GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. – After weeks of indulging during the holidays, many Americans regard January as the month to get back to the basics by adopting healthier eating regimens. According to Meijer nutrition buyers, the consumption of plant protein powders is on the rise.
The adoption of plant-based protein powders continues to grow, as opposed to traditional dairy-based powders, such as whey or casein, due to the rise in lactose intolerance or sensitivity to dairy proteins. If you are looking to adopt a more plant-based diet or start a new eating plan, adding a plant protein powder as a supplement or meal replacement is a convenient alternative that may help you stay on track.
Smoothies are still the most common way to use protein powders. The Meijer chefs that oversee the retailer’s fresh deli and meal selections offer an easy recipe to start your day.
Iced Coffee Smoothie
In a blender, add 1 cup of cold brew coffee, 1 scoop of plant protein powder, 1 cup of unsweetened almond milk, ½ of a banana and 2 tbsp. of sugar free syrup (any flavor). Blend on high and pour over ice. Recipe may vary, add or subtract liquid to give a rich, thick consistency.
In recent years, protein powders have also made their way into recipes for baked goods, like cookies or brownies, in an attempt to add a little nutrition or to make them more filling, so you eat less of them. According to the Meijer chefs, the trick is to not add too much protein powder, in addition to adding moisture, as the powder can make baked goods a little tough. Meijer chefs also suggest finding a recipe that includes a plant protein powder and sticking to the exact ingredients, instead of taking your favorite recipe and adding protein powder.
Plant protein powders also make good energy bites, since making your own protein bars can get expensive. Making energy bites is a cost-effective alternative that uses minimal ingredients.
Because the category of plant-based proteins continues to grow, the Meijer nutrition team offers their top three picks to try:
- Garden of Life Sport Organic Plant-Based Protein. This plant-based protein is low in sugar, USDA Certified Organic, soy-free and contains no GMOs. The product offers 30g of protein, which is equal to or better than many whey protein products, and 5g of Branch Chain Amino Acids (BCAAs), which help in muscle recovery after workouts. This product is also NSF certified and approved by Informed Choice.org.
- Vega Clean Protein Powder, BCAAs plus Glutamine. This plant-based protein powder is also low in sugar, non-GMO and soy-free. The product offers 25g of protein and 4g of BCAAs. It also blends well and tastes good, especially when mixed with almond milk.
- Plant Fusion Plant Protein. Because this product is unflavored, you can easily add it to any kind of smoothie without affecting the taste. This powder offers 21g of protein, 4,500mg of BCAAs, is non-GMO, low in sugar and soy-free.
If you are looking for other smoothie recipes to try, click here to see some new ideas.
Meijer is a Grand Rapids, Mich.-based retailer that operates 235 supercenters and grocery stores throughout Michigan, Ohio, Indiana, Illinois, Kentucky and Wisconsin. A privately-owned and family-operated company since 1934, Meijer pioneered the “one-stop shopping” concept and has evolved through the years to include expanded fresh produce and meat departments, as well as pharmacies, comprehensive apparel departments, pet departments, garden centers, toys and electronics. For additional information on Meijer, please visit www.meijer.com. Follow Meijer on Twitter @twitter.com/Meijer and @twitter.com/MeijerPR or become a fan at www.facebook.com/meijer.