I admit that I used to be one of those people who drove my vegetarian friends crazy with questions like, “But how do you get enough protein?” Like most of society, I carried around the belief that the only real way to get all the protein we need for optimal functioning was through animal products. Well, my friends, after years of digging deeper into the issue, my eyes have been opened to the fact that there are major benefits to eating a plant-based diet, both for our bodies and for the planet. That’s why I’ve rounded up a few of my favorite vegetarian dinners with protein.
Through a diet rich in vegetables, legumes, good grains, seeds, and nuts, our bodies will easily get all the amino acids (which form a “complete” protein) it needs. Kimberly Snyder broke it down for us here earlier in the year, and it all makes so much more sense now. She also predicts the plant-based way of life will only continue to gain momentum, so the more we know, the better!
While I do incorporate small amounts of meat and fish into my diet a few times a week, many more of our meals these days are getting all their nutrients from plant-based sources.
If you’d like to learn more about the benefits of a plant-based diet, here are a few sources that I’d highly recommend: Forks Over Knives (the film), Eat Vegan Before 6:00, The Beauty Detox Solution. Keep scrolling for my current favorite recipes that feature protein-packed meatless mains, and I’d love to hear if you guys are giving vegetarianism a try!
Spicy Black Bean Tacos with Corn Salsa & Avocado from The Awesome Green
These tacos have it all. They’re filling and are incredibly nourishing–packed with protein, healthy fats, carbs, minerals, and vitamins. Plus, it looks great and tastes amazing!
These hot potatoes are a staple in my dinner rotation—quick and easy to make, they’re as delicious as they are healthy and loaded with nutrients.
Loaded Mediterranean Street Cart Fries from A Pinch of Yum
Part salad, part nachos, and part chili fries, these sweet potato fries are absolutely heavenly. They’re topped with fresh summery romaine, marinated tomatoes, chickpeas, feta cheese, herbs to the nines, and easy tzatziki.
When was the last time you had a truly delicious leek dish? You need to put this one on your list ASAP because it is elite.
Sushi Bowl With Miso Glazed Eggplant from Goop
Delicious, healthy, and can be easily prepped in advance so you won’t be stressed at dinnertime.
Roasted Brussels sprouts and radishes elevate these warming, wholesome tacos into an elegant and delicious meal.
Sesame Shiitakes and Bok Choy from Scaling Back
I can practically smell these delicious veggies through the screen!
Roasted Sweet Potato Pitas With Arugula and Garlic Dressing from Salt & Lavender
This is such a fresh, healthy, and comforting vegetarian meal that even the pickiest of meat-eaters will be obsessed.
The colors alone in this grain bowl make it a must-try when you’re looking for vegetarian dinners with protein. Yum!
Chickpea Bean Bowl With Toasted Breadcrumbs & Dill Tahini from Dolly & Oatmeal
You’ll be shocked at how filling this vitamin-packed bowl is—as satisfying as it is a breeze to make.
These flavors may seem a bit out of the ordinary for a soba noodle salad, but trust, you’re going to be hooked. These fresh, light and beautiful flavors are too good to be true.
Mean Green Vegetable Detox Soup from Half Baked Harvest
This veggie dish is absolutely loaded with some of the most powerful soup-erfoods around. (Get it?)
Green Bean & Shallot Ravioli Salad from Martha Stewart
Simple, tasty, and absolutely perfect.
Mole-Spiced Chickpea & Grilled Zucchini Tacos from Snixy Kitchen
The perfect alternative to mole-spiced chicken, these tacos have all the flavor and protein while still being vegetarian.
This dish is easy to prep in advance, so you don’t have to worry about throwing it together during a chaotic dinner hour. And isn’t it gorgeous?
Roast Cauliflower Steaks With Kale & Lentils from The Last Food Blog
The cauliflower steaks are seasoned with garlic, thyme and lemon then roasted until they are golden, sweet, and tender. It doesn’t get more cozy and delicious than that.
This vegetarian and gluten-free recipe can be easily reheated, is packed with nutrients, fits a variety of dietary needs, and most importantly, is incredibly delicious.
Mushroom Lentil Spaghetti “Bolognese” from Love & Lemons
Get all those comforting flavors and textures of a bolognese without any of the meat. It’ll still be packed with protein thanks to the lentils.
Tofu Noodle Stir-Fry With Spring Vegetables from Minimalist Baker
The tahini stir fry sauce is a game-changer in this super flavorful dinner. Tofu, fresh veggies, and rice noodles make up this quick and easy healthy dinner.
Chana Masala With Spinach from Foodie Crush
This easy chickpea stew gets a little extra green thanks to some spinach that makes the tasty, earthy, spiced tomato sauce even better.
Crispy Sesame Falafel Melts With Garlicky Green Tahini from Half Baked Harvest
These homemade, vegetable-filled falafel bites are topped with melty cheese for a truly luscious, filling, colorful, and fun dinner. Add a side of sweet potato friends and you’ve got a real treat.
Vegan Moussaka from Minimalist Baker
Layers of roasted eggplant melt into a hearty tomato and lentil filling and are then topped with an absolutely stunning roasted garlic cashew bechamel. All you need are 10 ingredients and you’re good to go!