Get Your Protein: A Guide to 10 High-Protein Foods

High-Protein Foods

Getting enough protein in your diet is important for building and repairing muscle, bone, blood, and cartilage. While meat, poultry, and dairy are common sources of protein, there are also many plant-based foods high in protein. If you’re looking to boost your protein intake,

Here are 10 foods high in protein to consider adding to your diet:


With 6 grams of high-quality protein and numerous vitamins and minerals, eggs are one of the most nutritious high-protein foods available. Despite outdated warnings about dietary cholesterol, eggs can be part of a healthy daily diet.

For most people, the cholesterol in eggs has little effect on blood cholesterol levels. So there’s no need to limit yourself to just three eggs per week. Whether scrambled for breakfast, hard-boiled for a snack, or cooked into frittatas, stir-fries, and baked goods, eggs are a delicious and affordable source of protein to add to your high-protein diet.

Chicken breast:

With 31 grams of protein per 4-ounce serving, chicken breast is an excellent high-protein food. It is also lean meat, with little saturated fat. Chicken breast’s versatility allows it to be prepared in many healthy ways – bake, grill, roast, or sauté it with vegetables and herbs or spices for a balanced high-protein meal.

Use cooked chicken breast in salads, sandwiches, burritos, or pasta dishes. Chicken breast is an affordable and readily available source of high-quality protein to include in your high-protein diet on a regular basis.

Fish and seafood:

With 20-22 grams of protein per 3-ounce serving, fish and seafood are excellent high-protein foods to include in your diet. Salmon, shrimp, tuna, trout, and scallops provide lean protein and healthy omega-3 fatty acids that are good for your heart.

Shellfish like clams and mussels are also high in protein and full of nutrients. Whether grilled, baked, or added to pasta or rice dishes, stews, or salads, fish and seafood are extremely versatile high-protein ingredients. For peak protein intake and health, aim for 8-12 ounces of a variety of fish and seafood per week.

High-Protein Foods


Made from soybeans, tofu is a plant-based high-protein food. Half a cup of tofu contains 10 grams of protein, so it can be a great addition to a high-protein diet. Tofu absorbs flavors well from sauces and marinades and can be cooked in many of the same ways as meat, such as baked, grilled, roasted, or stir-fried. Because it is cholesterol-free and low in saturated fat, tofu is a healthy alternative to meat.

Whether added to stir fries, salads, noodle soups, or used as a meat substitute in dishes like burgers or tacos, tofu is a versatile high-protein food to include in your diet a few times per week.


With 18 grams of protein per cooked cup, lentils are a high-protein legume. They are also high in fiber, magnesium, and potassium. Lentils have a mild nutty flavor and tender texture that works well in many dishes. They are often cooked into soups, stews, and dals, or cooked and spiced for a side dish.

For a high-protein vegetarian meal, use cooked lentils in place of meat in burgers or meatballs, or add them to salads with grains and vegetables. As a healthy, affordable high-protein food, lentils are worth including in your diet a few times per week.

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Peanuts and peanut butter:

Peanuts and peanut butter are convenient and affordable high-protein foods. One ounce of peanuts contains 8 grams of protein and healthy fats, while two tablespoons of peanut butter also provide 8 grams of protein.

Whether enjoyed as a quick snack or included in recipes, peanuts and peanut butter are versatile high-protein foods to keep on hand. For the healthiest options, choose unsweetened, natural peanut butter and dry-roasted peanuts. In addition to protein, they provide beneficial nutrients like niacin, folate, and resveratrol. With many uses and nutrients, peanuts and peanut butter are budget-friendly high-protein foods to incorporate into your diet a few times each week.


With 6 grams of protein per ounce, almonds are a healthy high-protein snack. They are also high in vitamin E, magnesium, and riboflavin.

Whether enjoyed raw or roasted as a convenient on-the-go snack, or added to salads, yogurt, oatmeal, or granola, almonds are a versatile high-protein food. For the most nutrition, choose unsalted almonds and watch your portion since they are high in calories. With portability and nutrients, almonds are a smart addition to your high-protein diet and daily food choices. Have an ounce or two a few times a week to boost your protein intake and reap the many health benefits almonds provide.

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Pumpkin seeds:

With 9 grams of protein per ounce, pumpkin seeds are a portable high-protein snack. They are also high in zinc, magnesium, copper, and other minerals.

Whether raw or roasted, pumpkin seeds are a healthy high-protein snack with a satisfying crunchy texture and nutty flavor. Enjoy them by the handful, or sprinkle them on salads, yogurt, or oatmeal. Due to their small size, pumpkin seeds are easy to overeat, so keep an eye on portion sizes. With plenty of nutrition and uses, pumpkin seeds are a convenient high-protein food to include in your diet several times per week.


With 8 grams of protein per cooked cup, quinoa is a nutritious high-protein grain. It is also high in fiber, B vitamins, magnesium, and other nutrients.

Quinoa has a mild nutty flavor and tender texture that works as a substitute for rice or couscous. However, quinoa contains more protein and nutrients than these grains. It can be prepared simply as a side dish or added to salads, bowls, and casseroles. As a complete protein and high-protein whole grain, quinoa is a healthy addition to your high-protein diet. Include it in your meals a few times each week to boost your protein and nutrition.

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With 2.6 grams of protein per cup, broccoli is a high-protein vegetable. It is also high in vitamins K, C, and A, folate, and minerals like potassium and magnesium.

While 2.6 grams of protein may not seem like much, the protein adds up when eating several servings of broccoli per week. Whether raw with dip as a snack or cooked as a side dish, broccoli is a healthy high-protein food to include in your diet. Its mild flavor pairs well with dips and sauces and other vegetables. As an affordable and nutritious high-protein food, broccoli is worth incorporating into your meals several times per week


From eggs and chicken breast to lentils, nuts, and seeds, there are many delicious and versatile foods high in protein to choose from. Adding more of these protein-rich foods to your daily diet can help you meet your protein needs, whether you follow a meat-eating diet or a plant-based vegetarian or vegan diet. Consuming adequate protein is vital for the body’s health, growth, and proper functioning of the body, so include a variety of these high-protein foods as part of a balanced diet.

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