6 Best Protein Powder Of 2023: According To A Nutritionist

Reviewed by Brittany Ferri, PhD

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best protein powder

In the flooded fitness nutrition market there are thousands of protein supplements to choose from. Quantity does not equal quality, however, and we have done research to help narrow down your choices. If you are looking for a high-quality, palatable, and effective protein powder to add to your fitness regimen, read on.

Let’s explore 6 of the best protein powders that were on the market in 2023 that can help you meet your fitness goals in 2023. 

Our Top 6 Best Protein Powders 2023

6 Best Protein Powder Of 2023: According To A Nutritionist

Jacked Factory Authentic Whey Premium

Jacked Factory Authentic Whey Premium Protein Powder is a no frills and effective protein powder that can help you with your recovery and muscle gain. At 24 g of protein, 2 g of fat, and 1 g of sugar per serving, you can be assured you’re only getting what you need.

  • Tasty
  • Easily digestible
  • Rapidly absorbed
  • Whey concentrate blend, not exclusively whey protein isolate
  • Some people find it too sweet

Most reviewers rave about the taste, texture, and digestibility of this protein powder. Some complain that certain flavors are too sweet for them. 

Transparent Labs 100% Grass-Fed Whey Protein Isolate

Transparent Labs 100% Grass-Fed Whey Protein Isolate has excellent macros (28 g of protein, 1 g of carbs, 0 g of fat) and is carefully produced without artificial sweeteners, dyes, or preservatives. You can be assured you’re getting only what you want without any unknown fillers or chemicals added.

  • From hormone-free cows
  • No artificial sweeteners, dyes, or preservatives
  • High protein-to-weight ratio
  • At $59.99 per 30 servings, it’s a bit pricier than some other options.

It’s difficult to find a bad review about this product. People love the flavors, the quality, and the ease of digestion. Many people report seeing improvements in gym performance and body composition after regularly using this product. 

Naked Nutrition Strawberry

When looked at as a meal replacement, this product checks all the boxes.  It is also an amazing option for vegans since it uses only high-quality pea protein.

  • Uses pea protein, an vegan
  • Delicious
  • Contains MCT oil to support fat metabolism
  • Only has 20 grams of protein per serving
  • Has 3 grams of fat and 7 grams of carbohydrates per serving, more than some might want

People are impressed with the quality of the product and how well it mixes in liquid. Some people love the taste, while others are more tepid in their praise of the palatability. All in all, people like the convenience, ease of use, and quality of this vegan option. 

Optimum Nutrition 100% Gold Standard Whey Protein

The number of flavor options and the macros (24 g protein/1 g fat/ 1 g carbs) in this powder are impressive. It also contains glutamine, glutamic acid, and BCAA’s as well as high-quality whey protein isolates.

  • 82% protein by weight
  • More than 5 grams of naturally occurring BCAAs per serving
  • 12 flavors to choose from
  • Not everyone is a fan of the taste

Most reviewers appreciate the energy boost this product provides to them as well as its mixability and digestibility. Some people don’t enjoy the taste or texture of the powder.

GNC Lean Shake Burn

The GNC Lean Shake Burn is chock full of vitamins, minerals, fiber, and 30 g of protein per serving. It contains a “thermogenic blend” of caffeine and black pepper and capsicum extract that purports to increase metabolic rate and speed up fat loss.

  • Packed with vitamins and protein
  • 200 mg caffeine per serving for those who want an extra energy boost
  • Satisfies hunger with 6 g of fiber per serving
  • Not everyone can or wants to ingest extra caffeine

Some buyers report that the consistency and texture can vary between flavors when mixed in liquid, and others are simply not fans of the taste. Fans of this shake love the energy boost it provides and report significant changes in body composition after regular use.

Vega Sport Premium Plant-Based

The quality of this vegan protein powder is unsurpassed. It contains 30 g of plant protein per serving. It also provides glutamic acid, BCAA’s, and probiotics. 

  • Multiple sources of high quality plant protein
  • 2 billion CFU of probiotics per serving
  • 30 grams of protein per serving
  • At about $96 per 45 servings, it’s significantly more expensive than some other options

For the most part, reviewers rave about the quality and taste of the Vega Sport Premium Plant-Based. They say it mixes well without any chalky texture, and most enjoy the taste. Some complain that the stevia used to sweeten the powder is a bit too much, and others don’t love the high price tag. 

What Is Protein Powder?

It is a dietary supplement that provides a significant amount of protein in an easy-to-consume form. It can be added to water, dairy or non-dairy milk, oatmeal, baked goods, and any other number of things to boost your protein intake. 

Who Should Use Protein Powder?

You might automatically think of elite athletes and bodybuilders when you think of protein powder. However, anyone[1] who wants to maintain or grow muscle mass can benefit from using a protein powder, especially if they find it difficult to get the protein they need from diet alone.

Benefits Of Protein Powder

Adequate protein[2] intake is important for immune function, wound healing, and muscle growth. If you have difficulty eating enough protein, then protein powder can help you increase your intake. 

If gaining muscle is a priority to you, know that research[3] shows that ingesting 20-25g of high quality protein after resistance training can increase muscle hypertrophy. Experts[4] have also  found that eating meals with 30-45 g of protein can improve the level of muscle maintained with aging and also increase muscle growth from exercise. 

Potential Side Effects

Protein[5] powder’s number one side effect is gastrointestinal distress. Protein powder can cause gas, bloating, and stomachaches. Whey protein is not a good option for people with lactose intolerance or dairy sensitivity, although plant proteins can also cause GI distress in some people. 

Keep in mind that just because your protein powder has a decent amount of protein doesn’t automatically make it healthy. Some protein powders are high in calories, sugar, and other unwanted ingredients. 

Because they are considered “supplements,” the FDA doesn’t regulate protein powders. That means it’s up to the manufacturers to regulate themselves. You don’t necessarily know what your protein powder contains if you buy from an untrustworthy company. Buyer, beware.

How To Choose The Best Protein Powder?

Make sure your protein powder is 3rd party tested, ensuring no contaminants and an accurate nutritional profile. 

Thoroughly vet the companies you choose to buy from. Read reviews, check for transparency about how their products are produced and what ingredients are used.

Read labels, check macros, and prioritize high quality ingredients.

How and When To Use Protein Powder?

It can be a great idea to have a protein shake soon after your workout in order to maximize muscle growth, but that’s not the only way you can do it. 

You can add a protein shake as a nutritional supplement anytime in your day, or even use it as an occasional meal replacement. 

You can sprinkle protein powder in your oatmeal or add it to baked goods. Even you can even make protein powder ice cream for a healthier snack.


A usual serving of protein powder has 20-30 g of protein. Read the serving instructions for your particular protein powder. Some are one scoopful, and others are two.

Can Protein Powder Help With Weight Loss?

It can help with weight loss. Protein is digested more slowly than carbs and can increase feelings of satiety, helping you to control your appetite. If used as an occasional meal replacement, protein powder shakes can also lower total calories consumed throughout the day.

Final Thought

Protein powders are not necessary, but they can offer many benefits for those seeking to grow muscle and improve their fitness and body composition. They are not exclusively for athletes and can be a helpful supplement for many kinds of people with varied goals. 

Choose your protein powder wisely and use it as instructed, and you might reap health and performance benefits.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

How much protein do I need?

It’s generally recommended to ingest 0.7 g of protein per pound of body weight.  Experts find that eating meals containing 30-45 g of protein is ideal for maintaining and growing muscle mass.

Is protein powder safe?

If you choose a product from a reputable company and use it as instructed, then protein powder is considered to be safe.

I’m lactose-intolerant. Can I still use protein powder?

Yes! There are many excellent non-dairy protein powder options on the market. Pea, soy, lentils, beef, chicken, and certain grains can all be used as protein sources for protein powder.

+ 5 sources

MIDSS adheres to strict procurement guidelines and relies on peer-reviewed studies, academic research institutes, and medical associations. We work mainly with peer-reviewed studies to ensure the accuracy of the information. We avoid the use of tertiary references. You can read about how we ensure the accuracy and timeliness of our content in our editorial process.

  1. Gelsomin, E. (2020). The scoop on protein powder – Harvard Health. [online] Harvard Health. Available at: https://www.health.harvard.edu/blog/the-scoop-on-protein-powder-2020030918986 [Accessed 4 Jan. 2023].
  2. Harvard Health. (2018). The hidden dangers of protein powders – Harvard Health. [online] Available at: https://www.health.harvard.edu/staying-healthy/the-hidden-dangers-of-protein-powders [Accessed 4 Jan. 2023].
  3. Tipton, K.D. and Phillips, S.M. (2013). Dietary Protein for Muscle Hypertrophy. Limits of Human Endurance, [online] pp.73–84. doi:10.1159/000350259.
  4. Loenneke, J.P., Loprinzi, P.D., Murphy, C.H. and Phillips, S.M. (2016). Per meal dose and frequency of protein consumption is associated with lean mass and muscle performance. Clinical Nutrition, [online] 35(6), pp.1506–1511. doi:10.1016/j.clnu.2016.04.002.
  5. Harvard Health. (2018). The hidden dangers of protein powders – Harvard Health. [online] Available at: https://www.health.harvard.edu/staying-healthy/the-hidden-dangers-of-protein-powders [Accessed 4 Jan. 2023].


Jennifer Turkyilmaz, BSN, RN
Medical Writer & BSN, RN
Jennifer is a certified medical writer and registered nurse specializing in plain language writing. She received certification in medical writing and editing from the University of Chicago in 2021, and she has been a practicing nurse for many years. She has written website and blog content for numerous physicians and women's health specialists.


Brittany is the owner of a writing and consulting company called Simplicity of Health. She has written over 350 pieces of patient-facing content, published 4 books, created over 30 continuing education courses, and medically reviewed countless pieces of content for accuracy. Her media appearances include being quoted as a health expert in WebMD, Healthline, NBCNews, and Forbes.

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