What’s the Best Protein Powder for Smoothies? Reviews & Buyer’s Guide

Posted in  Supplements  on  August 7, 2021 by  Welcyon Team

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Smoothies are a great choice if you are bulking up. On a personal level, I like to fill my smoothie with as many nutrients as possible.

Doing so allows me to get a decent amount of healthy calories in, while also keeping taste in mind.

To ensure that the calories I'm consuming are healthy, I make sure to fill my post-workout smoothies with adequate amounts of protein.

A protein powder goes a long way in achieving this feat. They are a great source of lean protein and come without unnecessary nutrients.

As a result, I can add other ingredients such as fruits and nuts without hesitation.


But which protein powder should you buy for your stacked protein shake? Don't worry. I've got you covered. Here is a list of the five best protein powders for smoothies:

Editor's Choice

PROTEIN SERIES 100% Grass-Fed Whey Protein Isolate

PROTEIN SERIES 100% Grass-Fed Whey Protein Isolate

Made with grass-fed cow milk, this product is very low in carbs and fats. Easily the best protein powder to add to your smoothies.

Key features:

• High protein content

• Gluten-free and non-GMO

• It comes in multiple flavor options


#2nd Best Choice

Authentic Iso by Jacked Factory

Authentic Iso by Jacked Factory

This whey protein isolate is perfect for people looking to accelerate the recovery process after a tough training session. And because it uses the latest filtration technology combined with only the highest-quality ingredients, Authentic Iso starts working quickly, leaving you with plenty of time to take care of other important things like eating properly and getting a good night's rest.

Key features:

• High protein content per serving

• Quickly absorbed and easy to digest

• Low carb and fat content


#3rd Best Choice

Ladder Whey Protein Powder

Ladder Whey Protein Powder

Sponsored by Lebron James himself, this protein powder is a great choice for building muscle. It also comes in popular flavor choices of Chocolate and Vanilla.

Key features:

• High protein content

• Contains probiotics

• Gluten-free


Top Protein Powders For Smoothies

1. PROTEIN SERIES 100% Grass-Fed Whey Protein Isolate

PROTEIN SERIES 100% Grass-Fed Whey Protein Isolate

Specifications:

Protein per serving - 28 g

Calories - 120

Carbs - 1 g

Fat - 0.5 g

Flavor - Milk Chocolate, Mocha, Cereal Splash, French Vanilla, etc.

Protein Source - Whey protein

Type - Isolate


The PROTEIN SERIES 100% Grass-Fed Whey Protein Isolate is by far the best option for making smoothies.

As its name suggests, it is an animal-based whey protein powder that is made using the milk of grass-fed cows.

Though it can't be consumed by vegans, it is gluten-free and non-GMO. It also contains no added sugar. Despite that, it comes in multiple flavor options such as Milk Chocolate, Mocha, French Vanilla, etc.

I personally tried the Vanilla flavor and can't recommend it enough. What I liked about this product was that is extremely low on carbs and fats which makes it a great choice for standalone shakes as well as protein smoothies.

Pros:

Very high in protein
Contains no added sugars
Contains all nine essential amino acids
Helps you lose weight
It comes in multiple flavor options


Cons:

Unusable if you are a vegan


2. Authentic Iso by Jacked Factory

Authentic Iso by Jacked Factory

Specifications:

Protein per serving - 25g

Calories - 110

Carbs - 1g

Fat - 0.5g

Flavor - Vanilla, Chocolate

Protein source - Whey protein

Type - Isolate


At Jacked Factory, all proteins are non-GMO and have zero fillers and zero artificial coloring.

Each serving of Authentic Iso provides an average of 25 grams of protein with 5 grams of carbohydrates, 1 gram of fiber, and half a gram of fat, adding up to 130 calories per serving. It promotes good lean muscle growth while also increasing strength and enhancing recovery during and after intense workouts.

The key difference between Authentic Iso and other protein powders is that Authentic Iso is powered by fast-absorbing, easy-to-digest grass-fed whey protein. Grass-fed whey comes from cows that eat organic hay. These cows are raised on natural diets without soy and corn—unlike the animals you'll find at conventional farms! This diet gives cows higher levels of immune-boosting bioactive compounds.

There are two flavors available: vanilla and chocolate. Each will perfectly complement your smoothie.

Pros:

High protein content per serving
cGMP-facility certified
Low carb and fat content
Quickly absorbed and easy to digest


Cons:

A bit pricey


3. Ladder Whey Protein Powder

Ladder Whey Protein Powder

Specifications:

Protein per serving - 26 g

Calories - 130

Carbs - 5 g

Fat - 1 g

Flavor - Chocolate, Vanilla

Protein Source - Whey protein

Type - Isolate


Another animal-based product on our list, the Ladder whey protein powder comes with a great repute. Sponsored by Lebron James himself, this product has been known to be a great supplement for performance.

Similar to the whey protein produced by PROTEIN SERIES, this product is also gluten-free. It comes in two flavor choices in the form of chocolate and vanilla.

As for artificial ingredients, it does not carry any. However, it is worth noting that it does have 2 g of sugar.

Therefore, I wouldn't recommend taking this in a smoothie if you are a diabetic considering that fruits will also provide you with some calories through sugars.

Pros:

Contains all nine essential amino acids
Gluten-free
No artificial sweeteners
Contains probiotics


Cons:

Contains sugar


4. Swolverine Whey Protein Isolate

Swolverine Whey Protein Isolate

Specifications:

Protein per serving - 26 g

Calories - 110

Carbs - 1 g

Fat - 0.5 g

Flavor - Chocolate, Vanilla, Honey

Protein Source - Whey protein

Type - Isolate


Most whey protein powders are known to absorb quite quickly. What makes the Swolverine Whey Protein Isolate even better is the fact that it contains digestive enzymes which help in further maximizing the absorption rate. As a result, it is an ideal protein powder to use in your post-workout smoothie.

It is an rBGH Free, non-GMO whey protein powder that is made using the milk of grass-fed cows. It contains close to no sugar.

Therefore, you can make your fruit-filled protein smoothie recipes without any hesitation.

This allows its users to blend ingredients with high fibre ingredients without getting any bloat or digestive issues.

Pros:

Contains all nine essential amino acids
rBGH free, GMO-free
Contains digestive enzymes
Very low in sugar


Cons: 

Mixability is not the best


5. Dr. Berg's Meal Replacement Shake

Dr. Berg's Meal Replacement Shake

Specifications:

Protein per serving - 11 g

Calories - 100

Carbs - 9 g

Fat - 2 g

Flavor - Chocolate Brownie

Protein Source - Pea protein

Type - Concentrate


Most protein powders are designed to provide lean protein.

However, with Dr. Berg's Meal Replacement Shake, you get a different kind of product. It comes with an almost equal split of carbohydrates and protein.

As a result, it comes with a decent base of macronutrient content. Therefore, any extra ingredients, say a banana can help boost up the calorie content of your smoothie with ease.

Though it does not contain 20 grams of protein per serving, it is a great choice in a bulking phase due to its macronutrient count.

As for ingredients, the supplement uses organic pea protein making it ideal for vegans.

Pros:

Uses organic pea protein
It contains very low sugar
Good for breakfast
Ideal for weight loss


Cons: 

It contains only 11 g of protein per serving


6. NOW Sports Nutrition Sprouted Brown Rice Protein Powder

NOW Sports Nutrition Sprouted Brown Rice Protein Powder

Specifications:

Protein per serving - 4 g

Calories - 15

Carbs - 0 g

Fat - 0 g

Flavor - Unflavored

Protein Source - Brown rice

Type - Isolate


Another plant-based product on our list, the NOW Sports Nutrition Sprouted Brown Rice Protein Powder is a 100% plant-based protein powder.

As its name suggests, it is made using sprouted brown rice. As a result, it contains no carbs and fats. In fact, 80% of its serving is made up of protein.

What I liked about this product the most was that it is unflavored. While I wouldn't say this in any other scenario, but having this specification in its forte allows you to create your smoothie exactly how you want it.

Want to add a banana? Almond milk perhaps? Maybe some frozen fruit? The choice is all yours.

Pros:

80% of the serving comes from protein
Ideal for weight loss
It contains no artificial sweeteners
Lasts long


Cons:

It contains only 4 g of protein per serving


Buying Guide - How To Choose The Best Protein Powder For Smoothies?

Protein smoothies allow users to add a number of ingredients without getting too much into the specificities. Therefore, buying a protein powder for smoothies is not the toughest of tasks.

However, you still need to keep the following things in mind before making a purchase:

Matching it with your goals

While the idea with a protein powder is always to boost your daily protein intake, the use case can vary tremendously.

Some of us buy protein powder to lose weight while some do it to bulk up and build muscle. Therefore, you must always ensure that the product you buy matches your goals in terms of nutrition.

Ethical and medical compatibility

Despite being an incredible supplement, a protein powder has its limitations. Not everyone is compatible with every supplement.

For example, if you are a vegan, you will likely go for a plant-based powder.

For a diabetic, the first place they will look for is the sugar count.

Predetermining recipe ideas

Though not a direct reason to select or deselect a protein powder, having a list of your ideal recipes certainly narrows down your choices.

If you want a strong flavor of a certain fruit you will externally add, you may want to go with an unflavored product.

If you are looking for a specific taste that preexists in the protein powder, a flavored option is the one for you.


Benefits of Using a Protein Powder for Smoothies

Smoothies have become quite popular in recent times. But are they really beneficial? The answer is yes. Here's how:

Incredible meal hack

Most people suggest that getting and remaining fit requires an insurmountable amount of effort. I was one of those people once. But ever since I found the meal hack that is a protein smoothie, there is no going back.

You can customize your smoothies exactly how you want them. From flavor to calories, you can create anything you want.

Great for building muscle

Protein has a positive effect on post-workout recovery, increased muscle mass, and protects against muscle hypertrophy. [1] If you are consuming a protein smoothie regularly, it bumps up your daily protein intake significantly.

As a result, you can build lean muscle mass with ease. It is also likely to keep you in a caloric surplus.

Even if it doesn't, research has shown that you can preserve and build muscle mass even while being in a deficit. [2]

Helps you lose weight

Protein powders are very low in calories. Therefore, it is very easy to stay in a caloric deficit as long as you choose low-calorie ingredients to add. [3]

Additionally, the calories you consume with protein smoothies are generally quite healthy.

Therefore, they are likely to boost your metabolism as long as you combine them with working out. This opens another avenue for weight loss.


Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Q. Are protein smoothies healthy?

A. Protein smoothies are among the healthiest food items at the moment. Since they are extremely customizable, the user can make them exactly as per their dietary requirements.

Q. How often should you drink a protein smoothie?

A. Protein smoothies are best consumed once a day post-workout. Since most of us add fruits and nuts to our smoothies, they are a great source of all macronutrients which your body needs after an intense session.

Q. Can I drink a protein smoothie without working out?

A. You can consume your protein smoothie anytime during the day. However, it is the most effective after a workout session as your body is then depleted of nutrition, and consuming a smoothie keeps you full and energized.

Q. Is it bad to drink protein smoothies every day?

A. You can consume protein smoothies every day as long as the ingredients you use are healthy and compatible. You must also ensure that the calories in your drink match your daily requirements.

Q. Will a protein smoothie help me lose weight?

A. Losing weight only requires one thing -- caloric deficit. Doing that will ensure weight loss. That said, protein smoothies are known to boost the user's metabolism which in turn may help in losing weight faster.

Addressing Controversies

At times, protein smoothies get a bad rap in the fitness community due to their high-calorie nature compared to protein shakes. However, the idea of being fit doesn't mean just consume protein all day.

!

A healthy body and mind require you to consume your daily required macronutrients and micronutrients. A protein smoothie allows you to do that with ease.

No other food item comes with as much customizability as a protein smoothie. You can literally add any ingredient you want and blend it with your protein powder.


The result will be a drink that is full of protein but also provides other nutritional benefits.

Related articles:

Conclusion

Looking for a protein powder for smoothies provides ample room for flexibility. As a result, generating a narrow list of the best products was quite a hard task for me. But which one did I find best?

For me, it has to be the PROTEIN SERIES 100% Grass-Fed Whey Protein Isolate which is a premium protein powder that is very high in protein, contains all essential amino acids, and is free from gluten and GMO.

Adding to that, it also comes in a variety of flavor options making it a great choice for smoothie customization.

Second on my list of personal favorites would have to be the Swolverine Whey Protein Isolate. It is also an animal-based product that is rBGH and GMO-free. It also comes with digestive enzymes making it a great option for maintaining good gut health.


References:

1. Matthew Stark, Judith Lukaszuk, Aimee Prawitz, Amanda Salacinski, Protein timing and its effects on muscular hypertrophy and strength in individuals engaged in weight-training, retrieved from https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3529694/
2. Edda Cava, Nai Chien Yeat, Bettina Mittendorfer, Preserving Healthy Muscle during Weight Loss, retrieved from https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5421125/
3. Jessica DiGiacinto, Alina Petre, MS, RD (NL), Alissa Palladino, MS, RDN, LD, CPT, How Protein Shakes Can Help You Lose Weight, retrieved from https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/protein-shakes-weight-loss

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