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November 07, 2020 4 min read

Unflavored vs Flavored Protein Powders: Which to pick?

As you look through the enormous selection of protein powders on the market, one of the many choices that you’re going to have to make is flavor. Protein powders can be designed to taste like birthday cake, fruit cereal, plain old vanilla and many other options. Or, you can pick up an unflavored protein powder, as well. These are usually higher in quality because they have nothing masking them. 

But, why would anyone want a flavorless protein powder? What are the advantages to unflavored protein powders? And most importantly, which is best for your overall health and longevity? 

Below, we weigh the strengths and weaknesses of flavored vs unflavored protein powders.  

If your only concern is Convenience, Choose Flavored Protein Powder.. and reprioritize your concerns! 

Convenience is the only reason for choosing a flavored protein powder. If you want your protein shake to have a specific taste or just don’t enjoy the idea of a flavorless liquid snack, then a flavored protein powder would be the easy option.

Of course, you could still blend in other ingredients too, if you wanted to add some depth. We all know that the flavorings in protein powders are not put in with our health in mind.  

With unflavored protein powders, it's a little more work (and a lot purer). That's because most protein powders don't have any built-in flavor, however with Centenarius the quality speaks.. and tastes for itself. It provides a uniquely sweet creamy flavor without any flavorings added.

We love using a blender for our shakes, but a shaker cup would do just as well.

In the end - let’s be honest, making a shake isn’t brain surgery. Using unflavored protein powder isn’t going to cramp your style, it’s just a little bit more effort here and there with a lot more benefit! Remember, it's not just the quality of what you put in, it's what your leaving out. 

Do You Want Adaptability/Versatility? Choose Unflavored Protein Powder

Flavored protein powders taste like what they taste like, with artificial flavors and strange aftertastes. If you purchase a chocolate flavored powder, for example, you are locked into that flavor, sometimes for a few weeks straight. And, when you decide to blend in other ingredients, you have to think about what will go well with chocolate.

The situation gets even more precarious if you have a specific flavor like "fruity pebbles". This will be very limiting. What if you’re really in the mood for something that doesn’t pair well at all with fruity pebble cereal– and it’s the only flavor of protein powder you have on hand?

Unflavored protein powders don’t have these limitations. The powder becomes nothing but a nutrient-rich blank slate that you can build all sorts of other flavor combinations with. Feel like adding strawberries and bananas one day, but spinach and raspberries the next? Go for it!

Using unflavored protein powder means that you can make each and every shake completely different, you’ll never get bored or feel tied down with the limitless options, and you’re never stuck with a shake that isn’t exactly what you’re in the mood for.  

Do You Want to Use it for Cooking? Choose Unflavored Protein Powder

This versatility is especially useful if you want to use your protein powder for cooking. Unflavored powders can be used to thicken soups and sauces without having a strong impact on the flavor while also delivering a boost of protein to the dish.

You can also use unflavored protein powder to boost the protein content of hot drinks like coffee – unflavored protein is the BEST way to enjoy a homemade cup of protein rich coffee, we love ours with butter and MCT oil!

Not to mention, protein Pancakes can be a little harder to make with an odd flavor.    

Do You Want to Eat Clean? Definitely choose Unflavored Protein Powder 

It’s also important to remember that in order to get that strange array of flavors, manufacturers often resort to… unsavory techniques. Generally, this involves the use of artificial flavorings that can have a host of negative side-effects, like aftertaste and bloating. 

Some protein powders are even colored artificially – if it’s not pink, it’s not actually strawberry-flavored, right?  Not to mention that, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) does not monitor – and therefore does not test – any flavoring for safety.

Considering the widespread use of artificial flavoring additives, this is a major concern. Many flavored protein powders also contain artificial sweeteners, and this may or may not be something you choose to typically include in your diet. Even when the flavors come from “natural sources”, they may be derived from things you’d rather not ingest – like Stevia, which is known for its really strong aftertaste.

Of course, this isn’t always the case, but wouldn’t you rather rest assured that there’s nothing at all sketchy lurking in your protein powder? For example, Centenarius Whey Isolate is always Grass-fed, Pasture raised, and NON-GMO with no added sweeteners or junk of any kind! It has a naturally creamy taste that serves as the perfect base for all flavors.

But for those looking to keep their diet as clean as possible, unflavored protein powders are an invaluable tool. Since the ingredients list is often just one or two things – which are pretty familiar – you can be confident that you aren’t taking anything into your body that you might regret. 

We firmly believe that unflavored protein powder should be a regular staple in your kitchen. 

Choosing a protein powder with no artificial sweeteners, colors or flavors means that you can create your own delicious protein shakes using natural foods such as frozen bananas, berries and more.

If you like the aspect of control in both your flavor choices and ingredients found in your protein powder, the unflavored version is undoubtedly the best for you and your goals.