What Meats Have the Highest Protein?

By this point, unless you live under a rock or are transitioning from being a vegetarian to become a carnivore, you likely know that meat is a great source of protein. However, you may not know what meat has the most protein. This can be especially important information if you are into health and fitness or working on increasing your muscle mass and want to include healthy, high protein meats into your diet.

Knowing which meat has the most protein can make a huge difference in not only how you prepare meals but what meals you prepare on a daily basis. This is a great way to keep track of your meals and nutrition intake for your food log or just to know what's the best option on the market if you are searching for high protein to help build up strength or even help yourself or someone else after losing weight too quickly.

It's recommended that men eat 55 grams of protein a day while women eat 45 grams, but if you live a very active lifestyle, you may want to increase that amount to ensure that you are getting enough to rebuild your muscles that break down during exercise. If you are active, especially in strength training, a good rule to follow is 1.2 grams of protein per kilogram of bodyweight. Of course, you may find that you're already getting plenty of protein once we break down what meats have the most and you can compare it to your current diet. Keep in mind, there are lots of other foods that happen to have protein in them, so you don't have to eat 45-55 grams of protein a day just from meat.

Meats Ranked in Protein Levels

  • Turkey. It looks like turkey is our winner for having the most protein per serving. You'll get 30 grams of protein in one serving of turkey, making this lean white meat a great addition to your weekly meal planning.
  • Beef. Depending on what type of beef, it can range from 20-24 grams of protein, making this a healthy amount. However, keep in mind that too much red meat can be detrimental to your heart, so you'll want to limit your red meat consumption to once or twice a week at most.
  • Chicken rings in at 24 grams of protein, making this another great choice. This is another lean, white meat like turkey, and is commonly seen in food preparation recipes.
  • Salmon. A delicious option, salmon also has 24 grams of protein as well as healthy omega 3s, making this a wonderful choice for your meals. You'll get filled up, and you can prepare this in a variety of healthy ways to help switch up your meals. Just don't heat this up in the work microwave or your coworkers may never forgive you.
  • Cod offers 20 grams, making this a great choice as well. This is a light fish and tastes delicious prepared in several ways. You can even prepare this on a grill for a tasty summer meal.
  • Lamb. Not always a common meal option, lamb is a delicious addition to your meal planning and offers 20 grams of protein for you to choose from.
  • Mackerel offers 20 grams as well and is a great option for a healthy diet.
  • Pork loin ranges from 17-20 grams and can be prepared in a variety of ways. We love ours prepared with fresh vegetables and seasoned with spices. This is a delicious way to get your protein each day while enjoying a tasty meat.

If you're looking for high-protein meats, the above list features the best options available for you. These are all delicious ways to enjoy a good meal while also ensuring you are getting enough of this valuable nutrient.

However, keep in mind that most of us exceed the amount of protein we eat in a day, so even if you choose a meat option that is lower in protein, you will likely still meet your protein dietary needs for the day. Many foods that are not meat have high levels of protein in them including chia seeds, nuts, eggs, Greek yogurt, oats, peas, and even cheddar cheese. So if you eat a combination of any of those foods each day, you're getting a good amount of protein from those as well, and you won't have any issues if you opt for lower protein meat or even wind up skipping a meat meal once or twice a week.