16 Complete Protein Pairings with Alfalfa Sprouts

Summary:

  • Alfalfa sprout contains a moderate amount of protein - about 1.3 grams per cup.
  • However, alfalfa sprout provides only 4 of the 9 essential amino acids sufficiently - it is a little low on valine it contains no histidine, methionine, phenylalanine or tryptophan.[1]
  • Alfalfa sprout pairs well with carrots, chia seeds, pumpkin seeds, wild rice or flaxseeds to create a complete protein profile. [2] More alfalfa sprout pairings and detailed analysis below.

A complete protein is a protein source that "contains adequate proportions of the nine essential amino acids" that our body can not produce on its own.

World Health Organization [2], National Academy Press [3]

We analyzed the amino acid composition of alfalfa sprouts, and found both vegan and vegetarian pairings with alfalfa sprouts that creates a complete protein profile. Read on to discover new combinations of foods to enjoy!

Details on how we calculate complete protein profiles.

image of alfalfa sprouts source

Amount of Protein in Alfalfa Sprouts

A decent source of supplementary protein, a single cup of alfalfa sprouts contains 1.3 grams of protein, or about 3% of recommended daily values. [1]

To get the adequate amount of protein with alfalfa sprouts alone, you will need 38 cups of alfalfa sprouts (1250 grams) for an average female, or 46 cups of alfalfa sprouts for males. [4] That's about 288 calories, and a lot of alfalfa sprout! Supplementing alfalfa sprout with food higher in protein is a good idea.

Full nutritional profile for alfalfa sprouts
USDA Source: Alfalfa seeds, sprouted, raw

Macronutrients in 1 cup (33g) of alfalfa sprouts:

% of RDV Amount
Calories
0.4% 8 kCal
Carbohydrates
0% -
Total fat
0.4% 0.2 grams
Protein
2.6% 1.3 grams

Essential Amino Acids in Alfalfa Sprouts

Proportionally, alfalfa sprout does contain abundant amounts of 4 out of the nine essential amino acids. However, alfalfa sprout is a little short on valine and it does not contain any histidine, methionine, phenylalanine nor tryptophan.[1]

The amount of each essential amino acid in 1 cup (33g) of alfalfa sprouts:

Amino Acid % of RDV [2] Amount [1] Complete /
Adequate
Protein
2.6% 1.317g
Histidine
0% -
Isoleucine
5.5% 0.047g
Leucine
4.7% 0.088g
Lysine
4.1% 0.071g
Methionine
0% -
Phenylalanine
0% -
Threonine
4.9% 0.044g
Tryptophan
0% -
Valine
4.4% 0.048g

More Complete Protein with Alfalfa Sprouts

Top vegan pairings with alfalfa sprouts include:
  1. Carrots
  2. Chia Seeds
  3. Pumpkin Seeds
  4. Wild Rice
  5. Flaxseeds
  6. Cashews
  7. Pistachio
  8. Coconut
  9. Dijon Mustard
  10. Spirulina
  11. Avocado
  12. Spinach
Although dairy and eggs are generally considered complete proteins, some types of vegetarian food pair more efficiently with alfalfa sprouts. These include:
  1. Sour Cream
  2. Mayonnaise
  3. Egg
  4. Cheese

Vegan 1. Carrots and Alfalfa Sprouts


image of carrots
image of alfalfa sprouts

Low in protein, carrot is high in histidine, methionine, phenylalanine, tryptophan and valine, which is complementary to alfalfa sprout.

A ratio of 0.5 cup of alfalfa sprouts (17g) and 3 carrots (219g) creates a complete protein profile. In fact, any ratio of more than 13:1 of carrot to alfalfa sprout will be complete.

Full nutritional profile for carrots
USDA Source: Carrots, raw

Table of amino acids of 0.5 cup alfalfa sprouts and 3 large carrots :
Amino Acid % of RDV [2] Amount [5] Complete /
Adequate
Protein
5.5% 2.7g
Histidine
13.9% 0.09g
Isoleucine
22.5% 0.19g
Leucine
14.3% 0.27g
Lysine
15.1% 0.26g
Methionine
5.1% 0.04g
Phenylalanine
9% 0.13g
Threonine
49.1% 0.44g
Tryptophan
10.1% 0.03g
Valine
16.3% 0.18g

Vegan 2. Chia Seeds and Alfalfa Sprouts


image of chia seeds
image of alfalfa sprouts

Chia seed is a reasonable source of supplementary protein, and is high in histidine, methionine, phenylalanine, tryptophan and valine, complementing the profile of alfalfa sprout.

For example, 3.3 cups of alfalfa sprouts (110g) and 0.9 ounce of chia seeds (26g) make a complete amino acids profile. In fact, any ratio of more than 0.23:1 of chia seed to alfalfa sprout will be complete.

Full nutritional profile for chia seeds
USDA Source: Seeds, chia seeds, dried

Table of amino acids of 3.3 cup alfalfa sprouts and 0.9 oz chia seeds :
Amino Acid % of RDV [2] Amount [6] Complete /
Adequate
Protein
17.2% 8.6g
Histidine
21.6% 0.14g
Isoleucine
42.1% 0.36g
Leucine
34.1% 0.64g
Lysine
28.3% 0.48g
Methionine
17.5% 0.15g
Phenylalanine
17.5% 0.26g
Threonine
36.6% 0.33g
Tryptophan
43% 0.11g
Valine
37.3% 0.4g

Vegan 3. Pumpkin Seeds and Alfalfa Sprouts


image of pumpkin seeds
image of alfalfa sprouts

A reasonable source of supplementary protein, pumpkin seed is high in histidine, methionine, phenylalanine, tryptophan and valine, which is complementary to alfalfa sprout.

A ratio of 1.7 cups of alfalfa sprouts (55g) and 0.5 cup of pumpkin seeds (29g) creates a complete protein profile. In fact, any ratio of more than 0.5:1 of pumpkin seed to alfalfa sprout will be complete.

Full nutritional profile for pumpkin seeds
USDA Source: Seeds, pumpkin and squash seeds, whole, roasted, without salt

Table of amino acids of 1.7 cup alfalfa sprouts and 0.5 cup pumpkin seeds :
Amino Acid % of RDV [2] Amount [7] Complete /
Adequate
Protein
15.3% 7.7g
Histidine
24.1% 0.15g
Isoleucine
41.8% 0.36g
Leucine
32.2% 0.61g
Lysine
30.7% 0.53g
Methionine
14.3% 0.12g
Phenylalanine
18.2% 0.27g
Threonine
30.5% 0.27g
Tryptophan
36.9% 0.1g
Valine
48% 0.52g

Vegan 4. Wild Rice and Alfalfa Sprouts


image of wild rice
image of alfalfa sprouts

Wild rice is a reasonable source of supplementary protein, and is high in histidine, methionine, phenylalanine, tryptophan and valine, complementing the profile of alfalfa sprout.

For example, 2.5 cups of alfalfa sprouts (83g) and 0.8 cup of wild rice (132g) make a complete amino acids profile. The entire range to create a complete protein are ratios of 1:1.6 to 1:0.46 for alfalfa sprout to wild rice by weight.

Full nutritional profile for wild rice
USDA Source: Wild rice, cooked

Table of amino acids of 2.5 cup alfalfa sprouts and 0.8 cup wild rice :
Amino Acid % of RDV [2] Amount [8] Complete /
Adequate
Protein
17.1% 8.6g
Histidine
21.9% 0.14g
Isoleucine
39.4% 0.34g
Leucine
31% 0.59g
Lysine
23.5% 0.4g
Methionine
18.3% 0.16g
Phenylalanine
17.3% 0.26g
Threonine
30.9% 0.28g
Tryptophan
25% 0.06g
Valine
39.5% 0.43g

Vegan 5. Flaxseeds and Alfalfa Sprouts


image of flaxseeds
image of alfalfa sprouts

A reasonable source of supplementary protein, flaxseed is high in histidine, methionine, phenylalanine, tryptophan and valine, which is complementary to alfalfa sprout.

A ratio of 1.4 cups of alfalfa sprouts (47g) and 3.8 tbsps of flaxseeds (40g) creates a complete protein profile. In fact, any ratio of more than 0.8:1 of flaxseed to alfalfa sprout will be complete.

Full nutritional profile for flaxseeds
USDA Source: Seeds, flaxseed

Table of amino acids of 1.4 cup alfalfa sprouts and 3.8 tbsp flaxseeds :
Amino Acid % of RDV [2] Amount [9] Complete /
Adequate
Protein
18.2% 9.1g
Histidine
29.6% 0.19g
Isoleucine
49.1% 0.42g
Leucine
32.5% 0.61g
Lysine
25.8% 0.44g
Methionine
17% 0.15g
Phenylalanine
25.4% 0.38g
Threonine
40.7% 0.37g
Tryptophan
45.1% 0.12g
Valine
45.6% 0.49g

Vegan 6. Cashews and Alfalfa Sprouts


image of cashews
image of alfalfa sprouts

Cashew is a reasonable source of supplementary protein, and is high in histidine, methionine, phenylalanine, tryptophan and valine, complementing the profile of alfalfa sprout.

For example, 1.4 cups of alfalfa sprouts (47g) and 1.5 ounces of cashews (43g) make a complete amino acids profile. In fact, any ratio of more than 0.9:1 of cashew to alfalfa sprout will be complete.

Full nutritional profile for cashews
USDA Source: Nuts, cashew nuts, raw

Table of amino acids of 1.4 cup alfalfa sprouts and 1.5 oz cashews :
Amino Acid % of RDV [2] Amount [10] Complete /
Adequate
Protein
19.4% 9.7g
Histidine
30.9% 0.19g
Isoleucine
47.1% 0.4g
Leucine
40% 0.76g
Lysine
29.1% 0.5g
Methionine
18% 0.16g
Phenylalanine
27.3% 0.41g
Threonine
39.8% 0.36g
Tryptophan
47.4% 0.12g
Valine
49.6% 0.54g

Vegan 7. Pistachio and Alfalfa Sprouts


image of pistachio
image of alfalfa sprouts

A great source of protein, pistachio is high in histidine, methionine, phenylalanine, tryptophan and valine, which is complementary to alfalfa sprout.

A ratio of 0.7 cup of alfalfa sprouts (22g) and 0.3 cup of pistachio (37g) creates a complete protein profile. In fact, any ratio of more than 1.7:1 of pistachio to alfalfa sprout will be complete.

Full nutritional profile for pistachio
USDA Source: Nuts, pistachio nuts, dry roasted, without salt added

Table of amino acids of 0.7 cup alfalfa sprouts and 0.3 cup pistachio :
Amino Acid % of RDV [2] Amount [11] Complete /
Adequate
Protein
17.5% 8.8g
Histidine
31.8% 0.2g
Isoleucine
45.4% 0.39g
Leucine
36.3% 0.69g
Lysine
28.8% 0.49g
Methionine
16.3% 0.14g
Phenylalanine
28.7% 0.43g
Threonine
33% 0.3g
Tryptophan
37.6% 0.1g
Valine
48.2% 0.52g

Vegan 8. Coconut and Alfalfa Sprouts


image of coconut
image of alfalfa sprouts

Coconut is a reasonable source of supplementary protein, and is high in histidine, methionine, phenylalanine, tryptophan and valine, complementing the profile of alfalfa sprout.

For example, 0.9 cup of alfalfa sprouts (30g) and 2.8 cups of coconut (223g) make a complete amino acids profile. The entire range to create a complete protein are ratios of 1:7 to 1:39 for alfalfa sprout to coconut by weight.

Full nutritional profile for coconut
USDA Source: Nuts, coconut meat, raw

Table of amino acids of 0.9 cup alfalfa sprouts and 2.8 cup coconut :
Amino Acid % of RDV [2] Amount [12] Complete /
Adequate
Protein
17.3% 8.6g
Histidine
27.3% 0.17g
Isoleucine
39% 0.34g
Leucine
33.4% 0.63g
Lysine
22.9% 0.39g
Methionine
16.1% 0.14g
Phenylalanine
25.4% 0.38g
Threonine
34.5% 0.31g
Tryptophan
33.5% 0.09g
Valine
45.8% 0.5g

Vegan 9. Dijon Mustard and Alfalfa Sprouts


image of dijon mustard
image of alfalfa sprouts

A great source of protein, dijon mustard is high in histidine, methionine, phenylalanine, tryptophan and valine, which is complementary to alfalfa sprout.

A ratio of 0.9 cup of alfalfa sprouts (30g) and 4.9 tbsps of dijon mustard (30g) creates a complete protein profile. In fact, any ratio of more than 1:1 of dijon mustard to alfalfa sprout will be complete.

Full nutritional profile for dijon mustard
USDA Source: Spices, mustard seed, ground

Table of amino acids of 0.9 cup alfalfa sprouts and 4.9 tbsp dijon mustard :
Amino Acid % of RDV [2] Amount [13] Complete /
Adequate
Protein
17.9% 8.9g
Histidine
41.4% 0.26g
Isoleucine
45.8% 0.39g
Leucine
36.9% 0.7g
Lysine
35.7% 0.61g
Methionine
16.6% 0.14g
Phenylalanine
23.4% 0.35g
Threonine
32.1% 0.29g
Tryptophan
29.2% 0.08g
Valine
45.5% 0.49g

Vegan 10. Spirulina and Alfalfa Sprouts


image of spirulina
image of alfalfa sprouts

Spirulina is a great source of protein, and is high in histidine, methionine, phenylalanine, tryptophan and valine, complementing the profile of alfalfa sprout.

For example, 1.1 cups of alfalfa sprouts (37g) and 1.5 tbsps of spirulina (10g) make a complete amino acids profile. In fact, any ratio of more than 0.28:1 of spirulina to alfalfa sprout will be complete.

Full nutritional profile for spirulina
USDA Source: Seaweed, spirulina, dried

Table of amino acids of 1.1 cup alfalfa sprouts and 1.5 tbsp spirulina :
Amino Acid % of RDV [2] Amount [14] Complete /
Adequate
Protein
14.7% 7.4g
Histidine
17.7% 0.11g
Isoleucine
44.4% 0.38g
Leucine
32.1% 0.61g
Lysine
22.8% 0.39g
Methionine
13.7% 0.12g
Phenylalanine
19.2% 0.29g
Threonine
39.4% 0.35g
Tryptophan
36.8% 0.1g
Valine
38.4% 0.41g

Vegan 11. Avocado and Alfalfa Sprouts


image of avocado
image of alfalfa sprouts

Low in protein, avocado is high in histidine, methionine, phenylalanine, tryptophan and valine, which is complementary to alfalfa sprout.

A ratio of 1.1 cups of alfalfa sprouts (37g) and 3.1 avocado (416g) creates a complete protein profile. In fact, any ratio of more than 11:1 of avocado to alfalfa sprout will be complete.

Full nutritional profile for avocado
USDA Source: Avocados, raw, California

Table of amino acids of 1.1 cup alfalfa sprouts and 3.1 fruit avocado :
Amino Acid % of RDV [2] Amount [15] Complete /
Adequate
Protein
19.2% 9.6g
Histidine
31.7% 0.2g
Isoleucine
46.2% 0.4g
Leucine
36.2% 0.68g
Lysine
36% 0.61g
Methionine
17.9% 0.15g
Phenylalanine
26.5% 0.4g
Threonine
38.7% 0.35g
Tryptophan
40.1% 0.1g
Valine
45.4% 0.49g

Vegan 12. Spinach and Alfalfa Sprouts


image of spinach
image of alfalfa sprouts

Spinach is a reasonable source of supplementary protein, and is high in histidine, methionine, phenylalanine, tryptophan and valine, complementing the profile of alfalfa sprout.

For example, 0.8 cup of alfalfa sprouts (28g) and 8.3 cups of spinach (248g) make a complete amino acids profile. In fact, any ratio of more than 9:1 of spinach to alfalfa sprout will be complete.

Full nutritional profile for spinach
USDA Source: Spinach, raw

Table of amino acids of 0.8 cup alfalfa sprouts and 8.3 cup spinach :
Amino Acid % of RDV [2] Amount [16] Complete /
Adequate
Protein
16.4% 8.2g
Histidine
25.2% 0.16g
Isoleucine
47% 0.4g
Leucine
33.2% 0.63g
Lysine
28.7% 0.49g
Methionine
15.3% 0.13g
Phenylalanine
21.5% 0.32g
Threonine
37.7% 0.34g
Tryptophan
37.1% 0.1g
Valine
40.7% 0.44g

Vegetarian 13. Sour Cream and Alfalfa Sprouts


image of sour cream
image of alfalfa sprouts

A reasonable source of supplementary protein, sour cream is high in histidine, methionine, phenylalanine, tryptophan and valine, which is complementary to alfalfa sprout.

A ratio of 2.5 cups of alfalfa sprouts (83g) and 0.7 cup of sour cream (136g) creates a complete protein profile. In fact, any ratio of more than 1.7:1 of sour cream to alfalfa sprout will be complete.

Full nutritional profile for sour cream
USDA Source: Cream, sour, cultured

Table of amino acids of 2.5 cup alfalfa sprouts and 0.7 cup sour cream :
Amino Acid % of RDV [2] Amount [17] Complete /
Adequate
Protein
13.2% 6.6g
Histidine
19.9% 0.13g
Isoleucine
39.5% 0.34g
Leucine
34.9% 0.66g
Lysine
32.2% 0.55g
Methionine
12.4% 0.11g
Phenylalanine
14.3% 0.21g
Threonine
33.8% 0.3g
Tryptophan
22% 0.06g
Valine
35.7% 0.39g

Vegetarian 14. Mayonnaise and Alfalfa Sprouts


image of mayonnaise
image of alfalfa sprouts

Mayonnaise is low in protein, and is high in histidine, methionine, phenylalanine, tryptophan and valine, complementing the profile of alfalfa sprout.

For example, 2.5 cups of alfalfa sprouts (83g) and 1.9 cups of mayonnaise (429g) make a complete amino acids profile. In fact, any ratio of more than 5:1 of mayonnaise to alfalfa sprout will be complete.

Full nutritional profile for mayonnaise
USDA Source: Salad dressing, mayonnaise, regular

Table of amino acids of 2.5 cup alfalfa sprouts and 1.9 cup mayonnaise :
Amino Acid % of RDV [2] Amount [18] Complete /
Adequate
Protein
14.8% 7.4g
Histidine
17.7% 0.11g
Isoleucine
46.2% 0.4g
Leucine
33.2% 0.63g
Lysine
28.4% 0.49g
Methionine
17.5% 0.15g
Phenylalanine
16.4% 0.24g
Threonine
38.5% 0.35g
Tryptophan
28.1% 0.07g
Valine
40.5% 0.44g

Vegetarian 15. Egg and Alfalfa Sprouts


image of egg
image of alfalfa sprouts

A reasonable source of supplementary protein, egg is high in histidine, methionine, phenylalanine, tryptophan and valine, which is complementary to alfalfa sprout.

A ratio of 2.5 cups of alfalfa sprouts (83g) and 0.8 egg (41g) creates a complete protein profile. In fact, any ratio of more than 0.5:1 of egg to alfalfa sprout will be complete.

Full nutritional profile for egg
USDA Source: Egg, whole, raw, fresh

Table of amino acids of 2.5 cup alfalfa sprouts and 0.8 large egg :
Amino Acid % of RDV [2] Amount [19] Complete /
Adequate
Protein
17% 8.5g
Histidine
20.3% 0.13g
Isoleucine
46% 0.4g
Leucine
35.4% 0.67g
Lysine
32.4% 0.55g
Methionine
18.3% 0.16g
Phenylalanine
18.9% 0.28g
Threonine
37.9% 0.34g
Tryptophan
26.6% 0.07g
Valine
43.9% 0.47g

Vegetarian 16. Cheese and Alfalfa Sprouts


image of cheese
image of alfalfa sprouts

Cheese is a great source of protein, and is high in histidine, methionine, phenylalanine, tryptophan and valine, complementing the profile of alfalfa sprout.

For example, 2 cups of alfalfa sprouts (66g) and 2.7 tbsps of cheese (19g) make a complete amino acids profile. In fact, any ratio of more than 0.29:1 of cheese to alfalfa sprout will be complete.

Full nutritional profile for cheese
USDA Source: Cheese, Mexican blend

Table of amino acids of 2 cup alfalfa sprouts and 2.7 tbsp cheese :
Amino Acid % of RDV [2] Amount [20] Complete /
Adequate
Protein
14.2% 7.1g
Histidine
22.2% 0.14g
Isoleucine
41% 0.35g
Leucine
31.2% 0.59g
Lysine
26.7% 0.46g
Methionine
13.3% 0.11g
Phenylalanine
15.3% 0.23g
Threonine
28.2% 0.25g
Tryptophan
26% 0.07g
Valine
35.5% 0.38g


Complete Protein Pairings

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