The other day I wanted to make a tasty banana bread but ended up also learning a lot more about protein. Protein is the material that our bodies use to build and repair tissue and to create enzymes and hormones. It’s important stuff.
There are several ways to get protein into our diet but for many people when they hear “more protein” they think “more meat”. However, it is important to note that everyone (not just vegans and vegetarians) can benefit from increasing their plant proteins consumption. Here’s why:
- Plant protein tends to be richer in essential nutrients. When choosing our protein sources it is important to consider the “protein package”, that is, the fats, carbs, micronutrients and phytonutrients that accompany the protein.
- There is significantly less saturated fat in plant proteins when compared to fatty meats.
- Plant protein sources like beans also contain protein, fiber and water. This trio keeps you satiated longer and can ultimately reduce your overall caloric intake.
- Meat production has detrimental environmental impacts. Incresing our plant protein consumption reduces the need for raising livestock for protein.
So how can you and your family complement (or replace) the animal protein in your meals with plant proteins? You can start by incorporating more of these in your daily diet:
- Nuts are the only plant protein sources that contain fats; it’s the good fats though.
- Legumes are rich in protein and also rich in fiber, calcium potassium. Pea protein is arguably a comparable substitute to whey protein.
- Whole Grain provides the least amount of protein per serving. However, I think we can all agree that whole grains can be a great addition to our diets (unless you have an allergy to whole grains).
Another convenient way to incorporate plant protein into your diet is through a plant-based protein powder like the ones made by PlantFusion. All of PlantFusion’s products are non-GMO and free of gluten, dairy, soy, artificial colors, flavors and preservatives. I started using their Complete Protein just after their new cool stylish rebranding. I’m enjoying it and my gut also seems to prefer it over other products I’ve used in the past.
It’s great in smoothies (I’ve been adding it to my berry smoothie nightcap) and recently, I used it in a few vegan baked goods recipes including this very nutty banana bread recipe below. This bread is moist, filling and tasty. Try it and let me know what you think.
Prep Time: 15 minutes . Cook Time: 40-45 minutes . Yield: Serves 12
1 Scoop PlantFusion Complete Protein Creamy Vanilla Bean
1 1/2 Cup Oat Flour (or rolled oats blend for 60 seconds)
1 Cup Mashed Overripe Banana (approx. 3 medium bananas)
1/2 Cup Raisins
1/2 Cup Walnuts, chopped
1/2 Cup Pumpkin Seeds
1/4 Cup Sliced Almonds
1/4 Cup Chia Seeds
1/2 Tsp Baking Soda
2 Tsp Vanilla Extract
1 Tsp Ground Ginger
1 Tsp Ground Cinnamon
1/4 Tsp Salt
Rolled Oats for garnish
1. Preheat oven to 350 F. Soak raisins in hot water for about 15 minutes. Then pat dry; set aside. Optional: Toast nuts for a few minutes to bring out their nutty flavor.
2. In a large bowl, combine dry ingredients: oat flour, PlantFusion Complete Protein Creamy Vanilla Bean, baking soda, raisins, walnuts, pumpkin seeds, almonds, chia seeds, ground ginger, ground cinnamon and salt. Mix so that ingredients are evenly distributed.
3. In another bowl, combine mashed bananas and vanilla extract. Mix well.
4. Pour wet ingredients into bowl of dry ingredients and mix until ingredients are well combined.
5. Line a small to medium bread pan with parchment paper. Scoop portions of dough from bowl and arrange into a loaf shape in the baking pan. Sprinkle some rolled oats over the top. Bake for about 45 minutes until tester comes out clean. Let loaf cool before slicing.
As enjoyable as this banana recipe is, I do not expect you to suddenly become vegan. However, I do want to encourage you to add more plants to your daily diet, even if it means starting with a simple breakfast smoothie made with PlantFusion’s Complete Protein.