What to mix protein powder with?

Written by Jack Schrupp and reviewed by Ella McGonagle, M.S. Nutrition

Wondering what to mix protein powder with? Here are a few ideas.

What to mix with protein powder.

Can you mix protein powder with water? 

Can you mix protein powder with milk? 

Can you mix protein powder with coffee?

What else can you mix protein powder with? 

Can you mix protein powder with water? 

Some people like to make a protein shake with just protein powder and water. The advantage of doing so is that water does not add calories, fat, etc., so what you see on the Nutrition Facts is what you get. This is great if you are counting calories, but it leaves a lot to be desired in terms of taste. In other words, by choosing to make your protein shake with just water, you are sacrificing flavor and texture for fewer calories. As someone who likes a rich, creamy protein shake, I always take my protein powder with milk.

That said, water, unlike milk, does not require refrigeration. For people who like to make protein shakes on the go, or at the gym, water is the best option. If you use water, I highly recommend adding a few ice cubes. Generally speaking, the colder your protein shake is, the better it tastes.

Can you mix protein powder with milk? 

Mixing protein powder with milk will make a better tasting, albeit higher calorie protein shake. That said, the flavor, texture, and nutrition content of the shake will depend on the milk you use. Cow’s milk, for instance, tastes different from plant milk, and contains more protein.

I use plant milk because dairy upsets my stomach. Fortunately for people like me, the market for plant milk has exploded in the past few years and there are now many products that rival cow’s milk in terms of taste and mouthfeel. Unfortunately, however, most plant milks are full of food additives. Additives can cause uncomfortable side effects and long term gut damage, so read the ingredients list next time you buy plant milk. If you cannot find an additive-free plant milk, I highly recommend trying my dairy-free milk powder. It can be reconstituted with water, or added to smoothies for extra creaminess. 

Can you mix protein powder with coffee?

You can definitely pair protein powder with coffee, but it is easier said than done. Protein powder and coffee are not exactly a match made in heaven, and adding protein powder to a hot cup of coffee with only a spoon will make a lumpy mess. To avoid this, follow these instructions. They can be used to add protein powder to other hot drinks like hot chocolate too. 

What else can you do with protein powder? 

Protein powder is perfect for giving your smoothie a protein boost. Grab a blender and blend protein powder with milk, fruit (ideally frozen), and nut butter. My favorite recipe is protein powder, oat milk, frozen banana, and a spoonful of peanut butter. If you like thick smoothies, add a handful of ice cubes.

If you are sick of smoothies, try making protein oatmeal or protein yogurt. You can also add protein powder into your favorite baked goods. In many cases, a scoop or two of protein powder will not change the recipe.

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