Protein powder is a useful supplement for anyone looking to increase muscle mass, lose weight, or aim to meet their total daily protein needs.
But while most protein powders come in either vanilla or chocolate flavors, it can be hard to find new ways to consume this daily supplement!
What do you mix with protein powder? You can mix a wide variety of liquids and soft foods with protein powder for delicious, filling, and even healthy results.
The best things to mix with protein powder include Greek yogurt, milkshakes, smoothies and juices, coffee, oatmeal, pancake/waffle batter, granola, and more.
What to mix with protein powder will depend on your health and fitness goals.
If you are aiming to lose weight or rehydrate after a workout, then fruit juice or almond milk are great options. For bulking out, mix protein powder with higher-calorie ingredients such as yogurt.
Protein powder can also be mixed with nutritious ingredients such as fruit and nuts for a more balanced snack.
Let’s take a look at 15 great ways to get protein powder into your diet!
What Is Protein Powder?
Protein powder is a nutritional supplement used to help build muscle and repair tissue. This essential macronutrient can also aid weight loss and help develop toned muscles.
Protein powder comes in many different forms, including dairy-based and plant-based versions. Initially made popular by bodybuilders, this supplement is now widely used by people as part of a healthy eating regime.
We all consume protein as part of our everyday diet because it is one of the building blocks of bone, muscle, and skin. It is also vital to enable the body to produce hormones, enzymes, and other chemicals.
People use protein powder for various reasons. Some people find it difficult to meet the recommended daily protein intake, particularly people following a vegetarian or vegan diet.
Using a protein supplement can help to ensure they consume a balanced and complete diet.
Protein powder can also be useful for weight loss, as it helps to reduce hunger and help people feel fuller for longer.
Yet, many athletes also use protein powder to bulk up, as this is the essential building block to support strong and healthy bones and muscles.
There are several different types of protein powder, to suit different diets and individual requirements. The most popular forms among athletes contain whey, a water-soluble milk protein. This complete protein can be easily and quickly absorbed by the body.
Another dairy source of protein powder is casein, which is rich in amino acids that speed up muscle repair.
Non-dairy protein powder options include those made from soy, pea, and hemp.
How to Mix Protein Powder
Protein supplements normally come in the form of a fine powder that is dissolved in water or other liquids. It can be mixed in several different ways:
- Shaker Bottle
This is a reusable bottle that contains an integrated whisk, making it a convenient way to mix protein powder with liquids wherever you are.
If you want to combine protein powder with solid ingredients, you will need to use a blender. This can be a full-size kitchen blender or a portable stick blender.
- Baking dough/batter
Baking with protein powder is an ideal way to mix things up when you’ve had enough of smoothies, shakes, and juice drinks. Protein powder can be added to many popular recipes, including cereal bars, pancakes, and even waffles!
What to Mix With Protein Powder: 15 Delicious Examples!
With our 15 top suggestions of what to mix with protein powder, we’re sure that we’ll have something for everyone here!
1. Greek Yogurt
Using Greek yogurt as a base for your protein powder is a great way to turn this daily supplement into a decadent and satisfying snack. Yogurt not only contains high levels of protein but also has fat, which will keep you feeling full for longer.
The good thing about using yogurt is that you don’t need any special equipment – simply sprinkle the recommended amount of protein powder onto the yogurt and stir it in.
Both vanilla and chocolate-flavored powders will work well with yogurt. You can also use a plain protein powder in flavored Greek yogurt, or add honey and fruit to the yogurt and powder mix.
For added variety, try mixing fruity berries and protein-rich seeds into the yogurt as well. If you are aiming to lose weight, then opt for low-fat Greek yogurt, which will also be low in sugar.
2. Classic Milkshake
Don’t underestimate the classic, simple milkshake when it comes to mixing protein powder! Most of these powders were designed to be mixed with water or milk, and the latter is definitely the tastier option of the two.
Milk adds a delicious flavor and texture to both chocolate and vanilla protein powders. Your shake will be creamy, thick, and incredibly indulgent!
The great thing about milk is it will also help you to feel full for longer, thanks to the additional protein and fat content. If you’re avoiding fatty food, pick lower-fat milk instead.
Protein powder will also blend really easily with milkshake powder, which you can then turn into a full milkshake.
Lactose-free milk is also available for those who are lactose intolerant, and you also have a myriad of dairy-free milk options, such as almond milk, which can still be turned into a milkshake.
3. Superfood Protein Smoothie
If you’re going to the trouble of making a protein powder drink, it makes sense to combine it with as many other health benefits as you can!
Use dairy-free milk as a base for your smoothie, such as almond milk, then bulk it out with as many superfoods as you can squeeze in.
A great combination is a mix of avocado, banana, spinach, flax seeds, and chia seeds. This smoothie will be so full of nutrients that it will constitute a complete, balanced meal.
It will also be incredibly high in vitamins and minerals and will be satisfying enough to keep you feeling full until dinnertime.
This combo is most suitable for vanilla protein powders – unless you’re a big fan of chocolate and spinach!
4. Fruity Protein Juice Drink
For a long refreshing drink without any added fat, fruit juices can be a great choice to mix with protein powder.
Apple and orange juice normally taste better with vanilla protein powder, while chocolate can be surprisingly nice when blended with the juice of mixed red berries.
Fruit juices can be high in sugar, so remember to factor this into your nutritional calculations if you are following a calorie-controlled diet. However, this sugar can be a useful boost after a workout, so it is not necessarily a bad thing!
The great thing about this option is that it can be made on the go, in a shaker bottle. The high water content of juice is also ideal for rehydrating after your training session.
Now, please don’t think we’ve gone crazy here! Protein powder in coffee can be a surprisingly good combination, perfect for an early morning drink to set you on course for the day.
Consuming protein in the morning is also shown to help reduce snacking throughout the day, ideal if you want to curb your intake of food between meals.
There is one problem with adding protein powder to coffee, and that is that it can get lumpy. To prevent this, pour hot coffee over the protein powder and stir constantly.
You can also use a blender to mix the two. This will have the added bonus of creating a frothy coffee – a definite win-win situation!
If you’re a plain coffee drinker, use vanilla protein powder, since it tends to have a more mild flavor. If you use milk, reduce the amount of any milk or creamer you add by at least half.
For fans of mochas, chocolate protein powder is the perfect partner for coffee!
Adding protein powder to a bowl of morning oatmeal is a trick that many fitness fanatics swear by! There is no better way to kick start the day than a bowl of nutritious oatmeal laced with your favorite protein powder.
Oatmeal provides a great source of slow-release energy, which, along with the protein powder, will provide a myriad of health benefits.
This innocent bowl of breakfast deliciousness will keep you full right through until lunchtime, no matter how strenuous your morning workout is.
Simply make your oatmeal in the normal way, with either dairy or non-dairy milk. Stir in the recommended amount of protein powder whilst the oatmeal is simmering in the milk, and enjoy!
Here’s an awesome overnight oatmeal recipe by Fit by Cooking that uses chocolate protein powder:
7. Healthy Banana Protein Shake
The great thing about bananas is that they are packed full of natural sweetness and creaminess, creating an indulgent shake without any added sugar or sweeteners.
Chocolate protein powder works best in a banana shake, although some people do like the combination of chocolate and vanilla.
To make the ultimate banana protein shake, we’d suggest using frozen sliced bananas. This gives a super-indulgent creaminess to the shake, similar to soft ice cream! A splash of milk and yogurt will add to the creaminess.
8. Red Berry Fruity Protein Blast
For a more fruity option, a smoothie loaded with red berries will give you a guaranteed post-workout recovery boost! You’ll need a blender for this option, but it is worth putting in the time and effort.
Whizz together a mix of frozen red berries with yogurt and vanilla protein powder until smooth. If you like a bit of texture in your smoothies, add some nutritious chia or flax seeds as well.
This option makes a refreshing breakfast drink or can be enjoyed on the go as you head to the office after your workout.
9. Indulgent Chocolate and Peppermint Protein Shake
You’d never guess that this chocolate and peppermint shake is actually a healthy drink!
Use frozen bananas to give a creamy sweetness, along with chocolate protein powder, a splash of milk, and a tiny amount of cocoa powder. Add to this a dash of peppermint extract, and a tiny pinch of salt to bring out the chocolate and peppermint flavors.
Blitz this up in your blender, and you’ll be enjoying a delicious and indulgent shake in no time at all!
10. Protein Bars
If you want a snack on the go, then smoothies and shakes are not always the most convenient. It can be hard keeping them chilled, never mind the hassle and mess when they spill all over your gym bag!
The other great advantage to making your own protein bars is that they cost a fraction of the price of their commercially made counterparts.
Plus you can tweak the recipe to include all your favorite ingredients, and make them differently every time!
Pretty much any standard cereal bar recipe can be transformed into a protein bar by adding protein powder.
The best type of protein powder to use for baking is whey, but you can also use soy and other plant-based protein powders as well.
Whether you pick vanilla, chocolate, or anything else will depend on your recipe, as both can work equally well when baked.
11. PB&J Protein Shake
Peanut butter and jelly is one of the all-time classic flavor combinations, and the two together make the perfect protein powder shake!
Plus, peanut butter is packed full of protein as well, so this really ups the nutritional properties of your post-workout shake.
To get the great jelly flavor, all you need to add is cooked oats, red berries, and vanilla protein powder. The combination of these ingredients, along with peanut butter, magically transforms into our childhood comfort food favorite, peanut butter, and jelly!
12. Milk-Free Pumpkin Protein Pancakes
Finding fun milk-free ways to consume protein powder can be tricky, but we’ve got a fabulous suggestion for you here!
A blend of egg whites, pumpkin puree, almond flour, and vanilla protein powder can be used to make a delicious batter that tastes even better than a standard pancake mix.
A spoonful of baking soda will help turn the pancakes light and fluffy, and a sprinkling of warm spices such as ginger, nutmeg, and cinnamon will complement the pumpkin flavor perfectly.
You can add natural sweetness to the batter mix in the form of honey or sugar, or drizzle it on top of the cooked pancakes.
13. Chocolate Protein Waffles
While it’s all well and good being healthy with your fruit smoothies and protein shakes, when it comes to the weekend we all deserve a treat!
But this doesn’t mean you need to give the protein powder a miss, as you can simply incorporate it into your breakfast waffle batter!
When using protein powder in a batter, one made from egg whites is a good choice. This will blend perfectly with the other batter ingredients, without adding any unusual flavors.
And whether you opt for vanilla or chocolate is your choice, but we think the latter is the ultimate in decadent breakfast treats!
14. Almond & Vanilla Protein Granola
Sometimes it feels like every high-protein breakfast product is a smoothie, shake, or juice drink!
But what if you want a good old-fashioned bowl of granola to enjoy with your morning coffee? If this is your dream, then protein powder granola is the way forward!
There are plenty of granola recipes available for inspiration, but one that works particularly well with vanilla protein powder is almond granola.
The great thing about protein powder granola is that you can make a large batch to enjoy over several days. If you’re making five portions, add five times your normal daily intake of protein powder.
15. Ultimate Protein Shake
If you’re aiming to really maximize your protein intake, then this super protein shake is the one for you! Just a single serving of this shake contains up to 80 grams of protein, perfect for anyone who likes to train hard.
Add flax seeds, chia, seeds, hemp hearts, and oats to a blender with the chopper attachment. Blitz until they resemble a fine powder, then stir in the protein powder.
Add milk and peanut butter, and blend until all the ingredients are smoothly combined.
This ultimate high-protein shake will be perfect for building strong and healthy muscle, and will also satisfy any post-workout hunger pangs.
If it isn’t quite sweet enough for you, enhance the flavor with fresh red berries and a tiny amount of honey.