Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Post-Kid Kitchen: The Protein (Powder) Problem

Today, unfortunately, I have no recipe to share. What I have is a plea. I need some help. Some nutritional advice. Not the "eat this, don't eat that" type. I need hands-on, "swallow this without gagging" advice. (That's what she said.)


Since going gluten-free and swearing off the soy, I've become quite the vegan cliche. The old "Where do you get your protein?" cliche.

The answer is: Beans. Lots and lots of beans. (Yes, I know practically everything has a leetle bit of protein in it, broccoli is mostly protein, whole grains, nuts, sea vegetables, and on and on and on. But I'm thinking specifically about stuff that packs some serious protein punch.) Except that I can only eat so many beans.

According to my naturopath, I need at least 50 grams of protein every day. When she said it, I thought, "That's not so much." But when I actually started tracking my food intake and really looking at what I was getting, nutrition-wise, I realized that my soy-free, gluten-free vegan diet wasn't cutting it on the protein intake.

So I bought myself some soy-free vegan protein powder thinking, "Hey, I like smoothies, and I have a freezer full of bananas with one, Westley-sized bite out of them. Let's make protein shakes! Yeah!"

It seemed like such a simple idea. A simple idea that would get me at least 21 grams of protein per smoothie. But it turns out that this stuff? Is foul.


It claims to have a "neutral taste." I'd describe it more as bitter, and vaguely "planty." Rather than hiding in fruit smoothies, it makes the fruit taste like it. I'm sure enough chocolate, peanut butter, and sugar would hide the taste, but the idea here is to make something healthful. Preferably something healthful that I don't have to choke down.

This is not the only soy-free, vegan-friendly protein powder on the market. But I'd like to use up what I've got before trying something else. Any ideas or suggestions would be more than welcome! And while you're at it, tell me where you get your protein.