Did you know that if you're trying to drop fat and gain muscle, you should be getting at least 1 gram of protein per pound of body weight PER DAY? This may seem impossible at first, I know. By including a source of lean protein with breakfast, lunch and dinner you're already well on your way. However, it is also beneficial to include a protein source in your snacks throughout the day. Not only will this help you to stay full for longer, but it will also aid in muscle recovery after workouts.
Here are some quick and easy high protein snack ideas.
Protein shake: A classic protein shake is a great way increase your protein intake. One serving of protein powder has 1o to 20 grams of protein depending on the brand and type of powder. Be sure to taste test a small amount of powder before buying a big tub. You can mix the protein powder with just milk or water, or add a banana for some carbs.
Apple and peanut butter: This snack is a favorite for a reason! Apples have plenty of healthy fiber to aid in digestion. Peanut butter is loaded with healthy fats and has 7 grams of protein per (2tbsp) serving.
Cheese and sausage: Cheese has a surprisingly high amount of protein, about 7 grams per ounce! Choose a leaner cut sausage such as venison, it has a whopping 24 grams of protein per ounce.
Greek yogurt: A higher protein version of its yogurt cousin, greek yogurt carries about 15 grams of protein per serving. Buy the natural ones with no added ingredients or sugars. You can make your own variety of flavors by adding fruit, honey and any other ingredients you can dream up!
Jerky: Beef, turkey or buffalo jerky's are fantastic sources of protein (especially when you're trying to keep the carb count low). Jerky typically has about 10 grams of protein per serving. Just be sure to check the label before you buy, many jerky's have added sugars and preservatives that should be avoided.
Tuna and whole grain crackers: This is one of my all-time favorite snacks. The crackers are a good recovery carbohydrate and tuna (packed in water) is a great lean protein. Just one half a can (about 1 1/4 serving) has about 13-14 grams of protein.
Hummus: This protein-packed spread is made from chickpeas and has around 1 gram of protein per tbsp ( I usually eat between 5-6 tbsp). You may choose to eat hummus with pita chips, whole grain crackers, veggies or even apples.
Edamame beans: You may buy these tasty little beans already cooked and seasoned at the grocery store, or do it yourself at home! They taste great with lemon pepper seasoning salt, or a little curry. Edamame beans have around 30 grams of protein per half cup serving.
Pumpkin seeds: Pumpkins aren't just for Halloween! The (un-shelled) seeds are packed with protein and zinc (a great skin food!). They contain around 9 grams of protein per oz. Not the season for pumpkins? No problem! You can buy them at the grocery store already un-shelled and roast them at home with a variety of seasonings.