If you need a reason to eat more nuts, this list is for you.
Nuts are a nutritional powerhouse for everyone especially those on a plant-based diet. They offer healthy fats, fibre and loads of nutritional benefits.
Studies have shown the health benefits of nuts in reducing inflammation and chronic diseases.
To top it off, nuts are one of the best sources of plant-based protein. These dense nuts are easy to include in your breakfast smoothie bowl, as a mid-afternoon snack or as part of a dessert that you want to feel better about!
Below are 5 high protein nuts that will help you reach your daily recommended protein intake!
Protein = 20g per 100g
Our obsession with almonds have sky-rocketed over the past years. It’s not hard to see why.
Almonds provide an impressive 20g of protein for every 100g. A 2016 review suggested that regular consumption of almonds reduces the level of LDL cholesterol and thereby, reducing the risk of heart disease.
These nuts are rich in vitamin E, niacin and essential minerals such as calcium, copper and iron. Almonds contain a high level of monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats which are considered as healthy fats. Their dietary fibre content is impressive too providing 12.5g per 100g which is 42% of the adult daily recommended value.
As with most nuts, almonds are one of the most healthiest snack foods out there. Enjoy them with your cake or in your muesli. I like to use almond flour and almond meal as an alternative to white flour when cooking. Almond milk is also a good alternative for cow’s milk and other plant-based milks but just remember that their nutritional content won’t be the same as snacking on raw, unprocessed almonds.
Protein = 26g per 100g
Peanut butter lovers rejoice! This is the cue for my two dogs to eagerly sit in front of me with saliva dripping down their tongues.
Since peanuts are so commonplace in today’s world, we often forget how amazing they are nutritionally. A 100g scoop of peanuts provide a wholesome 26g of protein. They are an all-rounder with high levels of thiamine, riboflavin, niacin, vitamin B6, vitamin E and folate. Peanuts also have a high amount of dietary fibre (30% DV) which can assist with daily bowel motions.
Peanuts are often considered as a functional food for famine relief. It’s high-protein, high-energy and nutrition-dense properties allows peanut-based pastes to be developed for malnourished communities.
As part of Vietnamese cuisine, we like to crush peanuts and garnish our vermicelli bowls!
Protein = 18g per 100g
Cashews are often used in Indian and Pakistani cuisine for sweets and curries. I like to use cashews to make my own plant-based cheese to curb my cheesy-nacho cravings and tomato-cheese toasties.
Of course, snacking on cashews are the best way to benefit from their nutritional content without extra calories.
Cashews are rich sources of copper, phosphorus and magnesium. They provide good levels of vitamin B6 and vitamin K. As with many nuts, cashews contain a good amount of monounsaturated healthy fats which can lower your bad cholesterol.
A 100g serving of cashews provide 36% of the daily recommended value of protein.
Protein = 20g per 100g
This may or may not be an excuse to eat more pistachio ice-cream!
Raw pistachios are very high in dietary fibre. A 100g portion of pistachios provides 10.3g of fibre, making up 35% of your recommended daily fibre intake!
Compared to other tree nuts, pistachios have a lower fat (although its healthy fats) and calorie content with higher amounts of minerals such as potassium and vitamin K. Pistachios are rich in thiamine (76% DV), vitamin B6 (131% DV) and phosphorous (70% DV).
It’s best to stick to raw, minimally processed pistachios to reap up their benefits. (So not an excuse to eat more pistachio ice-cream!)
Protein = 15g per 100g
I love walnuts in my cake and muesli. Their excellent nutritional value makes me feel good about eating my banana walnut coffee cake! I like to enjoy walnuts as a snack on their own or as an ice-cream topping and salad garnish.
At 15g per 100g, walnuts provide a pretty healthy dose of protein per serve. They are rich in manganese providing 163% of the daily recommended value in an adult. Other minerals of note include zinc, phosphorous, magnesium and iron. They are also high in vitamin B6 too.
Walnuts are also used for savoury dishes as well, notably in cooking chicken… but remember that jackfruit is an amazing chicken-substitute, so add your walnuts in those dishes!
6. Brazil Nuts
Protein = 14g per 100g
Did you know that in Brazil, it is illegal to cut down a Brazil nut tree?
Brazil nuts are a nutful of goodness.
They contain 14% of protein, 12% carbohydrates and 66% of fats. The majority of these fats are healthy fats, primarily made up of healthy polyunsaturated (mostly omega-6 fatty acids) and monounsaturated fats.
Brazil nuts are rich in a diverse variety of micronutrients. 100g of these South American nuts provide 30% of the daily recommended value of fibre. They are rich in magnesium (106% of DV), phosphorous (104% DV), thiamine (54% DV) and manganese (57% DV). Notably, they are considered to be the richest dietary source of selenium with 100g providing 34x the daily recommended value of selenium in an adult!
Studies have shown that consuming one Brazil nut per day for 8 weeks was sufficient to restore selenium blood levels and increase high-density lipids cholesterol in obese women.
I like to eat Brazil nuts as a snack with a consideration of how much I eat per day due to its potent selenium content. You can also enjoy them in cookies or even make a homemade brazil nut butter!
Thanks for reading to the end of this list guys! I hope this helps you choose your next nutty snack to give your muscles a bit of that extra booster! My favourite nuts are peanuts and brazil nuts (although I had to get used to the taste first). Let me know in the comments what your favourite nuts are?
- Bachelor of Medicine and Surgery (VI)
- Certified Personal Trainer (Cert III and IV)
- Fellowship of Nutritional and Environmental Medicine (Pathway)