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Meat and Beans

Aim to eat 3 to 7 oz/day (for 1200- to 3200-calorie diets). The Protein Group includes many different foods that are rich in protein, along with the minerals, iron and zinc. Keep portions of meat, poultry, and fish at two to three ounces, cooked weight, or about the size of the palm of a medium hand. Following are serving suggestions and tips for the

Protein Group:

Food Protein Group equivalent Tips
3 oz hamburger patty, cooked 3 oz Beef, including hamburger patties and ground beef, are tops for iron and zinc in the Meat & Beans Group. Buy lean or extra lean for less fat.
3 oz steak, cooked 3 oz To pick lean cuts, look for less marbling and little or no fat around the edges.
3 oz chicken, cooked 3 oz Stir-frying or grilling are two easy ways to cook chicken and both can add little additional fat.
3 oz fish, cooked 3 oz Fish is an excellent source of protein. Some health organizations recommend eating two servings per week.
2 Tbsp. peanut butter 2 oz This American lunch classic is also a great choice for a snack when spread on fruit or crackers.
1 egg 1 oz Each egg counts as one ounce of meat. A scrambled egg or small cheese omelet makes a great, quick supper idea.
½ cup legumes 2 oz Each 1/4 cup of beans—black, kidney, garbanzo, pinto, lentils and others—is the equivalent of an ounce of meat. Serve in salads, soups or pasta.
1 oz nuts (24 almonds, 48 pistachios, 14 walnut halves) 2 oz Some nuts and seeds (flax, walnuts) supply essential fatty acids, and some (sunflower seeds, almonds, hazelnuts) are good sources of vitamin E.