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Tips for Increasing Protein in Your Diet

The following information gives tips for increasing protein in your diet.

If you have kidney disease or liver disease, or if you have been told to follow a low-protein or protein-restricted diet, this information may not be appropriate for you. Ask your doctor or dietitian if you are not sure.

 

 Food Uses

Hard or Semisoft Cheese (cheddar, Swiss, brick)

  • Melt on sandwiches, bread, muffins, tortillas, hamburgers, hot dogs, other meats or fish, vegetables, eggs, and desserts such as stewed fruit or pies
  • Grate and add to soups, sauces, casseroles, vegetable dishes, mashed potatoes, rice, noodles, or meat loaf.
Cottage Cheese or Ricotta Cheese
  • Mix with or use to stuff fruits and vegetables
  • Add to casseroles, spaghetti, noodles, and egg dishes such as omelets, scrambled eggs, and soufflés.
  • Use in gelatin, pudding-type desserts, cheesecake, and pancake butter.
  • Use to stuff crepes and pasta shells or manicotti.
Milk
  • Use milk in beverages and in cooking when possible.
  • Use in preparing food such as hot cereal, soups, cocoa, or pudding.
  • Add cream sauces to vegetables and other dishes.
  • Add a tablespoon of non-fat, dry powdered milk to each cup of regular milk, cream soups, and mashed potatoes.
 Powdered Milk
  • Add to regular milk and milk drinks such as pasteurized eggnog and milkshakes
  • Use in casseroles, meat loaf, breads, muffins, sauces, cream soups, puddings and custards, and milk-based desserts.
Nutritional Drink Mixes (Boost or Ensure)
  • Use nutritional drink mixes available in supermarkets and drug stores
  • Use instant breakfast powder in milk drinks and desserts
  • Mix with ice cream, milk, and fruit or flavorings for a high-protein milkshake.
Ice Cream, Yogurt, and Frozen Yogurt
  •  Add to carbonated drinks such as ginger ale and to milk drinks such as milkshakes.
  • Add to cereals, fruits, gelatin desserts, and pies; blend or whip with soft or cooked fruits
  • Sandwich ice cream or frozen yogurt between enriched cake slices, cookies or graham crackers.
Eggs
  • Add chopped, hard-cooked eggs to salads and dressings, vegetables, casseroles, and creamed meats.
  • Beat eggs into mashed potatoes, vegetable purees, and sauces. Add extra yolks to quiches, scrambled eggs, custards, puddings, pancakes, French toast, batter, and milkshakes.
  • Make a rich custard with egg yolks, high protein milk, and sugar.
  • Add extra hard-cooked yolks to deviled egg filling and sandwich spreads.
Nuts, Seeds, and Wheat Germ
  • Add to casseroles, breads, muffins, pancakes, cookies, and waffles.
  • Sprinkle on fruit, cereal, ice cream, yogurt, vegetables, salads, and toast as a crunchy topping; use in place of bread crumbs.
  • Blend with parsley or spinach, herbs, and cream for a noodle, pasta, or vegetable sauce.
  • Roll a banana in chopped nuts.
Peanut Butter
  • Spread on sandwiches, toast, muffins, crackers, waffles, pancakes, and fruit slices.
  • Use as a dip for raw vegetables such as carrots, cauliflower, and celery.
  • Blend with milk drinks and other beverages.
  • Swirl through soft ice cream and yogurt.
Meat and Fish
  • Add chopped, cooked meat or fish to vegetables, salads, casseroles, soups, sauces, and biscuit dough.
  • Use in omelets, soufflés, quiches, sandwich fillings, and chicken and turkey stuffing.
  • Wrap in piecrust or biscuit dough to make turnovers
  • Add to stuffed baked potatoes.
  • Eat calf liver or chicken liver or heart; these are especially good sources of protein, vitamins, and minerals.
Beans
  • Cook and use dried peas and beans and bean curd (tofu) in soups or add to casseroles, pastas, and grain dishes that also contain cheese or meat.

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