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Which Meat is Best for a Protein Boost?

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As everyone knows, protein is essential for building muscle and repairing the body’s tissues after any kind of intense workout. 

Veteran lifters generally have a set of well-tried strategies for getting enough protein in their diets each day, but for the novice who finds they’re relying a little too much on whey shakes, it’s always good to find some culinary inspiration.

Luckily, for every brand of protein powder on the market, you can find a tasty and sometimes obscure meat to add to the menu. Believe it or not, there’s more out there than just skinned, boiled chicken breast.

Without further ado, here’s a list of some of the best cuts of meat for upping your protein intake the tasty way.

(All nutritional information in this article is taken from the USDA food composition database1. All the values are for raw meat unless otherwise stated.)

Beef jerky (processed) — 33.20g of protein per 100g

Beef liver — 26g of protein per 100g

Beef steak (grass fed) — 20.85g of protein per 100g

Beef tenderloin roast (lean, trimmed to 0 inches fat) — 21.94g of protein per 100g

Buffalo steak (top round) — 21.44g of protein per 100g

Chicken breast (skinless) — 22.50g of protein per 100g

Chicken drumstick (boneless) — 19.19g of protein per 100g

Chicken liver — 16.92g of protein per 100g

Cod (wild caught) — 17.81g of protein per 100g

Duck breast (wild caught, boneless) — 19.85g of protein per 100g

Frog legs — 16.40g of protein per 100g

Goat — 20.60g of protein per 100g

Goose breast (skinless) — 24.31g of protein per 100g

Lambchop (leg, lean) — 21.10g of protein per 100g

Lamb shank (trimmed to 1/4-inch fat) — 18.58g of protein per 100g

Mackerel (wild caught) — 18.60g of protein per 100g

Ostrich tenderloin — 22.07g of protein per 100g

Pheasant breast (boneless) — 24.37g of protein per 100g

Pheasant leg (boneless) — 22.20g of protein per 100g

Pork bacon (cured, unprepared) — 12.62g of protein per 100g

Pork knuckle (cured) — 25.66g of protein per 100g

Pork leg (cap) steak — 21.64g of protein per 100g

Pork liver — 21.39g of protein per 100g

Rabbit (domesticated) — 20.05g of protein per 100g

Rainbow trout (wild caught) — 20.48g of protein per 100g

Salmon fillet (wild caught) — 21.24g of protein per 100g

Sardines (skinless, boneless) — 21.82g of protein per 100g

Tuna steak (wild caught) — 25g of protein per 100g

Turkey breast (skinless) — 21.89g of protein per 100g

Turkey drumstick (boneless) — 20.52g of protein per 100g

Turkey neck (boneless) — 16.51g of protein per 100g

Veal loin — 20.07g of protein per 100g

Venison (deer) — 21.50g of protein per 100g

 

…And the Vegetarian Alternatives?

Of course, there are far more than just meat-based protein sources. Whether you’re a dedicated vegan, vegetarian or are simply try to cut down on your meat intake; these vegetarian alternatives are a great shout.

Almonds – 21.15g of protein per 100g

Black beans (cooked, boiled) – 8.86g of protein per 100g

Buckwheat – 13.25g of protein per 100g

Chia Seeds – 16.54g of protein per 100g

Chickpeas – 20.47g of protein per 100g

Edamame – 11.2g of protein per 100g

Lentils (raw) – 24.63g of protein per 100g

Peanut butter (reduced fat) – 25.90g of protein per 100g

Pumpkin seeds – 30.23g of protein per 100g

Tofu (firm) – 9.04g of protein per 100g

 

1 https://ndb.nal.usda.gov/ndb/search/list?qlookup=05064

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