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5 Post-workout Protein Smoothie Recipes to Try

Updated: Aug 4, 2023

Green smoothie placed beside a Tropical pool with pink flowers and mango cheek
Matcha and Vanilla Protein Smoothie

Do you work out in the morning or afternoons? Moving your body has so many benefits, and it's not just for losing weight, even though that is the driving cause for many. Many forms of exercise include yoga, pilates, running, swimming, dancing, and weight training.

Why is daily exercise important?

There are plenty of benefits to moving your body. Helps with balance and stability, boosts energy and mood, can enhance cognitive performance, helps you relax and sleep better and has many other benefits to keep your body healthy and strong well into your older years.

One study showed that our hippocampus shrinks in older adulthood leading to impaired memory capabilities and increased risk for dementia. They indicated that aerobic exercise could improve hippocampus volume in late adulthood.

According to Australian government guidelines Adults, 18-64-year-olds should be spending 1.25-2.5 hours doing vigorous training such as jogging, high interval training (HIT), cycling or sports at least 3- 5 hours being active throughout their day such as a brisk walk, gardening and mowing, swimming, yoga and pilates.

Why is protein important?

Protein is essential for our body to thrive, muscle growth, building and repair. It also provides our bodies with energy Protein provides 17kJ/g (4 cal/g) of energy per gram. Protein is needed on a daily basis due to its universal role and limited storage in the body.

The recommended daily intake (RDI) according to Nutritional Reference Values (NRVs) for the general population (excluding athletes).

  • 64g/day for men

  • 46/day for women

When exercising we need optimal protein intake to stimulate muscle protein synthesis (building muscle mass) from resistance training.

Let's break down the roles of protein in the skeletal muscle

Mitochondrial proteins collectively generate ATP (energy) vital for cellular function.

Myofibrillar proteins (most abundant) are involved in helping our muscle contract and relax.

Collagen is the scaffolding in our connective tissue, skin, bones and cartilage. Collagen helps with skin repair, immune response and cellular communication.

Amino acids

Amino acids are important for synthesising enzymes, cells, muscles, organs and hormones.

There are 9 essential amino acids, 8 conditional (non-essential unless in times of stress or illness) and 4 non-essential (made in the body). Animal proteins are considered easily digestible whereas

Plant-based proteins that contain all 9 essential amino acids are chia seed, soy, buckwheat and quinoa. however, they are not easily digestible during a workout due to their fibre content.

Low dietary protein intake can cause fatigue, mood changes and in deficiency muscle wasting and increased bone fractures. Consuming protein throughout the day will help your body optimise muscle growth.

Post-workout protein allows amino acids to rebuild and repair muscles.

The body's natural nitrogen balance reflects the intake and loss of protein. When your body is nitrogen-positive, it allows the body to repair and grow, whereas nitrogen-negative breaks down needed muscle (muscle wasting).

I find after rigorous exercise, I am not overly hungry, and a liquid drink is what I need to satiate my body. I love making a delicious smoothie post-workout, so I have assembled five smoothies for you as a morning breakfast or an afternoon pick-me-up after the gym.


Blueberry Muffin Smoothie

Oats are a perfect grain for smoothies because of their low GI content. They keep you fuller for longer to reduce unnecessary snacking. Oats are packed with protein, fibre, iron, magnesium and calcium. If you are gluten-free, you can swap for quinoa flakes.

You will need

  • 1/4 cup rolled oats

  • 1 frozen banana

  • 1/2 cup frozen blueberries

  • 1 scoop of vanilla protein

  • 100ml filtered water

  • 1/4 cup plant-based milk

Add all ingredients to a blender and blend till smooth.


Choco and Peanut butter Smoothie

My ultimate favourite combo and I have it most days, anything with peanut butter. Flax seeds are packed with omega-3s and fibre; they should be kept in the freezer for freshness.

You will need

  • 1 frozen banana

  • 1 tbsp peanut butter

  • 1 tbsp flax seed meal or chia seeds

  • 1 scoop of chocolate protein powder

  • 100ml water

  • 1/4 cup plant-based milk

Note- if you don't have chocolate protein powder add 1 tbsp cocoa powder to vanilla protein with a date or 1 tbsp of maple syrup or honey.

Add all ingredients to a blender and blend till smooth.


Matcha and Vanilla Smoothie

Matcha is grounded green tea leaves. Green tea has many health benefits, such as preventing heart disease and helping with type 2 diabetes and even encouraging weight loss. Mangoes are prebiotic foods that are great for gut health.

You will need

  • 1 tbsp matcha

  • 1 tsp honey or maple syrup

  • 1 scoop vanilla protein

  • 1 cup mango frozen

  • 1/4 avocado

  • 1/4 cup plant-based milk

Add all ingredients to a blender and blend till smooth


Troppo Smoothie

Perfect for warm days after a sweat session, pink dragon fruits are rich in antioxidants and prebiotics and help lower blood sugar. They also strengthen your immune system since they are tropical fruit you can buy or grow during summer and freeze to have out of season.

You will need

  • 1/2 pink dragon fruit, fresh or frozen

  • 1/2 cup mango, fresh or frozen

  • 2 tbsp coconut yoghurt

  • 1 frozen banana

  • 1 scoop vanilla protein

Add all ingredients to a blender and blend till smooth.


PBSC- Peanut butter and salted caramel (for those with a sweet tooth)

Another PB smoothie; I told you I loved peanut butter. Dates are a great sweetener packed with nutrients: Protein, potassium, copper, and small amounts of magnesium, manganese, iron and vitamin B6.

You will need

  • 1 tbsp peanut butter

  • 1 scoop salted caramel protein

  • 1 Medjool date, removed pits

  • 1 frozen banana

Add all ingredients to a blender and blend till smooth.

I encourage you to try these recipes. They are delicious and satisfying; leave a comment below which one is your favourite x

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