Go alternative in getting your protein requirements

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Challenge yourself to go meatless one night a week. Have fun experimenting with different proteins; you may be surprised to find a few new family favourites.

Legumes include dried peas, beans and lentils. They can be used to add protein to a dish or to replace some or all of the meat. Legumes have protein and fibre, which helps to keep you satisfied. They are also low in saturated fat. Be sure to increase the amount of legumes you eat slowly, and drink plenty of water. Easy ways to include legumes in your meal plan:

– Purée beans as a base for dips or spreads such as hummus.

– Thicken sauces or soup with puréed beans.

– Add canned legumes to pasta sauces, soups, stews or rice dishes.

– Have baked beans for a quick lunch.

– Make a bean salad for lunch or add rinsed canned beans to your tossed salad.

– Add black beans on your pizza.

– Make a bean burger or a burrito.

– Add cooked or canned lentils to burgers or meat loaves.

– Replace half of the fat in cookie, muffin and brownie recipes with puréed beans or lentils.

Tofu and texturized vegetable protein (TVP) are soy products that have a very mild taste and but will take on the flavour of whatever they are cooked in. Easy ways to include tofu and TVP:

– Chop firm tofu and add to stir-fries, soups, spaghetti sauces or lasagna.

– Purée soft tofu into dips, puddings, smoothies or shake recipes.

– Rehydrate TVP in a low sodium broth. Use in spaghetti sauce, lasagna, chili, shepherd’s pie, tacos and burgers to replace all or some of the ground meat.

After learning about all of the wonderful benefits of eating more meat alternatives and easy ways to include them, how can they be added into your weekly routine?


Health and Wellness Events at Sobeys


Meals Made Easy: Join our dietitian for quick and easy meal ideas to help you get out of a cooking rut. Sobeys Westside, March 25, 2-3 p.m. Seats limited. Email terry.jordan@sobeys.com or call 755-3645 to register.


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Terry Jordan, P.Dt., Sobeys Professional Dietitian


Terry’s Recipe Corner       

Quick Vegetarian Chili

Serves 6



1 2/3 cups     400 ml           Vegetable broth

1 1/4 cups     325 ml           Textured vegetable protein (TVP)

1 tbsp             15 ml             Canola oil

3 cups                        750 ml           Omelet mix (mushrooms, peppers, onion)

2 cloves                                 Garlic

3 tbsp             45 ml              Chili powder

1½ tsp            7 ml                Cumin

3 cups            750 ml           Diced tomatoes, canned, no salt added

1½ cups        375 ml           Tomato sauce, no salt added

2 cups            500 ml           Kidney beans, drained and rinsed

2 tsp               10 ml              Lemon juice




1. Put vegetable broth in a saucepan and bring to a boil. Add TVP, stir, cover

and let stand for 5 to 10 minutes.

2. Heat oil in a large pot on medium-high and sauté vegetables until tender.

Add garlic, chili powder and cumin and cook for 1 minute more.

3. Add tomatoes, tomato sauce, kidney beans and lemon juice. Turn heat to

medium low and simmer for 10-15 minutes.

4. Add soaked TVP to pot. Stir and simmer for 5 minutes or until hot.


Nutrition Information per Serving:


Calories                    256

Fat                              4 grams

Carbohydrate           38 grams

Fibre                           13 grams

Protein                       19 grams

Sodium                      388 milligrams


Tip: Serve this chili with a slice of whole grain bread or a whole wheat roll.


Source: Sobeys Dietitians

Organizations: Sobeys

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