At first glance, a paleo protein powder may seem a bit ironic. After all, the paleo diet is all about eating the way our ancestors would have eaten. That means whole foods and zero processing.
Still, protein powder can fit with the paleo diet the same way it fits with any diet, as an easy and convenient way to meet daily protein requirements.
Paleo protein powders are most commonly sourced from beef, may not be flavored, and contain little to no sugar. Having no artificial ingredients whatsoever, the best paleo protein powders tend to be as natural and simple as possible.
If you’re a paleo follower looking for a compatible protein powder, I have the list for you. Let’s get started!
In a Hurry? Here is our top pick:
Quick Answers – Top 10 Best Paleo Protein Powders in 2020
- Bulksupplements Beef Protein Isolate – Best Overall
- Designs for Health PurePaleo Collagen Protein Powder – Best Digesting Paleo Protein
- Julian Bakery Paleo Thin Grass-Fed Beef Protein Powder – Best For Recovery
- PaleoPro Protein Powder – Best Protein Blend
- Equip Prime Protein Powder – Best Meal Replacement
- Vital Proteins Collagen Peptides Powder – Best For Women
- Judee’s Gluten Free Paleo Protein Egg White Powder – Best Egg White Protein
- Ancient Nutrition Bone Broth Protein Powder – Best Tasting
- Naked Nutrition Naked Whey Unflavored – Best Paleo Whey
- Natures Plus Organic Paleo Protein Powder – Best Plant-Based Paleo Protein
Reviews – The Best Paleo Protein Powders
1. Bulksupplements Beef Protein Isolate – Best Overall
This is the purest paleo protein on this list. It contains one ingredient: 27g of beef isolate protein. That’s it. No carbs, no sweeteners of any kind, just protein.
This protein is a great choice for bodybuilders, athletes, and fitness-minded individuals because it supports recovery and muscle growth.
Beef protein also supports immune system health and function.
While this product may fall a little short in the flavor department, you can’t beat the purity, quality, and cost of Bulksupplements Beef Protein Isolate. That makes Bulksupplements Beef Protein Isolate the best overall paleo protein.
- 26g Beef Isolate Protein Per Serving
- There Are No Other Ingredients
- Excellent Value
- Unflavored – The Taste May Be Overpowering For Some Users
2. Designs for Health PurePaleo Collagen Protein Powder – Best Digesting Paleo Protein
Designs for Health PurePaleo Collagen Protein contains 26g of trademarked Hydrobeef protein per serving. Beef protein is an excellent protein source that supports healthy cartilage and ligaments. It also supports muscle growth. (1)
PurePaleo protein contains beef from animals raised in Sweden and is free of any GMO grains or grasses. Hydrobeef digests easily with no gastric discomfort and absorbs just as easily, making this a great choice for anyone with digestive issues.
If there’s a potential downside to this protein, it’s sweetened naturally with stevia. The strictest versions of the paleo diet do not allow stevia, but as we will see soon, there are modified paleo diets that allow a larger choice of healthy foods.
Otherwise, it is also an expensive protein. Designs for Health PurePaleo Collagen Protein Powder is the best paleo protein for anyone with digestive issues.
- 26g Of Trademarked Hydrobeef Protein
- Easy Digestion & Absorption
- Zero Sugar – Flavored Versions Use Stevia
- Contains “Collagen-Specific” Amino Acids
- Very Expensive
3. Julian Bakery Paleo Thin Grass-Fed Beef Protein Powder – Best For Recovery
Julian Bakery Paleo Thin Beef Protein Powder contains 23g of Hydrobeef protein with extra glutamine added to support muscle growth and recovery.
There are also probiotics to improve digestion. It’s sweetened naturally with stevia, which is generally accepted as suitable for all but the strictest versions of the paleo diet.
Paleo Thin supports recovery, making it a great addition to any bodybuilding or weight training program.
If there’s a downside to this protein powder, it’s the high sodium content. Otherwise, the added glutamine makes Julian Bakery Paleo Thin Beef Protein Powder the best paleo protein for recovery.
- 26g Hydrobeef Protein
- Extra Glutamine Added To Support Recovery
- Sweetened With Stevia
- High Sodium Content
4. PaleoPro Protein Powder – Best Protein Blend
PaleoPro Protein Powder contains 26g in a blend of beef isolate and egg protein. They aren’t merely using egg white powder, they’re using the whole egg.
Like the best paleo-friendly powders, it’s sugar-free, soy-free, and whey-free, making it a great choice for stricter versions of the paleo diet. This is especially true of the “plain naked” flavor that’s also sweetener free.
The flavored versions use monk fruit as the sweetener, which is similar to stevia and has been used in numerous paleo products in recent years. This protein powder is a great choice for athletes and fitness-minded followers of the paleo diet.
Some strict paleo followers may object to the use of egg protein but the blend provides the best of two excellent protein sources. That makes PaleoPro Protein Powder the best paleo protein blend.
- 26g Of Beef & Egg Protein Per Serving
- Zero Sugar
- Flavored Versions Sweetened With Monk Fruit
- Monk Fruit May Taste Bitter To Some Users
5. Equip Prime Protein Powder – Best Meal Replacement
Equip Prime Protein contains 24g of trademarked Beefiso grass-fed beef isolate protein. This popular protein powder also contains coconut milk powder, stevia, and natural flavoring.
High quality beef protein not only supports muscle growth, it’s loaded with collagen and gelatin to support healthy joints. It also promotes gut health and is considered to be one of the most easily absorbed proteins on the market.
This is a paleo-approved protein with zero whey or egg, zero sugar, and less than 1g of carbs.
Coming in on the high end of the price range, the only real downside is the cost.
Still, the fact that there’s a little more to the flavoring yet still an exceptionally clean formula makes Equip Prime Protein Powder the best paleo protein to use as a meal replacement.
- 24g Of Trademarked BeefIso Protein Per Serving
- Supports Muscle Growth
- Zero Sugar
- Sweetened With Stevia
- Some Users May Not Like The Taste
6. Vital Proteins Collagen Peptides Powder – Best For Women
This protein is one of the best ways to get more collagen in your diet.
Collagen is a protein that’s important for healthy nails, skin, hair, tendons, cartilage, bones, and joints. It’s missing from most modern diets yet was something our ancestors frequently ate, making it an important component of the paleo diet.
Collagen typically comes from the tougher cuts of beef and may be difficult to eat, therefore a protein powder such as Vital Proteins Collagen Peptides powder fills the need nicely.
With a primary emphasis on healthy skin, hair, and nails thanks to its 20g of collagen protein, Vital Proteins Collagen Peptides is the best paleo protein for women.
- 20g Of Bovine Collagen Peptides Per Serving
- Supports Joints & Ligaments
- Promotes Healthy Hair, Skin & Nails
- High In Vitamin C
- Not A Complete Protein – It Does Not Contain All 9 EAAs
7. Judee’s Gluten Free Paleo Protein Egg White Powder – Best Egg White Protein
While dairy is not part of the strictest paleo diets, many modified versions do allow dairy for its health benefits.
If you’re following a dairy-allowed version and want an egg white protein powder, Judee’s Gluten Free Paleo Protein Powder is the way to go.
One serving provides 20g of protein with zero sugar, less than 1g carbs, and zero fat. It’s unflavored, there are no sweeteners and there’s just a small amount of sunflower lecithin added to allow easier mixing. You can mix it up for a protein shake, add it to your smoothies or bake with it.
The only real downside is the sodium content. Otherwise, if you’re following a modified paleo diet, Judee’s Gluten Free Paleo Protein is the best paleo egg white protein.
- 20g Egg White Protein Per Serving
- The Only Other Ingredient Is Sunflower Lecithin
- You Can Drink It Or Bake With It
- Egg May Not Fit All Versions Of The Paleo Diet
- The Taste May Not Appeal To Some Users
8. Ancient Nutrition Bone Broth Protein Powder – Best Tasting
Ancient Nutrition Bone Broth Protein Powder was designed and brought to market by Dr. Axe.
This product features 22g of chicken-derived bone broth per serving with only 2g carbs. This formula contains more ingredients than the others on this list.
These ingredients include xanthan gum, guar gum, cocoa, lou han guo fruit, and stevia. That makes it a good choice for modified paleo diets, however, it would not be good for the stricter versions of this diet.
Still, Ancient Nutrition Bone Broth promotes a range of benefits that include joint, skin, and gut health. It also supports the immune system. You can add it to any hot or cold beverage. You can even add it to pancakes and other recipes.
The chocolate flavor is not overwhelming and is, in fact, the best tasting paleo protein powder.
- 22g Chicken Bone Broth Protein Concentrate Per Serving
- A Complete Protein
- Lightly Flavored – Add It To Your Morning Coffee
- The Addition Of Xanthan & Guar Gum May Not Appeal To All Users
- May Not Mix Easily
- May Not Be Suitable For All Versions Of The Paleo Diet
9. Naked Nutrition Naked Whey Unflavored – Best Paleo Whey
Need a whey protein regardless of the diet you’re following?
Then you need to go with Naked Nutrition Naked Whey. There’s just one ingredient in this product: 100% grass-fed whey protein. That’s it. No sweeteners, fillers, colors, or flavors. There’s 25g of protein and 2g of naturally occurring sugar.
You can add it to any cold or hot beverage and you can bake with it.
While not a good choice for the strictest paleo diets, it will work well for any modified version that allows dairy. That makes Naked Nutrition Naked Whey the best whey for paleo.
- Whey Protein Concentrate Is The Only Ingredient
- 25g Whey Protein Per Serving
- Fast Digesting
- Contains Sugar
- Not Allowable In Some Versions Of The Paleo Diet
10. Natures Plus Organic Paleo Protein Powder – Best Plant-Based Paleo Protein
If the concept of the paleo diet is to eat like our ancestors, Nature’s Plus Organic Paleo Protein Powder fits the bill.
This is a plant-based protein, but it’s a little more; the 20g of protein per serving comes from a blend of sunflower, pumpkin, flax, almond, and coconut. It also contains 5g of fiber, something that’s a little hard to come by in many versions of the paleo diet.
There’s a digestive enzyme blend but that’s it, no added sugar, no sweeteners, no fillers, and no flavors.
For best taste, this protein is suggested to be mixed with any cold beverage. This is one case where baking or adding to a hot drink is not recommended.
Still, if you want a vegan-sourced paleo protein, Nature’s Plus Organic Paleo Protein Powder is the best choice.
- 20g Protein Per Serving
- Unique Sunflower, Pumpkin, Flax, Almond, And Coconut Protein Blend
- Contains Digestive Enzymes
- There are Only 15 Servings Per Container
Buying Guide – How To Choose The Best Paleo Protein Powder?
What Is The Paleo Diet?
It’s safe to say you’re probably at least interested in paleo if you’re reading this guide. The basic rule of thumb of the paleo diet is: if it’s processed, avoid it.
Primarily, suggested foods include meats, fish, vegetables, fruits, nuts, and seeds. Also known as the caveman diet, the paleo diet is a high-protein, low-carb whole food diet based on the dietary habits of our early ancestors.
Of course, these hunter-gather types of diets varied depending on where the early humans lived. The fact that our early ancestors were very active means that the paleo diet is often used for fat loss.
The main criticism of this diet is that the original version is too limiting. This is because there are a number of healthy foods that are not allowed because they are not what our ancestors could have eaten.
Examples of these include dairy, grains, and beans. As we’ll see below, there are certainly healthy products that fall into these categories.
Modified Paleo Diets
Given the limitations of the paleo diet, the concept has evolved over the years. There are currently numerous versions of this diet. These different versions allow the use of healthy foods typically omitted by the original.
These additional foods include the examples mentioned above such as dairy (eggs, cheese, and yogurt), as well as beans and healthy grains. This transforms paleo into less of a strict diet and more of a flexible template.
With that said, let’s look at protein and the unique types of powders typically used by followers of the paleo diet.
The Importance Of Protein
The paleo diet lends itself to individuals that are physically active. That’s part of the heritage of our early ancestors. Therefore, many paleo followers are bodybuilders, athletes, and fitness enthusiasts.
If you fall into that category, you already know how important protein is. For those that may not be as familiar, let’s recap.
Protein is one of the three macronutrients, the other two being carbohydrates and fats. Protein is fundamentally important, in fact, after water our bodies are made of protein.
Amino acids are the building blocks of protein, In different sequences, amino acids play a major role in literally hundreds of daily functions required by the body.
The paleo diet is naturally high in quality sources of protein, such as meats and fish. The addition of a paleo protein powder ensures you’re getting enough protein in your diet every day. Adequate daily protein is important for anyone, even more so for anyone that exercises regularly. (2)
Types Of Protein Used In Paleo
When it comes to protein powders, most of us think of whey, casein, egg, and plant-based. That’s not what you’ll find in the paleo diet! Here’s a look at the types of protein used in this diet.
Beef – This is the most common protein source used in paleo protein powders. Most powders use beef isolate and many use a trademarked form such as Hydrobeef. This type of protein is considered one of the best sources in terms of supporting workout performance and results.
Bone Broth – This form of protein is nutrient-dense. It supports joint health, gut health, and the immune system. Bone broth is typically made from chicken or beef bones.
Collagen – Every cell in our bodies contains collagen protein, from our muscles to the skin, hair, nails, ligaments, and tendons. However, this may not always be a complete protein. That means you would have to combine it with other sources in order to compensate.
Plant – Of course, some of our ancestors may have relied more on plants and seeds than on meats. It all depends on where they lived. If you’re vegan and follow the paleo diet, which relies heavily on meats and fish, supplementing your food sources with a good plant-based protein powder makes sense.
Egg – For years, egg white protein was considered the best protein on the market, until whey came along. Not every version of the paleo diet may allow eggs, but if you follow one that does, this is a great addition.
Whey – One of the primary criticisms of the paleo diet is its rejection of various healthy foods, such as dairy in general and whey in particular. In response to this, some of the more recent modified versions of paleo allow whey because of its premium quality. Of course, you’ll want to use the cleanest possible whey you can find, preferably unflavored and unsweetened.
Who Should Buy Paleo Protein Powder?
If you have trouble meeting your daily protein requirements, protein powder can make a big difference.
It’s convenient and easy. You may have trouble sitting down to a meal, but chances are you can find time to drink a protein shake.
Paleo protein powder is typically a clean protein source. It contains little to no sugar, no fillers or artificial ingredients of any kind.
Paleo protein powder is a good choice for paleo followers trying to lose fat as well as build muscle.
If you’re a paleo follower but don’t actively exercise, you can still benefit from using a paleo protein powder to help you meet your everyday protein needs.
It can also be a good choice for people with dairy allergies or those trying to avoid specific animal products.
How To Use Paleo Protein Powder
Most protein powders are mixed in with a cold beverage or smoothie and consumed once to twice a day.
If you work out, the best time to have a protein shake is immediately after your training session.
If you don’t work out, you should consume a shake early in the day, preferably first thing in the morning. This is because you have just spent the last 7-9 hours sleeping, your body is in a fasted state and needs protein.
You can also have a shake between meals if you lead a busy lifestyle and can’t always eat as planned. Many paleo protein powders are also versatile enough to add to most recipes. This opens up the options when it comes to using a protein powder.
While it might not seem like a protein powder fits the paleo diet, the truth is it fits quite well.
There are several great choices, but the best overall paleo protein is Bulksupplements Beef Protein Isolate. It contains 27g of beef protein. That’s it! This simple protein is exceptionally pure and priced to fit any budget.
If you’re looking for something that might make a great meal replacement, Equip Prime Protein Powder is the best choice. Equip provides 24g of trademarked BeefIso protein per serving, an excellent protein for muscle growth, joint health, and gut health.
What about vegan followers of the paleo diet?
The best plant-based paleo protein is Natures Plus Organic Paleo Protein Powder. With 20g of protein from sunflower, pumpkin, flax, almond, and coconut, this protein is hard to beat.
As you can see from our list, there’s a protein for every type of paleo diet, from the strict version to various modified versions.
No matter what version you follow, there’s a protein powder for you!
- Tarnopolsky, M. A., MacDougall, J. D., & Atkinson, S. A. (1988, January). Influence of protein intake and training status on nitrogen balance and lean body mass. Retrieved from https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/3356636