the best protein powder

If you've stepped into a gym in the past ten years, you've doubtless encountered protein powder. And it's no surprise — high protein diets are associated with weight loss and muscle gain, and if you're trying to consume as much as 200 grams of protein per day, that's a lot of egg whites and chicken breasts.

Enter protein powder: a fast, easy way to punch up your protein intake, even on the go.

But with dozens of varieties and hundreds of brands, it's hard to know which you should choose. And it's actually quite an important question: some protein powders are so full of sugar, carbs, or fats, they're more likely to make you chubby than shredded. Others are low in carbs but also taste like poison garbage — not the way we like to start our morning.

So we crunched the numbers, taste tested a whole lot of shakes, and came up with our definitive list of the best protein powders. 

How we judged

To evaluate the best protein powders, we first considered only high-qualit

Type of protein: Protein comes in many forms

Percentage of powder that is actually protein: No matter how pure you get your protein, you'll have fillers and additives to make the stuff mix well and taste decent. You want the percentage that's actually protein to be high, though — otherwise you'll find yourself consuming way more carbs and fats than you were planning to.

Taste: at the end of the day, if it tastes awful, you're not going to drink it. Surprisingly, there's a huge range here, from sickeningly sweet, to bitter, to chalky, to mild and delicious.

And, just in case you're new to the game, we follow up with a primer on the different main types of protein powder and some tips on how to serve up your protein palatably. Read on for the full scoop! ;)
 

The best protein powders

1. Optimum Gold Standard 100% Whey

Type
Whey Isolate

What percentage of the powder is actually protein?
74%

Cost per gram
$.03

Taste 
Surprisingly tasty. The Double Chocolate variety is our favorite go town for making morning mochas or mixing into yogurt at night. For a protein powder so high in protein and low in carbs, it tastes pretty sinful.
 

 

2. Myprotein Impact Whey Isolate

  • Type: 
  • Percentage: 74%
  • Cost per gram: $.03
  • Taste:

3. PUREWOD

  • Type: Beef
  • Percentage: 74%
  • Cost per gram: $.03
  • Taste:

3. MusclePharm Casein

  • Type: 
  • Percentage: 74%
  • Cost per gram: $.03
  • Taste:

4. Six Star Pro Nutrition Elite Series Whey Isolate Plus

  • Type: 
  • Percentage: 74%
  • Cost per gram: $.03
  • Taste:

5. Body Fortress Super Advanced Whey Isolate

  • Type: 
  • Percentage: 74%
  • Cost per gram: $.03
  • Taste:

6. Integrated Supplements Whey Isolate Protein

  • Type: 
  • Percentage: 74%
  • Cost per gram: $.03
  • Taste:

7. Pure Protein 100% Natural Whey Protein

  • Type: 
  • Percentage: 74%
  • Cost per gram: $.03
  • Taste:

8. Nature's Best Zero Carb Isopure

  • Type: 
  • Percentage: 74%
  • Cost per gram: $.03
  • Taste:

9. Optimum Gold Standard Natural 100% Whey

  • Type: 
  • Percentage: 74%
  • Cost per gram: $.03
  • Taste:

10. NOW Foods Whey Protein Isolate

  • Type: 
  • Percentage: 74%
  • Cost per gram: $.03
  • Taste:

11. Dymatize ISO-100

  • Type: 
  • Percentage: 74%
  • Cost per gram: $.03
  • Taste:

12. Vega Sports Performance Protein

  • Type: 
  • Percentage: 74%
  • Cost per gram: $.03
  • Taste:

13. Optimum Gold Standard 100% Casein

  • Type: 
  • Percentage: 74%
  • Cost per gram: $.03
  • Taste:

14. Bulletproof Whey Protein

  • Type: 
  • Percentage: 74%
  • Cost per gram: $.03
  • Taste:


HOW TO CONSUME YOUR PROTEIN

Unless you like shoveling spoonfuls of dry powder into your mouth, you'll need a tasty vehicle for your protein powder. Here are a couple of our favorites:

  • Shake it up in a blender bottle with water or almond milk
  • Whiz it into a shake
  • Mix it into Greek yogurt to double the protein (and feel almost like you're eating ice cream)
  • Or, our favorite: mix it with iced coffee in the morning for a mocha

THE DIFFERENT TYPES OF PROTEIN POWDER