9 Meatless Snacks Loaded With Iron
It’s a common misconception that eating a predominately plant-based or vegan diet results in an iron deficiency. Although it’s true that animal products are good sources of iron, there are plenty of delicious vegetarian options available to fulfill your daily requirement. Plant-based ingredients like lentils, chickpeas, dark leafy greens, chia and hemp seeds, and dried fruits all contain varying amounts of iron.
And while iron found in meat (heme iron) is more easily absorbed by the body than iron from plant-based products (non-heme iron), research shows that eating foods that contain vitamin C or other heme-containing foods together enhances the iron’s availability. For example, a bowl of beans with chopped red peppers or tofu with broccoli.
This Monday, use your mid-day snack sessions to boost your iron levels with these recipes for nutritious (and delicious) plant-based snacks.
Black Bean Brownies
Yes, you heard right. This recipe for black bean brownies by the Plant Based RD blurs the line between sweet and savory. Although it eats like a dessert, the addition of black beans, quick oats, and almond butter gives this batch of brownies a more complete nutritional profile that includes extra protein, fiber, and iron.
Sure, you can have regular hummus (a favorite Meatless Monday recipe), or you can make this sweet, guiltless chocolate hummus from Eat Plant Based. Just toss some chickpeas, cocoa powder, nut butter, maple syrup, and a plant-based milk into the blender and give it a whirl.
Creamy Vegan Spinach Dip
A delicious way to get your vitamins and nutrients, this vegan spinach dip recipe created by From My Bowl is just as creamy and delicious as the traditional version. Using silken tofu and vegan cream cheese adds an extra pop of protein to go along with the iron naturally found in spinach.
Crispy Vegan Tofu Nuggets
These crispy vegan tofu nuggets from Jessica in the Kitchen are just as tasty as the fast-food variety, but you’ll be able to recognize all the ingredients. Marinating the tofu nuggets before breading and frying infuses them with salty, smoky, garlicky flavor.
Pumpkin Chickpea Fritters
Chickpeas are packed with protein, vitamins, and minerals, including iron. These yummy pumpkin chickpea fritters are everything: crispy, savory, and just the right amount of sweet. The combination of seasonings and ingredients makes these fritters the perfect holiday appetizer.
These crispy quinoa cakes from Oh She Glows are loaded with flavor, texture, and vegetables. The combination of cooked quinoa, rolled oats, grated sweet potato, and sunflower seeds makes for a well-balanced bite with just the right amount of sweetness and crunch.
Roasted Pumpkin Seeds
Pumpkin seeds are a good source of iron, but their tough outer shell leaves something to be desired. Roasting the pumpkin seed crisps up the shell making it crunchy, yet tender. You can sprinkle them with salt, or you can make one of these more elaborate roasted pumpkin seed recipes created by Wholefully.
Tomato and Basil Lentil Chips
Lentil chips are a great alternative to potato or tortilla chips. Loaded with protein and iron, these tomato basil lentil chips from Nest and Glow are beautiful to look at and easy to eat. Now all you have to do is imagine all the amazing creations you can dip them in!
Zippy Black Bean Dip
Hummus was so 2010. Up your dip game with this zippy black bean dip. It’s one of the easiest recipes to make; simply throw all the ingredients (onion, cilantro, tomato, jalapeño, spices) into a blender, puree until smooth, and serve with sliced vegetables.
Click here for more Meatless Monday recipes. When posting pictures of recipes to your social media network, tag @MeatlessMonday use #MeatlessMonday to show the plant-based community your creation.