Best Ways to Mix Your Protein Powder (4 Healthy Options)

James Cunningham, BSc, CPT
Published by James Cunningham, BSc, CPT | Staff Writer & Senior Coach
Last updated: January 16, 2024
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Protein powder is essential, especially if you want to buff up your muscles fast. It repairs damaged muscles and helps in generating new muscle cells.

As we all know, taking protein powder requires it to be mixed with a liquid. As a fitness instructor, I have seen many people get bored with their supplements because it doesn't have good taste.

So I have compiled my list of favorite things you can mix your protein powder for an enhanced taste.

Quick Summary

  • To enhance the taste and nutritional value of protein powder, mix it with various liquids like water, milk, or in smoothies.
  • Mixing protein powder with milk, such as almond milk, adds a creamy texture and extra protein, while smoothies offer a nutritious blend with fruits or vegetables.
  • The National Institutes of Health suggests blending protein powder with milk or water for a smooth consistency, especially when adding solid ingredients like fruits, with a recommended serving size of 1 scoop of protein.
  • In my opinion experimenting with different mix-ins like fruits or nut milks in protein shakes is a delicious way to keep the protein intake interesting and varied.

What to Mix with Protein Powder?

A row of foods and drinks that can be mixed with protein powder

Consider mixing your protein powder with a range of ingredients and creating delicious recipes, in order to avoid getting bored of unflavored protein powders.

Here are some ideas on what to mix protein powder with.

1. Water

Drawing from my experience, water is the simplest and quickest way to mix protein powder. Just put it to your shaker bottle and you are good to go. Despite its convenience, the taste can get boring even if you have a great tasting whey protein powder.

Coconut water may give your protein shake some flavor. According to information from Medical News Today, coconuts are high in unsaturated fat, which may be something you want to consider if you are on a weight loss program [1].

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2. Milk

Milk is another easy and convenient choice to add to your protein powder mix. Just like using cow's milk to make hot cocoa, it helps create a creamier texture. Options range from skim to 2% fat with the latter providing a creamier texture to your protein shake.

Unlike water, it can also add more protein and nutritional value to your diet. There are tons of ingredients you can experiment with when mixing protein powder with milk. You may also want to consider soy, oat, or nut milks.

They can contain more calories and sugars than cow’s milk though, so read the label to ensure that you are getting what you want after you mix protein powder.

My personal favorite option is almond milk, it creates a creamy texture and unsweetened almond milk doesn’t even have added sugars. Try it on your own and let me know in the comments section of your feedback!

Dairy-Free Protein Powder Options:

3. Smoothies

There are several protein shake smoothie recipes out in the world. They provide a large variety, and it’s not hard to find something that you like even if you drink gluten-free protein powders.

Adding frozen fruits or vegetables can make your protein shake smoothie even more healthy. You can try banana, apple, and orange for starters. It’s a nice way to put some variety to your morning protein intake.

4. Protein Bars

Did you think your love of baking had to go out the window when you started a healthier diet? Well, we have good news for you, there are plenty of delicious and healthy baking recipes out there.

One great idea is to start making your own protein bars. Protein powder is also a great baking ingredient that work with a surprising amount of recipes.

It’s cost-effective and you can customize them to create a unique flavor that you enjoy eating. Grab your chocolate protein powder and go crazy.

How To Mix Your Protein Powder

A special portable bottle that can mix liquids and solids made for protein powder

1. Shaker Bottle

The first is to use a shaker bottle to mix protein powders. It looks like any other reusable bottle. However, it has one key feature. It contains a mixer that often looks like a whisk shaped into a ball. A shaker cup is a convenient way to mix your protein powder with liquids.

2. Blender

According to insights from the National Institutes of Health (NIH), to mix protein powder, simply add the recommended serving size to a blender with your choice of milk or water and blend until smooth [2]. This is a much better option if you combine protein powder with solid ingredients like bananas or ice cubes. It helps you create delicious protein smoothies in no time.

How to Make a Smooth Protein Shake

Close up shot of a smooth protein shake

Even after you’ve chosen the perfect way to mix protein powder, there is still the risk of lumping it up.

Lumpy protein shakes aren’t, quite frankly, the worst thing ever, and so we have a few more tips on how you can prevent them.

One of these tips is to sift with a fork before mixing protein powder with a liquid. It ensures each grain of powder has a better chance of dissolving before it sticks together to form that inseparable goo.

If you are using a shaker cup, then another trick to ensure a smooth protein drink is to fill the bottle halfway and then add protein powder, shake it up, then fill it up with your chosen mixer.

Can I Mix Coffee with Protein Powder?

Close up shot of coffee beans on a table and protein powder beside the coffee beans

Yes, you can mix coffee with protein powder for a delicious coffee protein shake. However, you need to be careful on you blend it.

Putting hot coffee in a shaker bottle creates steam that can cause it to open. So the best option is to slowly add protein powder to you drink while stirring constantly to prevent lumps.

You can put bananas, almond milk, cacao nibs, and cubed ice in your coffee protein shake. Sounds yummy!

Is It Better to Mix Protein with Milk or Water?

The choice of whether to mix protein with milk or water ultimately depends on personal preference and nutritional goals. Water will add no calories, but it doesn’t add any taste or nutrition after you mix protein powder with it.

Milk will add a creamy taste and other necessary nutrition like calcium, and it adds extra protein and calories.

How Can I Make My Protein Shake Taste Better?

A person blending fruits and protein shake at a home kitchen

To get your protein shake to taste better, consider using a shaker cup, milk as a base, and ingredients like fresh fruit, yogurt, or peanut butter for tasty smoothies. You could also get flavored protein powders like vanilla or chocolate.

Adding protein powder with fresh fruit, yogurt, or peanut butter to create a smoothie is another great idea.

There are tons of ingredients that you can add to your vanilla protein powder.

Try searching the web for famous recipes or you can create your own and experiment. Then, adjust the ingredients according to your taste.

How Many Scoops of Protein Should I Use?

Close up shot of a scoop of protein powder

The number of scoops of protein you should use varies by brand and your individual protein needs, so read the label and consult a professional for guidance.

Protein powder usually recommends one scoop as a typical serving size. However, brands have varying scoop sizes.

It’s important to read the label to determine how much protein content is in each scoop. Your daily protein needs depend on your age and physical activity level.

If you are unsure, you can also consult your physician to know the correct dosage.

It is still best to get an expert's opinion than deciding on your own.


References:

  1. https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/321655
  2. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7509468/
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About The Author

James Cunningham, BSc, CPT
Staff Writer & Senior Coach
James Cunningham, BSc, CPT holds a BSc degree in Sport & Exercise Science from University of Hertfordshire. He's a Health & Performance Coach from London that brings a unique blend of academic knowledge of health supplements and practical exercise experience to the table for his readers.
Learn more about our editorial policy
Dr. Harshi Dhingra, MBBS, MD is a published peer-reviewed author and renowned physician from India with over a decade of experience. With her MBBS from Bharati Vidyapeeth and an MD from Rajiv Gandhi University, she actively ensures the accuracy of online dietary supplement and medical information by reviewing and fact-checking health publications.
Learn more about our editorial policy
Dr. Kristy June Dayanan, BS, MD is an author with a BS degree from University of the Philippines and an MD from University of Perpetual Help System. Her ability to simplify medical science complexities and dietary supplement jargon for the average reader makes her a valued medical fact checker and reviewer.
Learn more about our editorial policy

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One thought on “What do You Mix Protein Powder With?
Shake Guide 101

  1. I’ve always wondered what is the best liquid to mix with protein powder, and yes I agree that it varies from person to person. As for me, I prefer mixing it with my smoothie! Yum!

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