While few, if any, amateur athletes need protein powder to support their exercise regime, it can be a highly convenient way to ensure you have all the fuel required to repair and build muscle after a workout.
First, check the amount of protein you get per serving – that’s the key number. Then compare the concentration and profile of amino acids (or BCAAs). You want a complete source of protein that contains the nine essential amino acids, ideally with a good-sized portion of leucine. Check the amount of carbohydrates, fats and sugars in the powder. These need to be in line with your general approach to your diet. Finally, scout the ingredient list carefully for additives like thickeners, preservatives, sweeteners and fillers. Generally, the fewer of these the better.
1 Best Whey Protein Powder: Myprotein Pro THE Whey+
Only the finest ingredients have been used to create this powder, which delivers 26g of protein per 32g serving via “beadlets” that gradually release muscle-building BCAAs. It mixes easily without lumps and although the texture’s a touch grainy the chocolate brownie flavour is a winner.
£35.99 for 960g
2 Best Budget Protein Powder: Bulk Powders Pure Whey Protein
The concentrate whey in this powder might not be the more refined types you’ll find in pricier options (isolate, hydrolysate and native), but it’s incredible value considering the 24.2g of protein per 30g serving, and with a wide range of flavours you should find one that suits.
£21.99 for 1kg
3 Best Casein Protein Powder: Optimum Nutrition Gold Standard 100% Casein
Each 32g serving of this powder contains 24g of protein, which is sourced from premium micellar casein to ensure a slow delivery to your muscles over time, making it the ideal option for a pre-bedtime shake.
£14.95 for 450g
4 Best Vegan Protein Powder: Healthspan Elite Complete Vegan Protein
Along with 20g of protein per 27g serving this powder delivers 100% of your recommended daily intake of B12, which is important because it’s a virtually impossible vitamin to get enough of on a vegan diet. The protein is sourced from a combination of pea, pumpkin and brown rice to provide a complete source of essential amino acids.
£24.99 for 1kg
5 Best Recovery Protein: SiS REGO Rapid Recovery+
The 24g of protein in a 70g serving of this powder is just the start of what you get. It also contains 38g of carbs to help your body recover from intense endurance activities. It’s one for fans of citrus too – the lemon flavour is head and shoulders above the rest.
£16 for 490g