mexican cuisine.

24 grams of protein per 100g

Pinto beans 

Pinto beans are a part of the family of pulses often used in Mexican and Spanish cuisine. As with other pulses they are high in protein and fibre, and low in fat.

21 grams of protein per 100g

Green peas

Green peas are a type of fresh legume. They are an excellent source of vitamins A, C, and K, as well as fibre and protein. Peas can be used in a variety of dishes, from soups and stews to salads and pasta.

9 grams of protein per 100g


Chickpeas are a type of pulse that is high in protein and fibre. Their distinctive colour and texture make them a popular choice all over the world. Our favourite chickpea creations include hummus and falafel.

19 grams of protein per 100g


Hummus is a dip or spread made from cooked and mashed chickpeas, blended with tahini, olive oil, lemon juice, and garlic. It is a staple of Mediterranean and Middle Eastern cuisine. Enjoy it with pitta bread, as a condiment, or as a healthy dip with vegetable snacks.

8 grams of protein per 100g



Spirulina is a type of blue-green algae that grows in mineral-rich waters. Given where it grows it’s a powerhouse of vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants. Spirulina has a sea-salt flavour which makes it popular for cooking or sprinkling with. A perfect plant-based protein addition.

60 grams of protein per 100g

Nutritional Yeast

Nutritional yeast is a type of dried yeast that is grown on molasses. It’s rich in B vitamins like thiamin (B1), riboflavin (B2), niacin (B3), and pantothenic acid (B5). Its yellow colour and cheesy flavour make it popular for crafting vegan cheesy sauces or sprinkling on popcorn.

50 grams of protein per 100g


Mushrooms are commonly thought of as vegetables but they’re actually funghi. They come in an array of shapes, colours, sizes, and flavours. The common theme is that they’re delicious and healthy with lots of antioxidants, B vitamins, and beta-glucan. Mushrooms are incredibly versatile and form a staple of cuisines across the world.

3 grams of protein per 100g


Quinoa is a gluten-free complete plant protein that’s part of the ancient grain family. Quinoa is nutritionally impressive with lots of antioxidants for anti-inflammatory good health. Quinoa can be used in place of rice or pasta in most recipes, and it can also be enjoyed as a hot cereal or added to soups and salads.

21 grams of protein per 100g dry Quinoa


Amaranth is another gluten-free ancient grain that is high in fibre, protein and minerals. It has a nutty flavour and can be cooked like rice or quinoa. Amaranth is a good source of lysine, an essential amino acid that is not commonly found in plant-based foods. It can be eaten as a side dish, added to soups or salads or used in baking.

9 grams of protein per 100g

Soy Milk

Soy Milk

Soy milk is a tasty, lactose-free alternative to cow’s milk. It is naturally free of cholesterol and low in calories but still delivers all the benefits of soy. Enjoy as a healthy and tasty replacement to dairy milk in your breakfast or desserts.

3 grams of protein per 100g

Ezekiel Bread

Ezekiel bread is a type of whole-grain bread that is made from sprouted wheat, barley, and lentils. It is named after the biblical figure Ezekiel, who advocated for the consumption of sprouted grains. We recommend this if you want to give your morning toast a protein boost.

12 grams of protein per 100g (4g per slice)


The common oat is a type of gluten-free whole grain. Oats are rich in fibre and beta-glucan, which are known to help with lowering blood cholesterol and blood sugar levels. So enjoy oats as part of a tasty, filling, and nutritious high-protein breakfast.

12 grams of protein per 100g


Rice is a catch-all term for a group of plant foods derived from the seeds of grass species in Africa and Asia. This makes rice a type of grain. Rice is a great source of complex carbohydrates and is packed with essential nutrients. It’s versatile and fits into every cuisine you can imagine.

7 grams of protein per 100g


Peanuts are not actually a nut, but a legume native to South America. They are an excellent source of protein, fibre, healthy fats and antioxidants. Peanuts can be eaten raw or roasted, and they are often used in peanut butter, sauces, and desserts.

25 grams of protein per 100g


Almonds are a type of tree nut native to Asia. Just like peanuts, they are high in protein, fibre and healthy fats. Enjoy them raw as a healthy snack, chop them and sprinkle on top of dinner, or blend them to make a vegan sauce.

21 grams of protein per 100g

Natural Peanut Butter / Almond Butter

Peanut Butter

Peanut butter is a mixture of ground-roasted peanuts and oil. Peanut butter is high in protein and healthy fats, making it a nutritious choice. If it’s more to your tastes, swap to almond butter for the same high protein nutty goodness.

25 grams of protein per 100g


Pistachios are the seeds of pistachio trees. They’re commonly referred to as nuts but they’re actually seeds. Pistachios are high in fibre, protein and unsaturated fats. They have a naturally nutty and salty flavour and make a great addition to your baking or as a healthy snack.

21 grams of protein per 100g

Chia Seeds

Chia seeds are seeds from the plant Salvia hispanica. Chia seeds are a good source of fibre, protein, and omega-3 fatty acids. They can be added to smoothies, yoghurt, oatmeal, or even be used as an egg replacement in recipes. Our favourite use for them is to make delicious overnight oats.

16.5 grams of protein per 100g

Hemp Seeds

Hemp hearts are a nut made from the Sativa hemp plant. They are one of the rare complete plant protein sources and are nutritionally rich with lots of unsaturated fatty acids. They make for a great addition to any meal whether sweet or savoury.

30 grams of protein per 100g

Pumpkin Seeds

Pumpkin Seeds

Pumpkin seeds are the edible seeds of a pumpkin. They are a good source of protein, fibre and minerals like zinc and phosphorus. Pumpkin seeds can be eaten raw, but we love them roasted crunchy in some butter and salt and pepper.

19 grams of protein per 100g


Broccoli is a green cruciferous vegetable that is part of the cabbage family. It is high in fibre and vitamin C, and the total carbohydrate content is very low making it perfect for those on a low-carb diet. It holds a secure spot on the list of high protein green vegetables.

3 grams of protein per 100g


Cauliflower is a cruciferous vegetable that is part of the cabbage family. It is a good source of fibre, vitamin C and vitamin K. It sits firmly with broccoli on the list of high protein leafy vegetables.

2 grams of protein per 100g

Sun-dried tomatoes

Sun dried Tomatoes

Sun-dried tomatoes are a type of tomato that has been dried in the sun or in an oven and preserved in oil. Sun-dried tomatoes are a good source of vitamins A and C, as well as iron and potassium. They have a sweet and tangy flavour and can be used in salads, sauces, or cooked dishes.

5 grams of protein per 100g

Brussel Sprouts

Brussels sprouts are another vegetable belonging to the cabbage family. As with the other cruciferous vegetables they are relatively high in protein content, as well as high in nutrients like vitamins C and K, potassium and magnesium. They have a slightly bitter taste but we like to roast or boil them with a little bit of butter and salt to bring out their flavour.

3.5 grams of protein per 100g


Avocados are often mistaken for a vegetable but are actually a fruit. And for fruit, they pack a good amount of protein. Avocados also contain high amounts of monounsaturated fat, a good kind of fat, which is great for your heart and can help to reduce bad cholesterol. They can be enjoyed in many ways, but my favourite is to mash them up and put them on toast.

4 grams of protein per 100g



Guava is a tropical fruit native to Latin America and the Caribbean. Guava is a treat to look at with green skin and purple fruit. It’s high in vitamin C, potassium, and fibre. It contains relatively high protein content for fruit and is a great way to add more protein to your 5 a day.

2.6 grams of protein per 100g

What is Protein?

Proteins are complex molecules that are essential for the structure and function of all cells in the body. They are made up of smaller units called amino acids, which are linked together in a long chain. There are 20 different amino acids that can be used to make proteins, but nine of them are considered essential because the body cannot make them on its own. These nine essential amino acids must be obtained through diet. In order to have a complete protein, a food must contain all nine of these amino acids. While most animal products contain all nine amino acids, some plant-based foods lack one or more of them. So make sure to eat a variety of high protein foods in order to get all the essential amino acids needed for a healthy diet.

How Many Grams of Protein Do I Need?

As we’ve established protein-rich foods are an essential part of a healthy diet. However, your individual protein needs will depend on your age, sex, and level of physical activity. The average man needs about 55 grams of protein per day, while the average woman needs about 45 grams (1). However, these numbers can vary depending on your individual amino acid requirements. For example, athletes, people who are recovering from an injury, or people wanting to increase muscle mass will have higher protein needs.

How much Protein Do I Need To Build Muscle?

Building skeletal muscle requires a sufficient intake of protein. How much protein you need depends on several factors, including your weight, activity level, and muscle mass. Studies demonstrate that for the vast majority of people, 1.6 grams of protein per kg of body weight is sufficient to build muscle (2). The best way to get enough protein is to eat a variety of high protein foods. Check out the list above for a load of healthy and delicious high protein foods to suit all diets.

Are High Protein Diets Good for Weight Loss?

If you’re looking to lose weight, then a high-protein diet may be the way to go. Firstly, high protein foods are generally more filling (3), so your hunger remains satisfied for longer and you will be less likely to snack or overeat. Second, protein takes more energy to digest than carbs, so it can help boost your metabolism and burn more calories. And finally, protein helps preserve muscle during weight loss, which is important because muscle burns more calories than fat.


High protein foods should be a staple of everyone’s diets, especially when it comes to building muscle, weight loss, and satiety. Be sure to include a variety of protein-rich foods in your diet to ensure you are getting all the essential amino acids needed for optimal health. No matter what your dietary preference is, we hope this post gave you the inspiration to build a tasty and balanced diet full of high protein goodness. Happy eating!

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