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The Guide to the Perfect Protein Shake

Do you remember the 1st time you tried a protein shake?

My experience was traumatizing. Let’s take it back to 2012 when there were only like 3 options for protein powders and 95% of them were soy-based. I was at a Publix and chose a random vanilla protein powder without looking at the nutrition label – why? Because it said in big bold letters “PROTEIN” on the front. Duh. Feeling very proud of myself, I headed home dreaming about how tasty this powder was going to be.  Maybe a vanilla milkshake?! Next I grabbed a glass, added room temp water and mixed it this new concoction with a spoon. I think you know what happened next… sip… “holy sh*t this is disgusting”. It was gritty and the flavor was absolutely horrible. I pretty much swore protein powders off all together for a while because I thought that is just how they all tasted.

Fast forward a few years and I realize that sometimes I just need to get in some protein and fast. {Protein boosts your metabolism and can provide you with more steady energy for your work day. You absolutely need it for recovery and keeping your bones strong.} Cooking a homemade meal isn’t always an option and these muscles need to be fed! So I set out on a mission to find better-tasting and quality protein powders. And I am happy to report that there are SO MANY protein powders out there and not mention that proteins can also come from whole foods like vegetables, nuts and seeds.

So you will have a “protein shake” no matter which ingredient you choose. Of course, some have more protein than others, and it all comes down to personal preference to suit your taste buds. You can add a protein powder, but if that’s not your cup of tea, there is more than enough protein from the fruits, vegetables, nuts and seeds to meet the demands of the body.

 


How to pick your protein.

Let’s start with some basics for choosing a protein powder. Just like food, powders are not all created equal. So if you’re a newb to the protein supplement world, here are some key words to look for on a label:

✅ non GMO

✅ grassfed whey, organic

✅ Gluten free, *soy free, *dairy free

✅ No artificial flavors or colors

✅ No artificial sweeteners

*Most whey protein powders on the market contain soy and dairy.  So for any females that are dairy-intolerant or have sensitivities to dairy, whey is not the best option. Excess bloating and gut inflammation may occur with sensitivity. Many people just can’t absorb them efficiently because they can be highly processed. This of course all depends on the quality of the whey. Speaking of quality… you can use this easy formula to get the most bang for your buck:

Protein grams per serving divided by individual serving size (in grams)

{Example: 20 grams protein/34 grams per scoop = 61.7%}

Plant-based: this percentage should be more than 60%

Any other protein: this percentage should be more than 75%

 

Everything from Plant-based, Collagen, Bone Broth and Egg-white powders are available to you and most grocery stores allow for you to return the product if you’re not satisfied. Before buying a powder, our best suggestion to you is to check the customer reviews and dive into the efficacy of the company.


How to Build your Shake

 

1.🥛 Non-dairy liquid

The amount will vary depending on the consistency that you prefer. For a thicker add < 1 cup and for a more liquid-based shake, just add more liquid.
Serving: approximately 1 cup
Options: Water, Unsweetened Almond/Cashew/Coconut milk

2. 💪🏼 Protein

Serving: 1 scoop for Powders
Powder options: Grassfed Whey, Plant-based, Collagen, Bone Broth, Egg White
Serving: 1 to 2 tbsp for Seeds or Butters
Seed/Butter options: Ground Flaxseed, Chia seeds, Hemp seeds, Pumpkin seeds, Tahini, Almonds/Almond butter

3. 🍓 Fruit or 🌱Veggies

Serving: 1/2 cup for fruit
Fruit options: organic strawberries, blueberries, jicama, apple, banana, kiwi, acai berries
Serving: 1/2 cup + for veggies
Veggie options: spinach, kale, cucumber, baked sweet potato, pumpkin puree

4. 🥑 Fat – optional

Serving: 1 to 2 tbsp
Options: Ground Flaxseed, Hemp Seeds, Almond butter, Avocado, Yogurt (dairy free), Tahini, Coconut milk (from the can)

5. ➕ Added Flavors

Serving: 1 to 2 teaspoons
Options: Turmeric, Cinnamon, Vanilla, Coconut or Cinnamon, flavored non-dairy creamer or Prebiotic Fiber Syrup

6. ❄️ Ice – optional


Final Tips

Blend not stir.

You won’t always have time to sit at home and make a gourmet protein shake, but I’ve gotten the best results while making sure my protein shakes are blended rather than just water and protein powder stirred/shaken together. It’s not as convenient and it does take a little longer but for me it’s 100% worth it. So invest in a good blender, because without it you will be left with big chunks, and it won’t be appealing to drink. You will need a powerful blender that has a good quality blade to ensure all of the ingredients break down to create the ideal smooth texture. Side note – if you’re ok with just a quick shake-n-go, then make sure you at least have a good blender bottle like this.

Choose a flavor.

When I say decide on your flavor, I don’t mean the flavor of the protein powder. What I am recommending is that you dream up an amazing shake and figure out how to re-create the same flavor profile.  For example, if I want a protein shake that’s going to taste like the 🧡 Starbucks Pumpkin Spice Latte, I will use a coconut milk or almond milk liquid base, vanilla protein powder, pumpkin puree, vanilla extract and pumpkin pie spice powder. And if i’m feeling extra indulgent, i’ll add in some almond butter.

Mix it up.

Change up the flavors up so you don’t get burnt out.

❤️ Chocolate Raspberry Smoothie – Training Day
1 cup almond milk or coconut milk / 1 scoop chocolate plant-based powder / 1 cup frozen organic raspberries (can sub these for frozen strawberries or blueberries)/ 1/2 cup coconut milk yogurt / 1-2 tablespoons Prebiotic Fiber Syrup / 1 tsp organic vanilla extract / 1 cup ice (made with filtered water)
💚 Green & Mean Smoothie – Rest Day
1 cup almond milk or coconut milk / 1 scoop vanilla plant-based powder / 1/2 cup coconut milk yogurt / 1/2 avocado / 2 cups organic spinach leaves or kale (stems removed) / 1/2 kiwi / 1/4 cup mint leaves / monkfruit/ 1 cup ice (made with filtered water)

Make a parfait: Combine yogurt, protein powder, low-carb granola, and berries

Sneak it into your breakfast: just add protein powder to your pancake or waffle batter.

The possibilities are endless.


 

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