The phrase "vegan protein powder" has probably already turned some of you off — vegan or not.
You might be vegan and thinking, "WHY are we still so obsessed with protein? Just eat real food!"
Or you might be a carnivore and thinking, "It's whey or nothing. What's the point of vegan protein?"
But maybe you're like me. I'm pescatarian for ethical reasons, not health reasons, and I try to eat more protein because I feel better and fuller when I do. HOWEVER, whey protein doesn't sit well with my stomach, so I opt for the vegan kind. Plus, I feel better about eating hemp and peas than I do about eating whey. Because, well, it doesn't look appetizing. I'll spare you the image — just Google it if you're curious.
Vegan protein powder gets a bad rap. It can be gritty, chalky and taste earthy (kinda like, well, mud). Soy protein doesn't typically have this issue, but my stomach doesn't do well with soy, either.
I like protein. I like things that taste good. My stomach doesn't like whey or soy. What's a girl to do?
Try all the things.
These are the things I like best — vegan sources of protein that make my stomach, and my tastebuds, happy.
Favorite Chocolate: Orgain
When my mother-in-law was going through chemotherapy, Orgain was her go-to. Now that she's finished with treatment (!!!!), I think she's sick of the stuff. She had a couple of extra tubs of the Orgain Creamy Chocolate Fudge organic protein powder left over and gave them to me. I'm not one to pass up free protein powder so I gladly took it off her hands, though admittedly I didn't think I would love it. But ohmygosh I do. It tastes so chocolately and yummy and it's all organic if you're into that. No worries, it doesn't taste earthy like some powders can. I've gone through the tubs she gave me ... and purchased a few more refills. Yum.
Protein source: organic rice, sprouted chia seed, organic hemp and peas
Favorite Vanilla: Sunwarrior Warrior Blend
I tried the Sunwarrior Warrior Blend Vanilla protein powder because Angela from Oh She Glows raved about it. I love her blog, her recipes and well, her, so I gave it a shot. That was a couple of years ago and it's become my favorite vanilla powder. It's less expensive than some comparable products and just as yummy (read: not earthy tasting). It also contains a bunch of leucine, which the Internet says is great for preserving muscle tissue.
Protein source: Raw organic pea protein, raw cranberry protein, raw organic hemp seed protein
Favorite Splurge: Vega One
Vega was my first protein love. I like all the flavors but I mostly went for the vanilla. We kind of broke up, because I felt like he was kind of a gold-digger. Don't get me wrong, it's great stuff. Just kind of expensive and I like the types listed above just as much. HOWEVER, sometimes I'll find an amazing deal and have a one-purchase stand with Vega for old time's sake.
Protein source: Hemp, flax, pea and SaviSeed protein
Favorite Steal: Sprouts
Usually I buy my protein powder online, but sometimes I run out and need something NOW. I picked up a vegan protein powder at Sprouts on one of these days and it wasn't too shabby! It didn't taste earthy or too chalky. It wasn't as good as the others on this list, but good enough to include. I'd buy it again in a pinch.
Protein source: Shucks. I think it was peas and hemp?