Which foods score the highest in the protein steaks? Time to find out…

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Image: 6 foods that contain more protein than a steak (and some other close contenders which may surprise you)

Via: Sainsbury's Magazine/Photo: Dan Jones

Think of high-protein dieting, and you might immediately think of chomping down on a big hunk of beef. 


But steak has had its day as the protein food-du-jour. Here are some alternatives that all contain more protein than your standard rump (28.4g per 100g, FYI) – and there are some close contenders that may surprise you...


1. Dried skimmed milk: 4% more protein than steak

Not the sexiest ingredient in the world, and you’d be forgiven for wondering what the hell you do with it. But dried milk might just get trendy again if you're on a high-protein diet. Use it to make your very own homemade chocolate or keep it in the cupboard for when the milk's gone off and you’re dying for a cuppa.

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2. Chicken breast: 13% more protein than steak

It might have plenty of protein, but grilled, skinless chicken breast can still be pretty dull. Which is why we think you should stuff it with spinach, cheese and artichoke. Ladies and gents, meet the Hasselback chicken – your new go-to midweek dinner.

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3. Pork fillet: 14% more protein than steak

Pork fillet is a lean, mean cut of meat that's delicious cut into strips and stir-fried with pak choi and shiitake mushrooms (and contains 14% more protein than steak). Even pork belly, the most delicious of cuts, contains 27g protein per 100g, while roast pork contains 31g per 100g. It's our new Sunday lunch fave (as long as it still comes with Yorkshire puds, that is).

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4. Turkey: 24% more protein than steak

This Christmas classic contains more protein than chicken, rump steak and even pork fillet, with a whopping 34g protein per 100g. Even the dark meat contains marginally more protein than a steak. Seriously, why aren't we all eating more turkey burgers?

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5. Salmon: 82% more protein than steak

It seems we can't get enough of everybody's favourite on the fish counter for good reason. Try it roasted with ricotta and a chargrilled chicory salad or in a hearty salmon pho

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5. Fresh tuna: 128% more protein than steak

Swap your beef steak with a fresh tuna steak for 32g protein per 100g. If you're economising, canned tuna still contains a hefty 25g per 100g, so there’s no need to splash out on the fresh stuff all the time. Other fish to look out for are halibut (always choose Pacific, as it tends to be more sustainable than Atlantic) and salmon, which are both also high in protein.

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Other close contenders:


Wheatgerm: 27g protein per 100g

This dry, floury powder is actually the embryos of wheatgrains – the part that germinates into a plant. It’s left over when wheat is milled and refined for white bread and flour. Sprinkle it over your cereal, bake it into cookies, flapjacks or muffins, or add a tablespoon to your morning smoothie for a protein perk.

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Wheatgerm muffins

Meal Makeover Moms/CC BY-SA 2.0/adapted/Flickr: mealmakeovermoms


Bacon: 26g protein per 100g

Hurrah! The lure of a bacon sarnie might not be such a bad thing after all. Oh happy day.

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Cheddar: 25g protein per 100g

Add double Gloucester, Edam and Camembert to your sharp, strong cheddar and you’ve got yourself one heck of a protein-packed cheeseboard, as these are all high-protein cheeses.

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Via: Sainsbury's


Pumpkin seeds: 24g protein per 100g

A top seed for protein turns out to be pumpkin. Add to granola, sprinkle into salads, or whizz into pesto instead of pine nuts (just don’t tell the Italians – they won’t be impressed). 

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Peanut butter: 23g protein per 100g

Peanuts are a mighty nut when it comes to protein, beating almonds, brazils and cashews to the top. This means you can keep slathering PB on your toast in the morning, only without the guilt factor. Great stuff. 

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Nutritional information taken from McCance And Widdowson's The Composition of Foods. Protein values compared against a rump steak fried in corn oil (lean and fat included) and rounded to the nearest whole figure.