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Flexi veggie

According to a new report, 24% of Brits are planning to eat more vegetarian meals on a weekly basis this year

The Home Cooking & Eating Habits report conducted by Goodlife, reveals results from a new YouGov survey on over 2,000 adults, which found that 37% of Brits eat a vegetarian meal twice a week or more.

With the rise of the ‘flexi veggie’ apparent, the research also highlighted that 44% of those surveyed considered protein as the most important factor in their daily diet. As more of us than ever introduce ‘meat-free Monday’s’ and look to increase veggie meals, leading nutritionist, Lily Soutter, says that ‘how to be veggie and still get lots of protein’ is one of her most asked questions.

Teaming up with Goodlife to share her expert advice and a veggie-protein packed recipe idea, Lily said, “It’s completely possible for a vegetarian to get sufficient protein needed in a single day. As long as a varied and balanced diet is enjoyed and calorie intakes are being met, it shouldn’t be difficult to reach the daily protein recommendations.”

Lily continued, “In fact, all dairy products, eggs, soy products, beans, pulses, grains, nuts, and seeds contain protein. With so many delicious protein-rich plant-based foods on the market, it’s easy to reach our targets, with a little planning and prep.”

Nutritionist Lily Soutter explains the key facts about protein 

Q. Why do we need protein?

A. Protein is an essential dietary component as it is the building blocks of the body. It is vital for healthy muscles, organs and even hair, skin, and nails. It is also essential for our immune system, as well as manufacturing hormones and neurotransmitters such as serotonin.

Q. How much protein do we need per day?

A. In the UK, adults are advised to consume 0.75g of protein per day for each kilogram that they weigh – this equates to around 45g per day for the average female. However, those leading a more active lifestyle may need to consume up to 1g per kg body weight or as much as 1.2-1.8g for the very active.

Q. What’s the biggest mistake veggies make?

A. Many following a vegetarian diet over-compensate with dairy to obtain sufficient protein, however, there is a vast range of amazing plant-based protein sources to enjoy. Beans are a good source of protein, and just one Goodlife Spicy Veg Beanburger comes with as much as 6.3g protein and is super high in fibre.

Q. What is the best time to eat protein on a veggie diet? 

A. Protein consumption is best spread throughout the day. Little and often is key! Per meal, our body utilises a maximum of 0.25-0.4g protein per kg of bodyweight for maintaining muscle mass. Surplus protein can be broken down by the body and used as an energy source, alternatively, unused protein is excreted or even stored as fat. This means that on average 20-40g protein per 3-hour period is optimal for muscle growth and repair. Furthermore, protein helps us to keep us full therefore including a portion of protein at each meal can help us to feel satiated and satisfied all day long.


Sundried Tomato Pesto Veggie Protein Sub (pictured above) 

Serves 4

Variety is key…A simple, speedy and delicious protein-packed recipe to liven up your lunchbreak


For the sundried tomato pesto

  • 40g pine nuts
  • 1 x 280g jar sundried tomato in oil 
  • 1 garlic clove
  • 1 lemon, juiced

For the rest

  • 4 x wholegrain ciabatta loaf (rectangle)
  • 20 Goodlife vegetable protein balls with spinach & kale 
  • 4 handfuls rocket
  • 1 red onion sliced 


  1. Pre heat oven to 180 degrees celsius. Place Goodlife vegetable protein balls on to a non-stick baking tray at the centre of the oven for 12-13 minutes. Turn once halfway through cooking time.
  2. Place ciabatta bread in the oven to warm up, until it starts to crisp up.
  3. For the pesto: Place all ingredients in food processor and blend until smooth.
  4. Slice open ciabattas, place 5 cooked protein balls into each ciabatta. Top with sundried tomato pesto. Add in a handful of rocket and sliced onion and serve. 


Packed with nutritious veggies and bursting with flavour, Goodlife is your go-to freezer must-have. With all dishes ready in under 30 minutes, they help free up your time in the kitchen, leaving more time to live your best life.

Starting from £1.80 – £2.49 per pack, find the range at leading retailers nationwide. Shop online and instore across Ocado, Waitrose, Tesco, and Sainsbury’s. For more mouth-watering recipes or for information on the full Goodlife range, visit goodlife.co.uk.  

All figures, unless otherwise stated, are from YouGov Plc.  Total sample size was 2121 adults. Fieldwork was undertaken between 8th – 9th February 2021.  The survey was carried out online. The figures have been weighted and are representative of all GB adults (aged 18+).