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Chickpea Swiss Chard Stew and Lemon Green Beans: Vegetarian Recipes with Protein

Looking for some good vegetarian recipes with protein? 

So many people seem very concerned about how vegetarians get their protein. Really, it's not a worry if vegetarians eat a variety of healthy foods throughout the day.

A plant based diet can provide plenty of protein along with vitamins, minerals and anti oxidants.

The RDA (recommended daily allowance) is 46 grams of protein for an average sized woman and 56 grams of protein for an average sized man per day. We need protein for strong healthy bones, muscles, cartilage, and of course beautiful skin, hair and nails.

Click here to read more details on protein & how much protein we need

I always try to make tasty vegetarian recipes with protein for dinner that are full of flavor and nutrients for my family. I need them to be quick and easy dinners, too. Who wants to spent a lot of time cooking after a day of working?
chickpea swiss chard dinner menu

My younger daughter is all about rich flavor. She wants food with lots of taste. So I try to deliver! The garlic, onion, diced tomatoes, tomato paste, cumin, smoked paprika and cayenne pepper add rich, savory flavor with a little kick to my Chickpea Swiss Chard Stew.
chickpea swiss chard stew
This dish also gets richness from vegetable broth. My favorite veggie broth is Swanson Vegetable Broth. We love it's flavor. I go through tons of it!

You can add a little cheddar cheese to this stew for extra flavor and protein if you would like. I like to use cheeses that are made with vegetarian or microbial rennet instead of animal rennet.

Some vegetarian rennet cheddar cheese brands I use are Cabot, Organic Valley, 365 (from Whole Foods), Boar's Head, Crystal Farms, Sargento, Giant Brand and Trader Joe's. You can easily find them in supermarkets.

You can substitute spinach or another green instead of the chard.

This recipe uses 1/2 a can of tomato paste. I always freeze the other half in a container to use at a later time.
chickpea swiss chard stew recipe
The side of green beans gets a fresh and zesty taste from lemon juice with a bit of savory flavor from shallots. 
They are a bright compliment to the stew.

mixed green salad with carrots and peanuts
I like to serve a mixed greens salad with finely sliced carrots and store bought roasted peanuts dressed with olive oil, red wine vinegar, salt and pepper. A one ounce serving of peanuts will provide you with 7 grams of protein which is about 28 peanuts. That's a lot for a salad so figure you will eat about 14 so that's 3.5 grams. The mixed greens will provide you with about 2 grams of protein. 

Some store bought mini corn muffins are also tasty with this dinner. You can make your own corn bread or corn muffins. I frequently make homemade corn bread because it's easier to make it gluten free than try to find a good gluten free store bought muffin when my one daughter is following a GF diet. Plus, it's a super time saver to buy store bought muffins!!! Two mini corn muffins will provide you with about 3 grams of protein.
homemade corn bread
I try to prepare each item in the most time efficient order to get dinner made as quickly as possible.

I make the salad first and pop it in the fridge to keep it nicely chilled while I cook.

I always start cooking my rice before the main dish. It only takes about 20 minutes to cook but it gets better and drier as it sits in the pot off of the heat after it is cooked.
veggie chopper
This is one of my favorite kitchen tools. It is a scissor like chopper that makes chopping veggies quick and easy.

I work on the stew while the rice is cooking.

I do the beans while the finished stew stays warm resting in the pot.

Chickpea Swiss Chard Stew

chickpea swiss chard stew recipe
This hearty stew provides a nice dose of protein along with anti oxidants including lycopene, vitamin C, vitamin A, vitamin E, alpha and beta carotene, lutein, zeanthanthin, choline, quercertin, allcinin, plus it is gluten free and vegan. I like to serve this stew over jasmine rice. 

2- 15 ounce cans unsalted chickpeas, rinsed and drained
1 pound Swiss chard
1- 14.5 ounce. can of unsalted diced tomatoes
1 average sized yellow onion, about 1 1/2 cups, chopped
1/2 cup vegetable broth
3 ounces tomato paste (half of a 6 ounce can)
3 large garlic cloves, more if cloves are small
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 teaspoons cumin
1 1/2 teaspoons smoked paprika
1 teaspoon salt
dash of ground cayenne red pepper

Mince or press the garlic cloves into a small bowl.

Trim the Swiss chard leaves from the stems. Cut the stems into 1 inch pieces. Coarsely tear the leaves. Keep the stems and the leaves in separate bowls.

Heat olive oil in a medium sized pot or dutch oven over medium heat.

Add the chopped onions and cook, stirring occasionally until the onions begin to soften. About 3 minutes. 

Add the Swiss Chard stems and the minced garlic. Cook stirring occasionally until the onion and chard are soft. About 3 minutes.

Add the tomato paste. Stir a minute or two to mix. 

Add the cumin, smoked paprika, salt and cayenne red pepper. Mix for 2 minutes.

Stir in the vegetable broth, then the diced tomatoes, then the chickpeas mixing well. Bring to a simmer.

Add the Swiss chard leaves. Mix them in and reduce the heat to medium low. Cover and let simmer until the leaves wilt, about 10 minutes.

Serve over jasmine rice.

Serves 6. 

One serving of Chickpea Swiss Chard Stew provides about 8.5 grams of protein. 

Add 3 more grams of protein for a serving of jasmine rice for a total of about 11.5 grams. 

Want more protein? 

Add a 1/4 cup of shredded cheddar cheese on your serving for 6 grams more of protein making the total 17.5 grams. Of course, this dish is no longer vegan if you add the cheddar cheese. You could use vegan cheese, though!

lodge Carribbean Blue dutch oven

Lemon Green Beans with Shallots

lemon green beans with shallots recipe
Lemon Green Beans are a nice complement to the Chickpea Swiss Chard Stew. They add a small amount of protein and lots of vitamin C, vitamin A along with more vitamins and minerals including manganese.

1 1/2 pounds of green beans, trimmed
2 tablespoons minced shallots
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1 1/2 tablespoon olive oil
salt to taste
pepper to taste

Steam the green beans for 10 minutes. Steam longer if you like softer beans. Test with a fork for desired tenderness. 

While beans cook, combine the lemon juice, olive oil and shallots in a small bowl. Whisk together.

Add the green beans to a serving bowl. Pour the lemon juice mixture over the green beans. Toss to coat. Season as desired with salt and pepper.

Serves 6

One serving of green beans contains 2.2 grams of protein.

blue pasta salad bowls

Let's do the math to get the grand total of protein grams per serving for this Chickpea Swiss Chard Stew dinner with sides:

The stew- 8.5 grams
The rice- 3 grams
The cheese- 6 grams
The green beans- 2.2 grams
The salad- 5.5 grams
The mini muffins- 3 grams
The grand total is 28.2 grams of protein per serving.

That's half of the RDA for an average sized man in just one meal.

That's how a vegetarian gets good quality protein with a quick and easy dinner!

Dinner is the meal I really like concentrate on each day. I like cook something substantial since we are all on the run doing our work and school schedules during the daytime. Plus, you can eat the left overs (if there are any!) for lunch the next day! 

Follow me on facebook, instagram, and youtube for links to the Juicy Beauty Word to see what I'm making for dinner and get healthy beauty tips. 

       Have a Healthy Food Day! 
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