When you're working hard towards your fitness and weight loss goals, it's all about tough workouts and cutting out all the unhealthy foods.
But that doesn't mean you can't enjoy some delicious post-workout recovery protein shakes.
Unfortunately, through my years of experience as a fitness coach, I have to say that so many chocolate protein powders are utterly terrible. Some taste great but are full of sugars and empty calories.
And then there's those with great nutritional values but a totally fake chocolate taste.
So, our team here at Total Shape set out on a mission to bring you the best tasting chocolate protein powders.
Our Top Tasting Chocolate Protein Powders
1 - Transparent Labs Whey Protein Isolate (Editor's Choice)
Of all the chocolate protein powders we tested out, we all seemed to agree that Transparent Labs Whey Protein Isolate is one of the best tasting products.
The milk chocolate flavor contains high-quality ingredients that are favored by many athletes to help build muscle and reduce post-workout fatigue.
- 24 grams of grass-fed whey protein isolate per serving
- Contains no sugar or chemical sweeteners
- A popular choice for weight loss as it contains no carbs
- Certified gluten and GMO-free for extra peace of mind
- Currently not available in larger tubs
The only downside I can note is that it would be great if it was available in larger tubs.
2 - Performance Lab Protein Powder (Brown Rice Chocolate)
For those that are dairy intolerant or vegan, this Performance Lab option may be the best choice.
The maker, OptiNutra, also claims that it's an excellent choice for appetite suppression, which quite a few users confirm.
The only thing I would say is that I agree with some reviews that say it's the easiest protein powder to shake up with water.
- 20 grams of brown rice protein per serving
- Organic vegan-friendly ingredients
- Low fat and minimal carbs to not mess with your diet
- Claims to reduce appetite for easier fasting
- Some reports that it may need to be blended for a smooth consistency
3 - PaleoPro Protein Powder (Ancient Cacao)
This is one of the top paleo protein supplements we recommend for anyone on the paleo diet, but other non-vegan athletes may also gain benefits from the collagen it contains.
Studies have shown that collagen may help with joint pain .
I wasn't a big fan of the texture straight from the shaker, but the powder works well in a blender.
- 26 grams of grass-fed beef protein per serving
- Sourced from hormone and antibiotic-free cattle
- Helps avoid common soy, dairy, and gluten reactions
- May provide a natural boost of collagen
- Texture may be a little grainy when mixed with water
4 - Ora Organic Vegan Protein Powder (Chocolate)
I'm a big fan of organic protein supplements, and this vegan powder is a good choice to make.
With no fillers or artificial sweeteners, you're only getting what your muscles need.
The only thing on the negative side is that it's best to blend it for optimum taste and consistency.
- 22 grams of organic protein protein per serving
- No fillers or artificial additives
- Low in sugar, fat, and calories to support dieting efforts
- Use of organic cocoa creates a popular chocolate flavor
- You may want to plan blending it
5 - MyProtein Impact Whey Protein (Chocolate Smooth)
With only 100 calories per serving, Impact may be ideal if you're on a calorie-restricted diet.
Of all the chocolate protein powders we researched, this product has one of the lowest calories.
- 18 grams of whey protein per serving
- One of the lowest calories we found
- Low fat and sugar content makes it suitable for most diets
- Many positive reviews about the smooth tasting texture
- Despite only having a gram of sugar, some users find it too sweet
So, if you're staying away from sweets, this might trigger some cravings.
6 - Legion Whey+ Protein Powder (Chocolate)
What made this one stand out from all the other protein powders was the processing technique used.
Legion uses a cold filtration process as standard, which claims to have less of a negative effect on the structure of the proteins.
- 22 grams of grass-fed whey protein per serving
- Claims to use unique cold filtration to reduce protein breakdown
- GMO and hormone-free for added peace of mind
- Available in large bulk order tubs
- Some reviews point out that it may be a bit sweet tasting
On the downside, we did find that it was one of the sweeter tasting chocolate powders during our testing.
7 - Yuve Vegan Plant-Based All-in-One Shake (Chocolate)
This is another good vegan chocolate flavor option that combines rice and pea protein to get the full nutritional benefits of a complete amino acid profile.
Some people say it's an excellent choice due to the included superfoods, digestive enzymes, and fiber, which may help with immune and digestive health.
- 15 grams of rice and pea protein per serving
- Added superfoods for bonus vitamins and minerals
- Many comments that it tastes like a chocolate milkshake
- Contains 8 grams of dietary fiber to help with digestion
- It's not the best-tasting flavor
Of all the chocolate flavors we tried out, this is a little bit fake-tasting.
8 - Optimum Nutrition 100% Gold Standard Whey (Double Rich Chocolate)
Gold Standard is possibly one of the most recognized sports nutrition brands, and this whey protein powder has a nice taste that doesn't require a blender.
It's also a low-carb and calorie option to help support losing body weight.
- 24 grams of whey protein per serving
- Only 120 calories in each scoop with very little carbs and fat
- Many positive reviews that it mixes easily in a shaker
- Very good bulk-order tubs available
- Not suitable for mixing with hot drinks as it may curdle
Just avoid using it with hot water and beverages, as it does tend to curdle a little.
9 - Muscle Pharm Combat Protein Powder (Chocolate Milk)
The final one of our tested chocolate protein powders that made this list is Muscle Pharm.
It's the only one with a certificate for not containing any banned substances, which may be important for professional athletes.
- 25 grams of whey, casein, and egg protein per serving
- Combination of 5 quality proteins may help with a graduated release
- Tested and certified for banned ingredients
- Provides a boost in BCAAs that may help with muscle building and recovery
- It's a little high in cholesterol and sugar
While it has an excellent blend of 5 different proteins, it is a bit higher in cholesterol than all the other protein powders above.
What Should Influence Your Decision For Protein Powders?
We’ve broken the answer to this down into 6 points.
1. Protein Source
Protein powders are available from many different animal and plant sources, and your choice may come down to your diet or some allergies. Whey is by far the most common dairy protein powder, but you'll also find soy, rice, hemp, and pea protein products are becoming more common .
2. Nutritional Values
Some of the best products we found were all low in carbs and fat. The reason this is an excellent feature is that it won't end up messing with your diet, making it easy to plan your protein supplementation.
3. Essential Amino Acids
If you're trying to build some lean muscle mass, then you have to make sure that your chosen product has all nine essential amino acids listed on the contents. One of the best ways to ensure this is by choosing whey protein powder .
If you are an athlete or highly active person attempting to lose body fat while preserving lean muscle mass, a daily intake of 1.5-2.2g/kg body weight (0.68-1g/lb bodyweight) is a good goal.
- Kamal Patel, Nutrition Researcher
You would think that all protein powders have the same kind of consistency. However, pretty much all protein shakes are quite unique. You'll also notice a very different texture dependent on whether you use water, milk, or juice.
5. Suitability For Combining With Other Foods
Some athletes combine their protein powder with other foods to create a kind of meal replacement.
For breakfast or an in-between snack, chocolate and vanilla-flavored powders may be the best for a delicious combination.
6. Does It Mix Easily?
I already mentioned the texture above, but protein powders tend to differ in how easy it is to mix them. If it's easy in a shaker, then that's a great indicator that you could end up with something that tastes like a chocolate milkshake.
Which flavor is best for protein powder?
Chocolate flavors are the best in my opinion, with vanilla protein powders being a close second. The main reason for this is that when you find a product with natural flavors, then you won't get that fake and disgusting taste.
No, flavored whey protein powder is not bad as long as it doesn't have artificial sweeteners and flavors added. You should always check the nutritional content label, and if it's not all-natural, then you may be looking at something that won't have a great taste.
What can I mix with protein powder to make it taste better?
You can mix milk or fruit juice with protein powder to make it taste better. Another alternative is to add some natural cooking flavors like vanilla essence to unflavored protein powder.
You can also add yoghurt to give it an extra bit of depth, nutrients, and probiotics.
Do protein powders cause weight gain?
No, protein powders do not cause weight gain, as long as you are following the recommended serving per day, eating a healthy well-balanced diet, and maintaining an active lifestyle.
Our #1 Chocolate-Flavored Protein Powder
If you're aiming to build muscle or improve your recovery times, then I would recommend Transparent Labs as the best tasting protein powder in the list. I have struggled to find a better option when it comes to quality and nutritional values.
The company does live up to its name by only including valuable ingredients and being completely open about what's in it.
If you've found some other chocolate protein products that taste great, then let us know on social media, and we can research them as well.