Egusi (African Melon): The Protein-Packed SuperFood

  • , by Chibuikem Osuchukwu
  • 5 min reading time

Egusi seeds, also known as African melon seeds, are a versatile and nutritious ingredient popular in West Africa – and are gaining recognition as a plant-based protein powerhouse for vegans. Derived from melon seeds, Egusi offers a delicious and sustainable plant-based alternative to animal protein.

Rich in protein, healthy fats, and essential nutrients, Egusi is an excellent choice for vegans, vegetarians and bodybuilders looking to meet their daily protein needs. Just one serving of Egusi contains about 35 grams of protein, making it a great source of this essential macronutrient.

Importance of Protein

Protein is an essential nutrient that plays a vital role in many bodily functions. It is needed for building and repairing muscle tissue, producing hormones and enzymes, and supporting a healthy immune system. According to the National Health Service (NHS), men should aim to consume 67 grams of protein per day, while women should aim for 56 grams per day.

A well-balanced vegan meal typically contains between 15 - 20 grams of protein.

According to the NHS, low daily protein intake can lead to;

  • Muscle loss
  • Fatigue
  • Weakened immunity
  • Bone loss (Weakened bone health)
  • Delayed wound healing and recovery
  • Hair loss
  • Poor growth and development
  • Nutrient deficiencies
  • Increased infection
  • Hormonal imbalances

Egusi - the Protein Power-house


For those who are looking to increase their protein intake, Egusi is an excellent choice. 100 grams of Egusi contains approximately 31 grams of protein, making it a great option for those on plant-based diets. To put this into perspective, 100 grams of tofu contains approximately 8 grams of protein, and 100 grams of chicken contains approximately 25 grams of protein. Egusi is a natural plant-based protein powerhouse and is a natural and healthier alternative to heavily processed and chemical-laden protein bars and protein powders.

The protein in Egusi is also high quality. It contains all nine essential amino acids, and these are the amino acids that the body cannot produce on its own and must obtain from diet.

What are the nine essential amino acids?

The nine essential amino acids are the amino acids that your body cannot produce on its own and must be obtained from food. They are:

  1. Histidine
  2. Isoleucine
  3. Leucine
  4. Lysine
  5. Methionine
  6. Phenylalanine
  7. Threonine
  8. Tryptophan
  9. Valine

These Essential amino acids are vital for many important bodily functions, including:

  • Protein synthesis: Essential amino acids are used to build and repair proteins, which are essential for all cells and tissues in the body.
  • Muscle growth and repair: Essential amino acids are needed for muscle growth and repair, especially after exercise.
  • Hormone production: Essential amino acids are used to produce hormones, which regulate many important bodily functions, such as growth, metabolism, and reproduction.
  • Immune function: Essential amino acids are needed for the proper functioning of the immune system.
  • Energy production: Essential amino acids can be broken down to produce energy for the body.

Why You Should Add Egusi to Your Diet

When incorporated into your diet, Egusi provides various health benefits, including its protein content. Here are some reasons why you should consider incorporating Egusi into your diet for its protein benefits:

  • High protein content: Egusi is a rich source of protein. Protein is an essential macronutrient that plays a crucial role in building and repairing tissues, supporting muscle growth, and maintaining a healthy immune system. Incorporating Egusi into your diet can help ensure an adequate protein intake.
  • Protein quantity: A 100-gram serving of Egusi provides about 31 grams of protein, which is a significant addition to meet daily protein needs.
  • Vegetarian or vegan protein option: For individuals following a vegetarian or vegan diet, finding plant-based protein sources can sometimes be a challenge. Egusi, being a plant-derived protein source, offers a viable option to meet your protein requirements, especially if you are looking for a more diverse range of plant proteins in your diet.
  • Amino acid profile: Proteins are made up of different amino acids, some of which the body cannot produce on its own and needs to obtain from dietary sources. Egusi contains a wide range of essential amino acids required for various bodily functions. By including Egusi in your diet, you can ensure a more complete spectrum of amino acids in your protein intake.
  • Weight management: Protein is known to promote feelings of fullness and can help reduce appetite and cravings, which may aid in weight management and healthy eating habits. Including Egusi, with its protein content, in your meals can assist in satiety and support your overall weight management goals.
  • Nutrient density: In addition to protein, Egusi is also rich in other essential nutrients. It contains vitamins like vitamin E, B vitamins (thiamin, riboflavin, niacin), and minerals such as magnesium, phosphorus, and potassium. These nutrients play important roles in various bodily functions, including metabolism, energy production, and proper functioning of the nervous system.
  • Kid-friendly protein: Egusi seeds make getting extra protein into kids' diets easy to achieve through simple, tasty recipes.
  • Highly concentrated protein: Egusi seeds contain a very concentrated amount of protein, with around 27-30% of their total calories from protein. Just a small serving provides a big protein punch.

Egusi seeds check all the boxes for an awesome vegan protein source that provides complete, bioavailable protein to support muscle growth, satiety, and overall health. Add their nutty crunch and flavour to your diet to hit your daily protein goals.

Check out our website and try some of the amazing Egusi recipes and experience its unique flavour and nutritional benefits for yourself.

GuDee sources its Egusi seeds with care for the environment, and this is why we only source from small local farmers in West Africa.



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