What Is the Best Protein Powder for Teens?

Updated on  February 26, 2023


Products Considered


Hours of Research


Experts Interviewed


Customers Consulted

William Toro

Published By:  William Toro

Fact Checked by: Bridget MacDonald, RDN

Our Methodology

We personally test every products with our researchers, trainers and members. All products are ordered anonymously. We evaluate on point based system to determine ranking under each category. Learn More

Throughout my teenage years, I have always been lean and rawboned and I have always been bullied for my sleek appearance. So when I finally decided to deal with all this, one of my pals suggested that I use protein powders.

"Are protein powders necessary"? Scientists suggest that a daily average of 52 g for boys or 46-48 g protein for girls is optimal and preferably this should be provided by whole food such as vegetables, fruits, whole grains, nuts, and legumes.

But if you have a busy routine or you are sick of following the same diet then you can go for supplements since they have lots of flavors to freshen your taste buds. Also, protein shakes are digested by body in 1.5-2.5 hours compared to 2 days taken in digesting the protein content of food.

So, let's find out what is the best protein powder for teens.

Editor's Choice

Transparent Labs Protein Powder

When you buy Transparent Labs' 100% Grass-Fed Whey Protein Concentrate, you get the benefits of natural protein that has been filtered and isolated without any additional fillers or chemicals. Your protein intake will be boosted and your muscles will grow stronger.

• Contains 24 grams of protein per serving

• Only natural ingredients

• Low in carbs, making it the perfect choice for anyone on a strict fitness plan

#2nd Best Choice

Whey Protein Isolate

The most trusted protein powder for teens with excellent overall performance, nutrition profile, and growth results. The best protein powder on this list.

Key Features

• An excellent supplement for teens . 

• A perfect proportion of protein to help you get the most out of your workout . 

• Creates feeling of "filled tummy", ideal choice for weight loss.

#3rd Best Choice

casein protein bulk

Casein containing protein powder that is much softer on the stomach compared to whey protein.

Key features:

• It is tasteless so it can adjust in any type of intake you want.

• Contains calcium to keep your bones strong

• Helps in maintaining weight and build muscle mass

The Best Protein Powders for Teens

1. Transparent Labs Protein Powder

Transparent Labs Protein Powder


Protein per serving - 24g

Calories - 120

Carbs - 2g

Fat - 0

Flavor - Strawberry Cheesecake, Cereal Splash, Milk Chocolate, Mocha, Salted Caramel, French Vanilla

Protein source - Whey protein

Type - Concentrate

The Transparent Lab Protein Powder is a top-tier protein supplement made by Opti Nutra Advanced Nutraceuticals.

A perfect supplement product for teens, the Performance Lab protein powder contains brown rice protein. whey protein concentrate is considered one of the best protein sources to build muscles and has a high potential of promoting growth.

TL organic Whey Review

This way, the supplement supports muscle growth and can help you in your weight loss journey. It offers 24g protein- just perfect quantity as doctors suggest that 24g of additional protein per day is optimum for muscle gain. [1]


Contains 24 grams of protein per serving
Only natural ingredients
Low in carbs, making it the perfect choice for anyone on a strict fitness plan
Soy- and gluten-free
6 flavors available


Has few vitamins and minerals

Whey Protein Isolate


Protein per serving - 26 grams of protein

Calories - 110

Carbs - 2 grams

Fat - less than 1 grams

Flavor - Flavourless

Protein Source - Whey Isolates

Type - Isolate

The Whey Protein Isolate is a top-tier protein supplement made by Hard Eight Nutrition LLC dba Bulk Supplements.

A perfect supplement product for teens, the Soy Protein Isolate is rich in BCAAs and 100% vegan. It is a complete protein that may help with muscle recovery after a workout.

This way, the supplement supports muscle growth and can help you in your weight loss journey. It offers 25g protein- just perfect quantity as doctors suggest that 25g of additional protein per day is optimum for muscle gain. [1]


For overweight teens, it might help in appetite restriction as reported by several users.
No artificial ingredients.
Good profile of branched chain amino acids.


The texture of the powder could have been a little more smooth
casein protein bulk


Protein per serving: 25 grams of protein

Calories: 106

Carbs: <1g

Fats: <1g

Flavor: No added flavor

Protein source: Whey (milk)

Unlike many other protein powders out there, this one gets its protein from casein, a milk protein that is easily digested and is not known to have any adverse effects. I, myself, found casein much softer on the stomach than whey protein.

Another distinguishing feature of casein is that it is slowly absorbed, requiring 2-4 hours to get digested, making it a strong candidate if you take your smoothie or shake before bed. Since it is slowly absorbed, it is available to the body for a longer time.  [2]

It contains branched chain amino acids (BCAAs) that are required for muscle building, acting as a ladder to help you climb towards your goal.

The casein protein powder assists in general development of lean muscle mass at a faster rate and muscle recovery after workout. It contains 45% of daily required calcium, thus playing a major role in keeping your bones stronger as young athletes.


Slowly digested
Promotes post workout muscle recovery
Loaded with essential amino acids
Helps in maintaining weight
Calcium for bone strength
Free of added sugars, gluten, yeast and additives


Not fit for pals who aim to shed weight
Not lactose free so can cause problems for lactose intolerant people
Authentic Whey by Jacked Factory


Protein per serving - 24g

Calories - 120

Carbs - 3g

Fat - 1g

Flavor - Vanilla, Chocolate, Salted Chocolate Caramel, Orange Ice Cream, Fruity Cereal Splash

Protein source - Whey protein

Type - Concentrate

Authentic Whey protein powder for teens is a great-tasting, low-carb, high-quality whey protein supplement made from pure milk, so it contains natural levels of essential amino acids. It's the perfect choice for anyone who wants to maintain or improve their overall health and well-being through an active lifestyle.

This protein powder helps with building muscular strength, repairing damaged muscles and tissues, and improving immunity. Besides, it tastes great!

This whey protein powder can be used to fortify your recipes or simply be mixed with water, milk, almond milk, or in a smoothie. It is also great for making pancakes, muffins, cakes, and more!


Large selection of flavors
High protein content per serving
Quickly absorbed and easy to digest
Low carb and fat content


Must shake well before drinking to avoid a grainy texture
PaleoPro Protein Powder (Grass-Fed)


Protein per serving: 26 grams of protein

Calories: 120 g

Carbs: 0 net carbs

Fats: 1 g

Flavors: Ancient cacao, Azter vanilla, Mayan mocha, Mocha mint, Plain naked

Protein source: Beef and eggs

As mentioned above, this protein powder obtains its proteins from beef and eggs that the company proudly claims to be grass fed and pastured.

This protein powder has large amounts of protein content.

It is free from soy, making it an option to consider for people allergic to soy beans. Moreover, it does not contain whey. The eggs and meat are made sure to be obtained from cage free and non GMO animals.

It is very flexible to use and is fully compatible with keto and paleo diets.

Not to ignore, it is gluten free and does not contain dairy products, ultimately, not containing lactose. So, it is fully safe to use even for the lactose intolerant people.


Protein extracted from beef and egg sources
Keto and paleo friendly
No whey
No soy, gluten or dairy
Lactose free


Not fit for vegans since it is sourced from beef and eggs
Ora Organic Vegan Protein Powder


Protein per serving: 22 grams of protein

Calories: 130

Carbs: 3g

Fats: 0.5g

Flavors: Chocolate, vanilla, vanilla chai

Protein source: Organic peas

Ora Organic is USDA certified organic protein powder and is easily mixable in water and milk. 

The proteins are sourced mainly from peas along with many others. It does not have any artificial ingredients. Moreover, since the proteins come exclusively from plants, they make sure not to cause bloating.

The important aspect to be noted is that they are tested and proven to be safe against heavy metals.

Moreover, this quality protein powder is fully compatible with your keto diet plan.


Plant based
Soy free, gluten free
Dairy free
Safe in terms of heavy metals
Child safe
No artificial ingredients


Limited flavor options.
Quest Nutrition Protein Powder


Protein per serving: 24 grams of protein

Protein type: Isolate

Calories: 110

Carbs: 2g net

Fats: 1g

Flavors: Chocolate, cinnamon crunch, cookies and cream, multipurpose, salted caramel, vanilla milkshake.

Protein source: Milk

The Quest Nutrition Protein Powder extracts the essential proteins from milk. I found it very creamy just like a milkshake. There were no issues of mixability or grainy texture. The range of flavors offered is just hard to ignore.

It has a combination of fast and slow absorbing proteins containing 60% whey isolate that is quickly absorbed and is readily available to make up for your post-workout fatigue. 

The remaining 40% is casein that is slowly absorbed and is available to the body for a longer time, keeping your energy levels boosted. 


Milk containing
Perfect combination of slow and fast absorbed proteins
Keto friendly
Gluten free


Contains lactose so it may be inappropriate for lactose intolerant people
Not fit for vegans  

Buying guide - How to Choose the Best Protein Powder for Teens 

Due to a lot of products in the market and use of very intricate language, it became very difficult for me to choose the right protein powder for myself. Since I have gone through this hustle, I have made some points you should consider and save yourself some time.

Identify your goal

The first thing you should know before selecting a protein powder is to know what you want to achieve. These are some of the goals that adolescents set for themselves according to my research.


Gain weight 

To add some weight to your body and build muscle, you should go for whey proteins. Among the whey proteins, there are concentrate, isolate and hydrolyzed whey proteins with concentrate having the highest protein content.

Whey has all essential amino acids and helps in gaining muscle. It contains amino acid lecithin that provokes the protein synthesis at molecular level. [3]

Whey concentrate is best for this purpose since it also contains fats and carbs in addition to proteins.


Lose weight 

If you are looking for protein supplements to assist you in weight loss journey, you should go for whey isolate since they contain virtually no fat and carbs, but pea and other plant based protein supplements are another choice too. [4]

The aim is to replace carbs and fats with proteins. They lower down the release of the hormone responsible for provoking hunger and keep the satiety index high, giving you a feeling of full belly.


Ethical limitations

If you are a vegetarian, you should clearly not opt for beef or eggs based protein powders nor the milk containing powder. Instead, you should go for plant based protein powders as the one I have mentioned above.


Keeping your health first

Normally there are very narrow chances of diabetes in teens but there is a condition called MODY (maturity onset diabetes of the young) that happens in young age.

So it is better to consult your physician before taking any sort of proteins to roll out any such possibility. If such a condition exists, then go for protein powders that have very low carbs content in particular.


Don’t overburden your body with proteins

The recommended daily average (RDA) value for teens is about 52 grams for boys and 46 grams in case of girls. [5]

Normally if you are taking an adequate amount of meals then this requirement is met by food. But if you are not able to take enough or proper meals then you can try protein powders to fulfill this protein requirement. 

Addressing the controversies

When I shared with my parents that I am going to use protein powder, they were seriously annoyed and forbade me clearly since the society has many rumors in the air about the harmful effects of these supplements.

These rumors are baseless as these supplements contain protein mainly that is beneficial for the body. 

But there is an underlying issue that needs to be addressed here. Many protein powders contain heavy metals such as lead, cadmium, arsenic, mercury, BPA (bis phosphoenol-A); used to make plastic. These heavy metals cause serious health problems such as organ damage and cancer. [6]

The most important aspect to consider is to keep in mind the RDA values and try not to exceed them in order to gain more muscle or boost up your journey.

Frequently Asked Questions

Do protein powders really help in building muscle?

Yes. Since most protein powders contain essential amino acids, they help the body in making muscle by stimulating synthesis of many substances required for protein synthesis.

What is the difference between whey and casein protein?

Whey is an immediate source of protein for the body and is digested immediately. On the other hand, casein is a slowly digested protein taking 2-4 hours for digestion. Casein normally remains available to the body for a longer time than whey.

What are the different types of whey?

Whey is the liquid portion of milk that is left out during the process of making cheese. Three types of whey proteins are normally available; concentrate, isolate and hydrolyzed.

Isolate whey has the highest protein content i.e 90 to 95% and has virtually no fat and carbs.

Concentrate whey has 80% proteins along with lactose and fats and is budget friendly. Hydrolyzed whey has 85 to 90% proteins, low in lactose and contain partially digested proteins so they are expensive.

What are the uses of different types of whey?

Isolate whey is ideal for muscle building and weight loss. Concentrate whey is best for muscle gain and weight gain too. Hydrolyzed whey is normally used for medical purposes.

Are protein powders essential to build muscle mass?

No. Studies reveal that teens are still able to build muscle by fulfilling their protein requirement through natural substances. But if you have a busy routine and follow a proper diet plan then protein powders are an easy option for you.


For those who want to lose weight, my vote of confidence is with Performance Lab Protein Powder and Transparent Labs Protein Powder. It offers the right amount of protein preventing your body from protein overdose. It is completely organic with decent amount of BCAAs to stimulate muscle repair process. It creates a feeling of satiety, lessening your hunger pangs.

My choice for those who want to put on weight is Casein Protein Powder since it is made of casein, available to the body longer than whey and helps in muscle recovery as well as promotes muscle development. Above all, it is much softer on the stomach than whey!

William Toro

William Toro ‧ CPT & Nutritionist

William is a certified personal trainer from NASM, he has also been a rehab physiologist for sports persons. He has more than 15 years of experience training people. And has featured in multiple publications like FoxNews, CNBC, Bustle, and other. 


1. Dr. Jacqueline Winkelmann, Protein Powders and Teens: Are They Safe? Are They Necessary?, retrieved from https://health.choc.org/protein-powders-and-teens-are-they-safe/
2. WebMD, Casein Protein, retrieved from https://www.webmd.com/vitamins/ai/ingredientmono-1575/casein-protein
3. Juha J. Hulmi, Christopher M. Lockwood, Jeffrey R. Stout, Effect of protein/essential amino acids and resistance training on skeletal muscle hypertrophy: A case for whey protein, retrieved from https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/20565767/
4. Paige E. Miller, Dominik D. Alexander, Vanessa Perez, Effects of whey protein and resistance exercise on body composition: a meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials, retrieved from https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/24724774/
5. Julie Garden-Robinson, Ph.D., R.D., L.R.D., Johanna Christenson, Teens and Protein: How Much Do You Need?, retrieved from https://www.ag.ndsu.edu/publications/food-nutrition/teens-and-protein-how-much-do-you-need
6. Harvard Health Publishing, The hidden dangers of protein powders, retrieved from https://www.health.harvard.edu/staying-healthy/the-hidden-dangers-of-protein-powders

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