11 tasty high protein shake recipes for muscle gain, weight loss and after workout

protein shake recipes

In need of tasty protein shake recipes?

Let me show you 9 protein shake recipes for rapid muscle gain, faster recovery after workout or if you are just looking for tasty shake ideas.

Of course under each recipe I leave the macros (protein, carbs, fats) and calories of the shake. In the last part of the post I share some tips on how to make your shake even more tastier and creamy!

Let’s get started…

Warning: Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate. Calories and macros (protein, carbs, fats) may vary depending on the brand/source of ingredients in the shake.

Table of contents

Part 1: Protein shake recipes for muscle gain

Protein shake recipes muscle gain

Packing raw muscle mass requires protein and calories.

Therefore the shake recipes in this part has higher protein, carb and fat content.

Keep in mind, however, that the body releases 300-350 calories per day to build muscle. Anything over that is stored as fat. Remember. The goal is to gain muscle mass without excessive amounts of body fat (clean bulking).

The idea behind working out is to look good all year round, not just 1-2 months in the summer.


Recipe 1: High protein shake with unflavoured protein powder, cottage cheese and yoghurt

Looking for cheap high-protein shake for lean bulking?

Depending on the brand of products, one shake can contain 80 – 100 g of protein! Half of your protein intake if you are 100 kg. I admit it. Not the tastiest thing ever, but it puts 80 – 100 grams of protein into the body, OK?

Another advantage of the shake is that if you use skimmed cottage cheese and milk, almost all the calories are from protein. The yogurt adds flavour and that oh-so-appetizing creamy texture.

Add water and salt to taste (cottage cheese lacks taste). Skip the water if you want something like protein cereal. Of course, you can also add nuts, fruits, veggies, etc.

Whatever tickles your fancy.



  • 1 scoop (25-30 g) protein powder
  • 300 g cottage cheese, non-fat
  • 300 g Greek yogurt, non-fat (or Bulgarian kiselo mlyako)
  • 300 ml water or ice
  • Salt to taste


Method of preparation

Pour the cottage cheese, yoghurt, water and salt into the jug. Finally add the protein powder. Blend until smooth.


Nutrition facts

  • Protein: 85 g
  • Carbs: 31.6 g
  • Fats: 1 g

Total calories: ≈475 kcal.


Recipe 2: Shake with vanilla protein powder and SKYR yogurt

1 shake form this bad boy contains 69-70gr. protein and only 280-300 kcal.

Almost carb and fat free. Because of the high-protein content, the shake is perfect for lean bulking and as an after workout. The taste is very nice (especially if you add cookies) and this is one of my favourite protein shake recipes.

Here are the recipe variations…

  • Besides vanilla, you can also try it with protein powder in banana, cookie, chocolate, strawberry, etc. flavours. Anything goes as long as it goes with the SKYR flavour.
  • If you want, you choose not to use a shaker. You just mix the SKYR with the protein and voila. Its getting even tastier, but more caloric, with crushed cookies.
  • You can add fruit – strawberry, apple, banana, kiwi, berry etc.


Recipe 3: Shake with chocolate protein powder, yogurt, strawberries, milk and walnuts

Shake chocolate protein powder yogurt strawberries milk walnuts

One of the tastiest shakes in the list for gaining weight.

Its quite caloric (450-500 kcal depending on the ingredients) and can replace about 2 meals. Smells good and has an appetizing pink colour. The perfect snack in the office, before or after a workout.

Basically the recipe is with Greek yogurt, but you can substitute with Bulgarian yogurt (kiselo mlyako) no problem. You can also add half a cup of non fat milk, but if you don’t like it (or want to reduce the calories) you can remove it from the recipe.



  • 1 scoop (25-30 gr.) protein powder
  • 1/2 cup greek yogurt (≈115 g)
  • 1/2 cup non fat milk
  • 1/2 banana (≈60-80 g)
  • 1/4 cup walnuts (≈28 g.)
  • 3-4 whole strawberies
  • 4-5 ice cubes


Preparation method

Pour the milk, yogurt and protein into the pitcher. Add the sliced banana, walnuts, strawberries and ice cubes. Blend until smooth. If desired, you can sprinkle with some slivered almonds.


Nutrition facts

  • Protein: 46 g
  • Carbs: 28 g
  • Fats: 20 g

Total: ≈ 450 kcal.


Recipe 4: Protein shake with protein powder, milk and probiotic chocolate marbles

Simple, yet highly beneficial shake recipe for muscle growth, immune system and gut health!

Perfect if you are prescribed probiotics or want to regulate your tummy. Easy to make in the office, at home etc. Calories are not much (293), so its convenient for muscle gain, weight loss or maintenance.

Important: Keep the shake cold and drink immediately. Bacteria are dying in hot liquid.

The highlight of the shake are the probiotic chocolate balls. 1 g of the marbles contains more than 50 million CFU/g encased in tasty milk chocolate. So instead of chocolate, try your next shake with them.

Important: The recommended daily dose is a maximum of 20 g of marbles.

By the way, there’s another option to prepare. Instead of in a protein shake, add the marbles to a bowl of fresh milk, yogurt or Bulgarian kiselo mlyako (the far superior option). Perfect for a quick snack while playing WoW, Heroes or actually doing something productive with your life.



  • 1 scoop (25-30 g) protein powder
  • 20 g probiotic chocolate marbles
  • 1/2 cup non fat milk
  • 3-4 ice cubes or water


Preparation method

Pour the ice cubes or water. Add the milk. Pour in the powder and pellets. Blend until smooth. Drink immediately.


Nutrition facts

  • Protein: 34 g
  • Carbs: 22 g
  • Fats: 7.7 g

Total calories: ≈ 293 kcal.


Recipe 5: A protein shake with pumpkin, milk, yoghurt, nutmeg and cinnamon

A pie recipe disguised as a protein shake. Yeah, its not like the real pie (nothing beats that) but it’s something different from the other recipes on the list.

1 serving brings 43 g protein, 46 g carbs, 7 g fats (and liquid pie) into your bloodstream. The shake provides a potent amount of carbs for a quick energy boost, making it suitable for pre-workout or just for gaining mass.

Pumpkin (1/2 cup) delivers 214 mcg (24%) vitamin A and 5 mg (6%) for protection against infection, vision support, muscle function and beautiful skin.

Downsides? This protein shake recipe calls for quite a few ingredients – milk, yoghurt, honey, nutmeg, pumpkin spice etc. If you’re in a hurry (or on a budget), replace with something else.



  • 1 scoop (25-30 gr.) protein powder;
  • 1/2 cup greek yogurt (=115 g)
  • 1/2 cup pumpkin
  • 1 tsp pure organic honey
  • 1/2 cup non fat milk;
  • 1 tsp graham cracker crumbs
  • ½ tsp ground nutmeg
  • 1 tsp sugar-free pumpkin instant Jell-O Pudding Mix
  • Cinnamon


Preparation method

Pour in the milk, yoghurt and protein powder. Then pour in the pumpkin, honey and remaining ingredients. Blend until smooth.


Nutrition facts

  • Protein: 43 g
  • Carbs: 46 g
  • Fats: 7- 8 g

Total calories: ≈ 460 kcal.



Part 2: Intra-workout protein shake recipes

intraworkout protein shake recipes

Intra-workout shake?

Yup, that’s the shake you drink during your workout. Works well if you want to squeeze 1-2 more reps on that heavy deadlift or squat.

Highly recommended for intense and long workouts or if you haven’t eaten in 4-5 hours before your workout.

Note: Don’t add anything heavy to digest in the workout shakes. Keep it simple and light. Try deadlifting or squatting with something undigested and heavy in the stomach and see what happens.


Recipe 5: Shake with protein powder, honey and orange


My standard recipe for an intra-workout shake. Contains enough calories 440 calories for a quick energy boost. Easy to prepare. It’s easy on the stomach.

Important here are the ingredients…

  • The water will keep you hydrated which is a no brainer.
  • The powder saturates the blood with high-quality protein where its most needed – in the ruptured muscle.
  • The honey provides fast carbs (sugars) for a quick energy boost. (by the way, my advice is to stick to the honey, maltodextrin and other fast sugars are highly processed foods).
  • The orange contains potassium – a crucial electrolyte for muscle contractions for that wicked, skin-splitting pump and mind-muscle connection.



  • 1 scoop (25-30 g) protein powder
  • 100 gr. honey
  • 1 orange
  • Water


Method of preparation

You don’t need an electric shaker. Dissolve the protein, water, honey and squeezed orange juice in the shaker. Drink while working out.


Nutrition facts

  • Protein: 25.8 g
  • Carbs: 83 g
  • Fats: 0

Total: ≈ 436 kcal.


Recipe 6: Shake with chocolate protein powder, milk, coffee and cinnamon

Shake chocolate protein powder milk coffee cinnamon

Another of my favourite shakes before and during workout…

The shake contains only 150-160 kcal. (if you follow the recipe, of course) and is quite light on the stomach. It’s also perfect for a quick snack at work, while traveling, etc.

First of all, I am kind of a caffeine junkie myself, so anything containing coffee is at least OK in my book. Second, caffeine boosts endurance and focus during exercise.

Even the US special forces use it to improve their performance and awareness. And if you’re working out at the end of the day (and feeling a bit sleepy), a cup of coffee will give you an energy boost.

The chocolate protein powder goes well with the coffee and the milk. The cinnamon completes the shake with its subtle and pleasant aroma.

If it doesn’t interfere with the taste of the coffee, you can try caramel or coffee flavoured powder or something similar.



  • 1 scoop (25-30 g) protein powder (chocolate, caramel latte)
  • 1/2 cup milk, non fat
  • Half a cup cold coffee
  • Cinnamon
  • 1-2 ice cubes or water



First, pour the milk, then the coffee. Add the protein powder, the ice cubes and finally some cinnamon for taste. Blend until it becomes a runny liquid. Pour into a glass or shaker. Drink 20-30 minutes before or during your workout.


Nutrition facts

  • Protein: 30 g
  • Carbs: 6 g
  • Fats: 1 g

Total calories: ≈ 150-160 kcal.


Recipe 7: Shake with vanilla protein powder, banana, milk and cinnamon

Shake vanilla protein powder banana milk cinnamon

Need a light, tasty, easy and a quick to make shake? Try this.

Banana and milk have some calories, so they’ll give you energy for your workout. All you need is a scoop of protein powder, 1 banana and some milk. After you pour it into the cup, sprinkle with cinnamon for an irresistible flavour.

The banana also brings some vitamins…17% RDI of vitamin C, 20% RDI of vitamin B6 and 7% magnesium. Not much, but its ok.

I’ve tried the chocolate, vanilla, caramel latte flavoured protein powder shake and a non-flavoured one. I liked the vanilla flavour the best, but you can’t go wrong with whichever one you try.



  • 1 scoop protein powder (25-30 g) – vanilla, chocolate, caramel, latte etc.
  • 1 cup non fat milk
  • 1 banana (≈120 g)
  • 2-3 ice cubes or water
  • Cinnamon



Ohh.. this is hard one. Ok. Pour the powder, milk, banana, and ice cubes/water into the pitcher. Whisk until creamy. Pour into a glass and sprinkle with cinnamon. Drink.


Nutrition facts

  • Protein: 34 g
  • Carbs: 30 g
  • Fats: 1 g

Total: ≈ 265 kcal.


Part 3: After (post) workout protein shake recipes


The two meals after a workout are crucial.

I suggest the first one be 1-2 scoops of protein powder with water or milk 30-40 minutes post workout to deliver fresh and easily digestible protein to repair damaged muscle tissues.

You can also add carbs to the shake (oats, peanut butter etc.) for rapid replenishment of depleted glycogen levels after intense workout.


Recipe 8: Protein shake with protein powder, peanut butter, milk and walnuts

Protein shake protein powder peanut butter milk walnuts

The perfect post-workout high calorie shake or as a meal replacement on a day off.

It contains a lot of calories from fat (from the good kind), so it’s perfect if you don’t have an appetite but need to score calories no matter what. In short, hard gainers, this one is for you.

It’s also a pretty balanced meal. It contains 45 g protein, 20 g carbs, 43 g fats, fibres, potassium, etc for a total of 650 kcal.

I also like to add a cup of walnuts (around 28-30 g). I don’t know about you, but they add a special flavour and a subtle taste that I really like. The downside is that the walnuts add 200 calories. If it doesn’t tie in with your diet, don’t put it in.

Vegan? Replace the milk with almond milk and the whey protein with a vegan alternative. For a more fluid shake with fewer calories, replace the peanut butter with peanut butter powder.



  • 1 scoop (25-30 g) protein powder (vanilla, peanut butter)
  • 50 g. peanut butter (smooth style, 3 tbsp)
  • 1/2 cup non fat milk
  • 1/4 cup walnuts (around 28 g.)
  • 3-4 ice cubes or water



Pour in the ice cubes or water, add the walnuts and peanut butter. Pour in the protein powder and finally the milk. Blend until smooth. Done.


Nutrition facts 

  • Protein: 45 g
  • Carbs: 20 g
  • Fats: 43 g

Total: ≈ 650 kcal.


Recipe 9: Shake with protein powder, oats and milk

This protein shake recipe will give you everything you need to recover – 52 g protein, 70+ g carbs and a whooping 562 kcal.

100 g of nuts contain 66 g of slow absorbed carbs, which is more than enough to restore the perished glycogen in the body after a demanding workout.

Protein and milk supply the protein needed to rebuild ruptured muscle fibres. Keep in mind that the shake is nutritious, so you can drink it in 2 servings. If you feel heavy on your stomach or the calories seem too much, cut the amount of ingredients in half.



  • 1 scoop (25-30 g) protein powder
  • 100 gr. oats
  • 2 cups (490 gr) milk, non fat


Nutrition facts

  • Protein: 52 g
  • Carbs: 75 g
  • Fats: 6 g

Total: ≈ 562 kcal.


Recipe 11: A protein shake with kiwi, banana, yoghurt and wallnuts

A protein shake with kiwi, banana, yoghurt and wallnuts

This recipe is a protein shake, smoothie and everything in between. The banana and kiwi give it a somewhat tropical and appetizing look that reminds me of a vacation in the Maldives.

1 serving of the smoothie brings in 46 g protein, 28 g carbs (and quite a bit of fiber) and 20 g fats for a total of 480 kcal. The recipe is both suitable for losing weight (if you remove the nuts) and gaining mass (if you leave them in).

The shake is brimming with crucial vitamins and minerals. Thanks to the kiwi you get 90 mg Vitamin C, 34 mg Calcium, 25 µg Folate (aka Vitamin B9), 7.8 mg Choline, 40 µg Vitamin K and quite a few other vitamins and minerals.

If you want to make the recipe more like a smoothie, add more of the kiwi, bananas or another fruit or vegetable. For a lower calorie option, remove the walnuts.



  • 1 scoop (25-30 gr.) protein powder (vanilla, banana)
  • 1/2 cup greek yogurt, non fat (=115 g)
  • 1/4 cup walnuts (≈28 g.)
  • 1 kiwi (≈70 g.)
  • 1 banana
  • 2 – 3 ice cubes or water


Preparation method

Cut the banana and kiwi into chunks. Pour in the protein powder, yoghurt, walnuts and ice cubes. Blend until smooth.


Nutrition facts

  • Protein: 46 g
  • Carbs: 28 g
  • Fats: 20 g

Total calories: ≈ 480 kcal.


4 tips for making delicious shakes

  • Tip 1: Pour the water or other liquid into the pitcher first, then the protein. Otherwise, the powder sticks to the bottom and sides of the pitcher and doesn’t dissolve.
  • Tip 2: Frozen fruit (banana, berries, strawberries, etc.) gives a thicker and creamier consistency. If you want your smoothie to be more runny and light, add fresh/unfrozen fruit.
  • Tip 3: Too many flavourful ingredients are a distraction. For example, if you’re putting fruit, etc. it’s best to keep the protein powder flavourless or more subdued. Let the fruit flavour be. Industrially produced protein tastes pale in comparison to the natural fresh fruit flavour.
  • Tip 4: Love a thicker and colder shake? Add ice. The ice thickens the shake and makes it extra cold.


If you need a quick and convenient way to add more protein to your diet, just look at the protein shake recipes above

Most of them are quick to make with affordable and easy to find ingredients.

If you need a chopper, blender, ingredient etc. recommendations, just look at the links I’ve provided to each recipe. Keep in mind that I will be adding new and novel recipes so check this post back from time to time.

Do you have a favourite protein shake recipe? Share it in the comments below. Thanks!

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