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12 Sweet Ways to Sneak Protein Powder into Your Meals

Unexpected Ways to Cook With Protein Powder

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This article originally appeared on Mensfitness.com

We all know that protein plays a powerful role in your weight loss journey by helping you retain lean, fat-fighting muscle along the way. But instead of chugging run-of-the-mill protein shakes to amp your intake, we thought of a few sweeter ways to deliver the nutrients. Click through to find a dozen delicious recipes—from your morning coffee to your late-night nosh—to sneak protein powder into your daily meals and snacks.

Pumpkin Cacao Muffins

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Ingredients:
3 1/2 cups of old-fashioned oats
2 cups canned pureed pumpkin or fresh pumpkin puree
1 cup applesauce
1 cup fat-free vanilla Greek yogurt
1/2 cup vanilla protein powder
1 cup baking Stevia
3 tsp cinnamon
3/4 tsp salt
4 tsp baking powder
1/4 cup of cacao chips
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp pumpkin pie spice

Instructions:
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
2. Puree oats in a food processor.
3. Mix oats with the rest of the ingredients.
4. Scoop batter into prepared muffin tins and bake for 15 to 20 minutes.

Source: Leah Kaufman, M.S., R.D., C.D.N.

Can't get enough pumpkin? Find 10 Delicious Pumpkin Recipes right here!

Photo: Corbis Images

Coffee á la Protein

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Ingredients:
1 scoop whey protein powder of choice
1 cup coffee
1/4 cup of milk or creamer

Instructions:
1. Add protein powder to a cup of steaming coffee.
2. Stir in 1/4 cup of milk or creamer.

Source: Lisa Moskovitz, R.D., C.D.N., C.P.T.

Trying to cut back on coffee and soda? See 4 Healthy Caffeine Fixes to get a boost of energy instead.

Photo: Corbis Images

Chocolate-Coconut Popsicles

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Ingredients:
2 scoops of pea, rice, or whey protein powder
1 can of organic full-fat coconut milk

Instructions:
1. Blend ingredients and pour into popsicle molds
2. Freeze until frozen

Source: Jason Boehm Nutrition, LLC

Vanilla Chocolate Chip Pancakes

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Ingredients:
2 scoops vanilla protein powder
2 scoops almond meal
4 egg whites or 1/2 cup of egg substitute
1/2 cup of water
3 tsp Stevia
1/4 cup of cacao chips (dark chocolate or raw cacao preferred)

Instructions:
1. Mix all ingredients together until batter is formed (it may be thicker than what you are used to).
2. Pour batter onto heated nonstick pan to form pancakes.
3. Flip pancakes after the bottom bubbles, and remove promptly when each side is cooked.
Makes about 7 pancakes.

Source: Leah Kaufman, M.S., R.D., C.D.N.

Protein Pudding Cups

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Ingredients:
1 scoop vanilla or chocolate whey protein powder
6 oz plain Greek yogurt
1-2 tsp water

Instructions:
1. Mix protein powder and Greek yogurt.
2. Add 1 to 2 tsp of water, as needed, to thin out the mixture.

Source: Lisa Moskovitz, R.D., C.D.N., C.P.T.

Photo: Corbis Images

Nutella Shake

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Ingredients:
1 scoop of whey, pea, or rice chocolate protein powder 
1 tbsp almond butter
10 oz unsweetened almond milk
Optional: extra ice for thickness

Instructions:
Blend ingredients together until shake reaches a creamy consistency.

Source: Jason Boehm Nutrition, LLC

Slurp a few servings of vegetables with this green smoothie that tastes just like a vanilla milkshake!

Photo: Corbis Images

Banana Crepes

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Ingredients:
1 cup egg whites or 2 whole eggs
1/2 cup mashed banana
1/2 cup chocolate or vanilla whey protein powder
1/2 cup rolled oats or whole-wheat flour
Optional: vanilla extract or cinnamon

For the filling:
6 oz Greek yogurt
1 tbsp peanut butter
1 banana, sliced
Optional: melted dark chocolate as desired

Instructions:
1. Mix all crepe ingredients together and pour batter in a hot, greased pan.
2. Flip each crepe after the bottoms bubble. Remove promptly when each side is cooked.
3. After removing crepes, fill with Greek yogurt, fresh sliced bananas, natural peanut butter, and dark chocolate, if desired.

Source: Lisa Moskovitz, R.D., C.D.N., C.P.T.

Antioxidant Power Smoothie

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Ingredients:
3/4 scoop protein powder
1 cup blueberries
1 cup frozen strawberries
1 tbsp honey
1 cup almond milk

Instructions:
Blend all ingredients until smooth.

Source: Kate Davis, M.S., R.D., C.S.S.D.

Protein Bites

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Ingredients:
1 cup nut butter
1/2 cup protein powder
1/4 cup raw agave nectar
1 tbsp unrefined coconut oil
unsweetened coconut, cocoa powder, or crushed nuts for topping (optional)

Instructions:
1. Mix all ingredients.
2.When completely combined, shape into balls.
3. Roll balls in topping of choice. If you find they are dry, add more coconut oil as desired.
4. Store in an airtight container.

Source: Karen Graham, R.D.

Photo: Corbis Images

Hot Chocolate

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Ingredients:
1 scoop chocolate protein powder
8 oz hot water or almond milk
1 tsp vanilla extract

Instructions:
1. Add protein powder to hot water or almond milk.
2. Stir in vanilla extract (and your sweetener of choice, if desired).
3. Sprinkle cinnamon on top.

Source: Lisa Moskovitz, R.D., C.D.N., C.P.T.

Photo: Corbis Images

Protein-Almost Oatmeal

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Ingredients:
2 cups unsweetened applesauce
4 tbsp raw, chunky almond butter
3 tbsp raw, unsweetened canned coconut milk
Cinnamon, to taste
1 scoop protein powder
Dash of freshly grated nutmeg (optional)
Fresh or dried fruit, nuts (optional)

Instructions:
1. Combine all ingredients in a small pan over medium heat, stirring often until thoroughly combined and warm.
2. Add fresh or dried fruit and/or nuts for additional texture and flavor.

Source: Healther Heefner, R.D.

Don't limit oatmeal to just your mornings! See 16 Savory Oatmeal Recipes to enjoy the breakfast favorite any time of day.

Protein Fruit Dip

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Ingredients:
11 scoop unflavored protein powder
2 tbsp PB2 (powdered low-fat, low-cal peanut butter substitute)
3 tbsp water (more or less depending on desired consistency )

Instructions:
Mix protein powder with PB2 and use as a dip for sliced fruit.

Source: Lauren Antonucci, M.S., R.D., C.S.S.D.

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