No snack is more wallet friendly, protein bearing or versatile than protein powder. It forms to any calorie goal and can be served in a multitude of formats be it a shake, smoothie, pancake or dessert pudding. Protein powder comes in all different forms and melds to any fitness goal, whether it’s squeezing in calories or fighting them off. Keep it simple for a naturally low carb, low fat, high protein snack or snazz it up for the mass building march. Either way you won’t be let down.
Cheap is Good
Protein powder is one of the cheapest sources of protein man can buy. Evaluating by price per gram eggs and chicken can come close. However any savvy buyer can get protein powder in bulk at a discount that makes it far and beyond the cheapest source. For example, 50g of protein from whey costs around a $1. That means you have to find chicken breasts selling for $2 a pound to match the protein content. This is totally possible, but at that price it’s likely covered in excess fat and of questionable quality. While you should keep protein sources diverse protein powder can easily be worked into the rotation.
Results are Better
If the price won’t sell you, the benefits will have you doing the shake weight protein dance before your next workout. The benefits are numerous and Anthony Yeung drops knowledge bombs about them in this article.
Before you jump into these wicked concoctions make sure you’re digging around for that ever elusive scoop in the right container. If you’re looking for a pre workout surge or a post workout refuel stick to recipes with whey (Hydrolyzed, isolate and concentrate are best in that order) or blend protein powders. Recipes with blends or casein protein not only keep you fuller longer but also give your body a more steady release of anabolic amino acids.
If even the simplest of recipes are a turn off for you don’t forget how protein powder originated. The basic whey and water or milk in the shaker is a lifesaver. It’s low calorie but gives you the protein you need. I always keep protein powder on me for a couple reasons. It could save you a couple bucks by not having to buy a snack while you’re on the go. You never know when you’re going to work out. Not having proper pre or post workout nutrition is a sure fire fail. Lastly, I just love the looks and questions I get from people when I bust out a random protein shake. Seriously, start making a protein shake at the next party you go to, people won’t be able to control themselves and will think you are the most dedicated fitness diehard they’ve ever met.
Get Ripped with Recipes
Eventually you’ll want to step up your game. That may happen consciously or subconsciously. You may realize all the great low calorie food you could be indulging in. Conversely, you could stay in denial and leave the kitchen empty handed ten times a day in search of that certain snack. Instead of driving up summer utility bills by letting the cold air escape your fridge try one of these recipes. They’re built for men who have a refined fitness palate yet don’t pack a Betty Crocker level pantry.
One of my go to recipes for protein powder is the ever popular pancake. It’s not quite IHOP, but it won’t have the same nutritional value either. Try making this for an anytime snack or even make two in the morning and pack one away for later. Here is a great recipe using pumpkin, but it can easily be converted to a pumpkin free version:
- 3/4 Cup oats (Blend the oats for a smoother texture)
- 1/2 Cup of pureed pumpkin
- 1 scoop of protein powder (A blend protein using whey, casein and egg works best)
- 2 whole eggs or 5 egg whites
- 1 stevia packet or honey
Extra Options: Sliced or mashed bananas really helps moisten the pancake, lathering almond or natural peanut butter on top is just delicious, a pinch of cinnamon adds flavor, cottage cheese adds creaminess and the possibilities are limitless.
The cooking is simple. Either mix it all together with a fork or blend it. Pour it into a medium sized pan on medium heat. Cook until the bottom is firm, flip it, turn off the heat and let it finish. Those cooking lessons are going to come in clutch right?
Smoothies are the most versatile snack and certainly one of the most delectable. They’re really where having a variety of flavors above the classic chocolate/vanilla variations comes in handy. If you’re new to the protein powder kitchen of experimentation, here’s your starting line. However you can skip the growing pains and find rich creamy smoothies, a hardcore weight gainer or just something to cut those midnight cravings with my favorite protein smoothie recipes.
Protein is a Dish Best Served Cold
As much as I love protein smoothies, protein pudding has always been right there. Casein is definitely the ideal protein to use (Casein is much thicker than other proteins), just mix one and half scoops into some milk or water till thick not watery, put it in the freezer for 30-45 minutes and you’ve just taken instant pudding to a level most will never know. Nut butters go great with it as well. You may want to make two batches since you’ll be pretty shocked how tantalizing and addicting 200 calories can be.
Protein powder can be baked, frozen, chopped, blended or mixed. It’s much like the artists’ palette but for you palate. Add a comment down below and let us know what your favorite protein powder concoction is.