Last Updated on March, 2023
You’ve likely heard about how bad it can be to use protein shakes as meal replacements. Most of these claims are true, as it’s true that protein powder supplements on their own aren’t nutritious enough to help you with that. But who says you can’t add a little nutrition of your own?
While you can’t use protein powder as meal replacement shakes, you can certainly make a meal shake out of them. But, you need to know how to add all the right ingredients to work properly. Lucky for you, we’re here to walk you through all the important steps!
Below is everything you need to know regarding making a meal replacement shake with protein powder. You’ll find a list of steps, important distinctions between both types of supplements, and much more. Let’s get started.
The Step-By-Step Process of Making Meal Replacement Shakes With Protein Powder
A meal replacement shake needs to have a good balance of all macronutrients. It also requires a liquid base, additional ingredients for flavor and micronutrients, and much more. Of course, protein shakes help you with… well, the protein. But, how do you get the rest? Just follow these steps below to find out!
1. Choose a Liquid Base
The first and most important step to getting a liquid base for your meal shake is selecting a liquid base. The two main options are milk and water. What type of milk depends entirely on you and your preferences. You can use low-fat, skim, cream, or anything else.
Out of the two, milk is the preferable option. It has a much better texture for “shakes,” is nutritionally better, adds to the taste, and is more filling. All of those are things that make a meal shake good in the first place, so consider going with 1 or 2 cups of any milk for your serving.
2. Get Your Healthy Fats
They’ve developed a bad reputation, but not all fats are bad. On the contrary, some of them are very helpful, and your body needs them to function properly. Some of the best sources of unsaturated fats include nut butter, chia seeds, avocados, eggs, cheese, etc.
How much you’ll need depends on how much shake you’re making and which other ingredients you’re adding.
If you’re following a recipe, use the exact amount. Adding too many fats isn’t healthy, so definitely avoid that.
3. Add Carbohydrates
Carbs aren’t hard to find. You can find them in many fruits and vegetables even. A lot of these same fruits and vegetables taste great. So, add a few of them to your shake to make it more nutritious and delicious at the same time.
From fruits, you can choose stuff like blueberries, mangoes, bananas, pineapples, etc. On the other hand, you’ve got the option of vegetables like cucumber, spinach, and other nutritious greens. Depending on which sounds the most delicious, you can add any of these to your meal replacement.
4. Now Get Your Protein in
This is where your protein powder becomes a meal replacement shake. You’ve got everything else you need. Now you have to add a source of protein into the mix to make it nutritious and well-balanced, as all meal shakes should be.
For this, add the recommended scoops of any protein powder you prefer. The only thing we have to say about this is to make sure you choose your flavor carefully. You don’t want the powder to mix badly with the fruits or vegetables to make a horrid mixture.
5. Add Some More Stuff for the Perfect Taste and Texture (Optional)
If you’re content with the stuff you’ve already got in there, feel free to move on to the next step. But, if you want to treat yourself to this meal shake, add some ingredients to spice things up. (Not literally. No one wants to drink a spicy meal replacement, right?)
For example, greek yogurt is a good and nutritional choice for making the shake thicker/creamier.
Chocolate, honey, caramel, and some other ingredients can similarly be used to give the shake a better taste. You can try out all kinds of fun mixtures to create the perfect supplement at home.
6. Shove it All in a Blender and… Blend!
The heading there is pretty self-explanatory. But, if you still didn’t get the hint, add the right amount of each ingredient you’ve chosen into a blender and let ‘er rip for a couple of minutes.
7. Pour and Drink
Here’s your last and final step, which is to enjoy the fruits of your labor! Pour the shake into a bottle/glass and drink it up immediately. Now, the “immediately” part is something we can’t stress enough.
Many people make these shakes and then shove them in the fridge for later drinking. That ruins the fresh taste and makes the texture worse, especially if you blend ice in the mixture. It’s highly recommended you drink up as soon as possible to enjoy the shake more.
Avoid these worst ingredients when making your meal replacement shake.
Difference Between a Protein Shake and Meal Replacement
So, why do you have to go through all this trouble? Why can’t you use a protein shake as a meal replacement supplement in the first place? What makes them so different that the former can’t be used as the latter? The answer to this question lies in the names of these products.
A meal replacement shake, as in the name, replaces meals. It has all kinds of nutrients inside, including protein. You also get lots of macronutrients and other helpful properties, making it even better for your body. They’re quite filling and usually low on calories at the same time.
When people drink these, they don’t have to eat a whole meal. That helps them cut down on lots of calories throughout their day. It is a convenient way of getting your daily nutrition, but it’s also good for weight loss.
On the other hand, protein shakes are just drinks that have a lot of protein in them. While they usually have a higher amount of protein, they’re lacking in pretty much all other nutritional compartments compared to meal shakes.
They don’t have healthy fats or carbs, micronutrients, or other helpful things. The only thing they do have going for them is that they’re low in calories. Other than that, they’re just great drinks for fitness. If you’re someone that doesn’t work out often? Then, not so great.
if this information is not enough, check out this guide.
6 Ingredients That Can Increase Protein in Meal Shakes and Make Them Healthier
You can add plenty of ingredients to your meal replacement shake other than protein powder to add protein in the mix. But, not all of these are good options. That’s why we’re only going to be talking about the ones that can add protein while also making the shake healthier rather than worse. Speaking of which, here’s a rundown of the best options:
- Oats: Oats are by far your best option for additional ingredients for meal replacement shakes. These are low-cost, easy to find anywhere and packed with protein. Blend these with your shake to make them much healthier while adding protein content.
- Peanut Butter: Peanut butter is another ingredient that’s healthy, easy to find, and easy to add to a shake. Another win for this particular option is that it tastes great, and many people will love it in their shakes. Add a tbsp of it to your shake to make it instantly better.
- Fruits: There’s no food we’re better acquainted with than fruits. They’re good for pretty much any recipe, and they’re especially good for our bodies. Plus, lots of them are filled with protein. Some of these include guava, bananas, peaches, and kiwi. These ingredients are healthy and seriously tasty, so it gets better and better.
- Berries: Fruits aren’t the only common, high-protein ingredient that Mother Nature has to offer. If you’re looking for something subtle which is equally tasty, give berries a try. Options like blackberries and raspberries have a lot of protein for their size.
- Spices: While they aren’t as filled with proteins as the other ingredients, there are plenty of spices with some protein. You can add these to give your shake a unique taste and make it healthier. They include paprika, turmeric, basil, ginger, and some more.
- Yogurt: Saving one of the best options for last, try some yogurt in your meal shake. This is another very common ingredient and one that’s very high in protein. Yogurt and shakes are a match made in heaven anyway. This is a personal favorite of many looking to make a high-protein and healthy meal replacement.
To make a meal replacement shake with protein powder, that’s all there is. Indeed, these powders aren’t fit to be used as meal shakes on their own. But, with the tips we’ve discussed here, that’s something you can easily work around with a bit of work.
Just remember to follow all our steps as we’ve given them. We’ve thrown in a couple of pointers there if you want some extra protein in the mix. If you want some more tips on how to make the perfect homemade meal replacement shakes, check out these recipes to learn more.
We’ve used these steps to make many shakes for ourselves, and you can do the same. So, if you enjoyed it, make sure to let us know. Feel free to share any thoughts or questions while you’re at it, and we’ll be sure to take a look.
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