Protein is an essential nutrient that the body requires to build tissues such as bones and muscles. Protein is found in animal-based and plant-based foods. However, with the exception of soy protein, animal protein sources are complete proteins, meaning they contain all of the essential amino acids the body cannot make. According to the National Institutes of Health, most people usually require between 50 and 65g of protein each day. Protein needs are higher for some athletes and pregnant and nursing women.
Bagel Breakfast Sandwich
A breakfast bagel sandwich made with eggs, turkey sausage and cheese provides a high-protein meal for breakfast. Eggs provide about 6g of protein each, while one turkey sausage patty provides about 6g per patty, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture Nutrient Data Laboratory. Whole-grain bagels typically contain more protein than plain bagels. Adding low-fat or part-skim cheese to your breakfast sandwich will increase the protein content of your meal.
Spaghetti with Meat Sauce
Spaghetti provides a high-protein meal when following a few simple tips. The more meat you add to your spaghetti sauce, the higher your meal’s protein content will be. Using whole-grain pasta will help increase protein in your meal, and sprinkling parmesan cheese on top will further increase your protein content.
A beef chuck, shoulder pot roast cooked and trimmed free of fat provides about 31g of protein per 100g serving, according to the USDA Nutrient Data Laboratory. To increase the protein in your meal, serve a high-protein vegetable such as peas with your pot roast. Serve baked potatoes topped with cheese to further increase the protein content of your meal.
Make lean beef burritos by choosing a lean ground beef or steak. Increase the protein content of your beef burritos by adding pinto beans and cheese to the burrito and using whole-grain tortillas instead of white flour tortillas. One frozen beef and been burrito contains about 10g of protein, according to the USDA Nutrient Data Laboratory.
Chicken Stir Fry
Grilled chicken is high in protein and typically low in fat. Make a stir fry using extra chicken for a high-protein dinner. Use brown rice instead of white rice to further increase the protein content of your meal. Vegetarians may substitute a high-quality vegetable protein such as tofu for the chicken in stir fry.
For a quick high-protein meal when you don’t have time to cook or when you’re on the go, mix whey, casein or soy protein powder with cow’s or soy milk. Add peanut butter to your shake for extra protein and additional calories. Some protein shakes when prepared contain 30g or more of protein per serving.