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Plant Based Protein Powder vs. Whey: Which Is Better?

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Whether you turn to protein powder to help with muscle recovery or to supplement your daily protein intake, protein powder is an easy and convenient protein source.

You can find many types of protein powder on the market, ranging from whey to plant-based protein. The variety of flavors of different protein powders may also come as a shock to you. You can find your average strawberry, vanilla, and chocolate, as well as more exotic flavors such as cappuccino.

With the variety of options, how do you decide which type of protein powder is right for you?

If you’re curious about the difference between plant-based protein powder vs whey protein powder, keep reading. In this post, we compare the nutrition, cost, flavor profiles, and food allergies of plant-based protein powder vs whey.


Whey protein contains dairy, which supplies all the essential amino acids your body needs for recovery and functioning. We call this type of protein, a complete protein.

On the other hand, plant-based protein powder can be an incomplete protein when its protein source comes from a single protein including:

  • rice
  • soy
  • hemp
  • peas

However, some plant-based protein powders combine protein sources so that the final product is a complete protein.

As for protein content per serving, the differences are slight. Any calculated difference in protein content is rather in the quality of the protein powder brand as opposed to it being a plant-based protein powder or a whey protein powder.

If you are unsure of how many servings of protein a day you should consume, use this online calculator provided by the USDA.


As for protein powder costs, we find that the cost of plant-based protein powder compares similarly to whey protein powder. In a few instances, some plant-based protein powder brands are more expensive than your traditional whey protein powder.

If cost is a concern in choosing the right protein powder for you, check to see if your local fitness supplement store–or even online ones–are running special deals on protein powders.

Taste and Flavor

For this category, whey protein takes the win. Whey protein comes in so many different flavors, including the exotic ones you’ve never tried, and they taste like milkshakes. Isn’t that a treat after a good workout?

Plant-based protein powder is more limited in the range of flavors they offer, but don’t be mistaken, they can come in more flavors other than the traditional ones you expect. They also tend to have a more grain-y texture to them, even after shaking them in your shaker bottle, shaker cup. Whether this is a dealbreaker or not, is up to you.

Plant Based Protein Powder vs Whey Protein Powder: The Verdict

Plant-based protein powder vs whey protein powder: which is better?

In terms of nutrition and cost, both types of protein powder fare well. In some cases, you’ll find that plant-based protein powders are more expensive, but you can almost always find a deal to take advantage of.

For flavor and texture profiles, it depends on your personal preference. If you don’t care too much about the grain-y texture of plant-based protein, both make viable options.

For more help choosing the right fitness supplements for you, check out more from our blog.

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