Vegan Keto: 13 Effective Ways To Get Enough Protein

Protein is one of the biggest hurdles in the way of vegans to the Keto diet. When you think about all the foods that you can’t eat on the diet, you can’t help but think there is no way to naturally get enough protein if you were to go through the Keto diet.

I’m here to tell you that it doesn’t have to be this way. I’m offering you today 11 tips to get more protein into your Vegan Keto diet, all from healthy sources

1- Recalculate Your Protein Intake Needs After Getting Into Ketosis.

This is a crucial step in your way to getting enough protein. I made sure to write it here as a tip, so you don’t skip it.

Ketone bodies prevent the amino acid, Leucine, from oxidizing. That way, a lot of the amino acids in your body will be recycled over and over again. Thus, you don’t have to consume them (as food or supplements) as much as you used to before.

As you can see, the Keto diet is very protein-sparing.

That means, when your body gets into ketosis, it requires less protein than it priorly did. That requires you to calculate again and figure out the new amount of protein your body needs now.

2- Make Nutritional Yeast Your New Cheese

I bet you came across multiple vegan cheese recipes before, probably some using nutritional yeast, too. However, the special thing about this one, made from nutritional yeast, is that it not only tastes and looks great, it’s also extremely easy to prepare from scratch. This is because its ingredients are very basic.


1 cup (240 ml) of coconut milk

4 tbsp of nutritional yeast flakes

3 tbsp of coconut flour

1/2 tsp of salt

1/2 clove of garlic, crushed

(a pinch of paprika and onion powder to taste)


1- Put all the ingredients in your pan.

2- Stir with a whisk until everything is well combined.

3- Turn the stove on and bring the mixture to a boil.

4- Turn the heat down to low, and let it simmer for a couple of minutes.

5- Enjoy!

It’s best served hot out of the pan. The texture will thicken and need a little more milk the next time if it goes in the fridge.

3- Embrace The Wide Variety Of Dairy Substitutes Out There.

We have just used a milk substitute to create a substitute for cheese! And we’re just scratching the surface. There is an endless world of substitutes for everything these days. You name it, and I’ll give you either a recipe or a recommended product.

However, since you’re on two diets at the same time, Vegan and Keto, it’s gonna be a little bit harder for you to find substitutes for certain foods. Some of the substitutes you should look for are:

  • Cashew Cheese.
  • Almond Milk.
  • Hemp Milk.
  • Nutritional Yeast (Can be used as a substitute for Parmesan Cheese).
  • Vegan Sour Cream.
  • Coconut yogurt.
  • Coconut butter.
  • Cashew cheese.
  • Vegan cream cheese.

You might have to spend more time in order to find these, but they are gonna save you a lot when preparing recipes. Reading recipes when you’re on two strict diets can be frustrating when you keep coming across ingredients you can’t use. So, I advise you to spend some time finding which of these substitutes (and many others out there) work for you. Do that and you’ll make it easier for yourself to eat enough fat and to stick to the diet in the long run.

4- Let Pea Protein Be Your Savior

You’ll be making it harder on yourself than it should if you don’t get some of the nutrients you need from supplements. There is the process of finding the right ones depending on your diet and needs, but they make things a lot easier. They’re fast, convenient, and if you pick the right brands, trustworthy of delivering the macro and micronutrients to help you get enough of them in your diet.

In this case, we’re talking about Pea Protein. If you were already vegan before starting Keto, then you’re probably familiar with it. If not, I want to point out something that might be non-obvious. When you first read pea, you probably thought “Peas? On Keto? How?” But what you gotta understand is that pea protein is prepared by grinding dried peas and then extracting only the protein out of the mix.

This protein powder is fantastic. It was of great help when I tried both vegan keto. And it’s really inexpensive on Amazon.

What makes pea protein great is that it pack all the nine essential amino acids, that your body can’t produce on its own. It’s also good for muscle building since it is also quality branch-chained amino acids (BCAA). It helps keep you fuller for longer. It’s also a great source of iron, and that’s great news since you don’t consume meats.

5-Don’t Neglect Seitan

This is something everyone talks about. And if you’ve been vegan for a long time, chances are you know seitan. And you should. If you don’t have health problems with gluten, seitan should be a consistent part of your diet. It has some iron and calcium, which you can’t get from their biggest sources, meat and dairy, respectively. It has a monstrous 25% protein! That is close to the protein percentage of the richest meat in protein, chicken. (Which has 25-31% of protein)

Moreover, it can be prepared in a variety of ways that are sure to fit into almost any recipe. And remember, condiments are vegan. And most of the time, condiments are responsible for over 80% of the taste. So if you know how to cook well, you’re gonna find yourself enjoying all these substitutes I’m recommending to you as if they were the real stuff.

6- Keep Tofu and Tempeh In Your Diet

If you don’t have a problem with soy products, these are great, protein-packed gems that, again, you’re probably familiar with if you’ve been vegan for a while. Along with seitan, these are the most famous substitutes for meat for Vegans. And they are Keto-friendly, too. It should be noted, since we have just discussed seitan, is that the latter is the closest texture to the real meat, compared to tofu and tempeh.

What I like about tofu and tempeh is that they don’t have strong flavors. They are always trying to know which recipe they are in order to blend in and absorb the taste.

They averagely have 15g of protein in every 100g.

7- Allow Sacha Inchi To Be A Part of Your Diet

If you haven’t already heard about Sacha Inchi, it’s a plant that has been cultivated for centuries in the Amazon Rainforest. It’s most known for three forms, the seed that can be consumed roasted like other seeds and nuts, leaves, that are usually made into a tea, and finally the Sacha Inchi oil.

What makes this plant special and worth mentioning is the amount of protein, fiber, and omega-3 it packs. Anecdotally, It’s said to have a lot of health benefits on the heart and cholesterol levels, but there are currently not enough studies made on this plant in specific.

8- Fava Bean Protein Is A Must-Try

Just like pea protein, this is a legume that is naturally high in carbs and sugar, but it’s another story for its protein powder form. Roasted fava beans too, are grounded and then protein is isolated from the powder to provide Fava Bean Protein.

What is also spared through the process are the vitamins and minerals found in fava beans. For example, zinc, magnesium, iron, copper, manganese, and a range of B vitamins.

This is cool because you’ll be harvesting all the micronutrients from plant-based foods that you normally can’t eat because they have a high amount of carbs and sugar. This is why supplements make your life a lot easier, by helping you met your macros, vitamins, and minerals without you exceeding your carb limit and risking getting out of ketosis. Invest in a high-quality, affordable product like this on Amazon, that is both healthy and delicious, and you’ll be doing yourself a big favor.

9-Nuts Should Become Your Best Friends

You should really appreciate the fact that nuts are allowed on Vegan Keto. If you pick the right kinds of nuts and incorporate them moderately into your diet, they can help you get more fat, protein, omega-3, potassium, magnesium and a lot more. If you look deep enough into the numbers below, you’ll mostly find that nuts have bigger amounts of fat than protein. However there are some that do have a decent amount of protein as well.

What I suggest you do is have a mix of nuts in a small plate as a snack. That way, you can have some that you like more, and some that give you more protein. Generally, if you do that, you’re more likely to get more of the nutrients you need from nuts.


They are probably the most popular nuts out there. I’m actually a decent fan of them and even a bigger fan of its butter, which we’ll be getting into it a bit. Peanuts have a big portion of protein, compared to other nuts.

Calories: 164

Protein: 7g

Fat: 14g

Total carbs: 6g

Fiber: 2g

Net carbs: 4g

(In every ounce (28g))


If you’ve been researching keto information, you’ve probably come across almonds and all of their glory and variable derivatives: Almond butter, almond milk, almond flour, and almond: the nut. Almond dominates the Keto diet. Here are some insights on what the actual nut consists of:

Calories: 164

Protein: 6g

Fat: 14g

Total carbs: 5g

Fiber: 3g

Net carbs: 2g

(In every ounce (28g))


This is my number one favorite Keto-friendly nut. If your eye has gotten used to reading the nutrition facts of Keto-friendly foods, you can easily see how this nut was created specifically for Keto dieters. Though, has less protein.

Calories: 196

Fat: 20g

Protein: 3g

Total carbs: 4g

Fiber: 3g

Net carbs: 1g

(In every ounce (28g))

To make you love it even more, this nut has been proven to improve insulin sensitivity, which is huge when you’re trying to lose weight in general, and especially when you’re trying to take on the Keto diet.

Macadamia Nuts:

We owe this great nut to Australia. But lately, it has been very easy to find in the United States and pretty much everywhere in the world. It doesn’t have a relatively big amount of protein, but I like because It keeps you full for longer, and has positive effects on diabetes, and protecting your brain from numerous diseases, including, Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s, and oxidative stress. It’s also naturally high in fat, as you can see:

Calories: 204

Fat: 21g

Protein: 2g

Total carbs: 4g

Fiber: 2g

Net carbs: 2g

(In every ounce (28g))


Walnuts are some of the tastiest and healthiest nuts out there. They have been proven to improve brain functionality, as well as lowering the levels of LDL. They are also a great source of vitamin E, among other vitamins and minerals.

Calories: 185

Protein: 4g

Fat: 18g

Total carbs: 4g

Fiber: 2g

Net carbs: 2g

(In every ounce (28g))


Are you missing all the chocolate you’ve cut out since you’ve started Keto? Well, I’ve got a vegan-keto-friendly treat just for you. Hazelnuts are some of the tastiest nuts that can heal your chocolate nostalgia. You can use its flour, when appropriate, when making Keto-friendly desserts, as a substitute of regular flour, thereby adding a great flavor to the recipe.

Calories: 178

Protein: 4g

Fat: 17g

Total carbs: 5g

Fiber: 3g

Net carbs: 2g

(In every ounce (28g))

Brazil nuts:

All of the nuts we’ve talked about so far are great, and for many of you, might be enough. However, what makes Brazil nuts also special and worth mentioning, is that it’s an incredible source of Selenium, a trace mineral that is crucial for reproduction and muscle building.

Calories: 185

Protein: 4g

Fat: 19g

Total carbs: 3g

Fiber: 2g

Net carbs: 1g

(In every ounce (28g))

Here’s a table that summarizes the main differences in macros in each nut:

FoodServing SizeCaloriesProteinFatTotal CarbsFiberNet Carbs
Almonds1 ounce (28g)1656g14g6g3.5g2.5g
Almond flour1/4 cup (25g)1506g11g6g3g3g
Brazil nuts1 ounce (28g)1655g18g3g2g1g
Cashews1 ounce (28g)1504g12g10g1g9g
Macadamias1 ounce (28g)2072g23g4g0.5g1.5g
Hazelnuts1 ounce (28g)2206g22g8g4g4g
Pecans1 ounce (28g)2012.7g20g4g3g1g
Pistachios1 ounce (28g)1507.5g12g7.5g3g4.5g
Walnuts1 ounce (28g)1904g18g4g2g2g

10- Give Seeds The Attention They Deserve

Not many people give enough attention to seeds. Don’t be one of them. They are packed with fat, omega 3, protein, and many other nutrients that you need when you’re following a very strict diet like Vegan Keto. Here are my top favorites seeds and what makes each of them special.

Hemp seeds:

In addition to having a decent amount of protein (35%!) and fat, this seed was proven to improve high blood pressure and protect against Alzheimer’s.

Each ounce of Hemp seeds packs:

Calories: 155

Protein: 9g

Fat: 14g

Total carbs: 2g

Fiber: 1g

Net carbs: 1g

Chia Seeds:

These tiny, black-and-white seeds easily win my number one pick any day of the week. They are packed with fiber, protein, and omega-3. Moreover, studies have shown more weight loss and anti-inflammatory effects for people who regularly consume Chia seeds. Each ounce packs:

Calories: 138

Protein: 5g

Fat: 9g

Total carbs: 12g

Fiber: 10g

Net carbs: 2g

Ways to incorporate it into your diet include adding it to stir-fry recipes, smoothies, salads, salad dressings or even using its powder instead of breadcurmbs for coating meat or chicken.

Flax Seeds:

I hope you haven’t had the bad experience with this seed that I keep hearing from people, which is always due to one mistake: eating it raw, right from the bag. First of all, you won’t be getting the same benefits if you’re eating it that way, and second; you’ll hate it because it’ll keep sticking in your teeth. Here are two great ways for you to enjoy this amazing seed:

1) Grind it. If you want a nutty, buttery addition to a smoothie or a porridge.

2) Roast it. If you want a crunchy addition to a recipe.

Each ounce of flax seeds has:

Calories: 131

Protein: 6g

Fat: 9g

Total carbs: 9g

Fiber: 8g

Net carbs: 1g

Sesame Seeds:

With tons of antioxidants, and proven protection against heart disease and so much more, you should really consider including this seed into your diet.

Each ounce of sesame seeds has:

Calories: 160

Protein: 5g

Fat: 13g

Total carbs: 7g

Fiber: 5g

Net carbs: 2g

FoodServing SizeCaloriesProteinFatTotal CarbsFiberNet Carbs
Chia seeds1/4 cup (30g)1455g10g12g10g2g
Pumpkin seeds 1/4 cup (30g)1809g14g4g3g1g
Sesame seeds2 tablespoons (18g)1033.2g9g4g2g2g
Sunflower seeds1/4 cup (30g)1606g15g6g3g3g
Hemp seeds1/4 cup (30g)1559g14g2g1g1g

11- Incorporate Nut And Seed Butters More Into Your Day

Nut and seed butter are amazing for Keto. It’s a real blessing being able to eat them on Vegan Keto, thanks to their low-carb portions. Not only do they pack fats, but they also have decent amounts of protein and different micronutrients to help you meet your macros and still be eating healthy. Sure, there are some types better than the others, and I will have a table down below, showing you the basic differences in macros, for you to figure out what fits best into your diet.

The following are my favorite types of nut and seed butter. Whatever you choose to purchase, just make sure it has no added oils or carbs. You want to buy natural nut/seed butter without any additions or flavor enhancers. If you can’t find these in the market, you can make them yourself. You’ll only need a good food processor.

1- Almond Butter

2- Pistachio Butter

3-Peanut Butter

4-Sunflower seed butter

5- Walnut Butter

6- Hazelnut Butter

FoodServing SizeCaloriesProteinFatTotal CarbsFiberNet Carbs
Coconut butter1 tablespoon (16g)1051g10.5g4g2.5g1.5g
Almond butter1 tablespoon (16g)983.5g9g3g1.51.5g
Cashew butter1 tablespoon (16g)943g8g4.5g0.5g4g
Macadamia butter1 tablespoon (14g)972g10g2g1g1g
Sunflower seed butter1 tablespoon (16g)992.8g9g4g1g3g
Tahini1 tablespoon (15g)892.6g8g3g1g2g

12- Tahini Should Definitely Have A Place In Your Diet

Tahini is basically a seed butter. It’s made from the grounded sesame seed. However, I wanted to talk about it separately here because of the many different ways it can be consumed.

It has a very special taste to it that can go with many recipes. While I love it with salty and sour recipes, as it’s mostly known as a crucial ingredient in Hummus, it can also go with desserts. There’s a very popular dessert in the Middle East called Halva, it tastes heavenly. There’s even a Keto-friendly version of it (that is vegan, too!).

It has an impressive amount of fat, and a decent amount of protein.

If you think you’re already sold on Tahini, wait til you read its nutritional facts:

Each ounce (2 tbsp) of Tahini packs:

Calories: 180 calories

Protein: 6g

Fat: 16g

Carbs: 6g

Fiber: 2g

Net carbs: 4g

13- Add Intermittent Fasting To Your Routine

Intermittent Fasting, when done right, and for the appropriate window of time, can trigger Autophagy in your body. If you haven’t heard of it yet, autophagy is an incredible process that when turned on, allows our bodies to eat their damaged cells in order to make new ones. Autophagy literally means to “eat itself”.

This is an incredible process that can help us fight inflammations, early aging, and many various diseases. What’s important for our discussion today, is that autophagy can also reuse old proteins and amino acids, which reduces the amount of protein you need to be consuming on a daily basis.

This is amazing news for those with busy, outside-the-house lives, that barely find the time to eat. If you’re that person, then you’re already not eating that often. It’s gonna be a lot easier for you to do intermittent fasting at a 16:8 or a 18:6 pattern, test reducing your protein intake as a start, and watch the miracle happens.


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Nabeel Kallas

I'm a medical doctor with a lot of passion for Keto & Intermittent Fasting. They have completely changed my life and I am beyond honored to help you experience that same change. I'm ready when you are. Read more here.

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