The Best Tasting Protein Powders You Can Purchase Right Now
Protein powder can be an important addition to your diet regimen if you are working out or trying to stay lean. However, some protein powders are grainy and leave you scrambling to find something else to take away the bad aftertaste. The best tasting protein powders should leave you excited to drink it while supplying you with the quality protein you need.
* Below, you'll see more detailed reviews, but you can also click the links above to see current prices and read customer's reviews on Amazon.
Why Should You Use Protein Powder?
Protein powder can help you stick to your weight loss or muscle gaining goals. When you work out, your body needs protein to replenish the calories it just burned. Protein helps to build your muscle and keeps you fuller longer. Protein is a necessary nutrient to our brains to help your body’s production of neurotransmitters and the hormones that are in charge of your bodily functions. Protein powder can also improve your skin, bones, teeth, hair, and nails because these all require adequate amounts of protein to grow properly. Consuming protein after a workout can protect your muscles from injury and helps to reduce how sore you are the next day.
What To Look For When Purchasing Protein Powder
If you do not have any dietary restrictions, 100% whey protein will be the greatest form of protein. Whey protein is a complete protein, which means it contains the essential amino acids needed to help your body recover best and form the lean muscle you want. 100% whey proteins also contain higher amounts of protein per serving compared to their plant based counterparts.
Always check the ingredients on the protein powder you are buying. While taste is important, a protein powder should be able to taste good without a lot of added sugar and carbs. These added ingredients act as filler ingredients to make you think that you are getting more servings than other products on the market. The best protein will be made from all natural ingredients and won’t contain unnecessary filler ingredients.
The Type Of Protein
Also be aware of the type of protein you are buying. Most proteins come in two different forms, isolate and concentrated proteins. Isolates are often thought to be purer than concentrates. The difference between the two is that with isolates, other non-protein components of the whey or plant have been removed so that the protein is "isolated." Isolate proteins aim to give you more protein per dose than concentrated protein. Concentrates are around 80% protein whereas isolates are 92% protein. Isolates are generally more expensive and the protein powder market is based on the sales of whey concentrates. Concentrated protein is not bad, it just comes with a few more grams of fat or carbohydrates.
Price can also be a deciding factor when you are looking to purchase protein powder. More expensive protein does not necessarily mean it is better. Compare the amount of protein you are getting for each serving and then the number of servings in the container. You can find some containers that are cheaper per pound but require twice the serving size for the same amount of protein. If you are wanting maximum protein per serving, you may find yourself spending a little bit more.
Maybe the most important factor for us all is taste. If you hate the taste of the protein powder you buy, you are not going to want to use it on a daily basis. With the millions of brands and different flavors on the market, it can be hard to choose a protein that you feel good about. That is why later on, we review five different proteins that all taste great so you can feel confident when you purchase your newest protein.
A video talking more about what you can look for when purchasing protein powder is available here. He goes over the three most important things to look for in buying a protein powder, which are the ingredients, the type of protein, and the taste.
How Do I Use Protein Powder?
Most people use protein powders to stave off hunger and recover from their workouts. How you use it depends on what your ultimate goal is. If you are looking to keep your hunger away, your protein powder should replace a meal like breakfast or lunch. Most people will add their protein powder into shakes or smoothies in the morning and skip breakfast. The high levels of protein should keep you satisfied until lunch. If you are looking to recover from a workout, you can bring a serving of protein in a blender bottle and then use water or milk to create a shake. Many people also use protein powder in muffins, pancakes, energy bites, and even dessert recipes. If you get a great tasting protein powder, you'll be excited to add it to snack recipes!
The Best Tasting Protein Powders
1. Optimum Nutrition Gold Standard 100% Whey Protein Powder
While the amount of protein per serving is lower than a few others on this list, the taste is very good. Many protein powders come in the traditional chocolate and vanilla and that's it. It's important for me to have multiple flavors to choose from because I get tired of the same old chocolate. This cake batter is extremely smooth and rich but not too overpowering that you can't make a morning shake out of it. It also tastes great as birthday cake pancakes!
- Optimum Nutrition is very well known and their protein powder comes from 100% gold standard whey
- 24 grams of protein per 1 scoop serving
- Contains 5.5 grams of naturally occurring BCAA’s and 4 grams glutamine
- Low carb and low fat
- Comes in 9 flavors
- Many people report how delicious these flavors are
- It is made with all natural ingredients
- It will keep you full because it contains branched chain amino acids
- Doesn’t mix very well in a shaker cup
- It is expensive
2. MusclePharm Combat Powder Advanced Time Release Protein
Banana cream pie is one of my favorite desserts and this protein powder is reminiscent of that. It is pretty sweet, but it is perfect to add into a smoothie or drink by itself in a shake. The protein comes from 5 different sources, which some people may not like. But, the digestive blend is extremely important to me.
When I wake up and have a protein shake, it can be hard on my stomach when there’s no food to help break it down. This digestive blend helps me not feel any nausea or stomach pain if I drink a shake on an empty stomach. This is one of my favorite choices because it is a little cheaper than the Optimum Nutrition but tastes just as great.
- The highest amount of protein available gram for gram on the market.
- 5 protein sources (whey protein concentrates, hydrolysates, isolates, egg albumin, and micellar casein)
- 25 grams of protein per serving
- Added digestive blend
- Low carb
- Mixes great in a blender bottle
- The digestive blend helps the protein to settle better on an empty stomach and leads to better absorption
- Protein comes from multiple sources
- Not all natural ingredients
3. EAS 100% Pure Whey Protein Powder
This EAS protein is a great value for what you are getting. If you are wanting the maximum protein per serving, this is it. Each serving has 30 grams of protein, which is the highest of the five protein powders on the list. While it only comes in traditional flavors like chocolate, strawberry, and vanilla, they mix well and still taste great. The chocolate flavor, when mixed with milk, tastes like chocolate ice cream. It makes a really good milkshake and I look forward to having it post work out.
Because there aren’t any added sugars, this could also be a good choice for someone who is looking to lose weight. It is sweet but won’t be too sickly sweet in the morning when you get up. This protein powder also mixes incredibly well. Even in my blender bottle, I never have chunks. This is important to me because when I am going from work to the gym, I don’t have time to throw my protein powder into a high-powered blender. There’s nothing more I hate than chunky protein so the ability to mix smoothly is a must for me. The naturally occurring amino acids also help me to feel good about purchasing this protein. And truthfully, what I love best is the fact that I can get a great tasting protein for a steal of a price.
- 30 grams of protein from 100% whey
- 7.3 grams of BCAA’s
- No added sugar or filler ingredients
- 6 grams of carbohydrates per serving
- Contains more protein than any of the others
- Made with all natural ingredients
- The branches chain amino acids keep you full and satisfied
- Tastes great when mixed with milk or water
- Only comes in traditional flavors
- Some say the flavor is a little too sweet
4. BSN SYNTHA-6 Protein Powder
I can’t get enough of how good this cookies and cream protein tastes. It is easy to take your protein when it tastes like ice cream! But, this flavor does come at a cost to your carb count. This protein has the most added ingredients on this list and it has 15 grams of carbohydrates per serving. While this won’t wreck your post-workout recovery, that is a high carb count if you are using protein shakes to keep your hunger at bay.
This protein also only has 22 grams of protein per serving. This is pretty low compared to the EAS protein I just reviewed. However, the 5 grams of fiber is what really sets this protein apart. It can be hard for me to get an adequate amount of fiber in my diet throughout the day so I really like that I can count on my morning protein shake to give me a dose of fiber that I need. Plus, if you need a protein powder that will get the job done on a budget, this one won’t empty your pockets. It is a great money saver but also mixes smooth and tastes great.
- 22 grams of protein per serving
- 5 grams of fiber per serving
- 10 grams amino acids per serving
- 15 grams of carbohydrates per serving
- Contains fiber for digestive help
- Easily mixes in a blender bottle
- Cheap price while still being high quality
- Less protein per serving than others on the market
- Contains a lot of added ingredients
- High carb count
5. Pure Protein New Super Food Plant-Based Protein Powder
If you can’t stomach whey protein or you are vegan, it can be hard to find a plant based protein that isn’t grainy and sour. This berry flavor is actually really good. While it doesn’t contain as much protein per serving as whey protein, this is a great choice for those who want something different.
The berry flavor is perfect to add into fruit smoothies like banana acai! It is more expensive at $15 a pound but the protein blend from brown rice, hemp seeds, and peas is gentle on the body. It also doesn’t contain anything artificial, which is important to me because I always try to avoid additives that can be harmful to my body.
- Vegan and non-GMO
- Delivers 20 grams of plant based protein per serving
- Has added super greens and 7 essential vitamins and minerals
- No artificial colors, sweeteners, or colors added
- Great for those on a vegan diet because it contains no animal proteins
- The protein is gentle on the stomach because it is plant based
- The flavor tastes great
- Protein is high carb since it comes from rice
- Some people report the texture is grainy when mixed
The clear winner of this group is the EAS chocolate protein powder. While it is not the most exotic flavor, it has everything you need. It has 30 grams of protein powder per serving, which is higher than any of the other protein powders. The ingredients are pure and it doesn't have added sugars so the carb count is low.
This protein powder will help to keep you full longer and has enough protein to properly help you recover post workout. It still has essential amino acids that your body needs and the price made it one of the cheapest available. It comes with the most protein per serving, is the cheapest, and also is made from pure ingredients. While each of these protein powders tastes great, the traditional chocolate of the EAS brand reigns.