How to Cook With Protein Powder

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Your survival relies on adequate amounts of protein as part of your daily diet, and meat, seafood, beans and dairy foods are among the best sources of the nutrient. Serious athletes or bodybuilders, however, might need more protein than their usual diets provide. Protein powder supplements can be used in a wide variety of healthy recipes.

Baked Goods

One of the easiest ways to cook with protein powder is to include it in homemade baked goods. You can increase the protein content of desserts such as brownies, cookies or cupcakes with protein powder. You may also add protein powder to your favorite muffin or bread recipes. For example, add a teaspoon of powder per muffin and increase the liquids by 2 or 3 tablespoons. Adding a bit more of the wet ingredients helps keep your baked goods from drying out, but the protein powder won't have a significant impact on the outcome of your recipe. Dana Carpender, author or "1,001 Low-Carb Recipes," suggests vanilla-flavored whey protein powder as a good option for baked goods.

Include It in Your Breakfast

Just as you can add protein powder to baked goods, there are ways to include it as part of a healthy breakfast. Add protein powder to pancake, waffle or crepe batter. Stir protein powder into oatmeal or other hot cereals as another way to cook with it. A small amount of protein powder in a fresh fruit or vegetable smoothie adds a boost of protein without significantly changing the taste or texture. Use sweet flavored protein powders, such as vanilla or chocolate, in breakfast recipes for the best results.

Soup and Other Savory Foods

Though it's easiest to stir protein powder into baked goods and similar recipes, it can be added to main courses, too. Shake a bit of protein powder into a pot of vegetable, minestrone or chicken noodle soup. Whisk the powder well so you don't end up with clumps of powder floating in your bowl of soup. Use protein powder in chili, too. Add a scoop or so of protein powder to the ground beef or turkey you use to make meatloaf or burgers. Opt for plain protein powders in savory recipes for the best results.

Daily Protein Requirements

Pay attention to how much protein powder you use. Women generally need 46 grams of protein per day and men need 56 grams. Talk to your doctor about how much protein is appropriate for you based on your activity level. Though more protein than this isn't necessarily harmful, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, follow your doctor's advice regarding your protein intake and your intake of protein powders.