The Nutritional Value of Peas
When considering options for plant-based protein, peas might not be the first plant to come to mind. But did you know that peas are actually a powerful source of protein? That’s right — the nutritional value of peas is greater than you might think!
In addition to protein, peas and other legumes contain a number of vitamins and nutrients that are beneficial for eye health, the digestive system, the heart, and more. They may even be useful in preventing some types of cancer!
While peas on their own can be a good source of protein, pea protein powder contains a concentrated amount of protein — making it a great alternative to animal- or soy-based proteins.
Read on to learn more about the nutritional value of peas and pea protein.
The Nutritional Value of Peas
While green peas (also called garden peas) may be the first variety that come to mind, there are several different kinds of peas, including:
- Green peas (or garden peas)
- Sugar snap peas (or snow peas)
- Black-eyed peas (or cowpeas)
- Pigeon peas (or red-gram peas)
While the nutritional value of peas can vary by type, all varieties have their own health benefits and contain relatively high levels of protein. Green peas contain the largest amount of protein, while sugar snap peas contain the smallest amount.
In general, peas are usually low in saturated fat, cholesterol, calories, and sodium. They don’t cause rapid spikes in blood sugar and are rich in dietary fiber, which aids digestion.
What Is Pea Protein?
Pea protein usually refers to a powdered supplement that contains concentrated protein extracted from yellow peas. It’s easy to digest, completely vegan, rich in iron, and both gluten- and lactose-free. It’s also widely considered a complete protein, as it contains all 9 essential amino acids.
If you’re plant-based or vegan but have a sensitivity to common vegan protein options like soy (or if you just want some variation in your protein sources), pea protein is a great alternative.
How to Get More Pea Protein
How can you take advantage of all that peas have to offer? After all, there are only so many ways to eat these little, round vegetables. Not to worry — there are plenty of ways you can capitalize on the nutritional value of peas.
Here are some ideas to help you incorporate more pea-based protein into your diet:
- Add peas to your salads, stir-fries, or soups
- Enjoy lightly-steamed peas as a side dish or even part of a main course (they’re great plain with salt, but better with a dash of melted butter!)
- Use pea protein powder in your protein shakes
- Purchase healthy, plant-based snacks that contain pea powder (like our Outstanding Puffs!)
- Add pea protein to your baked goods (it’s almost flavorless)
- Mix pea protein into oatmeal or smoothies
- Snack on roasted green peas
And the list goes on! Any dish where you would normally include other vegetables, protein powder, or soy can become your next opportunity to get more of the nutritional value of peas.
Are You Getting Enough Plant-Based Protein?
For many vegans and plant-based eaters, getting enough protein can be a challenge. That’s why it’s so important to know what options are available for you to get the nutrients your body needs.
Taking advantage of the nutritional value of peas by consuming more pea protein — and whole peas — is a fantastic way to enrich your plant-based diet with extra protein, vitamins, and nutrients.
At Outstanding Foods, our Outstanding Puffs aren’t the only plant-based snack we’ve created that capitalizes on pea protein. Both our Outstanding Cheese Balls and our Outstanding Pig Out Crunchies use pea protein as a fundamental part of their plant-based and protein-packed recipes.
Looking for some new, tasty snacks that’re packed with plant-based protein? Find Outstanding Foods products in stores near you.