Best Protein Powder to Build Muscle

Top 10 Best Protein Powder to Build Muscle of the Year

Selecting the best protein powder to build muscle is key to maximising your workout results. Our guide cuts through the noise to bring you top protein powders that stand out for their muscle-supporting nutrients. Whether you’re after great taste, specific dietary needs, or the best value for your money, our expert picks will help you elevate your muscle-building game without any guesswork.

Powerhouse Protein Picks

Explore the enchanting realm of body-sculpting with an array of first-class protein powders, each presenting distinct advantages designed to complement different workout objectives. If you’re in pursuit of exquisite flavour profiles, searching for premium plant-derived formulas, or after cost-effective options for stocking up, your perfect match awaits.

Delve into our curated selection spanning multiple categories—highlighting the cream of the crop when it comes to protein powder choices tailored to a myriad needs.

  1. Best Overall Muscle Builder: Optimum Nutrition Gold Standard

  2. Top Plant-Based Performer: Form Vegan Performance Protein Powder

  3. Most Innovative Formula: Gainful Protein Powder

  4. Best for Digestive Health: Transparent Labs 100% Grass-Fed Whey Protein Isolate

  5. Budget-Friendly Bulk Option: Bulk Pure Whey Protein

  6. Best for Flavour Variety: Legion Whey+++++++++++++ +++.

  7. Calorie-Dense Champion: Transparent Labs Mass Gainer

  8. Best for Recovery: PHD Diet Whey Protein

  9. Comprehensive Nutrition Profile: The Protein Works Diet Whey Protein Isolate 90

  10. Exceptional Quality and Taste: XWerks Grow

Best Overall Muscle Builder: Optimum Nutrition Gold Standard

Price: £34.99 for 900g.


  • Protein per serving: 24 grams

  • Calories per serving: 120

  • Carbs per serving: 3 grams

  • Sugar per serving: 1 gram

  • Fat per serving: 1 gram


  • High leucine content for muscle growth

  • Rapid absorption post-workout

  • Contains all essential amino acids

  • Good natural taste and mixability


  • Contains artificial sweeteners

  • Some users report a thin consistency with water

Optimum Nutrition Gold Standard represents the apex of supplements geared toward muscle development. This superior formula encompasses whey protein isolate, concentrate, and hydrolysed whey protein isolate to deliver a premium mixture that aids in fostering muscle growth following physical activity. The primary attributes of Optimum Nutrition Gold Standard include:

  • Blend of whey protein isolate, concentrate, and hydrolysed whey protein isolate

  • High leucine content for muscle recovery

  • Thin consistency when mixed with water

  • Natural chocolate flavour that is not overly sweet

Crafted from protein concentrate, this protein shake has won over many with its ability to aid in muscle recovery efficiently and enjoyably.

The value of this protein powder lies not only in its muscle-enhancing capabilities but also in the pleasure of consumption, striking a superb balance between quality and affordability. Optimum Nutrition Gold Standard excels by providing satisfaction on both these aspects.


  • Taste: 4.5/5

  • Mixability: 4/5

  • Value for Money: 4.5/5

  • Quality of Ingredients: 5/5

Top Plant-Based Performer: Form Vegan Performance Protein Powder

Price: £26


  • Protein per serving: 30 grams

  • BCAAs per serving: 5 grams

  • Flavours: Chocolate Peanut, Hazelnut, Banoffee, Tiramisu, Vanilla

Pros of this product include:

  • Complete amino acid profile from multiple vegan sources

  • Satisfying taste without being too sweet

  • Includes digestive enzymes for enhanced digestion

  • Contains curcumin and BioPerine® for recovery


  • Some find the texture grainy if not blended well

  • Considered expensive by some users

Form Vegan Performance Protein Powder stands out as a revolutionary option for individuals committed to a plant-based diet. It’s important to highlight the characteristics that position this particular plant based protein powder among the top echelon of plant based protein powders on the market.

  • Offers 30 grams of protein from pea, pumpkin seed, and brown rice

  • Provides complete amino acids, including BCAAs

  • Comes in a variety of flavours to suit different preferences

  • Includes digestive enzymes for easy digestion and to avoid bloating

Although the texture might be perceived as grainy by certain users, this can typically be resolved through thorough blending. Even though it is priced above some of its rivals, the superior quality and additional recovery-enhancing features warrant the expenditure.


  • Taste: 4/5

  • Texture: 3.5/5

  • Value for Money: 3.5/5

  • Nutritional Profile: 5/5

Most Innovative Formula: Gainful Protein Powder

Price: £40 for 14 servings.


  • Customised protein blend

  • Flavour Boosts included

  • Free from artificial colours, fillers, and preservatives


  • Personalized blend based on individual needs

  • High-quality ingredient commitment

  • Access to registered dietitian

  • Partially recyclable packaging


  • Premium price point

  • Some may find the unflavoured base less appealing

Gainful Protein Powder stands out in the protein supplement industry by offering a distinctive service that specialises in personalisation.

  • A quiz to tailor the protein blend to your individual needs, factoring in physical characteristics, diet, lifestyle, and health goals

  • The option to mix the unflavoured base with a variety of ‘Flavour Boosts’ for added customisation

  • Exclusion of artificial additives

  • Environmental consciousness reflected in their packaging choices

Gainful distinguishes itself from its competitors through a dedicated focus on high-quality, tailored nutritional solutions.

Although the cost is indicative of the upscale personalised nutrition and assistance provided, it becomes a valuable investment for individuals seeking specialised guidance with their protein consumption due to the added advantage of having access to customer support from a certified dietitian.


  • Personalisation: 5/5

  • Quality of Ingredients: 5/5

  • Taste: 4/5 (with Flavour Boosts)

  • Environmental Impact: 4.5/5

Best for Digestive Health: Transparent Labs 100% Grass-Fed Whey Protein Isolate

Price: £69.99


  • Hormone-free and antibiotic-free sources

  • Free from artificial sweeteners and fillers

  • Labdoor certification score: 98/100


  • Enhances digestive health

  • Suitable for those with lactose intolerance

  • Smooth mixability


  • Contains xanthan gum and stevia, which may cause bloating or taste issues for some

Transparent Labs Grass-Fed Whey Protein Isolate offers a beneficial option for individuals with digestive sensitivity. Key attributes of this product include:

  • Sourced from hormone-free and antibiotic-free dairy cattle

  • Prioritises digestive health by excluding common irritants and reducing lactose content

  • Provides a comfortable digestion experience

  • High Labdoor certification score attests to its purity and quality, giving users peace of mind regarding what they’re consuming.

Despite the fact that not everyone may tolerate stevia and xanthan gum well, the predominant favourable feedback from users and a focus on high quality render it an excellent option for individuals prioritising their digestive well-being.


  • Digestive Comfort: 5/5

  • Purity: 5/5

  • Taste: 4/5

  • Ingredient Transparency: 4.5/5

Budget-Friendly Bulk Option: Bulk Pure Whey Protein

Price: £17.99


  • Cost-effective pricing

  • Resealable and durable packaging

  • Includes a powder scoop


  • Good taste and texture when mixed with milk

  • Frequent promotional offers

  • Convenient packaging


  • Texture issues without proper mixing

  • Some flavours may not meet taste expectations

Bulk Pure Pure. Whey Protein stands out as an economical choice while maintaining high quality. Its characteristics include:

  • Competitive pricing, especially when considering the larger size options, offers significant savings over premium brands

  • Resealable packaging is more convenient than bulky tubs

  • Included scoop is a thoughtful touch

Despite some users finding that not every flavour is up to par and that the texture might be less than ideal without using a capable blender, many regard this product highly due to its high quality. Pleasant taste when mixed with milk. Its cost-effectiveness coupled with satisfactory overall quality maintains its popularity among those who are mindful of their spending.


  • Taste: 4/5

  • Value for Money: 5/5

  • Packaging: 4.5/5

  • Mixability: 3.5/5

Best for Flavour Variety: Legion Whey+

Price: £70


  • Available in 15 flavours

  • Uses Stevia as a natural sweetener


  • Wide range of flavours

  • Natural sweetening options


  • Some find Stevia’s taste overpowering in certain flavours

  • Nutritional info varies between flavours

Boasting an impressive selection of 15 different flavours, Legion Whey+ caters to a wide range of palates and preferences. Here’s a glimpse at some of the available taste options.

  • Dutch Chocolate

  • Birthday Cake

  • Vanilla

  • Cookies and Cream

  • Mint Chocolate Chip

  • Strawberry

  • Peanut Butter Chocolate

  • Salted Caramel

  • Chocolate Peanut Butter

  • Chocolate Mint

  • Chocolate Peanut Butter Cup

  • Chocolate Banana

  • Chocolate Coconut

  • Chocolate Mocha

  • Chocolate Raspberry

It should be taken into account that the natural sweetener Stevia included may come across as overly strong for certain individuals, and there might be nutritional differences from one flavour to another.

Even with these points in mind, the extensive range of flavours available positions Legion Whey+ as a notable choice for consumers who prioritise having a wide selection of tastes in their protein shakes.


  • Flavour Variety: 5/5

  • Natural Sweetener Use: 4.5/5

  • Taste: 4/5 (varies per flavour)

  • Nutritional Consistency: 3.5/5

Calorie-Dense Champion: Transparent Labs Mass Gainer

Price: £79.99


  • Protein per serving: 53 grams

  • Carbohydrates per serving: 109 grams

  • Fat per serving: 13 grams


  • High-calorie blend for muscle building

  • High-quality protein sources

  • Free from artificial ingredients


  • High saturated fat content

  • Not suitable for everyone

If you’re aiming to build muscle and increase weight, Transparent Labs Mass Gainer is the high-calorie behemoth designed for those very objectives.

  • 53 grams of protein per serving

  • 109 grams of carbohydrates per serving

  • 13 grams of fat per serving

  • Creatine monohydrate to enhance performance during resistance training

  • No artificial ingredients or added sugar

This mass gainer is formulated to aid in your muscle-building efforts, while also taking into account the concerns of those who are mindful about their health.

While not perfect for everyone due to its saturated fat levels and a protein-to-carbohydrate ratio of 1:2, this product’s capability in aiding recovery and fostering muscle growth combined with its appealing flavour has made it a favoured option among individuals aiming to increase their size.


  • Muscle Building: 5/5

  • Taste: 4.5/5

  • Ingredient Quality: 5/5

  • Suitability for Diets: 3.5/5

Best for Recovery: PHD Diet Whey Protein

Price: £22


  • Protein per 25g scoop: 17 grams

  • L-Carnitine and CLA included

  • Available in shakes and meal replacement bars


  • Supports training and recovery

  • Assists in weight management

  • Good flavour options


  • Some report gritty texture

  • Lesser protein content compared to competitors

PHD Diet Whey Protein is formulated to:

  • Aid in muscle recovery

  • Contribute to achieving a leaner physique

  • Provide added fibre and glutamine for gut health

  • Promote satiety and assist in weight management

The chocolate and vanilla flavours receive high marks for taste.

Although the texture might not be perfect for everyone when combined with water, it’s widely agreed that this product is a beneficial component of a diet aimed at fitness. The flexibility to enjoy it as either a shake or meal replacement bar offers an appreciated convenience for individuals who have hectic schedules.


  • Recovery Support: 5/5

  • Taste: 4/5

  • Texture: 3.5/5

  • Convenience: 4.5/5

Comprehensive Nutrition Profile: The Protein Works Diet Whey Protein Isolate 90

Price: £15.99


  • Protein per 32-gram serving: 28 grams

  • Fat per serving: 0.1 grams

  • Carbohydrates per serving: 1.1 grams


  • High protein-by-weight percentage

  • Low in fat and carbohydrates

  • Rich in essential vitamins and minerals


  • Not suitable for vegans

Whey protein, particularly The Protein Works Diet Whey Protein Isolate 90, is notable for its remarkable attributes in conjunction with whey protein concentrate and whey concentrate.

  • 87.5% protein-by-weight percentage, making each serving a potent source of muscle-building fuel

  • Low-fat and carbohydrate content, aligning well with calorie-controlled diets

  • Inclusion of essential vitamins and minerals, making it a comprehensive nutritional supplement.

Despite not being suitable for vegans, this protein powder is favoured by many due to its array of flavours and the natural sweetness derived from stevia extract, making it a well-regarded option for those in search of a reliable and wholesome protein supplement.


  • Protein Content: 5/5

  • Nutritional Profile: 5/5

  • Taste: 4/5

  • Dietary Flexibility: 3.5/5

Exceptional Quality and Taste: XWerks Grow

Price: £59.99


  • Protein per scoop: 25 grams

  • Leucine per scoop: 2.5 grams

  • Flavours: Chocolate Cream, Vanilla Victory, Peanut Butter PR


  • High-quality whey protein isolate

  • Delicious flavour options

  • Instant mixability


  • Flavour options may be limited for some

XWerks Grow stands out for its superior quality and flavour, offering an indulgent taste experience comparable to that of chocolate malt. Notable characteristics of XWerks Grow include:

  • 25 grams of whey protein isolate per scoop

  • 2.5 grams of leucine, a powerhouse for muscle building

  • Flavours derived from cocoa bean and vanilla bean, offering a smooth and pleasant taste without any unpleasant aftertaste.

The capacity for immediate blending is a significant advantage, as it offers flexibility in the choice of drinks. Although there are fewer flavours than offered by certain competitors, the ones provided are of exceptional quality.


  • Taste: 5/5

  • Quality of Protein: 5/5

  • Mixability: 5/5

  • Flavour Variety: 4/5

Muscle-Building Mastery: Choosing Your Protein Powder

In the complex landscape of protein powders, arming yourself with knowledge can guide you to a choice that complements your goals for muscle development. Ensure that any protein powder you consider contains all nine essential amino acids necessary for synthesizing muscle proteins. It’s important to consume sufficient quantities of daily protein, especially if you’re looking to build muscle. This Means exceeding the typical recommendation of 0.8 grams per kilogram of body weight.

When picking out a type of protein supplement, align it with your dietary objectives. Whey isolate may be ideal for those cutting calories due to its high concentration in proteins and minimal carbohydrates. The caliber of ingredients matters too – opting for whey protein powder sourced from cows not treated with hormones and which have grazed on grass could bring added health benefits.

Your own preferences are significant as well: choose a product that satisfies your palate and lifestyle needs because consistency is key in benefiting fully from any nutritional supplement. To optimise gains in muscle mass, ensure you integrate such supplementation within an overall balanced diet teamed up with steady exercise routines.

Timing and Quantity: Optimising Protein Intake

Recognising the significance of both timing and amount in consuming protein is key to optimising muscle development and recuperation. Though it’s important to meet your overall daily protein needs, studies suggest that taking in protein soon before or after strength training workouts can enhance nutrient absorption by muscles. It is widely recommended that you intake between 1.5-2 grams of protein for every kilogram of body weight each day to foster muscle growth. These requirements may fluctuate according to individual goals and physical activities.

Following a workout session, ingesting a protein shake delivering 0.2-0.5 grams of protein per kilogram of body mass may efficiently promote muscle synthesis. Consuming proteins prior to exercising could also initiate the anabolic process early on while possibly diminishing exercise-induced muscular damage. Protein-rich snacks spread throughout your day aid not only in achieving objectives related to strength and hypertrophy, but are instrumental as well for managing weight due to their satiating effect.

To achieve peak outcomes regarding muscular enlargement and restorative recovery processes, it’s essential to align the precise timings with substantial levels of dietary proteins, all while keeping within sight the principle role played by wholesome foods within any balanced diet even when supplemental shakes offer a convenient alternative.

Beyond the Scoop: Understanding Protein Powder Labels

Interpreting protein powder labels is an essential skill for anyone serious about their fitness and health. Labels provide a wealth of information but can also be a source of confusion. Third-party certifications, such as NSF Certified for Sport or Informed Sport, offer reassurance that what’s on the label accurately reflects what’s in the tub, ensuring you’re not consuming any banned substances.

Since protein powders are classified as dietary supplements, they aren’t subject to the same stringent regulations as food or medicines. This means that the responsibility for safety and quality falls on the manufacturers, though guidelines like the FDA’s Good Manufacturing Practices (GMPs) are in place to ensure certain standards are met. Third-party certifications add an extra layer of trust for consumers, confirming that the product has been rigorously tested for purity and potency.

When choosing your protein powder, look for these certifications to feel confident in the quality and safety of your supplement. In a market flooded with options, understanding the label is your first line of defense in making an informed choice that supports your fitness journey.


We’ve traversed the terrain of top-tier protein powders, uncovering the best options that cater to a variety of needs and preferences. From the muscle-building prowess of Optimum Nutrition Gold Standard to the vegan-friendly Form Performance Protein and the innovative Gainful Protein Powder, there’s a formula for everyone. Remember to consider the timing and quantity of your protein intake, and don’t overlook the importance of understanding product labels. Armed with this knowledge, you’re now well-equipped to select a protein powder that will support your muscle growth and help you achieve your fitness goals.

Frequently Asked Questions

Does protein powder help build muscle?

Certainly, protein powder can be instrumental in muscle development. It’s important to incorporate it as a supplement alongside your diet and consistent workout regimen. It is also beneficial for providing a prompt post-workout enhancement.

What protein powder do bodybuilders use?

Many bodybuilders opt for whey protein due to its rapid digestion and ability to foster muscle growth, which makes it perfectly suited for consumption before or after exercise.

Casein protein is also favored by them as an alternative because of its gradual amino acid release, particularly beneficial during the night’s fasting periods to support muscle recovery.

Which is the No 1 protein powder in world?

Momentous stands out as the world’s top-rated protein powder for its exceptional flavour and widespread use, while True Nutrition’s Whey Protein Isolate is a close second due to its concentrated protein levels and versatile customization possibilities.

Which protein powder is best for muscle gain?

To optimize muscle growth, the ideal protein powder should be readily digestible and high in calories while boasting a protein content of 70-80%, along with some fats and carbohydrates.

Whey isolate stands out as an excellent choice given its elevated protein ratio coupled with minimal fat and lactose levels.

How much protein do I really need to build muscle?

For effective muscle growth, it’s recommended to consume a daily amount of protein ranging from 1.5 to 2 grams per kilogram of your body weight, with variations depending on how active you are and what your specific fitness objectives entail. This level of protein intake is critical for building and supporting muscle development.

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