Protein powders are important if you want to gain muscle, but they’re also important for those who may not be able to get their protein elsewhere. Protein is the single most important thing to get if you want to build up muscle mass. Doing this is hard enough alone, but doing it on a keto diet is can be even harder. Before we get into which protein powders you should be using, let’s first discuss the keto diet itself and how you can recognize which protein powders are the best for a keto diet.
What is Keto?
Keto is a diet that was introduced in the 1900’s in order to control epilepsy symptoms in both children and adults. When anti-seizure medications developed and their usefulness was fully understood, the keto diet was abandoned in favor of them. It somewhat recently came under the spotlight again when James S. Abraham, the director of Airplane! And Naked Gun used the diet to help his son with his epilepsy. It proved to be so effective that he set up the Charlie Foundation to spread awareness of the diet and how it could help others. That is when research began again, and it was discovered how well it was suited to help people lose weight and lead more energetic lives.
The Keto diet is mostly the same whether it is used for losing weight or managing epilepsy. The diet calls for reduced carbs and instead uses proteins and, more importantly, fats to give the body energy. The reason why this diet is so difficult is because it removes most of the staples such as bread, rice, and noodles, and instead focuses on other items such as meat, dairy, and fish. These foods are high in fat and protein which is why they are used more readily.
The keto diet is also very strict when it comes to the consumption of sugar. Sugar is the most direct form of glucose, which is what this diet seeks to eliminate. It instead wants the body to utilize ketone bodies which are made from fats. These ketone bodies can be used to fuel the body instead of glucose and thus help in burning fat at a much faster rate. As with all diets, the specifications vary but most keto diets are comprised of high fat, medium protein, and little to no carbs.
How to Choose the Best Keto Protein Powder
The keto diet’s most important feature is that it still allows for every normal activity without hindering you in any way. That includes working out and bodybuilding. If any of you are gym buffs, you know how important protein powder is and how helpful it is in building muscle. The problem with most conventional protein powders is that they are often high in carbs and low in fat which makes sense for someone on a normal diet. For someone on keto, though, that’s a nightmare.
There is a bit of selection criteria that you can use to determine which protein powders are safe for consumption while on keto. The first thing that you should look for is the carb content. You want to make sure the carb count is low on a keto diet. You should also keep an eye on the protein per serving as that matters a lot for this diet. Even if you find products that meet this criteria, there is still one criteria that tops the rest. That is taste, of course! The taste matters a lot in protein powders and because keto diets don’t allow for much sugar, it can be a real pain to get powders that are tasty AND healthy. That’s why we set up this list, to let you know what the best keto protein powders are and how you can benefit from them.
11 Best Keto Protein Powders
We are going to start things off strong with this Keto-Alkaline protein shake. It would be hard to list all the things that it has, so instead here is a list of what it doesn’t have:
- Animal or Dairy Products
- Fish or Shellfish
- Peanuts or Tree Nuts
- Artificial Colors, Sweeteners, or Preservatives
- Ingredients Derived from GMOs (Genetically Modified Organisms)
Going through that list you might be thinking “Where does the protein come from?” The answer is simple... from high protein vegetables like spinach, as well as a blend of pea and rice protein. This powerful protein powder is naturally sweetened by monk fruit extract, which has no carbs and has little effect on blood sugar levels. The effect is so small that monk fruit sweeteners are considered as safe for consumption even by diabetics.
The absolute best part about this powder is the fact that it is vegan, in addition to being perfect for those on keto diets. That makes it great for every single person, so if you’re following keto and want to gain muscle, you should definitely give this powder a try. It’s delicious and provides your body with proper protein metabolism, gastrointestinal support, and detoxification.
This is one of the protein powders that has been catching on quite recently, and it’s become quite popular. You’ve probably already seen it being praised on other sites and we have to say, we agree. This isn’t a vegan protein powder like the last one and, in fact, the taste, smell, and ingredients are all different! The first thing that you should know about this is that this powder is not vegan. It uses grass fed beef collagen to provide you with the required amount of protein. Secondly, it is sweetened by stevia leaf powder which is an all-natural sweetener that is sweeter than sugar.
The powder also has an additional ingredient that is not usually included by most powders. This protein powder contains MCT oil powder which acts as a boost to your digestive system. For people on keto, MCT is an incredible vital source of energy, which is why this powder is great for people on keto. The taste of the powder is also really great. The worst part of being on keto is often cutting chocolate flavored drinks and sweets out of your diet. This chocolate flavored powder goes well with almost anything. You can mix it in liquids like milk and coffee, make a shake from it, or even use it to bake cookies.
The powder works great and tastes even better but the price tag may be off putting for some. We can vouch for the quality, however, and it is definitely worth it.
This protein powder by Isopure contains zero carbs and is made with 100% whey protein isolate. The best part about this powder is not its taste or its nutritional information even though they are really good. The absolute best part about this powder is the fact that its texture is so smooth. Most protein powders can deliver taste and nutrition but it is really hard to get the texture right. This powder hits that need perfectly. When using this powder, you’ll notice how creamy the protein shakes are and how easy they are to drink.
As for the taste and nutritional value, the powder is keto friendly and can help you gain muscle while still maintaining your diet. The powder comes in nine different flavors that are all really great, but the best out of all of them has to be the coconut flavor. It’s extremely good and can be used in a variety of different ways. The price is also very economical so you might want to check this protein powder out.
One of the powders that has been exclusively designed for people on keto, this powder is great if you want to get your protein quickly and efficiently. This powder is unique in the sense that it not only gives you protein and MCT oil, it gives you a host of electrolytes that provide your body what it needs. The product is also unique because the collagen that it contains is hydrolyzed, making it easier to absorb and thus utilize.
The flavor of this protein is chocolate and tastes really good. You can make different smoothies, baked goods, and desserts with the powder, or you can just add it to your favorite drinks like coffee or milk and have an energy boosting snack.
The protein powder from Kiss My Keto is advertised as both a protein powder and as a coffee creamer. I cannot get up without my morning coffee, no matter how well rested I am. I was missing coffee creamer while on keto, so I decided to give this a shot. I am extremely satisfied with the results! It works well whether you use it in a shake or in your coffee. It makes the bitter blackness go down so much easier, so this is a great option for those of you who love their coffee but miss their creamer.
The powder also contains MCT oil and is not suitable for vegans, so you should definitely keep that in mind if you’re following a hybrid diet of keto and vegan. Apart from what’s inside, the packaging is really good too. It’s quite different and appealing than the rest. You should also know that there are carbs in this. Only about 1g per serving, but they do exist.
The Purus Lab Keto Feed has been made to cater to all your protein needs. The base of this protein is not collagen but rather regular whey protein isolate which works just as well. The flavor of this particular protein powder is Samoa chocolate cream which works well with both hot and cold drinks. You should keep in mind, though, that this powder can turn out chalky in hot drinks so it’s best to blend it in for the best taste and texture. A typical jar of this powder lasts for about two weeks.
The protein powder from Ketologie contains 75% fat, 20% protein, and less than 2% carbs. That is basically what the average keto diet is all about which is what makes this product so good. The powder is not just some average, run-of-the-mill product but it is something that is worth the purchase. The powder features coconut oil, grass fed bovine collagen, and sea salt. There are no additives in the product and they never use caffeine or sugar so you can be sure that when you use this product you are going to be following your keto diet.
Ancient Nutrition recently made waves in the protein powder business by allowing customers to return products if they didn’t like the taste. That feature of being a risk-free order made me try the powder and I was pleasantly surprised. I was expecting a collagen stuffed, gritty powder but I found that the chocolate blends quite well with the collagen and provides a tasty boost to your day. The powder is mainly made from bone broth and MCT oil which gives you a lot of incentive to try the product out.
Here’s another vegan protein powder that I found to be extremely good. All the ingredients that are in this powder come from plant based substitutes of traditional ingredients. The powder is gluten, dairy, and lactose free and contains no artificial sweeteners or flavors. I found this powder to be one of the healthiest choices out of all of them because of the organic ingredients. Considering that this product is vegan, it’s not even that expensive making it easy to order this powder again and again. It’s also available through major retailers like Walmart and Costco, making it super accessible for everyone.
The only powder that contains casein on this list, this protein powder was great to use and easy to drink. The best part about this protein powder was the taste. The chocolate that they use is quite good and does not leave any aftertaste in its wake. It also contains whey protein isolate and is sweetened with stevia and sucralose. That means that you can enjoy the sweet powder without having to feel guilty about abandoning your keto diet. The powder is also soy free and gluten free so you know that you’re getting your money’s worth with this product. We love that this product comes in so many flavors and pairs well with their protein bars. The company is also really great to work with!
Here are the things that are the most important about this powder. It has zero sugars, less than 1g carbs, no gluten, and no artificial sweeteners or additives. The base of the protein powder is a collagen blend that is unique to this particular producer. They incorporate MCT oil, collagen, as well as a tri-blend of fats that includes avocado powder, coconut MCT powder, and grass fed butter powder. The blend is the best part about this powder because it allows for a ton of fat and protein without adding carbs. This powder is definitely the most unique on this list and deserves to be checked out.
How to Make a Protein Shake
Now that you have selected the protein powder that suits all your needs, it’s time to find out how to make a good protein shake. The hardest thing to get right is not the taste of the protein shake, but rather the consistency. It’s going to be impossible to enjoy a protein shake if it is all lumpy. That’s why we cooked up a recipe that you’ll love to try out. Here’s the list of ingredients that you’ll need:
- 1 cup plain unsweetened almond milk
- 1/2 cup full fat plain Greek yogurt, Cashew Yogurt, or Avocado
- 1 scoop protein powder
- A few organic strawberries, blueberries, or other low sugar fruit
- 1/8 teaspoon organic cinnamon
- Ice as needed (if not using frozen fruit)
When you have acquired all the ingredients all you need to do is blend them all together and enjoy. We prefer to blend them in the VitaMix, which pulverizes absolutely EVERYTHING.
You might be a little wary of strawberries, seeing as they are a fruit, but berries are the only fruit that are acceptable during keto. If you’re going to have fruit once a day, it might as well be in a protein shake that gets you going.
How Many Protein Shakes a Day?
Making and drinking protein shakes is easy but deciding how many to drink in a day is incredibly hard. A good rule of thumb is to drink one to two a day. One for your breakfast and the second before your workout. That is still debatable, though, because in the end the decision rests on you. To get actual personalized information you should consult a nutritionist or a dietitian because they can take your weight, muscle mass, age, height, and a host of other factors under consideration.
Through them, you can learn exactly what you need, how much of it you need, and how often you need it. Whatever the case may be, you should definitely check out these protein powders if you’re on keto. They are specially designed for people on keto and can help immensely if you want to build up mass or are just looking for a way to get a burst of energy.
Do you have a favorite keto protein powder? What’s your favorite shake recipe? Let us know in the comments below!