Whether you’re a health and fitness guru or you simply feel better when you eat a high-protein diet, it can be tough to get the protein you need to support a healthy lifestyle and metabolism. Here, we’ll check out some ways that you can sneak protein into your diet–without constantly loading up on tuna and chicken.
1. Load up on ricotta.
This creamy staple of Italian cuisine packs a surprisingly high protein punch. A half cup of part-skim ricotta (the perfect amount to enjoy in lasagna, on top of toast, or on another kind of protein with a sprinkle of fresh basil) adds 14 grams of protein to your diet. If you’re looking to add a touch of decadence to pasta sauce or soup, stir in a healthy amount of ricotta instead of heavy cream–you’ll love the way the extra protein makes you feel, and your family will be none the wiser that you gave them a healthier option.
2. Add yogurt to your morning.
It can be easier to add items to your diet instead of taking them away when you’re working to load up on the protein. There’s no need to change your current breakfast–enjoy what you already enjoy, plus a side of Greek yogurt. A single serving can add 18 grams of protein to your morning, helping you stay satiated through lunch. If you already enjoy fruit as a part of your breakfast, try dipping it into your Greek yogurt for a delicious way to get the protein you need. Prefer to drink your breakfast? Add a scoop of Greek yogurt to your morning smoothie for protein on the go.
3. Choose quinoa for your evening grain.
It’s comforting to have a warm bowl of rice or pasta in the evening, but tagging quinoa into your dinner game can help you get the protein you want, without sacrificing comfort or flavor. A bowl of quinoa has about eight grams of protein per cup. If your dinner includes meat or another protein (like beans), using quinoa as a base can help you get the high-protein dinner you need to support a good night’s rest.
4. Don’t forget about shakes.
We know–protein shakes don’t have the best reputation for being tasty, but it’s easy to sneak a scoop into your morning smoothie or bowl of oatmeal. If you’ve tried protein shakes before and haven’t been a fan, trying a different type of protein (like whey, soy, or pea) may provide you with the consistency that you prefer and a taste that you’ll love. If you find that protein powder bothers your stomach, start with half a scoop added to your breakfast and work your way up to a full scoop.