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Top 6 Best Seeds for a Vegan Diet

Best seeds for a vegan diet
James

Seeds are a fantastic addition to any vegan diet. They’re packed with nutrients, thoroughly delicious and extremely versatile. What’s not to love?

Yes it’s true that pretty much all seeds are great. However, there are some that stand head and shoulders above the rest for those eating a plant-based diet.

The article below lists the best seeds for a vegan diet. It ranks my top 6 based on nutrient content, availability, price and taste. Although to be honest; they’re all awesome in their own way.

1) Hemp Seeds

Nutrition per serving (2tbs, 20g)

  • Calories: 111
  • Protein: 6.3g
  • Fat: 6g
  • Carbohydrates: 1.7g
  • Fiber: 0.8g

Looking for the ultimate seed to meet your protein needs? If so, look no further than the almighty hemp.

Just two tablespoons of these protein powerhouses is enough to cover 6.3g of your daily requirements with only 1.6 of carbs. Not to mention they’re superb nutrient density that will support your overall wellbeing.

Anyone that knows about the importance of essential fatty acids will also be impressed by the amount of ALA omega-3’s that hemp seeds possess. In addition, they also contain all 9 essential amino acids and are widely heralded as one of the best ‘complete’ vegan protein sources.

If hemp seeds aren’t a key component of your low-carb vegan diet; they probably should be. Include them in shakes, sprinkle them over salads and incorporate them into your baking. The possibilities are truly endless.

Hemp Seeds
Hemp seeds are a complete protein source

2) Flax Seeds

Nutrition per serving (2tbs, 20g)

  • Calories: 110
  • Protein: 3.8g
  • Fat: 8.6g
  • Carbohydrates: 6g
  • Fiber: 5.6g

Flax seeds should be a key part of any vegan diet. It’s a low-carb seed that’s rich in heart healthy fats, packs plenty of protein and can significantly boost your fiber intake.

The biggest touted benefit of flax seed lies in its high omega-3 fatty acid content. Each 2tbsp serving can provide you with around 4.8g of ALA, which is then converted into much coveted EPA and DHA omega-3 fats.

Fatty acids aside; flaxseeds also boast an impressive all-round micronutrient profile. Magnesium and B vitamins are often viewed as nutrients of concern for vegans, but they are abundant in these tiny seeds.

Flax seeds are an excellent low-carb vegan protein source that provide great health benefits. It’s an incredibly cost-effective seed that’s easily added to deserts and smoothies.

Ground flaxseeds are also a common vegan keto baking ingredient…they pretty much please everyone!

Vegan Flax Seeds
Flax seeds have plenty of omega-3 fats

3) Chia Seeds

Nutrition per serving (2tbs, 20g)

  • Calories: 97
  • Protein: 3.4g
  • Fat: 8.6g
  • Carbohydrates: 8.4g
  • Fiber: 6.8g

It’s easy to see why chia seeds are beloved by vegans and non-vegans alike. They provide a vast array of nutrients and plenty of protein, while also being a versatile addition to your meals.

One of the great benefits of chia seeds comes in the form of omega-3. Each 2tbsp serving gets you 3.4g of these essential fatty acids, making them one of the best vegan sources of omega-3 available.

The impressive chia seed is also a favorite amongst low-carb enthusiasts thanks to its 3.4g of protein and 6.8g of fiber per serving. In addition, they’re an excellent source of magnesium, calcium and iron; all of which should be prioritized by those on a plant-based diet.

It’s easy to see why the mighty chia is one of the best seeds for a vegan diet. Complete with essential fats, plenty of nutrients and budget friendly price; they’re an ideal addition to a plant-based diet.

Chia seeds
Chia seeds are healthy, versatile and cheap

4) Pumpkin Seeds

Nutrition per serving (1oz, 28g)

  • Calories: 126
  • Protein: 5g
  • Fat: 5g
  • Carbohydrates: 15g
  • Fiber: 5g

Pumpkin seeds are a nutrient rich addition to your vegan diet. Not only are they a great source of healthy fats, but they have a boatload of protein and a wide range of health benefits.

Let’s start with the impressive micronutrient content. Each serving of pumpkin seeds gives you a significant boost in zinc, magnesium, iron and copper among others.

The variety and density of nutrients found in pumpkin seeds has also led them to be linked with improved prostate health and reduced cancer risk. In addition, they have the capacity to help you maintain adequate protein levels without a high calorie intake.

Whether you’re looking to reach your protein goals or get more antioxidants onboard; pumpkin seeds are a clear winner. They can work wonders for your health and taste buds alike. Try adding a handful to your salads, you won’t be disappointed.

Vegan pumpkin seeds
Pumpkin seeds fight multiple diseases

 5) Sesame Seeds

Nutrition per serving (2tbsp, 18g)

  • Calories: 104
  • Protein: 3.2g
  • Fat: 9g
  • Carbohydrates: 4.2g
  • Fiber: 2.2g

Sesame seeds are a common addition to baked goods that add a surprising amount of nutrients. In fact, just 2tbsp’s of these tiny seeds can give you an impressive 3.2g of protein with only 4.g of carbs.

The oil-rich sesame seed is also a valuable source of micronutrients; with zinc, selenium and calcium all found in abundance. This vast combination of nutrients makes them a tasty way to boost your immune system and improve bone health.

With 9g of healthy fats per serving; they can also work wonders for heart health and cholesterol levels. You will also significantly up your fiber intake by including these seeds in your diet. Awesome stuff.

Did we mention that sesame seeds are super cheap and easy to incorporate into your diet? Well, they are! In fact, the famous and delicious ‘tahini’ salad dressing is just sesame seed butter. Who knew?!

Sesame seeds
Sesame seeds provide nutritional bang for their buck

6) Sunflower Seeds

Nutrition per serving (2tbsp, 18g)

  • Calories: 102
  • Protein: 4g
  • Fat: 10g
  • Carbohydrates: 4g
  • Fiber: 2g

Sunflower seeds are a popular addition to many breads and ‘health bars’. Most vegans will find themselves eating them on a fairly regular basis thanks to their prominence, availability and price.

Despite being small in size; sunflower seeds possess plenty of nutritional power. Eating just two tablespoons is enough to gain 4g of protein and a whopping 10g of heart-healthy fats.

Selenium, vitamin E, folate and zinc are some of sunflower seeds’ most prominent nutrients. Each of these can provide you with a host of health benefits, such as improved inflammation and reduced risk of heart disease.

The eye-catching sunflower definitely produces one of the best seeds for a vegan diet. Enhance your nutrient intake by including them in your breads and throwing them over salads. Or just eat them straight from the bag!

Sunflower seeds
Sunflower seeds make a great snack

Summing Up

Choosing and ranking the best seeds for a vegan diet was a difficult task. Each seed has such a profound and varied nutrient profile that can provide an array of health benefits. In addition, they all taste great in their own way!

If I had to give some advice; it would be to prioritize hemp, flax and chia seeds. They all contain a solid amount of omega-3 fatty acids that are vital for good health on a vegan diet.

Getting the full spectrum of seeds into your diet is a great way to obtain a complete micronutrient profile. It will also significantly boost your protein intake without ingesting a huge amount of carbs.

Another understated benefit of seeds is their availability and versatility. They’re for sale in a multitude of shops for extremely reasonable prices and make a super addition to so many meals.

In my opinion; seeds should certainly be enjoyed as part of a healthy plant-based diet.

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