Beans and legumes are an excellent source of vegetable protein. They also contain other nutrients such as iron and zinc.
These foods are perfect for vegetarians and vegans as they provide a large amount of protein that is not otherwise received through meat. They are also highly recommended for those who do eat animal protein because they belong to the group of vegetables that provide the previously mentioned nutrients and that are important sources of fiber, folic acid, magnesium and potassium. See also Essential proteins: What you should know.
While the recommended consumption of legumes depends on the type of diet you have, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) recognizes the following as being high in protein: red beans, pinto beans, cargamanto beans, garbanzo beans and green peas.
Legumes are very important for vegetarians and they should consist of a high percentage of their daily diet. They can also be included in breakfasts, lunch or dinner. Some ways to prepare them include making salads, patties, stews, soups or dips to spread on tortillas or bread. See also Vegetarians must balance their diet.