the infamous question asked of all vegetarians and vegans: "where do you get your protein?" I love to answer because its what I consider to be a teachable moment. There are a host of foods that are packed with protein but its all about the combination and quantity eaten of these foods to ensure your diet is protein packed.
First thing to know is that all protein is not the same. Animal and dairy protein are higher in protein per serving and easier to digest. While, plant proteins are lower in protein per serving and harder to digest. Thus, it is important for non-meat eaters to eat a variety of protein sources that are complete proteins.
A complete protein contains 8 of the essential amino acids our body needs. A serving of animal protein contains all 8 amino acids and is thus a complete protein within itself. However, plant, grain, nut, and bean proteins lack one or more of the essential amino acids and are thus incomplete proteins.
Complete proteins: All 8 essential amino acids, found in animal meat and dairy (some grains).
Incomplete proteins: Lack one or more of the essential amino acids, found in all other food groups outside of meat and dairy.