10 high protein foods you can grow at home

Whether you choose to eat vegetarian or just want to eat a little healthier, there are plenty of home-grown high protein foods and vegetables that can add protein to your diet. Here’s our top 10 protein-rich foods you can grow in your garden at home. Not only do they taste great, they’ll save you money too.

1. Spinach

Spinach is one of the most well known non-meat foods high in protein. It grows best in cooler regions and can be planted in a sunny spot in well-draining soil from April to September. Sow seeds in a pot or directly into the garden bed on a cool day and cover with nutrient-rich mulch

2. Kale

Kale is a great source of protein and is easy to grow year-round in cooler regions and during winter in hotter climates. Sow seeds in potting mix before transferring seedlings to the garden. Kale loves cool weather, including frost, which improves its flavour. 

Vegetarian protein meal idea: 
Spinach and Kale are delicious in a summer salad or in pasta during winter.

3. Peas

You can eat almost every part of the sprawling pea plant—from peas to pods and the shoots they grow on. You can really make the most of this source of vegetarian protein. Peas like cooler climates and the seeds can be sown directly into well-draining soil from April to September then covered with nutrient-rich mulch. 

4. Edamame

Edamame are found in Asian dishes and they grow in warm climates. Sow near corn, strawberries or cucumbers, directly into the vegie patch in spring when the soil is warm. Pods will be ready to pick when bright green and filled with seeds. 

5. Green beans

There’s so many different green beans that you’re bound to find one that suits your garden—even in tropical areas. Sow seeds in a large pot with well-draining soil, or straight into the vegie patch with full sun.

Vegetarian protein meal idea: 
Toss your peas and beans into salads, or steam for a delicious side dish.

6. Quinoa

Quinoa is a great source of vegan protein. It’s drought tolerant and you can sow seeds directly into the garden at the end of spring, in full sun. When the leaves fall, seed heads can be harvested before drying.

Vegetarian protein meal idea: 
Quinoa is cooked in water like rice, allowed to cool, then tossed through a salad. It goes great with kale or spinach.

7. Sunflowers

Sunflowers are hardy plants that love full sun and are a staple vegetarian high protein food. Sow sunflower seeds directly in the garden bed in spring, alongside corn. Then harvest the seeds 11 weeks later and throw them into salad, muesli or trail mix.

 

 

8. Broccoli

Broccoli is high in protein and requires well-prepared, nutrient rich soil with a neutral pH level. Sow directly into the vegie patch from September to February in cooler regions and July to October in hotter climates.

Sweet young broccoli are popular with white cabbage moths so cover them with fine netting. After cutting the initial large head at the base, your broccoli will continue to grow smaller side shoots (known as broccolini). 

9. Corn

Corn are wind-pollinated, so sow seeds in a block rather than a line. When flowers appear, shake them to release pollen onto the thread-like “silk” at the end of the young corn ears. Before harvesting, pierce a kernel. If it releases a milky substance, it’s ready. 

Vegetarian protein meal idea: 
Stir-fry your broccoli and grill the corn on the barbeque for a simple crowd pleaser.  

10. Hazelnuts

Hazelnuts grow on a small, beautiful tree and are sold as a small plant. Suitable for cool and warm climates they should produce nuts in three to four years. You’ll need to apply blood and bone in spring, and chicken manure in autumn.

Vegetarian protein meal idea: 
Cook hazelnuts into biscuits, fudge and chocolate

Ready to plant?

Check out the full range of seeds and plants available at your local Bunnings Warehouse.
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Health & Safety

Please make sure you use all equipment appropriately and safely when following the advice in these D.I.Y. videos. You need to be familiar with how to use equipment safely and follow the instructions that came with the equipment. If you are unsure, you may feel it is safest to consult an expert, such as the manufacturer or an expert Bunnings Team Member.

Grave health hazards are linked to asbestos, which may be in homes built up to 1990. Health hazards may result from exposure to lead-based paints in older materials and copper chromium arsenic (CCA) treated timber. For information on the dangers of asbestos, lead-based paint and CCA treated timber and tips for dealing with these materials contact your local council's Environmental Health Officer or visit our Health & Safety page. You can also use a simple test kit from Bunnings to indicate the presence of lead-based paint.
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