High Protein Low Fat Foods

20. Artichokes

13 High-Protein And Low-Fat Foods For A Healthy Diet

We must take in high-protein foods to stay healthy. Protein is an essential part of any balanced diet and functions to repair worn-out tissues and build the body while also maintaining the normal functionality of the body’s systems. But what happens when the high-protein foods around us also contain too much fat and calories than we need? This would mean that we have to choose.

Here are a number of high-protein and low-fat foods for a healthy diet.

1. Plain Yogurt (Greek Yogurt)

In contrast to normal yogurt, plain or Greek yogurt is made by removing liquid whey during processing. What this does is that it produces a much more protein-rich kind of yogurt with less fat and a more creamy texture. If you are looking for high-protein and low-fat food, then this is a good pick.

It’s safe to say that 170 grams of Greek yogurt contain approximately 20 grams of protein. [1] You can have a Greek yogurt drink alongside a low-calorie snack like cheese or eggs. The good news is that you can even consider it a late-night snack because of the tryptophan it contains as tryptophan helps improve sleep quality.

2. White-Meat Poultry

White meat does not only taste good, but it contains a remarkable amount of essential proteins, too. On average, 100-grams of boiled or roasted turkey contains approximately around 30 grams of protein—that much! [2]

Most of the protein content in white meat is concentrated around the breasts and wings. This means that chicken or turkey breasts contain less fat than the other parts, such as the legs, thighs, etc would contain.

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Even the skin of poultry contains more fat than the breasts! For a high-protein, low-fat food, you can have poultry meat stripped of skin.

3. Egg Whites

More than half of the protein content of regular eggs is present in these eggs as the egg white. Agreed, the yolk contains a list of other great nutrients like cholesterol, but it also contains a large amount of fat and calories.

If you are seeking to pick a meal with little fat but high protein content, then we advise you to stick to eating just egg whites. Egg whites contain more protein and less fat than the yolk. [3]

Like yogurt, they can also be a great choice for late-night snacks as their protein content can improve the quality of your sleep.

4. Milk

Milk contains a variety of nutrients in the right proportion, and it is a great pick if you are seeking high-protein low-fat foods. Some of the nutrients in milk are calcium, phosphorus, and vitamin B12.

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Low-fat milk can be obtained as skimmed or dry milk. It tastes good and is good for you. Calcium is great for your bones and so are the other nutrients milk contains.

Please note, however, that milk might not be so great a pick for you if you suffer lactose intolerance as it can trigger diarrhea and gas.

5. Tuna Fish

Tuna is a healthy protein meal, anytime, any day. It is a fish found in saltwater. Its flesh yields high protein and little fat and calories. It also yields vitamins and some other great nutrients like Omega-3 fatty acids that act as antioxidants.

Tuna can be boiled and eaten hot or taken in combination with a variety of vegetables and—to some people—even cheese. It tastes good and is great for you even as a late-night snack. However, eating fried tuna fish isn’t so great because oil contains a lot of calories.

6. Shrimp

Shrimps are great seafood. They look like crawfish but are a bit larger. A great pick for a low-fat, high-protein diet, shrimps contain high contents of other nutrients such as Selenium and Riboflavin. Like most fatty acids, it contains Omega-3 fatty acids.

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The calories in shrimp are so low that about 3-ounces of shrimp contains about 20 grams of protein but barely 84 calories. [4]

Some people show allergic reactions after taking in seafood. This is due to underlying allergies, a situation where the body considers some compounds in seafood as antigens and attempts to fight against them. If you show allergic reactions after eating seafood, then you might want to refrain from taking them.

7. Bison

Bison, known by some as Buffalo, is considered more healthy and relatively fat-free compared to beef. It is believed that beef has almost double the amount of fat as does bison per ounce. [5]

Bison contains a lot of other nutrients and in larger quantities than beef. It also contains Omega-3 fatty acids and ALA.

Yes, Bison is not red meat, and red meat is mostly not advisable. But compared to beef, it is considered leaner meat and passes as a high-protein, low-fat food.

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8. Low-Fat Cottage Cheese

Cottage cheese is a protein-rich food. And even better, it contains low fat and calories. It tastes good and kids love it.

Cheese contains calcium, which is great for the development of bones and strong teeth. Most manufacturers even add Vitamin D, which helps your body absorb and make use of its calcium and is great for the parathyroid glands.

Cottage cheese can be flavored to suit demands. It goes along with other low-fat drinks and is a great late-night snack. Taking some cheese with Greek yogurt just before bed is great!

9. White-Fleshed Fish

White-fleshed fish are high protein-yielding meals and contain very little fat. 100 grams of plainly cooked white-fleshed fish should contain around 25 grams of protein and roughly 120 calories. [6]

White-fleshed fish contains anti-inflammatory fatty acids, such as ALA and Omega-3 fatty acids. They include tilapia fish, Pollock, flounder, haddock, etc.

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If you live in a riverain area, it might be easy to get white-fleshed fish as they are most probably sold in beach markets. But if you don’t, you can get white-fleshed fish in marts and stores. You’d get them as frozen food.

10. Legumes

Legumes are a group of plants in the family Fabaceae. A subgroup of legumes called pulses is a great source of protein and fiber yet contains low fat and calories. Pulses include beans, peas, and lentils. 100 grams of pulses are believed to average 8 grams of protein and a low percentage of calories compared to other foods.

Fibers contained in pulses and a variety of other foods are known to have an effect in lowering blood pressure and may help one pass out stool better. Fibers also aid digestive functions and defecation. Legumes can also be considered a healthy late-night meal.

11. Tofu

Tofu is made from soybean and is a constituent of most vegetarian meals. It yields a high content of protein, and plant-based protein is rich in essential amino acids.

Tofu also contains isoflavones. These antioxidants, isoflavones, are great at helping against heart disease, diabetes, cancer, and immune system disorders.

Vegetarians can substitute meat with Tofu. It even has that stringy texture meat gives. So yes, it’s a great substitute! Tofu is also a great source of vitamins, as are other plant products.

12. Liver

Liver is one of the most nutritious foods there is. The variety of nutrients it contains is vast. It contains folate, which is a B-vitamin and is needed to produce red and white blood cells in the body.

Liver contains Vitamin B, also known as riboflavin, which is essential to promote normal bodily functions, as well as iron, which is a major constituent of hemoglobin in red blood cells. It also contains copper, which is essential for thyroid function.

Although liver contains some amount of cholesterol and high calories, its high-protein and nutrient content makes up for this.

13. Guava

Guava yields a lot of protein and fibers. Still, it has few calories and so, would pass as a great pick for a low-fat, high-protein diet. It also contains almost thrice the number of vitamins contained in five medium oranges.

Guava tastes good and can serve a variety of functions. It can be blended into a smoothie and taken alongside cheese, or you can just eat it the way it is.


Low-fat, high-protein meals are great therapy for weight loss. Fat is known to cause health concerns when taken in excess. It could cause belly fat, weight gain, and even heart problems. This is why we are advised to stick to low-fat meals.

Proteinous foods, most of the time, are great low-fat meals, delivering a high content of protein and at the same time a low content of fatty acids and cholesterol.

When choosing low-calorie, high-protein foods, fish, white poultry, etc, are a great pick. Remember to always eat healthily.

20 High Protein Low Fat Recipes

Some years back, the high protein, high-fat diet, aka Atkins diet was the most popular diet. And for a good reason.

That’s because of the high protein content. Of all the macronutrients (protein, fat, and carbs), protein fills you up the most.

There is good news. Studies show that high protein diets that are low in fat are just as effective as the Atkins diet in helping you lose weight.

And they’re good for your heart too. That’s a win-win situation.

So, today I’m sharing 20 high protein low-fat recipes that will help you feel full, lose some weight, and stay away from the cookies. So, read on!

high protein low fat meals

1. Healthy Turkey Meatballs

Turkey Meatballs

When you think meatballs, you don’t usually think low fat. That’s because they’re often made with ground beef, which is higher in fat.

These ones, however, are made with ground turkey. Ground turkey, besides being low in fat, is packed with protein.

In fact, 3 oz. serving provides more than 40% of your daily protein needs. It is also a rich source of selenium, a powerful antioxidant.

But let’s face it, ground turkey tends to be tasteless. And no-one wants to eat tasteless meatballs.

These ones are packed with flavor. The spices, herbs, and veggies add tons of taste; if you’re looking to sneak veggies into your kiddos, this is the way to go.

You have chopped celery, bell peppers, and even spinach in these morsels of goodness. So, you get a ton of vitamin A and vitamin C to boot.

Now, to make them, you’ll need to chop up your onions, garlic, and celery quite finely. So, for extra convenience and to save time, you can use a food processor instead. This one should do the trick.

These meatballs make a great post-workout snack. But to make it a meal, you can serve them with whole wheat pasta and some tomato sauce. Yum!

Per Serving:

  • Calories: 183
  • Fats: 2.5g
  • Protein: 30.7g
  • Carbs: 12g
  • Fiber: 3.1g
  • Sugar: 2.9g

2. Vegan Philly Cheesesteak

Vegan Philly Cheesesteak

Sometimes, you just want a good old meaty, cheesy sandwich. But how do you do this when you’re vegan?

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Make this Vegan Philly Cheesesteak sandwich! It’s savory, hearty, cheesy, and totally hits the spot… without any meat or cheese.

And it’s packed with a whopping 49.5 grams of protein. And less than 5 grams of fat!

So, what’s the secret? Well, it’s a couple of things.

For the meaty texture, you’ll be using seitan. In case you don’t know what seitan is, it’s a meat substitute made from vital wheat gluten, and it has a steak-like texture.

A 3.0 oz serving provides more than 40% of your daily protein needs. That’s like what you would find in a 3.0 oz. serving of steak.

You can buy seitan prepackaged, but if you’d like to save some money, you can make it at home. For that, you’ll need to stock up on some vital wheat gluten, which you can find here.

And for the cheesy texture, you’ll be making your own provolone “cheese”. For that, you’ll be using firm tofu, lemon juice, spices, tapioca starch, and nutritional yeast.

The tapioca starch gives the cheese the stretchiness of cheese, while the nutritional yeast adds cheesiness. If you need to stock up on nutritional yeast, you can get some here.

Per Serving:

  • Calories: 400
  • Fats: 4.8g
  • Protein: 49.5g
  • Carbs: 39.2g
  • Fiber: 0g
  • Sugar: 6.4g

3. Mustard Baked Chicken Tenders

Mustard Baked Chicken Tenders

Kids can be very picky eaters. So, it can be very hard to making something that both you and your kids will love.

These baked chicken tenders are definitely kid-approved. They’re juicy, tender, and nicely seasoned.

The paprika adds sweetness, while the lemon juice adds some tang. Meanwhile, the whole grain mustard adds some heat, but nothing the kiddos can’t handle.

And since they’re packed with protein, they’re good for your kids. And for you.

Serve with air-fried potatoes or zucchini fries.

Per Serving:

  • Calories: 195
  • Fats: 4.6g
  • Protein: 28.5g
  • Carbs: 3.5g
  • Fiber: 1.4g
  • Sugar: 2.1g

4. Crispy Air Fryer Tofu

Crispy Air Fryer Tofu

Gameday is the perfect time to chill out. And (hopefully) watch your favorite team win.

But the game day can be a minefield of high-fat snacks. Like chicken wings and potato chips.

And as yummy, as they are, they’re not worth blowing your diet.

So, what can you do instead? Make this crispy air fryer tofu.

These tofu bites are addictive. They’re crunchy on the outside and tender on the inside, and taste delicious.

The soy sauce adds umami, while the Sriracha sauce adds a nice heat. If you don’t like it spicy, just omit the Sriracha sauce; they’ll still taste yummy.

The key to these bites being so low in fat is that you use an air fryer. If you’re following a low-fat diet, having an air fryer is a game-changer.

With an air fryer, you can use minimal to no oil to make your favorite fried foods. If you don’t have one yet, there’s a great deal on this high quality one right now.

Per Serving:

  • Calories: 63
  • Fats: 1g
  • Protein: 7g
  • Carbs: 4g
  • Fiber: 0g
  • Sugar: 1g

5. Best Ever Butter Chicken In The Slow Cooker

Butter Chicken

Butter Chicken is a staple at many Indian restaurants. But if you’re on a high protein, low-fat diet, it can be a big no-no.

That’s because many restaurants add tons of butter. And butter is pure fat.

This butter chicken is creamy, saucy, and packed with aromatic spices. The aroma of butter chicken wafting through the air will make your stomach growl.

But the best part is that it contains only 5 grams of fat. So, you can eat it without feeling guilty.

And the chicken is nice and tender. That’s because you let it simmer away in your slow cooker.

If you don’t happen to have a slow cooker, here’s a pretty budget-friendly slow cooker.

You’ll definitely want to mop up the delicious sauce. To do so, you can serve it with some basmati rice, or my favorite, naan bread.

Per Serving:

  • Calories: 288
  • Fats: 5g
  • Protein: 40g
  • Carbs: 18g
  • Fiber: 5g
  • Sugar: 10g

6. Zucchini Turkey Burger

Zucchini Turkey Burger

Summer is the perfect time for sitting on the deck. And making hamburgers and hot dogs.

But they tend to be loaded with fat. Just one hamburger can have more than 20 grams of fat.

And we all want to look good in our swimsuits, right?

This turkey burger is thick, juicy, and packed with flavor. What I love about it is that it doesn’t use a ton of ingredients.

All you need are 6 ingredients: lean ground turkey, zucchini, garlic, cumin, salt, and pepper.

You’ll notice that there are no eggs for the patty. Instead of eggs, you use grated zucchini for your binder.

Besides helping bind the patty, it keeps it moist, so it’s nice and juicy.

What you’ll love most about this burger is that it contains only 1.5 grams of fat. That’s 80% less fat than beef burgers.

Serve with your favorite toppings.

Per Serving:

  • Calories: 85
  • Fats: 1.5g
  • Protein: 17.8g
  • Carbs: 0.1g
  • Fiber: 0g
  • Sugar: 0g

7. Zucchini Boat Turkey Tacos

Zucchini Boat Turkey Tacos

Dinner parties are a great way to catch up with friends. And eat amazing food.

But appetizers can be a bit tricky. Especially when you’re trying to lose weight.

You want something that your guests will enjoy… And that you can enjoy it too.

These turkey tacos are here to the rescue. You have zucchini stuffed with nicely seasoned ground turkey and topped with Mexican cheese blend.

All served with homemade salsa. It’s mmm, mmm, good! You’ll be using a lot of spices. So, get out those measuring spoons.

Now, these turkey tacos have a Mexican theme. But you can also change out the spices, and top with mozzarella cheese and serve with marinara sauce if you want an Italian theme.

Per Serving:

  • Calories: 239
  • Fats: 7g
  • Protein: 34g
  • Carbs: 13g
  • Fiber: 4g
  • Sugar: 8g

8. 5-Ingredient Crock Pot Chicken Teriyaki

Crock Pot Chicken Teriyaki

After a long day at work, all you want to do is watch TV. And order takeout.

The last thing you want to do is cook.

What if you could come home to dinner already made? How awesome would that be?

This chicken teriyaki tastes just as good as takeout. The chicken is sweet and salty, savory, and has a nice umami flavor.

And making it is pretty easy. Just dump your ingredients in a crockpot and go. Easy, peasy.

Serve with brown rice, or if you’re really pooped out, you can saute some prepackaged cauliflower rice instead.

This could also be a nice high protein freezer meal.

Per Serving:

  • Calories: 312
  • Fats: 6g
  • Protein: 29g
  • Carbs: 33g
  • Fiber: 3g
  • Sugar: 8g

9. Skinny Chicken Fajita Soup

Chicken Fajita Soup

When it’s chilly outside, you just want to sit by the fireplace. And enjoy a warm bowl of soup.

This soup is hearty, comforting, and spicy…exactly what the doctor ordered. And it’s packed with Mexican flava, so it’s sure to transport you to warmer climes.

The fire-roasted tomatoes add a nice smokiness, while the fajita seasoning adds some heat.

Meanwhile, the bell peppers and red onion add some freshness. While the black beans and chicken make it hearty.

You’ll definitely want seconds. And why not? One bowl contains only 220 calories.

What I love most about this soup is that it makes 8 servings. So, you have plenty of leftovers, and it freezes quite well.

Just make sure you store it in air-tight freezer-safe containers to prevent freezer burn. These containers here are leak-proof and sustainable.

Check out more high protein soup recipes like this!

Per Serving:

  • Calories: 220
  • Fats: 3g
  • Protein: 20g
  • Carbs: 28g
  • Fiber: 6g
  • Sugar: 3g

10. Healthy Turkey Chili

Turkey Chili

A piping hot bowl of chili also works great when it’s cold outside. The trouble is, it’s often made with ground beef, which tends to be packed with fat.

This chili is chunky, yummy, and tasty. And it’s packed with ground turkey, kidney beans, and corn.

It’s not only packed with protein but fiber as well. In fact, one serving provides a whopping 70% of your daily fiber needs.

And fiber is not only great for your digestion but fills you up too.

Top with a bit of low-fat cheese.

Per Serving:

  • Calories: 336
  • Fats: 3.7g
  • Protein: 31.8g
  • Carbs: 46.7g
  • Fiber: 17.5g
  • Sugar: 9.5g

11. Southwest Shrimp & Black Bean Salad

Black Bean Salad

Eating salads is a great way to lose weight. But many times, salads taste like grass…and no-one likes eating grass.

This salad tastes like anything but grass. It’s tangy and savory and packed with sweet corn, black beans, ripened tomatoes, and succulent shrimp.

Shrimp is a great low-fat source of protein. A 3.0 oz. serving of shrimp provides close to 40% of your daily protein needs, and provides virtually little fat.

It is also an excellent source of selenium, a powerful antioxidant. So, eat up that shrimp!

Per Serving:

  • Calories: 234
  • Fats: 3g
  • Protein: 20g
  • Carbs: 33g
  • Fiber: 10g
  • Sugar: 0g

12. Skinny Lemon Pepper Chicken Breasts

Lemon Pepper Chicken Breasts

Chicken breasts are also great sources of low-fat protein. But, let’s face it- they can taste like cardboard.

These chicken breasts taste like anything but cardboard. They’re tender, juicy, and delicious.

It takes only 20 minutes to make them too. So, they’re perfect for those busy weekday evenings.

Serve with rice and a Garden salad.

Per Serving:

  • Calories: 160
  • Fats: 2g
  • Protein: 33g
  • Carbs: 1g
  • Fiber: 1g
  • Sugar: 0g

13. Low Fat Seasoned Tilapia

Seasoned Tilapia

Tilapia is a mild fish, so it’s great if you don’t like fishy tastes. And though it doesn’t have as many heart-healthy omega-3s as salmon, it still has more than say, chicken or beef.

Tilapia also happens to be high in protein and low in fat. It’s also an excellent source of potassium, which you need for healthy blood pressure.

This tilapia is perfectly seasoned and crunchy on the outside and moist on the inside.

Making it is pretty easy. Just brush some melted butter on your tilapia and season.

Then place on an oiled baking sheet and bake for 30 to 35 minutes.

Per Serving:

  • Calories: 188
  • Fats: 6g
  • Protein: 34g
  • Carbs: 1g
  • Fiber: 0g
  • Sugar: 1g

14. Skinny Buffalo Ranch Tuna Salad

Buffalo Ranch Tuna Salad

Health authorities recommend eating at least 2 servings of fish a week. Particularly fatty ones such as tuna and salmon.

That’s because fatty fish contain lots of heart-healthy omega-3s.

This tuna salad is as good to eat, as it is to look at. It’s spicy too; this ain’t your momma’s tuna salad.

The celery and carrots add some crunch, as well as some sweetness. They also freshen up the tuna salad.

Serve in lettuce leaves.

Per Serving:

  • Calories: 78
  • Fats: 2g
  • Protein: 11g
  • Carbs: 4g
  • Fiber: 1g
  • Sugar: 1g

15. Easy Vegan Sweet Potato Chili

Vegan Sweet Potato Chili

Eating healthy doesn’t have to be expensive. And this recipe proves it.

One serving of this vegan chili comes out to less $1.50 per serving. That’s about the cost of one cup of coffee.

This chili is hearty, chunky, and filled with deliciousness. And it doesn’t skimp on nutrition either.

One serving provides 18 grams of protein. It also provides 18 grams of fiber, which is more than 70% of your daily fiber needs.

It’s packed with kidney beans, sweet potatoes, and bell peppers. So, it contains lots of vitamins A and C, which are good for your immunity.

What I love about this dish is that it tastes like it’s been simmering for hours. But it hasn’t.

In fact, it takes only 5 minutes to cook. That’s because you use an Instant Pot.

Instant Pots are great for making food quickly, including foods that take longer to cook like dried beans. So, they save you both time and money.

If you’d love to spend less time in the kitchen, there’s a good price on this Instant Pot here.

Per Serving:

  • Calories: 420
  • Fats: 2.2g
  • Protein: 18g
  • Carbs: 89g
  • Fiber: 18g
  • Sugar:

16. Healthy Baked Lemon Garlic Cod

Lemon Garlic Cod

This lemon garlic cod is baked in a lemon garlic butter sauce. It’s flaky, tender, and packed with flavor.

Besides being naturally low in fat, cod is an excellent source of phosphorus, which you need for healthy bones. It is also rich in selenium, a potent antioxidant.

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This dish also takes less than 20 minutes to make. So, it’s perfect for busy weeknight dinners.

Serve with your favorite steamed veggies and some cauliflower rice.

Per Serving:

  • Calories: 258
  • Fats: 6g
  • Protein: 38g
  • Carbs: 12g
  • Fiber: 1g
  • Sugar: 0g

17. Low Fat Pesto Spaghetti Squash

Pesto Spaghetti Squash

Love some Italian eats? This is for you.

Now, your traditional pesto is yummy but full of fat. Just one tablespoon provides 9 grams of fat.

This low-fat pesto spaghetti squash is cheesy and creamy. And one serving provides less than 1.5 grams of fat.

The key to it being so low fat is that it doesn’t contain any oil. Instead, you use soft tofu to add a creamy texture, as well as protein.

It also doesn’t contain any cheese. To get the cheesy taste, you use fortified nutritional yeast, which adds extra protein as well as vitamin B12.

It is extremely important if you’re on a plant-based/vegan diet. If you need to stock up on some, you can get some here.

Not a fan of spaghetti squash? Not a problem. The pesto also works great on pasta and salads. Buon appetito!

Per Serving:

  • Calories: 112
  • Fats: 1.3g
  • Protein: 7.4g
  • Carbs: 20.5g
  • Fiber: 6g
  • Sugar: 0g

18. Low Fat High Protein Taco Soup

High Protein Taco Soup

Looking for a healthy alternative to Taco Tuesday? This is it.

Now, one beef taco can contain as much as 9.0 grams of fat. And goodness knows, you can’t stop at just one, right?

This taco soup has all the flavors of a taco, without all the fat. It has nicely browned meat, chili beans, corn, and kidney beans.

The green chiles add a nice heat, while the tomato sauce adds some tang. Meanwhile, the fire-roasted tomatoes add smokiness.

The key to keeping it low fat yet high in protein is the meat. Instead of ground beef, you use ground turkey breast, which drastically cuts down the fat.

This dish is a meal in itself, but if you miss the cheese, just sprinkle some on top. Just make sure that it’s low-fat cheese.

Per Serving:

  • Calories: 305
  • Fats: 6g
  • Protein: 22g
  • Carbs: 43g
  • Fiber: 11g
  • Sugar: 7g

19. Vegetarian Slow Cooker Lentil Sloppy Joes

Lentil Sloppy Joes

Vegetarian and Sloppy Joes? Yes, you read that, right!

You’ve got hearty, filling spicy lentil Sloppy Joes served on a bed of spaghetti squash. It’s definitely a much healthier alternative to regular Sloppy Joes.

Aside from being rich in protein, lentils are also rich in plant-based iron. They also contain a lot of bone-building minerals like magnesium, manganese, and phosphorus.

Meanwhile, spaghetti squash is rich in beta-carotene and vitamin C. So, it helps fight free radical damage.

Per Serving:

  • Calories: 358
  • Fats: 3.1g
  • Protein: 16g
  • Carbs: 69.7g
  • Fiber: 13.7g
  • Sugar: 11.9g

20. Lean Turkey or Chicken Tetrazzini

Chicken Tetrazzini

Some days are so stressful that you just want to chow on some comfort food. After all, comfort food is so comforting.

But comfort food is often packed with fat and calories. And there’s nothing comforting about that.

This turkey tetrazzini is creamy, cheesy, and packed with tender morsels of turkey/chicken breast. And it won’t expand your waistline.

The key to it being low in fat is that you use evaporated skim milk instead of butter and cream for your sauce.

You also use reduced-fat cheese instead of regular cheese.

This dish is a meal in itself. But if you like, you can serve some steamed broccoli on the side.

Per Serving:

  • Calories: 237
  • Fats: 2.3g
  • Protein: 23.2g
  • Carbs: 30.2g
  • Fiber:
  • Sugar:

What foods are high in protein?

Eating foods high in protein has many benefits, including muscle building, weight loss, and feeling fuller after eating. Though eating lots of protein may be beneficial, eating a balanced diet is an essential part of staying healthy.

Eating a protein-rich diet can help people lose weight because it can help them avoid overeating. A high protein diet can help build lean muscle when combined with exercise. Lean muscle helps to burn more calories throughout the day, which can also help with weight loss.

The following are some of the best high protein foods that a person can consume to help them lose weight.

black beans

High protein foods for weight loss include:

1. Black beans

Black beans are often an inexpensive source of protein. Black beans can be prepared in a variety of ways, making them a very versatile ingredient when preparing meals.

2. Lima beans

Some Lima beans offer about 21 grams (g) of protein per 100 g serving.

3. Corn

Yellow corn has about 15.6 g of protein per cup. Additionally, corn also contains a good amount of fiber and minerals, including calcium.

4. Salmon

Salmon is considered a fatty fish, meaning it is full of omega-3 fatty acids. Salmon is also an excellent source of protein and can help a person feel more satisfied at meals. Salmon may not be as budget-friendly as some other protein options.

5. Potatoes

Potatoes have a reputation as a starchy carb but are good sources of nutrients, including protein. One medium potato with the skin on contains just over 4 g of protein. People should use caution when preparing a potato as the extras that people often put on potatoes can increase the calorie count.

6. Broccoli

One cup of raw broccoli has almost 2.6 g of protein and contains a variety of nutrients such as folate and potassium. This powerhouse veggie only has 31 calories per cup.

7. Cauliflower

Cauliflower has a lot of protein with very few calories. One cup of chopped cauliflower has 27 calories and 2 g of protein.

8. Chinese cabbage

Also known as bok choy, this vegetable gets much of its calories from protein and is full of antioxidants.

9. Eggs

Eggs are an excellent source of protein, nutrients, and healthful fats. A variety of studies have shown that eggs can help people feel more satisfied and stop them overeating. For example, one study found that a group of women who ate eggs instead of bagels for breakfast felt fuller for longer and ate fewer calories throughout the day.

10. Beef

Beef offers high amounts of protein per serving. There is a range of different types of beef to choose from for weight loss. People following a moderate carbohydrate diet should eat lean beef whereas a person on a low-carb diet may eat fattier beef.

11. Chicken breast

Chicken breast is a lean source of protein. The majority of its calories come directly from protein when served without skin. A 100 g skinless chicken breast provides around 22 g of protein.

12. Oats

Oats offer about 13 g of protein per 100g. They are also a source of complex carbohydrates. Raw oats are easy to prepare as oatmeal and people can flavor them with a variety healthful foods, such as fruits and nuts. People should avoid prepared oatmeals as they often contain added sugar.

13. Tuna

Tuna is an excellent and widely available source of protein that also has a low calorie count. Tuna is a lean fish with minimal fat. Add tuna to salads, sandwiches, and snacks. Be careful with additional dressings, such as mayonnaise, as these can add additional, unwanted calories.

14. Tempeh

fried tempeh on a baking parchment

Tempeh comes from soybeans, like tofu. However, it has a higher protein count than tofu, offering about 20 g per 100 g. Tempeh may not be easy to find, but some grocery stores carry it in the refrigerated vegetarian section.

15. Spirulina

Spirulina is a bacteria that grows in both fresh and salt waters. It offers a variety of nutrients and protein from a small amount of its powdered form.

16. Legumes

Legumes are both high in fiber and protein. This makes them a good choice as part of a weight loss diet because they can be quite filling. Some people may have trouble digesting legumes, however.

17. Hemp seeds

People can use hemp seeds in salads as a substitute for croutons. Hemp seeds offer about 9.5 g of protein per 30 g. They are fairly easy to find in most grocery stores but can be expensive.

18. Sun-dried tomatoes

Sun-dried tomatoes are an excellent addition to many dishes and are widely available. They offer both a good source of protein, as well as additional nutrients and fiber.

19. Guava

Guava is a tropical fruit that may not be available everywhere. Guava is one of the most protein-rich fruits available. It also offers additional nutrients, such as vitamin C.

20. Artichokes

Artichokes are high in fiber and offer a good amount of protein. Artichokes are very versatile and are suitable for use in a variety of recipes. Artichokes are typically easy to find in most grocery stores.

21. Peas

Peas are high in protein, fiber, and other nutrients. Peas are inexpensive, easy to find, and can be used in lots of recipes.

22. Bison

Bison meat is another excellent source of protein. Bison is lean meat, offering less fat per serving than beef. Bison is becoming more available, and some people use it as a substitute for beef.

23. Pork

Lean pork is a good source of protein. Pork roasts and tenderloin are good choices for meals. People should avoid processed pork products such as bacon.

24. Turkey

Turkey packs a powerful punch of protein. Boneless turkey can provide about 13 g of protein per 100 g.

25. Chickpeas

Chickpeas are a healthful vegetarian protein that is high in fiber, and full of nutrients that support heart and bone health. They also ward off cancer.

26. Quinoa

Quinoa is one of the only complete sources of vegetarian protein. Quinoa contains all 11 amino acids needed to make a protein complete, making it an excellent choice for vegetarians, vegans, and those who do not eat a lot of meat.

27. Greek yogurt

Plain, low-fat Greek yogurt packs as much as 19 g of protein in a 200g pot. People looking to lose weight should limit or avoid Greek yogurt that contains added sugar. People should opt for the plain versions instead and jazz it up with some fruit or seeds.

28. Cottage cheese

This dairy product has an abundance of protein. It also offers a healthful serving of calcium and other nutrients.

29. Almonds

Nuts have a reputation for being high calorie but with a little bit of portion control, dry roasted or raw almonds can make for a filling, protein-rich snack.

30. Milk

Cow’s milk is an excellent source of protein for people that can tolerate drinking milk. A 1 cup (244 g) serving of milk contains 8 g of protein.

31. Lentils

Lentils pack a hefty dose of plant protein and fiber. They are very affordable and may promote heart health.

32. Pumpkin seeds

Pumpkin seeds are full of protein and minerals, such as magnesium and selenium. People looking to lose weight should stay away from oil roasted pumpkin seeds and choose dry roasted seeds, instead.

33. Avocado


Avocados not only contain protein and heart healthful unsaturated fat, but they also contain good levels of fiber and nutrients, such as potassium.

Portion control is necessary, however, since avocados are very calorie dense.

34. Pistachios

Pistachios are a reasonably low calorie nut that contain a big serving of protein.

One ounce of pistachios contains about 6 g of protein and a wealth of other nutrients including a high dose of B-6.

35. Chia seeds

This tiny seed packs more than 5 g of protein per ounce, along with omega-3s, fiber, and calcium. Vegans often use chia seeds as an egg substitute, and many people enjoy adding them to smoothies or salads for extra health benefits.

36. Nut butters

Nut butters, including peanut butter, contain a lot of calories, but a portion-controlled serving can add unsaturated fat and a dose of protein to a person’s diet. People wanting to eat nut butters healthily should stick to those with no added sugars or oils.

37. Halibut

This white fish is an excellent source of lean protein with nearly 30 g of protein in half a fillet.

38. Asparagus

Asparagus gets over one quarter of its calories from protein. It is also full of nutrients, including B vitamins and is low in carbohydrates.

39. Watercress

This cruciferous vegetable grows in water, has a surprisingly high protein content, and contains a full day’s worth of vitamin K. Adding some watercress to salads can really maximize its health benefits.

40. Brussel sprouts

Brussel sprouts are full of protein, fiber, and vitamins. A one cup serving contains almost 3 g of protein.

41. Spelt

Spelt is a type of hulled wheat that has a very high protein content. It has risen in popularity and is often available with the specialty flours.

42. Teff

Teff is a grass that is often ground down to make flour. This gluten-free food has a fairly high protein content with about 13 g of protein per 100 g serving.

43. Whey protein powder

Whey protein powder is used by many bodybuilders and athletes as a supplement to help increase muscle mass and strength. This powder is made from the proteins found in the liquid part of milk and can add a substantial amount of protein to a person’s diet.

It is essential for people to read the labels because whey proteins are often full of sugar.

There are many potential sources of protein people can choose from when trying to lose weight. Many protein sources offer additional nutrients that benefit overall health as well.

Last medically reviewed on January 26, 2020

  • Nutrition / Diet
  • Obesity / Weight Loss / Fitness
  • Cat 1
  • foodandfoodbenefits

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Alex Koliada, PhD

Alex Koliada, PhD

Alex Koliada, PhD, is a well-known doctor. He is famous for his studies of ageing, genetics and other medical conditions. He works at the Institute of Food Biotechnology and Genomics NAS of Ukraine. His scientific researches are printed by the most reputable international magazines. Some of his works are: Differences in the gut Firmicutes to Bacteroidetes ratio across age groups in healthy Ukrainian population [BiomedCentral.com]; Mating status affects Drosophila lifespan, metabolism and antioxidant system [Science Direct]; Anise Hyssop Agastache foeniculum Increases Lifespan, Stress Resistance, and Metabolism by Affecting Free Radical Processes in Drosophila [Frontiersin].
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