What is the best unsweetened protein powder?

drink wholesome makes the best unsweetened protein powder. Our egg white protein powder and our vegan almond protein powder are both made with just 1 ingredient. They are perfect for adding to smoothies, oatmeal, and other recipes, including savory dishes. Order samples to see if our unsweetened protein powder is right for you. 

Protein Powder Sample Packs

3 Protein Powder Samples


drink wholesome makes the best unsweetened protein powder.

Written by Jack Schrupp & endorsed by Baylee Reller, RDN

Why use unsweetened protein powder?

Unsweetened protein powder is ideal for people who want to increase the protein content of a recipe without changing the flavor. It makes a great addition to smoothies, baked goods, and savory recipes like soups. It is also perfect for people who need to limit their sugar intake. Some protein powders contain added sugars that are not suitable for certain diets or dietary restrictions.

Unsweetened protein powder is a good choice for people who like to control the amount of sweetness. Many protein powders are way too sweet because they are made with sugar substitutes that are hundreds of times sweeter than sugar. With an unsweetened protein powder, you can add your own sweetener until you like how it tastes.

Finally, many sweeteners, particularly sugar substitutes like artificial sweeteners and sugar alcohols, are not healthy. For starters, many studies have shown that they increase cravings for sugary and sweet foods, leading to overeating and feelings of withdrawal. If you are looking to shed a few pounds, you are probably better off using real sugar. Research has also linked artificial sweeteners to an increased risk of glucose intolerance, which is a precursor to pre-diabetes and diabetes.

It is worth mentioning that most sugar substitutes, including stevia, activate bitter taste receptors in addition to sweet taste receptors. Many people hate this bitter aftertaste, and prefer to use their own sweetener, or no sweetener at all. 


What is the best unsweetened protein powder? 

Not all unsweetened protein powders are created equal. For starters, unsweetened animal-based protein powders like whey, egg white, and collagen tend to taste and mix better than unsweetened plant-based protein powders. Plant-based protein powders tend to have a chalky aftertaste and gritty texture.

Moreover, many unsweetened protein powders contain a cocktail of emulsifiers, thickeners, and flavors known to cause painful side effects and long-term gut health problems. This is why reading the ingredient list is so important. As a rule of thumb, you should stick to protein powders made with a short list of simple ingredients. 

Our unsweetened protein powders are made with just 1 ingredient. We make it easy for you to know exactly what you are putting into your body. Plus, our unsweetened protein powders are made with whole food protein sources, not protein concentrates or isolates. Protein concentrates and isolates are high protein foods stripped of everything but the protein. They are the reason why so many protein powders taste like chalk. 

Our unsweetened protein powders are also a blank canvas for customization. You can add your own sweeteners, such as honey and maple syrup, to suit your preferences and dietary needs. You can add your own flavorings – cocoa, vanilla extract, fresh or frozen fruit, etc. – too.


Why drink wholesome

drink wholesome is additive-free.

One of the reasons why we make the best unsweetened protein powder is that we do not use any food additives whatsoever. This includes gums, lecithin, and flavorings. Added ingredients like these, even in small amounts, can cause painful side effects.

Here is a list of the most common food additives in protein powder:

acacia fiber, acacia gum, acesulfame potassium, artificial flavors, ascorbic acid, aspartame, calcium carbonate, carrageenan, cellulose gum, dextrin, dicalcium phosphate, dipotassium phosphate, erythritol, gellan gum, guar gum, gum arabic, inulin, locust bean gum, maltodextrin, mono- and diglycerides, ‘natural’ flavors, rice bran extract, rice dextrin, rice hulls, rosemary extract, silica, silicon dioxide, sodium alginate, sodium bicarbonate, soluble corn fiber, soy lecithin, sucralose, sunflower lecithin, tocopherols, tricalcium phosphate, xanthan gum, xylitol, zinc oxide

Food additives, to put it simply, look nothing like real food, making them hard to digest. They therefore end up spending extra time in your gut, which gives your gut bacteria extra time to eat. As they eat, gut bacteria produce gas, causing bloating, flatulence, and stomach pain. Gas can also slow colonic transit – the amount of time it takes food to move through the colon – leading to constipation.

For some people, partially digested food additives cause the colon to absorb extra water and/or prevent the colon from absorbing water. This can lead to osmotic diarrhea, and may be the reason why protein shakes make you rush to the bathroom. 

Regularly eating food additives can disrupt regulatory pathways in your intestines, causing development of inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) and other systemic inflammatory conditions. Food additives can also disturb your gut microbiome. An disturbed gut microbiome is a leading driver of inflammation and linked to the onset and progression of many chronic diseases.

the alternative:

Protein Matrix Comprised of (Whey Protein Concentrate,  Whey Protein Isolate, Calcium Caseinate, Micellar Casein, Milk Protein Isolate, Egg Albumen, Glutamine Peptides), Polydextrose, Sunflower Creamer (Sunflower Oil, Corn Syrup Solids,  Sodium Caseinate, Mono- and Diglycerides, Dipotassium Phosphate, Tricalcium Phosphate, Soy Lecithin, Tocopherols), Natural and Artificial Flavor, MCT Powder (Medium Chain Triglycerides, Nonfat Dry Milk, Disodium Phosphate, Silicon Dioxide), Lecithin, Cellulose Gum, Salt, Yellow 5, Sucralose, Acesulfame Potassium, Papain, Bromelain

drink wholesome is dairy-free.

Another reason why we make the best unsweetened protein powder is that we do not use dairy-based proteins like whey and casein. Whey and casein, which are leftover from cheese and yogurt production, contain lactose.

Lactose, the sugar in dairy, is infamous for causing gastrointestinal (GI) side effects, especially for people with lactose intolerance. Most adults suffer from lactose intolerance, meaning they lack the enzymes needed to fully digest lactose. As you just learned, partially digested food can cause a number of digestive issues.

drink wholesome is made with real foods.

A final reason why we make the best unsweetened protein powder is that we do not use protein concentrates or isolates. Nearly all other protein powders are made from one or both of these protein sources. As you just learned,  concentrates and isolates undergo heavy mechanical and chemical processing, sometimes with solvents like hexane, to remove their non protein components. What you put into your body thus looks very little like real food.

Your gut is designed to digest minimally or unprocessed or real foods, not protein concentrates or isolates. This is why more and more research is finding that regularly eating ingredients like these can alter the function and composition of your gut microbiome. Again, an altered gut microbiome is not something you want to deal with.

Instead of using protein concentrates or isolates, we make the best unsweetened protein powder with egg whites and almonds. Minimally-processed ingredients like these are a gut-healthy alternative to protein concentrates and isolates. 

Unlike protein isolates and concentrates, egg whites and almonds have enzymes and natural digestive aids that help you break them down. What is more, egg whites are low fiber, low FODMAP, alkaline (maintain healthy pH levels in your gut), and bioactive (promote the growth of healthy gut bacteria). In fact, our happy customers have reported fewer digestive issues with our egg white protein powder than with any other type of protein powder.

For those who cannot eat eggs, our vegan almond protein powder is the best unsweetened vegan protein powder. Almonds are prebiotic, meaning they improve the diversity of the gut microbiome. They also promote regular and healthy bowel movements. In short, our protein powders, because they are additive-free, dairy-free, and made with real foods, are the best unsweetened protein powders. 


easy to digest

“I’m diabetic and was looking for something simple to help me boost my protein. I just add it to smoothies. No glucose spikes and fills me up.” – James

Read more reviews or take the quiz.

Protein Powder Sample Packs

3 Protein Powder Samples


This content is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. drink wholesome is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.