I’ve tried so many brands of protein supplements in the last couple of years that I’ve lost count. The following brands are the top of the line ones which I tried.
My judging criteria are:
Naked Whey Unflavored 5 lb USD89.99
Naked Whey ranks as one of the best whey proteins in the market: it’s just pure grassfed whey concentrate and nothing else, not even an emulsifier. Taste is neutral and bland, somewhat like skim milk which is characteristic of all natural (unflavored) grassfed whey and which I like. Only complaint I have is that even with the blender bottle, you need to shake pretty hard several times to get the powder to dissolve. Probably an added emulsifier would enable the powder to dissolve more easily. If it was able to dissolve easily, I’d give it a full 5 stars.
It has an excellent profile of 25 grams of protein and 5.9 grams of BCAA (branch chain amino acids) per 30 gram serving. The 2 grams of sugar and 3 grams of carbs are from lactose in the whey. Cost is USD89.99 which works out to a reasonable 0.047 cents per gram of protein.
You can get Naked Whey here.
Promix Whey Unflavored 5 lb USD79.99
Promix Whey is another outstanding grassfed whey protein; plus point here is that it has non GMO sunflower lecithin as emulsifier which makes it easier to dissolve than Naked Whey. Taste is also neutral and bland just like skim milk but tastes slightly creamier than Naked Whey, probably because of the 1.5 grams of fat. For Promix Whey all I had to do was to give a few shakes to the blender bottle and the powder was dissolved.
This is another product with an excellent profile of 25 grams of protein and 5.9 grams of BCAA per 30 gram serving. The 1 gram of sugar and 3 grams of carbs are from the lactose in the whey. Promix Whey is more cost effective at USD79.99 which works out to 0.042 cents per gram of protein.
You can get Promix Whey here.
Grass Fed Whey Protein Powder Isolate Unflavored 1 lb (454 Grams) USD26.99
Frankly, I’ve never really heard of this brand of whey isolate before until last year so I decided to give a try since there were so many positive reviews from customers. Taste is slightly flatter and blander than Promix Whey and Naked Whey; this is expected because it is whey isolate after all. The powder mixes easily with just a few shakes of the blender bottle.
This is top grade whey isolate with an excellent profile of 27 grams of protein and only 1 gram of carbs. No sugar (lactose) listed and the only other ingredient is sunflower lecithin (less than 1%) which is the emulsifier.
Cost is USD26.99 which works out to 0.066 cents per gram of protein which is pretty reasonable as whey isolates are always more expensive than whey concentrates.
You can get it here.
Jay Robb – Grassfed Whey Protein Isolate Chocolate 11 Servings (12 oz) USD21.99
This whey isolate has a good profile of 25 grams of protein per 30 gram serving. It’s pretty easy to dissolve with just a few shakes of the blender bottle. It contains cocoa and stevia so it tastes very good.
There are 2 things about this brand which I don’t like:
First, it contains xanthan gum, an additive and a food stabilizer; the reason why I prefer natural unflavored grassfed whey is because there are no additives, other than an emulsifier.
Second, it is expensive for a whey isolate product, with only 11 servings which work out to 0.079 per gram of protein. Unlike Grass Fed Whey Protein Powder Isolate above, this brand comes only in 1 size.
You can get Jay Robb’s Whey Isolate here.
BlueBonnet 100% Natural Whey Protein Isolate Powder, French Vanilla, 2 lb USD44.24
This whey isolate has got a pretty good profile of 26 grams of protein per 33 gram serving. It’s easy to dissolve and very tasty. It contains natural vanilla flavor and stevia as the sweetener (stevia is the only sweetener that’s not harmful to the body).
The price is reasonable at 0.060 cents per gram of protein. There are also other flavors: chocolate and strawberry.
Naked Casein – 100% Micellar Casein Protein 5lb USD94.99
I’ve always been hesitant to try unflavored natural casein because of my past experiences: unflavored casein almost always has a chalky taste which makes it difficult to swallow. However, the experience with Naked Casein changed my opinion: the casein just tasted neutral and bland like skim milk with no chalky taste. Just like Naked Whey, it didn’t dissolve too well because of the lack of an emulsifier. I had to shake the blender bottle hard several times.
Profile wise it was excellent: 26 grams of protein and 5.9 grams of BCCA per 30 gram serving. This works out to 0.048 per gram of protein which is pretty economical for casein.
You can get Naked Casein here.
Now Foods Pea Protein Dutch Chocolate 2lb USD20.78
Natural unflavored pea protein tastes pretty awful but this Dutch Chocolate flavored version tastes okay. Not great, just okay. It also dissolves easily. Unlike whey or casein, pea protein’s texture is sandy and chalky and if you mix 2 scoops with water, it’s thick, almost like sludge.
Profile is decent with 24 grams of protein per 44 gram serving which works out to 0.041 cents per gram of protein which is very economical.
There are 3 things that I don’t like about this pea protein:
- The texture is chalky and gritty; some may even say it’s sandy.
- It’s also too thick for my liking; it’s like drinking a thick chocolate milkshake except that it doesn’t taste half as good.
- It contains xanthan gum and xylitol, which is a sugar alcohol.
You can get Now Foods’ Pea Protein here.
Sunwarrior Classic Protein, Raw Wholegrain Brown Rice, Vanilla, 1.1 lb USD27.99
This is supposed to be the best tasting of all the plant based protein powders. It tastes better than pea protein but still it’s a bit chalky, mixes well and not as thick as pea protein.
It has a decent profile with 15 grams of protein per 21 gram serving which works out to 0.081 cents per gram of protein which is on the high side. Unfortunately it doesn’t come in larger packs.
One thing I don’t like about this brown rice protein powder: it contains xanthan gum. It also contains 2 other ingredients:
- Pectin – It’s is okay because it’s a polysaccharide found in berries, apples and other fruit.
- Rice oligodextrin – also okay as well because it’s a complex carb from whole brown rice using a natural hydrolysis process without the use of acids alkalis or sulfites.
You can get Sunwarrior Brown Rice Protein here.
Vega One All in One Nutritional Shake Tub, French Vanilla, Large, 29.2 oz USD51
This is easily one of the best tasting protein shakes ever! Made entire of proteins from plants, vegetables, fruits and even herbs, too numerous to mention here, it’s not just a protein shake but a mini meal in itself.
The only negative thing about Vega One is the price: at USD51 and 20 grams of protein per 41 gram serving, it works out to 0.127 cents per gram of protein. But then, as I mentioned it’s not a pure protein shake per se but an all-in-one nutritional shake comprising protein, fiber, probiotics, greens, omega 3 and antioxidants!
You can get Vega One All-in-One Nutritional Shake here.
Viva Organic Cacao Powder USD9.10 (1 lb)
If you find the natural unflavored whey protein and casein bland, you can always buy 100% organic cocoa like this one from Viva and stir it into the whey or casein. Cost is USD9.10 for 1lb. You can get it here.
Now Foods’ Better Stevia 4 oz USD19.25
If you want a natural sweetener you can get stevia which is the only sweetener that doesn’t harm your health. I use this Stevia from Now Foods. Costs USD19.25 for a 4 oz bottle. You can get it here.
Note: Stevia is extremely sweet, so use only one fifth of a teaspoon if you normally use one teaspoon of sugar.
Sundesa Blender Bottle USD7.99
If you need a blender bottle, you can always get this one by Sundesa. Costs only USD7.99. It’s available here.
There you have it, a roundup of the protein supplements that I’ve tried before and my recommendations plus ratings for each of them.