Whether due to allergies, other health issues, or because you just don’t like soy, if you’re looking for a soy-free protein powder, it can be hard.
Trained as I am to automatically scan the labels all products that go into my body, it’s hard to miss the fact that soy is often in the powder blend even in protein powders that come from animal sources.
In this article, we’ve picked through the ingredient lists of our favorite protein powders to find 12 of the best that are soy-free.
We’ll also look at why people might be choosing to avoid soy in further detail, so read on to find out more.
Our Top Soy-Free Protein Powders
1 - Transparent Labs Vegan Protein (Editor's Choice)
If you’re looking for products with no added nonsense, then Transparent Labs have got the right blend.
They have made a name for themselves in dealing with stripped back, simple ingredients lists, and clear labeling telling you precisely what you’re getting.
Their Organic Vegan Protein Powder with rice & pea protein blend is not just the best vegan and soy-free powdered protein on the market; it’s one of the best protein powders full stop.
- Simple protein supplement blend designed to boost protein levels efficiently
- Complete plant-based protein source with all essential amino acids
- Great value for money with savings for buying in bulk
- Not a massive selection of flavor choices
Nothing artificial, no soy, no dairy, non-GMO, gluten-free, and also a complete protein source containing all the essential amino acids.
Both vanilla and chocolate flavors taste great and mix well however you choose to take them, and they’re reasonably low in calories.
2 - PaleoPro Protein Powder
Being soy-free doesn’t necessarily mean being without animal products.
While this protein powder is still free of common allergens such as soy, dairy, and gluten, it’s packed full of protein from egg and grass-fed beef sources with a whopping 26 grams of protein per serving.
The ingredients list is very basic, with only minimal additives used for the various flavors.
Perfect for those following a paleo diet, it is a delicious complete protein source that is also rich in collagen and claims to be minimally processed with all-natural ingredients.
- Perfect for those on a paleo diet
- Fantastic selection of flavor; favorites being the plain and aztec vanilla
- Excellent source of collagen and protein
- Made in a factory that also processes dairy, soy, peanut, wheat, and shellfish so cannot claim to be completely allergy-free
3 - Ora Organic Protein Powder
If you’re looking for a clean and all organic product, usually the vegan label is a good one to keep an eye out for as it doesn’t just mean free from animal sources.
This protein powder is made from over 20 different superfoods, all coming together to provide all of the essential amino acids alongside a hearty general health boost.
The benefits this protein powder claims to provide reach far beyond just protein, with the inclusion of super greens they are also serving up the macro and micronutrient needs we all may be lacking in our diets.
- Super healthy and diverse protein sources
- Rich in digestive enzymes that tackle bloating and help absorption
- Delicious taste coming from organic cocoa and only 1 gram of sugar
- Unless you are a subscriber to make use of the savings, it can work out expensive per scoop
It also includes digestive enzymes that help your body to absorb all the goodness packed inside. It’s low in calories, with only one scoop of sugar relying on the natural flavoring of cocoa and fruit for flavor.
4 - Orgain Organic Protein
If you’re worried about soy, it follows that you’re likely concerned about other problematic ingredients, and so you’ll find a lot of this list is also dairy-free and lacking in protein from animal sources.
Orgain Organic Protein Powder is no exception and proves just how effective and tasty plant protein can be.
The flavor claims to be one of the best there is, and it’s undoubtedly a great chocolate taste, but some find it a little chalky.
- Super chocolatey flavor
- The protein and fiber work well to suppress appetite as a dietary aid in the morning
- Versatile and can mixes well for shakes and when used in baking
- Uses stevia as a sweetener
A serving packs in 21 grams of protein and 7 grams of fiber with 0 grams of sugar, and it’s perfect for those looking to stem their appetite and lose weight with a protein powder that’s low in calories.
5 - Naked Rice Brown Rice Protein Powder
Naked Nutrition market themselves as a company with nothing to hide, and that much is accurate, at least from the ingredients list.
This is a straightforward and effective rice protein powder with no additives or artificial ingredients, low in calories and high in nutrition. Overall, a product that may be ideal for your general health.
The company claim they use superior extraction techniques to produce a protein powder every bit as good as whey.
- Super simple and straightforward ingredients list
- Easily one of the best pure rice protein powders there is
- Can be combined with the Naked Pea Protein for a complete profile of amino acids
- Not a complete source of protein
While they do avoid the usual flashy marketing techniques and gimmicks, and this is a genuinely good protein powder that we rank highly.
It should be noted that as it is sourced from rice, it is an incomplete protein, lacking the BCAA profile that you would get from a blended or whole plant-based protein such as soy, or rice and pea combined.
6 - Promix Pasteur Based Micellar Casein
Few brands can honestly claim they are serving up pure casein, which means Promix is an excellent and unique product to try out to achieve your health goals.
While whey is arguably the best at serving up fast-acting protein, casein is much better at the slow-burning release that makes it ideal for taking post-workout or overnight aiding in muscle recovery.
This powder mixes very well with a subtle but straightforward flavoring and is another that boasts an incredibly simple ingredients list free from artificial and unwanted additives.
- Excellent pure casein powder protein source
- Ideal for post-workout or overnight recovery
- Pure and purpose-driven product
- Significantly more expensive per serving when compared to others
7 - Naked Whey Grass Fed Whey Protein
Naked’s Whey protein follows much the same process and ethos as their plant-based protein powders. It’s free from anything artificial or nasty additives.
Like its plant-based product, the powder is best when you choose to opt for the unflavored option.
However, they do have a few flavor options to choose from that use only organic ingredients.
- A bare-all naked ingredient list that is just what you want with no added nonsense
- A complete source of protein that is reportedly ethically sourced
- Uses research and superior extraction techniques to ensure high quality
- Some of the bold claims about the quality of the ingredients made by the brand are, at best unverifiable.
My recommendation is to stick with the unflavored and then vary your shake recipe using the delicious whole and raw ingredients that you like best.
If you want just a tad bit of sweetness, you can go for the vanilla variant.
8 - Vega Plant-based Proteins and Greens
Vega is another protein powder that doesn’t just want to help you lose weight or make gains at the gym; it’s a vital part of a well-balanced and healthy diet.
With the addition of greens to balance the protein, it provides the nutrients that many are lacking and makes it the perfect start to any day.
With a blend of different vegan proteins, it is a complete protein with a full profile of branched-chain amino acids.
- Excellent protein source buffered with additional benefits and fibers from greens
- Great flavor options as well as an unflavored alternative
- Complete plant-based protein
- A press release concerning the high amount of heavy metals found in the product has been released and warrants further investigation
The flavors (vanilla and salted caramel are my personal favorites) are sweetened with stevia, but they do also offer an unflavored and stevia-free option.
There has, however, recently been a heavy-metal scare (not the music) with this product being found to be very high in metals such as lead and cadmium.
9 - OWYN Vegan Allergen Friendly Protein
The whole idea behind taking a protein shake is that it should be a one-stop-shop for all your nutritional needs.
Allowing you to focus on the exercise regime or diet goals you’re trying to achieve. OWYN knows this and has done precisely that.
It’s got probiotics, and it’s got vitamins, it’s a complete plant-based protein source fortified with greens. You could drink this in the morning for the health benefits alone.
- Fortified with additional nutritional benefits
- Contains probiotics for a healthy gut and easily digested
- Doesn’t contain stevia or other artificial sweeteners
- High salt content
10 - Garden of Life Raw Organic Protein Powder
Another great protein powder that has stood the test of time and not only helps you with your diet and at the gym but also in general health and wellbeing goals too.
The 22 grams of sugar-free plant-based protein per serving is aided in absorption by probiotics and fortified nutritionally with vitamins and minerals derived from its raw food ingredients.
- Great product with the reviews and consensus backing the companies claims
- Complete plant-based protein with additional nutritional benefits thrown in
- Certified organic
- Now owned by Nestle and “new and improved” reads a lot like “worse and you get less."
I have used the Garden Of Life and know many who still use it. My only concern and the reason that I no longer use it is that it is now owned by Nestle, who notoriously do not care about the products they buy or the consumers using them. If that isn’t on your worry list, then give it a try.
11 - Omega Nutrition Pumpkin Seed Protein Powder
If you want your soy-free protein powder to be clean, it doesn’t get much more honest than this.
This protein is sourced entirely from pumpkin seeds, and it’s all raw and organic as far as the ingredients list can read.
I wouldn’t put this up against some of the other proteins in this list if you’re looking to make muscle mass.
- Completely natural source of protein
- Very cost-efficient
- Tastes great added to recipes, meals, or shakes
- Can’t compete against other protein powders in terms of efficient delivery
I also don’t think it’s in the same category when it comes to being a complete source of protein or being beneficially healthy with other fortified vitamins and minerals.
What I would recommend it for is using to give cooking baking a little protein kick. It tastes great and is a great natural way to up your protein intake.
12 - Amazon Elements Grass-Fed Whey Protein
Considering the number of protein powders that get sold through Amazon daily, it should come as no surprise they want a high cut of that sweet profit margin.
What they have produced is a soy-free whey protein powder from reportedly grass-fed cows.
The taste is subtle, and it mixes well. The reviews are predominantly good, but considering it’s sold on their own platform should be treated with suspicion.
- Incredibly cost-effective
- Simple and clean ingredient list
- Mixes well with a good flavor
- It’s an Amazon own-brand product
The protein powder honestly surpassed my expectations, the ingredient list is honest and straightforward, and the product itself does what it’s supposed to.
Why Go Soy-Free?
Apart from being a common allergen, there are other reasons to avoid too much soy.
Maybe you’re vegan and already getting plenty of the stuff in your diet.
You might be lactose intolerant, so already mixing your shakes with soy and don’t want to double down.
Or perhaps you want to cut out soy completely.
There are tons of vegan proteins aside from soy. You may look at other options, such as hemp protein, pea, and rice powders.
Arguments Against Soy
The biggest concern with soy is the claim that it can affect hormonal imbalance. Although these claims are mostly unfounded and lack any scientific consensus.
Since many of the concerns related to soy come from studies in rats and mice, it’s important to recognize that rodents metabolize soy isoflavones differently than humans, essentially making these studies inapplicable.
- Judith C Thalheimer, Registered Dietician
The argument centers around the fact that soy is rich in isoflavones, which is a plant-based hormone similar to estrogen, which can bind to estrogen and is said to reduce fertility/masculinity in men.
However, in the nine identified studies that have been carried out, no such link has been found.
Arguments In Favor of Soy
Soy is a versatile ingredient and can happily be included as part of a healthy lifestyle, that is, unless you’re allergic.
Too much soy should be avoided, and so you should be keeping track of the different foods and drinks you consume that contain it.
Soy is a complete protein which for those following a plant-based diet, makes it an easy go-to replacement for milk and dairy.
Soy is cholesterol-free and low in saturated fats, making it a great healthy alternative to other sources of vegan proteins. Soy is also rich in omega-3 and polyunsaturated fats, which both promote heart health.
Does whey protein powder contain soy?
Some whey protein powders contain soy, but not all. If you are looking for some soy-free whey protein powders, check our list above, or else check the ingredient list on your favorite powder.
Does pea protein powder contain soy?
Typically, pea protein won’t contain soy unless it’s put in there to bulk it out as an additive. It will be listed on the label, though, so be sure to check them carefully. We do have some great pea proteins listed in the article above that are soy-free.
What Is The Best Soy-Free Protein Powder?
The best protein powder for you will depend on your health goals and reasons for being soy-free. That said, for me, the protein powder that ticks practically every box imaginable is Transparent Labs Organic Vegan.
The company pride themselves on being open and completely honest with their straightforward ingredient list.
The protein powder is vegan, so it works for those following a plant-based diet, but is also a complete protein and completely allergen-free.
Give it a try and let us know what you think.