in

9 Healthy Protein Shakes That Actually Taste Good

By Lara McGlashan August 21st, 2020 | Image Source: Men's Journal

If you’ve been training for more than a minute, you’re surely familiar with protein shakes. And you’re likely sick of them. The powder-plus-water routine gets old—fast. Do all healthy protein shakes have to taste like sidewalk chalk?

We challenged a few of our favorite nutritionists and dietitians to build us a better protein shake. The following recipes are simple, delicious, and guaranteed to fuel your active lifestyle while fulfilling your nutritional needs.

9 Healthy Protein Shakes That Actually Taste Good

1. Peanut Butter Banana Protein Shake

According to Natalie Rizzo, MS, RD, author of the No-Brainer Nutrition Guide for Every Runner, this shake is a post-workout favorite among her clients. “Bananas are full of potassium, which helps reduce blood pressure and replace electrolytes lost through sweat during exercise,” she says. “And the peanut butter contains healthy fats to help fill you up after a workout.”

Makes 1 serving

Protein: 39 g

Ingredients

1 scoop unsweetened, unflavored protein powder
1 tbsp peanut butter
½ banana
½ cup water
½ cup ice

Instructions

Add all ingredients to blender. Blend until smooth.

Jim White

2. Purple Power Smoothie

“Men need about 38 grams of fiber per day for optimal health, but most of us fall short,” says ACSM exercise physiologist Jim White, RDN, owner of jimwhitefit.com. This smoothie contains both prunes and berries, which collectively deliver nearly 20 percent of your recommended daily intake in one sitting, White says, while also helping fight inflammation and lower cholesterol.

Makes 1 serving

Protein: 29 g

Ingredients

¼ cup prunes, diced
1 cup baby spinach leaves
1 scoop whey protein (unflavored or vanilla; can also use plant-based protein)
¾ cup pomegranate juice
½ cup frozen berries of choice

Instructions

Add all ingredients to blender. Blend until smooth, adding ice or water as desired/needed.

Shutterstock

3. Soothie Smoothie

Veggie averse? This smoothie delivers one full serving of vegetables and two servings of fruit in one pain-free drink. “It also contains whey protein to help with inflammation and immunity, tart cherry juice, which contains melatonin for better sleep, and beets, which contain nitrates to improve oxygen delivery,” explains Leslie Bonci, MPH, RDN, CSSD, LDN and owner of activeeatingadvice.com.

Makes 1 serving

Protein: 34 g

Ingredients

1 scoop vanilla whey protein isolate (or plant-based protein)
8 oz tart cherry juice
1/3 cup raw beets, peeled and chopped
4 prunes, chopped
1 tbsp ground flaxseed

Instructions

Add all ingredients to blender. Blend until smooth.

Shutterstock

4. Post-Workout Pomegranate Protein Shake

Sometimes, plain ol’ protein needs a little punch. This shake delivers one. “Pomegranate juice contains polyphenol antioxidants, which have been studied for their role in aiding muscle strength recovery,” says Elizabeth Shaw, MS, RDN, CPT, author of the Instant Pot Cookbook for Dummies and owner of shawsimpleswaps.com. “And an 8-ounce serving of has as much potassium as a medium banana to help replace lost electrolytes and promote recovery.”

Makes 1 serving

Protein: 37 g

Ingredients

1 cup frozen pitted cherries
1 tsp cocoa powder
1 cup 100% pomegranate juice
1 scoop plain whey protein isolate
1 tsp chia seeds

Instructions

Add all ingredients to blender. Blend until smooth, adding ice or water as desired/needed.

Michelle Dudash

5. Creamy Ginger-Orange Smoothie with Almond Butter

What this drink lacks in protein, it makes up for with other goodness. Ginger has been shown to be effective against exercise-induced muscle pain, and research indicates it may also help reduce blood sugar levels and blood pressure. “It also contains a lot of potassium in the form of bananas and oranges to balance your electrolytes and keep your sodium levels in check,” says Michelle Dudash, RDN, Cordon Bleu–certified chef and creator of Dash Dinner Spice Kits.

Makes 2 servings

Protein: 9 g

Ingredients

½ cup low-fat milk
2 small (or 1 large) oranges, peeled and diced
½ medium banana, cut into chunks
½ inch piece gingerroot, peeled and thinly sliced (about 2 tsp)
1 tbsp unsweetened almond butter

Instructions

Add ingredients to a blender cup in the order listed. Puree on low speed to begin and work up to high until smooth, adding ice as needed.

Shutterstock

6. Chocolate Banana Wake-Up Smoothie

Recent research indicates that coffee consumption may reduce your risk of the most lethal form of prostate cancer, says Anne L’Heureux, RDN. “Coffee contains caffeine and several phenolic compounds that may serve as antioxidants,” she says, “which may lower cancer risk.”

Makes 1 serving
Protein: 37 g
Ingredients

1 cup brewed coffee, chilled
1½ scoops vanilla protein powder
½ banana, frozen
1 tbsp unsweetened cocoa powder
2 tbsp almond butter
Instructions

Add all ingredients to blender. Blend until smooth, adding ice as needed.

Shutterstock

7. Green and Lean Tropical Smoothie

“Green tea contains a host of antioxidant polyphenols, including a catechin called epigallocatechin gallate,” says L’Heureux. “As an antioxidant, EGCG is 25 to 100 times more potent than vitamins C and E and may help reduce the risk of prostate cancer.”

Makes 1 serving

Protein: 35 g

Ingredients

1½ cups brewed green tea, chilled
1½ scoops vanilla protein powder
1 handful spinach, washed
1 tbsp chia seeds
1 cup frozen tropical fruit mix (mango, pineapple, banana)
Instructions

Add all ingredients to blender. Blend until smooth, adding ice as needed.

Shutterstock

8. Cherry Berry Smoothie

This smoothie contains 20 grams of protein—with nary a powder in sight. “Make this an ‘express’ breakfast: portion out the berries, cherries, and walnuts into baggies and store them in the freezer,” says Rizzo. “Then all you have to do is toss it in a blender with yogurt and milk and you’re ready to go.”

Makes 1 serving

Protein: 20 g

Ingredients

½ cup frozen cherries
½ cup frozen blueberries
½ cup plain low-fat Greek yogurt
½ cup milk (dairy or soy)
2 tbsp walnuts

Instructions

Add all ingredients to blender. Blend until smooth, adding ice as needed.

Shutterstock

9. Tropical Turmeric Protein Smoothie

Curcumin, the active ingredient in turmeric, has been shown to be effective against DOMS (delayed onset muscle soreness). This recipe from Angie Asche MS, RD, CSSD, owner of Eleat Sports Nutrition, may help accelerate recovery and get you back under the barbell faster.

Makes 1 serving

Protein: 27 g

Ingredients

1 scoop vanilla whey or plant-based protein powder
½ to 1 tsp ground turmeric
2 large handfuls leafy greens (e.g. kale or spinach)
1 cup frozen mango or pineapple
1 cup coconut water
Blend until smooth, adding ice as needed.

Author: Lara McGlashan

Source: Men’s Journal: 9 Healthy Protein Shakes That Actually Taste Good

Get Big Triceps Fast With 4 Proven Exercises

What Happens to Your Body When You Eat Potato Chips