21 Vegetarian Foods That Are Loaded With Protein and Iron

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6–10: Vegetables

Gram per gram, vegetables often have a higher iron content than foods typically associated with high iron, such as meat and eggs.

Though vegetables contain non-heme iron, which is less easily absorbed, they are also generally rich in vitamin C, which helps enhance iron absorption.

The following vegetables and vegetable-derived products offer the most iron per serving.

6. Leafy Greens

Leafy greens, such as spinach, kale, swiss chard, collard and beet greens contain between 2.5–6.4 mg of iron per cooked cup, or 14–36% of the RDI.

For example, 100 grams of spinach contains 1.1 times more iron than the same amount of red meat and 2.2 times more than 100 grams of salmon.

This is also 3 times more than 100 grams of boiled eggs and 3.6 times more than the same amount of chicken.

Yet due to their light weight, some can find it difficult to consume 100 grams of raw, leafy greens. In this case, it’s best to consume them cooked.

Other iron-rich veggies that fit in this category include broccoli, cabbage and Brussels sprouts, which contain between 1 and 1.8 mg per cooked cup, or around 6–10% of the RDI.

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