Easy Complete Protein Meals: Sample Ideas

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What is a Complete Protein?

In order to create a complete protein meal, it is important to first understand what constitutes a complete protein meal. As the name suggests, a complete protein meal is one that provides those eating it with all necessary amino acids. Amino acids are necessary in the formation of muscle mass, which is required for the performance of a number of day to day activities, including walking, climbing stairs, and rising out of a chair. Though meats are typically considered to be the best source of all necessary amino acids, when paired properly, grains, legumes, vegetables, and even some seeds can also be paired to create great, nutritionally sound meals. These meals are a great option for vegetarians, as well as for those who may be limited in their diet choices. Individuals should feel free to experiment in order to come up with the combinations that work best for them.

Peanut Butter Sandwich

One of the best, easiest complete protein meals is a plain old peanut butter sandwich. For best results, whole grain bread should be used in the formation of a peanut butter sandwich. This is not only a great choice for busy individuals who are always on the go, but is a great choice for children, vegetarians, and many others. Though the type of bread used in the sandwich can affect its nutritional quality, a variety of different types of peanut butter can be used, including cream, chunky, or other varieties altogether

Beans and Rice

Another of the most common combinations that can be used to create complete protein meals are beans and rice. Beans and rice are commonly used in Hispanic populations, but can also be used to successfully meat dietary requirements with other individuals. Beans and rice can be combined in casseroles, tacos, or other dishes, and can be spiced up with salsa, guacamole, and other sauces or seasonings. Those who have never cooked beans and rice should read packaging instructions carefully in order to ensure optimal results when it comes to preparing the food. In many cases, the estimated cooking time can be quite longer than originally thought.

Pasta and Broccoli

Finally, pasta and broccoli is another great complete protein meal that can be made with relative ease. For best results when preparing this meal, the broccoli should be grilled, baked, or stir fried. While boiling or steaming broccoli may seem easier, the nutritional quality of the food greatly diminishes with this cooking process. As with the bread used for a peanut butter sandwich, the highest nutritional quality is achieved with whole grain pasta. Though this product was once considered quite rare, it can now typically be found in most grocery stores. Typically, it should be cooked for a shorter period of time than traditional pasta in order to prevent sogginess.


No matter if you are a vegetarian, or simply looking for a new addition to your recipe repertoire, these easy complete protein meals will be sure to satisfy even the fussiest eater. Experiment with different herbs and spices to add a twist for special occasions.