18 High-Protein Vegetable Stew Recipes


Add some jazz to meatless Mondays with these meatless stews that pack protein.

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Once the temperatures drop below 60 degrees, we declare it’s time to start making soups and stews. And even though most traditional stews start with a hunk of meat, the truth is, you can have hearty, delicious and comforting stews without any meat at all.

Yes, there are tons of vegetarian stews out there that are not only delicious but full of healthful vegetables and legumes that will keep you full for hours. And if you have a hard time getting your recommended servings of vegetables, veggie-based stews are a great way to trick yourself into eating more greens.

We tapped two registered dietitians to help us find drool-worthy, high-protein vegetable stew recipes with at least 10 grams of the satiating macro.

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1. Moroccan-Inspired Pumpkin and Chickpea Stew

You get nearly 18 grams of satiating fiber from one serving of this stew.

  • 325 calories
  • 16.3 grams of protein

“Pulses, which include dry beans, lentils, beans and chickpeas are the key to high-protein vegetarian stew,” Amy Gorin, RDN, plant-based dietitian and owner of Plant-Based Eats, says. “In fact, pulses are key components of the updated Dietary Guidelines for Americans, which recommend beans, peas, lentils and chickpeas as part of a healthy diet.”

2. Chipotle Black Bean and Quinoa Stew

Instead of traditional rice and beans, try this stewed version made with whole grain quinoa.

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  • 312 calories
  • 17 grams of protein

“I love that this recipe has a very low amount of sodium, which is rare for a stew,” Gorin says. And since you’re starting with dried black beans instead of the canned version, you have more control of the sodium levels and flavor profiles of your stew. To make this a well-balanced meal, try adding a side of your favorite vegetables for a boost of vitamins and minerals.

3. 15-Minute Cannellini Bean Stew

If you’re short on time, you can still enjoy this 15-minute stew that tastes like its been simmering for hours.

  • 593 calories
  • 31.8 grams of protein

This quick and easy stew gets most of its protein content from cannellini beans, Gorin says. And because this recipe uses canned beans, opt for the low-sodium or no-salt-added variety and add salt as needed.

4. Butternut Squash, Chickpea and Lentil Moroccan-Inspired Stew

This Moroccan-inspired stew has a whopping 28 grams of fiber per serving.

  • 431 calories
  • 27.4 grams of protein

This recipe’s two plant-based proteins — chickpeas and lentils — are what make this stew more satiating. “Chickpeas are considered both a protein food and a vegetable when aiming to meet recommended food intakes,” Gorin says.

Consider this vegan chili recipe the perfect blend of chili and bean soup.

  • 382 calories
  • 15.9 calories

Pinto beans are the star of this Mexican-inspired stew, and it’s loaded with flavor. “You get a lot of vegetables, including onion, tomato paste, avocado and green cabbage,” says Gorin. Not to mention, the hominy in this stew is a source of both protein and fiber.

6. Lentil and Mushroom Stew Over Potato-Parsnip Mash

This hearty stew is full of protein and fiber making it super filling for the entire family.

  • 470 calories
  • 15 grams of protein

“Lentils are a great source of fiber, protein, potassium and vitamin B9,” Amanda Nicole, RDN, says. Plus, they’re naturally low in sodium and saturated fat. If you’re vegan or looking to reduce or omit dairy, Nicole recommends adding plant-based milk, vegan butter or extra virgin olive oil to your mash instead of milk and butter.

7. Mexican-Inspired Red Lentil Stew

Double this recipe and have a meal for now and a freezer meal for later.

  • 268.6 calories
  • 14.91 grams of protein

Combining vitamin C-rich foods like tomatoes with lentils increases the body’s ability to absorb the non-heme iron in lentils, Nicole says. Adding the powerful antioxidant spice turmeric helps to protect our body from oxidative stress and is linked to a reduced risk for chronic disease and cancer, she adds.

8. Sweet Potato and Chickpea Peanut Stew

This West African-inspired stew is a one-pot-wonder.

  • 490 calories
  • 17 grams of protein

The combination of sweet potatoes and peanut butter adds loads of health benefits to this stew. “Sweet potatoes are a great source of fiber, antioxidants and provitamin beta-carotene, which the body converts into the active form known as vitamin A,” Nicole says.

This hearty stew is filled with nutrient-rich vegetables like peas, carrots, onions and potatoes.

  • 360 calories
  • 12 grams of protein

Spices and herbs are a great way to boost the flavor of a dish without adding excess calories. “Onions also add delicious flavor and have many immune-boosting components,” Nicole says. “They’re also an excellent source of fiber and prebiotics, which feed the good bacteria in your gut and help support your immune system.”

10. Quinoa and Vegetable Stew

Wow your family or guests by serving this Latin-inspired stew for your next Taco Tuesday.

  • 390 calories
  • 13 grams of protein

Quinoa is a great option to add to your stew because it’s high in protein, fiber, vitamins and minerals, Nicole says. It’s also high in manganese, magnesium, phosphorus and antioxidants.

11. Moroccan-Inspired Lentil and Vegetable Stew

You’ll get nearly 10 grams of fiber from this bowl full of hearty lentils and veggies.

  • 238.8 calories
  • 12.2 grams of protein

If you’re looking for an inexpensive meat alternative for your vegetable stew, consider chickpeas, like the ones used in this recipe. “Chickpeas are an excellent source of soluble fiber, which helps produce more healthy gut bacteria, making less room for harmful bacteria to produce, and improve the digestive system,” Nicole says.

12. Lentil and Potato Stew

The trio of rosemary, thyme and dijon mustard adds depth to this stew without packing on extra calories.

  • 265 calories
  • 12 grams of protein

Lentils are a slow-digesting resistant starch, making them a low-glycemic food, Nicole says. They’re also a source of prebiotics that feed our gut flora and help to regulate bowel movements.

13. Portobello Vegan Beef(Less) Stew

Portobello mushrooms are so “meaty” you won’t even notice that this stew is vegan.

  • 278 calories
  • 10.1 grams of protein

Swapping portobello mushrooms for beef helps to reduce the fat content in a traditional stew without losing the meaty flavor or texture. “Portobello mushrooms are an excellent source of selenium, potassium, riboflavin and niacin,” Nicole says. She recommends checking the label when buying mushrooms to see if they’re sun-exposed, which makes them a great source of vitamin D.

14. Mexican-Inspired Quinoa Stew

To decrease the spice of this stew, consider swapping the jalapeno pepper for a bell pepper of your choice.

  • 249 calories
  • 10.5 grams of protein

In a half-cup of black beans, you’ll get 7 grams of protein, according to the USDA, making beans a great meatless source of the macro. “Black beans also contain a good amount of dietary fiber, starch and complex carbohydrates,” Nicole adds. She explains that complex carbs are slowly digested in the body and prevent a spike in blood sugar levels.

15. Vegan Lentil Mushroom Stew With Sweet Potatoes

This mushroom and lentil stew is like a vegetarian upside down Shepherds Pie.

  • 283 calories
  • 13 grams of protein

The herbs in this stew are packed with nutritional benefits. “Thyme contains some vitamin C, vitamin A, copper and manganese,” Nicole says. “And sage is an excellent source of vitamin K and contains magnesium, copper and zinc.” To reap all the health benefits, she suggests using fresh herbs whenever possible and adding them at the end of the cooking process.

To avoid unnecessary added sugars, choose a barbecue sauce that is sugar free or low in sugar.

  • 281 calories
  • 13.2 calories

This hearty meatless stew contains jackfruit, which has a similar texture to pulled pork, that’s slathered in barbecue sauce. “Jackfruit is full of fiber, vitamin C, B vitamins and potassium,” Nicole says. “The pigment that gives jackfruit its vibrant yellow color is the antioxidant carotenoid — it is essential in protecting the cells in our body from harm and supporting overall health.”

17. Spanish-Inspired Chickpea Stew With Cauliflower Broccoli Rice

Top this stew with fresh cilantro for a boost in vitamin C.

  • 338 calories
  • 16 grams of protein

If you’re watching your carb intake, try serving this Spanish-inspired stew atop a bed of riced vegetables. The cauliflower and broccoli rice is also seasoned with cumin, “which has antioxidant compounds that protect our cells and skin from oxidative damage and may reduce the appearance of aging skin,” Nicole says. She suggests topping this stew with 1/4 of an avocado to add heart-healthy fat and make this dish even more filling.

18. Spanish-Inspired Pumpkin and Chickpea Stew

You can whip up this pumpkin-based stew in less than an hour.

  • 566 calories
  • 24.1 grams of protein

This pumpkin stew includes both tomato paste and fresh tomatoes, which are a great source of vitamin C, potassium, vitamin K and folate, Nicole says. They also contain the antioxidants lycopene, beta-carotene and chlorogenic acid, which can help lower oxidative stress, Nicole says.


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