5 Vegan Proteins You Should Know

Nancy Chen

Hemp Protein

This protein is made from hemp seeds and is great for people who are eating Paleo or have issues digesting legumes or grains. It’s been my go-to protein for ages.

Hemp is a complete protein, which means that it contains all the essential amino acids that your body is unable to produce on its own. It’s also a good source of fiber and fatty acids.

Taste: Grassy

Recommendation: Add to fruit-based/green smoothies; it can be a little grainy on its own.

Pea Protein

Pea protein is a popular soy protein replacement in vegan protein bars and foods, as people are starting to move away from soy. By itself, it has a hint of the pea taste, but can be disguised when in different products. It can be easily digested by most people, but unlike hemp protein, it does not contain essential fatty acids.

Taste: Faint taste of peas

Recommendation: It’s rare to find this protein sold by itself; it’s usually mixed with other proteins or in the form of a protein bar.

Sacha Inchi Protein

This is a newcomer to the game. It’s a seed that can be eaten as a nut (they’re large, almost the size of hazelnuts). It’s high in omega-3 fatty acids and fiber. I mix it in with my yogurt frequently, along with maca and some other superfoods.

Taste: Nutty

Recommendation: Add it to PB/nut-based smoothies, yogurt, pancakes, or oatmeal.

Soy Protein

I was introduced to this way back in high school when my dad bought me a bunch of SoyJoy protein bars to supplement my lunch. This was a time when soy was super popular and it was the only vegan widely available protein.

PSA: They tasted disgusting.

As I transitioned to a Paleo lifestyle, I stopped eating soy, but there are benefits to it — it contains all the essential amino acids and can aid in muscle building.

Taste: Chalky

Recommendation: There are better tasting protein bars on the market now that contain soy protein isolate — if you’re going to buy them, look for ones with as little ingredients as possible.

Rice Protein

This is usually mixed in with soy or another type of protein in popular vegan protein powder blends. It does contain all the essential amino acids and its taste goes virtually undetected compared to other plant-based proteins.

Taste: Almost tasteless

Recommendation: Bake with it or make protein pancakes.

Note: The Juicery has hemp protein available as an added supplement to your smoothies; my go-to after I teach boxing or workout is to get a Faster Than Light with no dates and add in hemp protein and espresso or wheatgrass!

For the “5 Best Supplements for Your Favorite Juicery Drinks,” check out my fellow #JuiceNation ambassador blog post here.

Nancy Chen

Paleo-ish blogger and trainer at Title Boxing Club Boston. Nancy’s passion is helping people lead a happier lifestyle through transforming their health, fitness, and mindset in a realistic manner. Yoga enthusiast, finisher in the 2016 BAA Half Marathon, Tough Mudder and Spartan Race runner, and former competitive swimmer. You can usually find her with a smoothie bowl in one hand and some form of avocado in the other.

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