When we think about the three macronutrients that we need to eat every day -- protein, carbs, and fat -- we know that we need these three things to function well and feel good. For those of us following a plant-based diet, we might notice that a lot of recipes are pretty high in carbs. Pasta, sandwiches, rice-based dishes and the like might be free of animal products, but we might not want that many carbs.
The following recipes are low-carb and high-protein and will be a plant-based eater's best friend. Here are 10 vegan low-carb, high-protein vegan recipes. They all sound delicious.
10. Chocolate Almond Protein Bars
You have to eat breakfast, and it might as well be a good one. When you're searching for something that is high in protein and low in carbs, you might be scratching your head and wondering what to eat... especially if you follow a vegan diet.
These Chocolate Almond Protein Bars are from Popsugar and have 10 grams of protein per bar. They have raw almonds, cinnamon, rolled oats, a vegan vanilla protein powder, maple syrup, sea salt, and optional dairy-free chocolate chips. They're also low in carbs at only 17 grams per bar. Chocolate and almond are delicious together, and we can't wait to make these.
9. Edamame with Aleppo Pepper
Have you tried edamame before? These are often served as a free appetizer at many restaurants, and they are super delicious.
This recipe for Edamame with Aleppo Pepper from Eating Well makes an awesome snack that is full of protein. You could also add them to whatever lunch or dinner you're making.
According to Medical News Today, 155 grams have 18.46 protein grams and 13.81 grams of carbs. Since that serving size has 8.1 grams of fiber, you can subtract the fiber from the carb count, and you'll get 5 grams of carbs. This is a perfect high-protein, low-carb dish.
8. Herbed Tempeh Meatballs
Where do vegans get their protein? This is a question that many of us have wondered... and if we ask anyone following a plant-based diet, they will definitely tell us that they hear this question on a very frequent basis.
Tempeh (made of fermented soy) is an awesome source of protein: according to Healthline, three ounces has 15 grams of protein.
Knead to Cook has a great recipe for Herbed Tempeh Meatballs that is a perfect high-protein and low carb vegan recipe. You'll combine a block of tempeh, a flax egg (water plus flax meal), garlic, onion, and some spices and herbs and whip up an incredible dinner in no time. The vegan meatballs are also "breaded" in ground flax meal, black pepper, salt, and almond meal. Of course, you won't be adding the bun as shown in this photo.
7. Breakfast Kale Salad
Kale is pretty big right now (and has been for a while) and chances are, those following a vegan diet are definitely eating a lot of kale. Why not start the day with kale and a meal that has a lot of protein?
This recipe packs in the protein with a tofu scramble and tempeh bacon. It also has kale, turmeric, soy sauce, avocado, and a sauce made from cashew butter, a carrot, nutritional yeast, and a few other delicious ingredients.
6. Roasted Veggie Mason Jar Salad
Making a salad in a mason jar is just plain fun. Eating veggies can get old fast, and if you're plant-based, you know that they're a big part of your daily meals.
Thanks to this Roasted Veggie Mason Jar Salad Recipe from Eating Well, you can make a salad that is high in protein and low in carbs.
This salad has mixed greens, roasted vegetables, and pumpkin seeds. It's got protein from tofu and a cashew sauce. The recipe suggests making this for lunch and that's definitely a good idea, but we think that it would make a great dinner, too.
5. Tofu Scramble
Breakfast foods don't just have to be eaten in the morning. Many of us enjoy making breakfast for dinner (and even for lunch) and there's no reason why you can't do that if you follow a plant-based diet. Instead of eggs and bacon, make a tofu scramble.
Thanks to Livestrong, you can make this awesome idea: add nutritional yeast, salt, pepper, cumin, and turmeric to crumbled tofu and sautee it. You can also make a vegetable-packed tofu scramble with red pepper, spinach, or red onion. (Just skip the toast on the side to keep this meal low in carbs, of course.)
4. Roasted Cauliflower With Tahini Dressing
Cauliflower is a really trendy vegetable right now. It's pretty cool to think that veggies are becoming just as cool as junk food, if not even cooler, and that people are so interested in trying new foods and finding new ways to cook them.
Roasted cauliflower is a particularly delicious way to make it, and topping it with tahini is genius.
Tahini is a great vegan source of protein: according to Mind Body Green, "It has 20% complete protein, making it a higher protein source than most nuts." That's why this recipe from Chatelaine for Roasted Cauliflower with Tahini Dressing is so awesome.
3. Low Carb High Taste Zoodles
Zoodles are noodles made out of zucchini, and they're a cool way to stop eating pasta made from wheat flour and start eating pasta made from veggies. Plant-based eaters (and people who want to eat fewer carbs in general, including those following the Paleo diet) are super into them. They really do taste good and they really do taste like pasta if you sautee them, season them, and top them with sauce.
This recipe for Low Carb High Taste Zoodles from Hurry The Food Up is great since it's low carb thanks to the zucchini noodles and it's topped with protein-rich walnuts. It also uses cherry tomatoes and pesto, and you can use a vegan pesto when making this.
2. Protein Rich Mushroom Patties With Herbs
You're either a mushroom person or you're not... but hopefully you are because then you can whip up these Protein Rich Mushroom Patties With Herbs from Gourmandelle.
They are super healthy and made with hemp seeds, hemp protein powder, nutritional yeast, herbs like thyme and dill, and, of course, mushrooms. According to Vegan Protein Lab, 100 calories worth of these patties have 2.2 grams of carbs and 5.8 grams protein (and since the recipe makes 15 patties, we know that we'll eat a lot of them so we'll be racking up the protein).
1. Low Carb Smoothie
Livestrong has a really great idea for a vegan high-protein, low-carb breakfast: making a smoothie. When we think about a smoothie, we tend to think that it has to have bananas and other fruits, which might make it too high in carbs. But it doesn't have to be that way.
The publication suggests this formula: "Blend 1/2 cup of tofu with 1 cup of unsweetened almond milk, half an avocado, 1 tablespoon of unsweetened cocoa and a packet of carb-free artificial sweetener for a drink with 4 grams of net carbs."
This sounds perfect since it's low in carbs but has tons of protein from the tofu. Talk about an amazing way to start off your day.
SEE ALSO: Best Vegan Options at Fast Food Spots