18 Protein Shake Recipes That Taste Just Like Dessert

18 Protein Shake Recipes That Taste Just Like Dessert

Pies, cakes, cookies, and ice cream are tempting and delicious desserts. Unfortunately, more often than not they’re packed with excess fat and loads of sugar. (Not to mention they take a ton of time to make from scratch.) But sip on this: We’ve got 18 ways to satisfy your sweet tooth in five minutes flat, while still keeping your diet on track. All you need is your favorite protein powder and a few key ingredients on hand. Inspired by Snickers, s’mores, banana splits and more, these protein shake recipes are the perfect way to have your “cake” and drink it, too.

RELATED: The Beginner’s Guide to Using Protein Powder

18 Protein Shake Recipes That Taste Like Dessert

1. Blueberry Pie Protein Shake

Ready to whip up a quick and easy blueberry pie? Vanilla protein powder, a dash of cinnamon and frozen blueberries create berry-licious base. Top with strips of a quick and nutty “crust” — made from raw cashew butter, agave and almond meal — to make it even more pie-like.

Recipe: Sarah / A Whisk and Two Wands

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2. Black Forest Protein Shake

This chocolate-cherry shake couldn’t be simpler. And, it tastes exactly like a thick slice of rich and indulgent black forest cake — just without all the sugar, butter and heavy cream. All it takes is chocolate protein powder, milk, a banana, a cup of frozen cherries and ice. Blend it up until smooth and top with a dollop of coconut cream and a cherry for the ultimate guilt-free snack.

Recipe: Perry Santanachote / Life by Daily Burn

3. Snickers Protein Smoothie

The secret to this Snickers-flavored shake is PB2 (or powdered, de-fatted peanut butter). But the protein comes from cottage cheese and chocolate, vanilla or caramel protein powder. The recipe also calls for sugar-free chocolate and caramel syrups, but if you’d prefer to skip the artificial stuff, all-natural caramel or butterscotch extract would work well, too. Top the final product with chocolate chips and chopped peanuts for an even more candy bar-like treat.

Recipe: Veggies by Candlelight

RELATED: 21 Quick and Easy Protein Shake Recipes

4. Frozen S’more Shake

This one is sure to bring back memories of toasting marshmallows over an open fire. While the end result isn’t as high in protein as most others on this list (the ingredients include just cocoa mix, milk, cinnamon, ice and a frozen banana), it’s still a healthier way to satisfy that sweet tooth. Pour the finished product into a frosty mug and finish it off with crushed graham crackers and marshmallow.

Recipe: Kathy Patalsky / Healthy. Happy. Life

5. Chocolate Brownie Batter Protein Shake

Heyyyy batter, batter! This recipe’s a home run not just for its nutrition (16 grams of protein per shake!), but its flavor. Seriously, this smoothie tastes like you’re licking the brownie batter straight from the bowl.

Recipe: Perry Santanachote / Life by Daily Burn

RELATED: How to Choose the Best Protein Powder for You

6. Oatmeal Raisin “Cookie” Protein Smoothie

If this is the way the cookie crumbles, count us in. Made with all the familiar flavors of the classic oatmeal raisin cookie — but with none of the sugar and fat — this is the recipe you’ll crave after a long day at work or a tough workout. (Those 27 grams of protein will take you far!) 

Recipe: Perry Santanachote / Life by Daily Burn

7. Butterscotch Apple Pie Shake

If you’re craving a slice of Grandma’s apple pie but don’t want to break the calorie bank, look no further than this smoothie recipe. Clocking in at about 350 calories per glass, with far less sugar and fat, this smoothie combines protein powder, Greek yogurt and one whole apple and banana (which offer a healthy dose of fiber and potassium too!).

Recipe: Chelsea / Chelsea’s Messy Apron

8. Banana Split Protein Shake

A traditional banana split can run you 515 calories and 82 grams of sugar (more than twice as much sugar as in an 12-ounce can of soda!). Lucky for us, one serving of this shake has just 282 calories, 12 grams of sugar (from the banana, pineapple, and strawberries), and a whopping 35 grams of protein. Plus, a combination of low-fat cottage cheese, low-fat Greek yogurt or silken tofu and vanilla protein powder will help kick hunger to the curb. Don’t forget to top it off with whipped cream, nuts, and a cherry!

Recipe: Katie Farrell / Dashing Dish

RELATED: 9 Healthier Single-Serve Dessert Recipe Ideas

9. Key Lime Pie Protein Shake

No time to swing down to Key West? This recipe will get you close — featuring key lime juice and zest, in addition to Greek yogurt, a frozen banana and vanilla protein powder. If you’re up for a real adventure, try pouring this mixture into a homemade, low-sugar graham cracker crust and freezing the whole thing to make a sip-able (and protein-packed) version of the classic key lime pie.

Recipe: Perry Santanachote / Life by Daily Burn

10. Pumpkin Pie Protein Smoothie

Secret’s out: You can still get that sweet, whipped pumpkin pie taste without a serious sugar rush. Simply load up your classic vanilla smoothie recipe with real pumpkin puree and spices. Pumpkin is high in fiber, antioxidants and immunity-boosting nutrients like iron and vitamins A and E. And one glass of this cool and creamy shake boasts a whopping 27 grams of protein. 

Recipe: Perry Santanachote / Life by Daily Burn

11. Sugar Cookie Protein Shake

Cream of tartar gives this shake its classic sugar cookie flavor. Other than that, the ingredients are easy as can be — milk, a very ripe frozen banana, baking soda and vanilla extract. Add a scoop of protein powder for more substance, and/or a tablespoon of cashew butter and a dash of cinnamon for a Snickerdoodle-flavored version. Add a pinch of sprinkles if you’re feeling extra festive.

Recipe: Katie / Chocolate Covered Katie

RELATED: 11 Healthy Homemade Protein Bar Recipes

12. Healthier Shamrock Shake

Come St. Patrick’s Day, it’s hard to resist splurging on a McDonald’s Shamrock Shake. But we have good news: You’ll never have to feel guilty about indulging in this minty treat again, — and you can make it right at home. Avocado gives this shake its color and texture while also offering heart-healthy monounsaturated fat and 19 grams of fiber. But it’s the mint extract that brings the flavor. This shake is leprechaun-approved!

Recipe: Perry Santanachote / Life by Daily Burn

13. Gingersnap Cookie Protein Smoothie

Just like grandma makes ’em, but to power your HIIT workouts. The secret ingredients (besides the protein powder, of course): molasses and ground ginger. Bonus: The therapeutic root also aids in digestion and soothes gastrointestinal distress.

Recipe: Perry Santanachote / Life by Daily Burn

14. Toasted Coconut “Macaroon” Protein Smoothie

OK, so maybe this isn’t quite a 1:1 sub for that chocolate dipped macaroon. But we promise this shake will do a body good. Low-carb coconut meat aids in digestion and adds some fiber and iron to your diet. And just like nuts, coconut tastes and smells like a dream once toasted. Opt for coconut milk to enhance the rich, coconut-y flavor of the shake, or sub in almond milk for a lower-fat option.

Recipe: Perry Santanachote / Life by Daily Burn

RELATED: 20 Unexpected Protein Powder Recipes to Try Now

15. Samoa Cookie Protein Shake

Thanks to full-fat coconut milk, chocolate protein powder, unsweetened caramel flakes and caramel sauce, this frozen, creamy concoction can easily compete with its packaged Girl Scout cookie cousin, the Samoa cookie. Top with toasted coconut, extra caramel sauce and melted chocolate chips for an even more cookie-like indulgence.

Recipe: Dianna / The Kitchen Prep

16. Carrot Cake Protein Shake

When you’re craving the sweet, lightly spiced, and super creamy combination of fresh carrot cake and cream cheese frosting, opt for this healthier option instead. Greek yogurt adds protein, while frozen baby carrots and overripe frozen banana help achieve a creamy texture and classic carrot cake flavor. Serve as-is, or top with chopped pistachios or walnuts for a bit of crunch.

Recipe: Emma / Better with Cake

17. Protein Frosty Shake

The next time you get the urge to swing by Wendy’s for a good old Frosty, re-route back home and whip this up instead. While a 16-ounce cup of the classic treat contains 460 calories and 64 grams of sugar, our healthier version has just 261 calories and 11 grams of sugar, plus 24 grams of protein and 10 grams of fiber. The secret ingredient? Xanthan gum, which gives this Protein Frosty its thick, creamy texture.

Recipe: Perry Santanachote / Life by Daily Burn

RELATED: 12 Energy Bites Recipes That Taste Just Like Dessert

18. Orange Creamiscle Protein Shake

Reminiscent of a classic frozen Creamsicle pop, this protein shake would make a perfect summer breakfast or refreshing post-workout snack. Orange zest and frozen orange juice mix offer concentrated flavor, while vanilla protein powder and banana add sweetness and body. Bonus recipe: Make a double batch, fill up popsicle molds, and stick them in the freezer for a few hours. Voila! Healthier, protein-packed homemade Creamsicles!

Recipe: Perry Santanachote / Life by Daily Burn

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Originally published July 2014. Updated April 2017 and May 2022

All images via Shutterstock

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