This nutritious Chocolate Protein Shake recipe is made with clean, healthy ingredients like natural cocoa powder, milk, natural protein powder, banana, ice, vanilla, and honey. It makes an ideal post-workout shake or breakfast smoothie, because it is refined sugar-free and is so simple to make. Learn how to make a homemade protein shake with this quick and easy recipe!
You are going to love this guilt-free chocolate smoothie recipe, because it is so effortless and is chock-full of nourishing ingredients. It makes a portable, protein-packed breakfast that will jump-start your day and will keep you feeling satiated all morning. It is also an ideal post-workout shake that will refuel your energy and help your muscles to heal after exercising.
Are Protein Shakes Good For You?
Yes! Protein shake are a great choice for breakfast, a snack, or meal replacement. All adults require 46-56 grams of protein each day (source) and protein shakes are an easy way to achieve that. The best protein shake recipes, in my opinion, rely on protein powder to provide protein. Protein powder has many benefits, including the following:
- Repairs muscles from exercise
- Aids with weight loss
- Boosts metabolism
- Functions as a appetite suppressant
- Helps build muscle and strength
With that said, it is important to read the ingredient list of any packaged products you add to your shakes, as some may have unhealthy additives. For that reason, I always recommend using natural, junk-free protein powder and unrefined sweeteners, like raw honey, in your protein shakes.
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Is it Better to Drink a Protein Shake Before or After a Workout?
A number of studies show that protein helps your muscles to repair and rebuild after exercise. For that reason, many people drink protein shakes after their workouts to aid this process.
However, recent research suggests the amount of protein you consume per day is more important than when you consume it for gaining muscle mass (source). Therefore, you can choose which time you prefer or is most convenient for you. Personally, I always opt to have a protein shake after hitting the gym, but that’s just what works for me.
Are Protein Shakes Good for Weight Loss?
Absolutely! As long as protein shakes are made with clean, junk-free ingredients, they are superb for weight loss. Protein shakes are a rich source of protein (hence the name), which is an important nutrient for weight loss. As I stated earlier, getting an adequate amount of protein in your diet boosts your metabolism, reduces your appetite, and also helps you lose body fat without losing muscle.
Chocolate Protein Shake Ingredients
Alright, so let’s talk ingredients. To make this homemade chocolate protein shake, you will need:
- Milk: This serves as the liquid base for the smoothie. I usually use low-fat dairy milk.
- Protein Powder: This majorly boosts the protein content of your smoothie. If you can, use an organic and natural protein powder. Select one that is free of any additives, fillers, artificial colors, flavors, preservatives or sweeteners. I love and use this one from Thrive Market.
- Banana: This gives your smoothie a luscious, creamy consistency. It is also a great source of potassium and dietary fiber.
- Cocoa powder: This adds rich, natural chocolate flavor. Be sure to use unsweetened, natural cocoa powder in this recipe.
- Honey: This adds natural and unrefined sweetness. Not all packaged honey is created equal, so I recommend using one that is 100% pure, raw, and unfiltered for optimal health benefits. I use this one from Thrive Market.
- Ice: This helps thicken the shake. However, if I don’t have any ice in the freezer, I just make my protein shake without it.
- Vanilla extract: This adds just a hint of warm, sweet vanilla flavor. Make sure you use the real, natural stuff and not anything artificial.
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How to Make a Chocolate Protein Shake
To make this homemade chocolate protein shake recipe, simply:
- Add all of the ingredients – milk, banana, ice, honey, protein powder, cocoa powder, and vanilla – to a blender.
- Blend until smooth and creamy. Serve immediately.
(Exact ingredient amounts are included in the full recipe below, as always.)
Pro Tip: When adding your ingredients to your blender, always add the liquid (in this case, the milk) first near the blades. Doing this will help your blender to run a bit more smoothly whenever you are making a shake.
How to Make This Recipe with Chocolate Protein Powder
If you want to use chocolate protein powder instead of plain protein powder in this recipe, you definitely can. I recommend using a high-quality chocolate protein powder that is naturally flavored and sweetened, like this one from Thrive Market.
To make your shake, simply make the recipe as written below (using a scoop of chocolate protein powder instead of unflavored protein powder), but omit the cocoa powder and honey. If your protein shake is not sweet enough after you’ve blended it, then feel free to sweeten it to taste with honey or another natural sweetener.
Possible Recipe Variations
This homemade protein shake recipe is very flexible with regards to variations. For example, feel free to…
- Use non-dairy milk: I generally use dairy milk when making smoothies, but you can use any kind of milk you like. Unsweetened almond, coconut, soy, hemp, oat, or any other type of plant-based milk are all excellent options.
- Add some spice: A pinch of cinnamon or nutmeg tastes great in smoothies.
- Swap in a different sweetener: Instead of honey, you can substitute another natural and unrefined sweetener, such as maple syrup or agave nectar. You can also throw in one or two pitted dates instead of a liquid sweetener.
- Add some collagen: Stirring collagen peptides into shakes boosts their protein content even further. Collagen is also known to improve the condition of skin, hair, nails, joints, ligaments, and is great for gut health. I recommend using one that is all-natural, unflavored, and unsweetened. I use this one from Thrive Market.
Those are just a few suggestions, so feel free to experiment with whatever ingredient swaps or additions that you would like. 🙂
More Protein Shake Recipes to Try
Craving more homemade protein shake inspiration? Here are some of my favorites on blog:
- Homemade Banana Protein Shake
- Chocolate Peanut Butter Protein Shake
- The Best Green Protein Smoothie
- Homemade Strawberry Protein Shake
- Vanilla Protein Smoothie
The Most Convenient Way to Make Protein Shakes
If you drink protein shakes on a regular basis, you need to check out SmoothieBox. SmoothieBox is a protein shake kit delivery service that uses only the best, organic produce with no added sugar or artificial ingredients.
Each box comes with either 20 or 25 pre-portioned smoothie pouches that contain a blend of flash-frozen fruits, vegetables, and seeds. You also have a choice of either grass-fed collagen, vanilla whey, chocolate whey, vanilla vegan, or chocolate vegan protein powder to add to your box. SmoothieBox’s shake mixes are available in four flavors – Green, Berry, Clementine and Cacao.
To make a protein shake, empty the contents of a smoothie pouch into your blender. Then add a scoop of protein powder, any liquid you like, and blend until smooth. Depending on how much blending liquid you add, one smoothie pouch will yield one 16-20 ounce smoothie, or two 8-12 ounce smoothies.
The price ranges between $5.56 to $7.44 per smoothie and shipping is always free. You can choose to have a one-time order or a monthly subscription. If you choose to have a subscription, it can be paused, delayed or cancelled at any time. SmoothieBox also offers a 100% money-back guarantee if you’re not satisfied. In addition, my readers get a discount on their order using the link and code below:
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If you want to learn more about all of my favorite protein shake and smoothie delivery services (including SmoothieBox), check out these useful posts on blog:
- The Top 3 Organic Smoothie Delivery Companies
- The Best Protein Shake Delivery Services Online
- The 7 Best Smoothie Delivery Companies
Okay, now you know every possible tip I have for making homemade protein shakes. Without further delay, here is the recipe! If you make this Chocolate Protein Shake recipe, let me know! Leave a comment with a star rating ★ below, because I love hearing from you! ♡
Chocolate Protein Shake
- 1 cup milk, of choice
- 1/2 cup ice cubes
- 1 banana
- 1 scoop plain (unflavored) protein powder
- 3 tablespoons honey
- 2 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
- 1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
- Add all ingredients to a blender in the order listed.
- Blend until smooth and serve immediately.
- For easy blending, add the milk first near the blades when adding the ingredients to your blender.
- Chocolate protein powder can be substituted for the plain protein powder. If you’re going to do that though, omit the cocoa powder and honey from the recipe.
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Pretty good! But way too sweet for me. Gonna try again with 1/3 of the honey and a Tbsp of peanut butter.
Hi Kate, thanks for your feedback! I hope you like the shake better after making the adjustments you mentioned! 🙂
This will now be my go-to chocolate shake recipe. It’s sooo delicious!
Hi Keyerra, thank you so much! I’m so happy you enjoyed this protein shake recipe. Thanks for your kind comment! 🙂