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Complete Proteins beyond the usual beans & rice / hummus & whole grain

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I'm new to vegetarianism.  I'm avoiding eggs (although I find that they're in many pre-made things like pasta and some soups, etc which is ok and I'm eating them that way if that even counts).  I'm still consuming other dairy products- yogurt, cheese, milk, etc. 

What I am most interested in is creative complete proteins.  I keep scouring the internet for the info and can't find it.  If I hear/read one more suggestion of peanut butter on whole grain bread or hummus with whole grain pita chips or rice and beans I might spank an eggplant.  I'm not interested in learning more about the protein powerhouses, I just want to know which low protein veggies should be paired with each other to make a more complete protein.  For example, what can I pair the mushroom with on my salad?  What can I add to my cooked eggplant to make it more complete.  I'm already eating the protein powerhouses, I want to know how to make the "little guys" of the veggie protein world more complete.


Would love ALL advice!

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Well! may be soups?? Lentil soup with lot of leafy vegetables like spinach etc with other vegetables. Salads with edamame, garbanzo beans, black beans etc.

I eat 95% vegetarian food. But again 90% of my food is home made and ethnic. So, I pair most of the vegetables with corn, peas, beans etc. in curries and I made lot of dals (pulses) with leafy vegetables.

 ETA : add some stir fried tofu to your salads may be?

Quinoa, soy, hemp are all complete proteins... basically most nuts/seeds/legumes paired with whole grains = a complete protein. You don't have to eat them in the same meal either (if you don't want to) just want to make sure that you are  getting all 20 essential amino acids in your diet...if you have a bowl of rice, then some nuts/beans for snack...that would be one complete protein. Corn is also a whole grain that completes beans/nuts/legumes. 

Quinoa pasta tastes like normal pasta to me! You should give it a try... top it with veggies and you have a complete protein meal 


Besides, I believe the current thinking is that you do NOT need to eat paired meals, just so long as throughout the day you get a mixture in.

I think the worlds healthiest foods website may contain that info (not sure)

You do not really need to worry about protein combining as long as you are eating a wide variety of whole foods, especially if you are still eating some animal proteins.

May I ask why?  The theory of needing to consume "complete proteins" together was debunked decades ago.  So as long as you are eating a varied diet, you will to consume enough protein to meet your requirements.  Protein combining is completely unnecessary and a waste of time. s_n211/ai_17010257/


I'm a vegan which means no animal products, including secondary animal products as well. Such as eggs, cheese, mild, honey, etc. As long as legunes and rice are eaten in the same day the body assimulates the protein providing you eleminate caffine from your diet. Hope this helps and good luck.

I agree that thought of "complete" proteins is no long really something to be concerned with. When animals eat plants they are getting a mixture of different sorts of items. But all plants contain the amino acids necessary for the body to synthesis protein.

This book is very informative about how to eat a whole food plant based diet for optimum health and weight loss

As stated, eating 'complete proteins' is completely unnecessary. It's like saying for B vitamins to work, you have to get all of them in in one meal.

Not so,

Eat plenty of leafy greens, and veggies in general, nuts and seeds, nutrional yeast, and you'll be good. Whole grains, non-GMO soy products, beans, and legumes work too.

In fact, animal proteins from dairy and eggs are absolutely unnecessary! Why waste calories on them when you can have so many tasty, plant-based foods?? :D

Happy Vegging!

Yea...i remember when i went vegetarian in the 80s - every meal was like ok i'm eating pulses i better have something else to "make it complete" haha

Thank goodness we all know better now!  I'm now vegan (for about the last 4-5 years) and it would have been a real pain if i had to sit working out what balanced what!! 

Instead I just eat a variety of foods and am fine.

10 Replies