Here at the Strategist, we like to think of ourselves as crazy (in the good way) about the stuff we buy, but as much as we’d like to, we can’t try everything. Which is why we have People’s Choice, in which we find the best-reviewed products and single out the most convincing ones. While we’ve asked New York trainers about the best workout gear and foam rollers, talked with workout professionals about the best home-gym equipment, and even found the best treadmills, exercise bikes, and under-desk ellipticals for your home gym, we’ve gone deep here on the best protein powder you can find on Amazon. (Note that reviews have been edited for length and clarity.)
Best overall protein powder
“The Gold Standard 100% Whey Double Chocolate tastes delicious. In milk, it’s just about as good as a chocolate milkshake. I have to resist the urge to drink more just for the enjoyment. In water it’s not quite that good but still very tasty. I only take it right after workouts which are usually 8 p.m.–10 p.m. after work. I’m up for another two to three hours afterward and I am getting no cravings where in the past late night was my worst time for eating snacks. I like the flavor and look forward to having it after my workout. It has definitely cut back my late night cravings. And if it is feeding my muscles on top of that I simply don’t know what more I could ask for. Simply put, I love this product and want to have it’s babies.”
Best whey-based protein powder
“This is the best-tasting protein powder I have ever tried. I bought the chocolate milk flavor and put it in the fridge to cool a bit before drinking. It’s absolutely delicious. I also like that this is a protein blend and sometimes drink this before going to work. I truly believe this has made a big impact on how hungry I am after work and as a result, my ability to make wise food choices when I get home.”
“I’ve been using this powder for years. Flavor, granule size, and packaging has been consistently excellent. As a post-workout or post-cycling recovery drink, I use two scoops of this plus a tablespoon of virgin coconut oil (trust me, it adds great texture), plus milk. When using the French vanilla kind, I use the above recipe plus one cup frozen blueberries and mix it in a blender. It really hits the spot after a day in the sun in the saddle.
“No weird aftertaste, their Stevia amount is just right to give you sweet but not overly sweet. Most other products I’ve used that have Stevia have a gross after taste, not any Designer Whey products I have used though. Highly recommend this product. I trust Designer Whey to keep making excellent products for years to come, they will always have my business.”
Best whey/casein protein powder
“I have ordered several bottles of this protein now over the course of months, and I have to say for the price this stuff is amazing. it is a mix of both whey protein and casein protein. Those are the two best/most common protein sources and since they metabolize at different rates, it helps keep protein synthesis at a higher rate all day. I really recommend this product to anyone looking for a good brand. All of the flavors I have tried have been good, i have no complaints there either. It also mixes very well with a shaker bottle, many cheaper protein powders require a blender to get rid of the chunks and to fully mix, but not this stuff. This stuff is amazing, and gets a perfect 5/5 from me.”
Best vegan protein powder
“Excellent product. Best plant-based protein that’s alkaline, affordable and tastes great. I almost didn’t buy because of the one-star review that called this a fake product. That is not true. As a medical professional, I contacted Orgain myself and received the product catalog and samples last week. In the catalog all the ingredients are listed just as on the tub from Amazon.”
“Alright, I’ll start off by saying this is the BEST protein powder I have ever had. I have tried multiple brands and a lot I have trashed. I have a degree in nutrition and fitness, I’m a wife, a boy-mom chef, a very busy online nutrition and fitness professional. I don’t have time for crappy products. I don’t want to be eating or drinking them, I won’t recommend them to my clients, and I certainly won’t give them to my kids or family. Thankfully this product hit the amazing mark in everything.”
Best unsweetened protein powder
“I’ve had bad past experiences trying various protein supplements and was afraid to spend more money on yet another brand but a friend recommended TGS so I gave it a shot. Best. Decision. Ever. First, I’ll say that I’ve a very active person. I use protein powder as it was intended to be used - as a supplement. I drink it when it’s convenient or when I know I won’t meet my desired daily protein intake. I felt that was worth mentioning.
“Now, my negative experiences were mostly due to side effects like bloating, stomach aches and gas. I checked TGS out, liked the short ingredient list and that it was unflavored. Finally! No more side effects and no more bad taste! Also, I like that it doesn’t come in a giant tub that takes up all my self space. Most of all, I like that it’s unflavored. I’m picky with my flavors. I drink mine in a shake. Here’s my favorite homemade flavor: A generous teaspoon of cacao powder, a banana, 8-12 oz. of almond milk, a hand full of ice, and a course a scoop of protein. I can drink those chocolate banana shakes all day! Love it! I highly recommend it!”
Best low-carb protein powder
“This is my second order of this product and I opted for a larger canister this time because it is so good. I didn’t have high expectations, but this is really a very good-tasting product for zero net carbs. I highly recommend it for anyone on a low carb or ketogenic diet.”
Best gluten-free protein powder
“I absolutely love this protein powder. I’m not a fan of Whey because it makes me feel nauseous and is a heavy drink for me, so someone recommended I try Vega Sport. I love the taste as well as how easy it is to mix it around with greens and fruits and other mixings. I find it easy to drink and I don’t find it disgusting at all. I don’t feel bloated or nauseous either. I’ve been using this protein powder for seven months now and I have no plans in changing it! My favorites so far have been Berry and Mocha. Vanilla is a wonderful choice too. Usually, I use Vanilla when I plan to add cinnamon and peanut butter. Also, I use cashew milk to help create a creamy taste as well as have a bigger drink.”
“After shopping around for alternatives I came across Body Fortress, which has become my go-to source for whey and similar supplements. This whey is a bit high in cholesterol but at this price I suppose that something has to give. I’d prefer the cholesterol to be lower but considering my diet and exercise I’m not too concerned. I certainly do much worse on my cheat day!
“This stuff tastes great in my opinion, and it mixes well enough in my shaker bottle. I used to get some clumps left on the bottom of the shaker that didn’t mix into the milk but I’ve since began to add the whey on top of the milk rather than adding it first. That’s solved the issue.”
Best low-sugar protein powder
“I’ve been using this product for a month now and it is great! I started working out in August and I finally decided that I’m not satisfied with my results so I’ll just invest in a protein powder. It was hard choosing and getting so many references made it even harder. I chose to go with Syntha 6 and it was a great decision, I love the flavor and have seen results! I am lifting much more weight and my body isn’t as tired as normal when I’m done lifting! Great product! Can’t wait to try other flavors.”
Best organic protein powder
“I’ve been drinking Raw Meal almost everyday for breakfast for the past nine months and I love it. I wasn’t crazy about the taste when I first tried Raw Meal, but I’ve really grown to love it and I actively look forward to my morning shakes. I mix it with almond or flax milk instead of water, which also makes for a much tastier shake. In addition, I add 1/4 teaspoon of turmeric powder and 1 tbsp of cod liver oil, to make it even more nutritious.
“I’ve been eating much healthier this past year and I’m really glad to have incorporated Raw Meal into my daily diet. What I like most about it is the natural sources of vitamins and minerals, rather than synthetic sources, which increases the bioavailability. I also love how an 8oz shake will hold me over for a number of hours before I start getting hungry.”
Best soy-free protein powder
Best peanut butter-based protein powder
“I thought PB2 was the best thing ever until I came across PBfit. It was priced reasonably, and I thought, “How bad could it really be?” Well, it wasn’t bad at all! This stuff is great. To me, it tastes a little sweeter than PB2. And–I know I’m not the only one who does this — but I can totally eat a spoon of this dry. I could do the same with PB2, but PBfit seems to have a better texture.
“This stuff is so easy to use. I know the label tells you how much water to use per serving, but you simply mix your serving with water until you reach the consistency you desire. If you accidentally add too much water, just add a little extra PBfit. You’ll be amazed at how little it takes to thicken up your peanut butter.”
Best lactose-free protein powder
Best vitamin-enriched protein powder
“I started buying this to replace Shakeology. I needed something more affordable. This may not have everything Shakeology has in it, but it is a pretty close alternative for a fraction of the price. It actually tastes very good too, much better than some of the other competitors. I also noticed my nails have started growing very long and strong without breaking, I swear it is from drinking this daily :).”
Best high-protein protein powder
Best oat-based protein powder
“I bought this product (chocolate flavor) to use on occasion rather than the “plain” whey I normally use. If you’re looking for cheap, you’d probably be better of just blending some oats down to a powder and adding them to regular whey, but I bought this for convenience, and convenient it is. It mixes well (if you just use water like I do when I’m in a hurry, I recommend just adding a bit of water and mixing it, then adding the rest of the water you want–it’s a bit hydrophobic) and tastes good. While not the product’s fault, I would also recommend washing the glass or container you make this in as soon as possible after you’re done — I’ve found that if I let it dry (even mostly rinsed out and waiting in the dishwasher a day or two before I run it), it dries so hard that it doesn’t come off very easily.”
Best hemp-based protein powder
“Mix with vanilla almond mild and shake it up, the vanilla covers a good portion of the grainy/green taste of the protein powder. Add more vanilla flavoring until you find your comfort zone. I don’t mind the grainy so much, as it’s not a soda, its GOOD for you, so buck up and feed your bod!”
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