Yes. Meal replacement shakes have always been a convenient way to stave off cravings and make sure you get the right macros.
While most traditional meal replacement shakes are either high in protein, carbs, and calories or all three, the keto market is now brimming with keto-friendly meal replacement shakes.
Can You Have Low Carb Meal Replacement Shakes on Keto?
These offer keto and low carb friendly options for those of us that are too busy to prepare 3 meals a day but still want to make sure we get what we need.
But which ones are the best? How do they compare? I took some time to find out more about the leading keto meal replacement shakes, and here are the results…
Meal replacements are better than typical on-the-go snacks because they are generally loaded with vitamins and nutrients users need to get them through the day.
Furthermore, they provide an exceptional boost of energy. If you follow a keto diet, you can only have those meal replacements that contain low carbs. At the same time, you may also opt for keto-friendly protein bars that are also good in such situations.
11 Best Keto Meal Replacement Shake
- Perfect Keto Meal Replacement Shake – #1 Best Choice For Ketogenic Diet
- Ketologie Chocolate Flavor Keto Protein Shake – Also available in Vanilla/ Strawberry
- Kiss My Keto
- Ancient Nutrition KetoFEAST
- Ample K Meal Replacement Drink
- KetoLogic Meal Shake
- Kegenix Meal Shake
- Ketond Ketogenic Meal Replacement Powder – For Men & Women
- LABRADA – Lean Body – Best Ready To Drink Whey Protein Shake
- 310 Shake
1. Perfect Keto – #1 Best Overall
Perfect Keto has done it again! Their meal replacement shake is made from 100% grass-fed whey isolate. What’s that? It’s the protein from milk. So there are fewer carbs and more pure protein.
The only added extras in this product are MCTs and Stevia. We all know MCTs are easily absorbed fat derived from coconuts, which will boost your mental clarity and keep you feeling full for longer. Stevia just adds to the flavor.
While the high protein content is great for building muscle or ensuring you meet your daily protein needs, you do need to take this into account when planning your other meals, especially if you’re not working out. You can also add extra coconut oil, acacia fiber or MCT powder to make sure you get enough fat in.
A tiny nutritional drawback is that it’s a powder, so it needs to be mixed with almond milk or water (which can affect the nutritional value)… But in my opinion, it tastes fine with water, so there’s no problem there.
The low calories per serving not only means it is good for weight loss, but you can also use it as a post-workout protein supplement without affecting your daily meal plans too much.
Summary: Overall this is my favorite meal replacement shake from a nutritional and taste perspective.
While the chocolate protein shake from Ketologie tastes really good, as a nutritionist, I don’t think it’s labeled right. Yes, it has the right keto macros at 75% fat, 19% protein, and 6% carbs, but the protein isn’t high enough to make it a “protein” shake. Made with natural ingredients like coconut oil, sea salt, and grass-fed bovine collagen peptides protein.
On the plus side, bovine collagen peptides protein, which will help support muscle and skin structure.
On the downside, it’s filled with coconut oil instead of pure Medium Chain Triglycerides (have a look at this article for more info), which may not be exactly what you’re after.
At 300 cal., it’s also not the best for weight loss. Yes, you can halve the serving size, but even then, it’s still 150 cal.
As with other powders it also needs to be mixed. If you want creamy chocolatey goodness, mixing it with almond milk will increase the cal even more.
Summary: If you’re very active and not trying to build muscle or lose weight this is a pretty good option.
3. Kiss My Keto – Keto Cocoa Shake
First off, this isn’t really a meal replacement. It’s a chocolate-flavored MCT supplement.
So yes, you can use it as a snack or meal replacement in a pinch, or if you have a hankering for something sweet, but in the long run this isn’t a great meal replacement.
On the plus side, it’s filled with the right kind of MCTs to give you all the benefits of training your body to burn fat for fuel.
On the downside, you’re going to have to mix it with something to get all the nutrients you need for a meal.
With only 70 cal per serving, this isn’t necessarily a bad thing, but it does defeat the purpose of having a convenient all-in-one meal replacement shake.
Summary: I’d use this to break a fast.
4. Ancient Nutrition KetoFEAST
If you’re looking for a nutritionally sound meal replacement that pack a kick, this is the one. But, it does have a very strange taste, and it’s a bit more pricey than other keto supplements.
That being said, each serving contains MCT, Magnesium, Calcium, Caffeine, Herbs, Bone Broth… I can go on, but suffice it to say, they covered the nutritional side very well.
But the taste… It really isn’t great, but better with almond milk and as it needs to be mixed, this is your best bet.
Summary: If you don’t mind paying more and gulping it down, this is a good choice from a nutritional perspective.
5. Ample K Meal Replacement Drink
Ample K is one of the most convenient meal replacement shakes. It comes in the right-sized bottle, so all you need to do is add your preferred liquid. No measuring, no refrigeration.
It’s packed with goodness, including fiber, prebiotics, and probiotics, 3 grams of net carbs, pea protein,t electrolytes, and MCTs, and no added fillers.
On the downside, it’s got 400 or 600 cal. per bottle, which may be more than you want. Bottles are BPA-free, but use a new bottle for every product… That’s a lot of wasted plastic. It’s a balanced combination designed to meet your high fat, low carb needs.
Luckily there’s a bulk pack with a 200 calorie scoop. Tastes great, with a mild, nutty mix of coconut, macadamia nut, vanilla, and cinnamon
Summary: If you’re an adventurer or on the road often this is a very good option, but please be considerate of the environment and consider the bulk option.
KetoLogic is known for real products for real people, and that is what this shake is.
It’s a well-balanced powder with just the right macro ratio to keep you in ketosis. The lower protein also means there is less likelihood of stomach upsets. It has flavors such as vanilla, strawberry, salted caramel, and chocolate.
It has added MCTs, Vitamins, Minerals, and electrolytes to make sure you have what you need to be a healthy ketoer.
On the downside, it still needs to be mixed and with 280 cal. per 2-scoop serving that leaves pretty limited options if you’re in a strict calorie deficit.
Summary: I recommend this product for people who suffer from stomach upsets and live an active lifestyle but don’t want to build muscle.
The Kegenix Shake makes the list, but only just. It’s got a lot of good, whey isolate protein, with added BHB salt (an appetite suppressant), exogenous ketones, and MCTs, which will help you build muscle and burn fat.
And with only 280 cal. per 2-scoop serving, it really is good for weight loss.
But, it’s pricey and doesn’t taste great. So I really would give this one a miss unless you’re planning on becoming a bodybuilder.
Summary: This is not my first choice, even for people that are serious about building muscle.
8. Ketond Ketogenic Meal Replacement Powder
A Ketond shake is a good option for men and women. It’s well-balanced, with the right macros and comparatively few calories (200) per serving. So it will help with fat loss if used with a low-calorie liquid.
The high protein and added BHB and MCTs keep you in ketosis and feeling full of energy. It also has egg protein, something not many shakes have.
And there are no unnatural food ingredients or fillers. But it’s quite pricey, even with the added essential vitamins and minerals. Also, the flavors are great for those that like it, and not great for those that don’t.
Summary: This is a good choice if you’re sharing with someone from the opposite sex and you are both active.
9. LABRADA – Lean Body
Ready to go? So is this product! Of all the Ready To Drink Shakes, LABRADA is the best.
It’s packed with protein, so it supports muscles and gives you the added energy you need while curbing your hunger pangs.
There are no added sugars or gluten, making it keto-friendly. It also comes in an eco-friendly carton instead of a plastic bottle.
There are no added preservatives, and it doesn’t have to be refrigerated. All of this makes it the best ready to use shake.
On the downside, the high protein content can kick you out of ketosis if you have a low protein threshold or you don’t work out. It’s also pretty pricey compared to some powders, but you don’t need to mix it!
10. 310 Shake
At 90 calories per serving the 310 Shake is good for people in a calorie deficit. There are no added artificial sweeteners, no caffeine, gluten, or GMO’s in this product, making it a healthy option for keto diet from that perspective.
It’s made from 100% plant-based protein, so it doesn’t have any dairy in it either, making it a good vegan option. The downside – it only has 15g of protein per serving.
But, there are a lot of flavors to choose from. And with only 90 calories per serving, you can add some extras if you want.
Summary: This is by far the best option for vegans, but otherwise, I would only recommend this if you’re big on clean eating.
How to Make Keto Shake Mix?
I have perfected the art of making even the most clumpy shakes smooth. It takes about 10 minutes, but it works!
- Take the glass, mug or bottle you’re going to use.
- Add a bit of your preferred liquid at the bottom. Just a tablespoon or two will do.
- Add the powder.
- Top up with the rest of the liquid.
- Stir (with a fork or milk frother).
- Let. It. Stand. For about 10 minutes.
NOTE: This can vary depending on the shake’s clump-factor. Some shakes for keto diet may be better off standing in the fridge for a couple of hours for the best and most convenient results. In this case do steps 1-5, put it in a sealable bottle and pop it in the fridge until you need it.
Stir again. And you’re good to go. Struggling to decide which liquid to add to your shake?
You can use water or milk, cold coffee or tea, normal full cream milk, half and half, nut milk… Really any liquid. But your choice is going to depend on two things: taste and calories.
First, figure out what your calorie limit is and which liquids suit your needs. Next, experiment until you find the liquid that you like best.
Do Keto Meal Replacement Shakes Help You With Weight Loss?
It depends. You can opt for a low-calorie shake, like my favorite the Perfect Keto Meal Replacement Shake, add just water, and then you’re going to lose weight. Because you’re in a calorie deficit.
If you choose the 600 calorie option from Ample K and use half and half… No, you’re probably not going to lose any weight, unless you plan on running a marathon or climbing a mountain.
The key is to make sure you meet your own daily needs. The lower calorie shakes are better for fat loss because they give you more room to experiment with different types of liquids to get the best taste options.
You will also be gaining weight quickly and your health will become poor.
Any Benefits & Dangers of Using Keto Meal Replacement Shakes on Ketogenic Diet?
Convenience and fat loss are the two biggest benefits that draw people to using meal replacement shakes on keto diet or any diet… But their use goes much deeper than this.
- It can help balance macros and micros. If you’re bad at drinking your electrolytes or MCT supplement or something, having a shake that has it all really helps.
- It can help you gain weight. Yes, some people do want to gain weight, and this product is a great way to add more calories without bulking out an already large portioned diet.
- Great if you have deficiencies or struggle to get enough of a certain something, provided that you choose a shake that matches your needs.
- It’s a great way to break a fast and get your body used to food again if you do IF.
But there is a downside if you don’t stick to instructions:
- You could eat too many calories or too much protein in one go, and this can either halt weight loss, kick you out of ketosis, or both.
- You can be intolerant to certain additives. Some shakes just might not work for your body. If you have a sensitive digestive system opt for one with pre-and probiotics, like Ample K.
- YOU CANNOT LIVE ON SHAKES ALONE. While they can replace a meal a day, meal replacement shakes are not a sustainable meal plan on their own. Your digestive system needs real food too.
Homemade Recipes: Protein Shakes for Weight Gain
As I’ve mentioned, meal replacement shakes are a great way to gain weight if you need to up your calorie intake.
While store-bought shakes are very convenient, real, whole food shakes are definitely the way to go if you want to gain some weight.
The reason? Because they’re packed with natural proteins, vitamins, and minerals, natural sweeteners are more easily absorbed.
Store-bought shakes are highly processed as well, which means they can have a lot of artificial ingredients. In the list above, I’ve added the cleaner ones, but if you’re going to be having one or two shakes on top of your normal meals a day, making your own is the better option.
Here are 3 delicious recipes you can try at home:
Vanilla Avocado Almond Keto Smoothie
- 1 tsp ground cinnamon
- 2 medium avocados
- 4 tbs almond butter
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 4 scoops 1st Phorm vanilla protein powder
- 4 cups unsweetened vanilla almond milk
- This recipe is sufficient for 4 smoothies, so grab 3 (or 4) glass bottles and divine up these ingredients: 1/4 tsp cinnamon, 1 Tbs almond butter, and 1/4 tsp vanilla into each bottle.
- When you’re ready to blend, add 1 cup of almond milk, 1/2 an avocado and 1 scoop of protein powder. Blend until smooth and pour back into the bottle.
This is a great option if you’re going the vegan route, just make sure to use a protein powder that matches your needs, like 310 Shake.
Chocolate Shake With Almond Milk
When Do You Start Losing Fat on Keto?
The first few weeks on a ketogenic diet can be quite tricky. The human body is designed to burn fat. Your body’s net carb intake will be very low so that the total amount of calories consumed in your daily diet won’t contribute to more body fat gain. However, consuming too little net carbs can also be the cause of severe lethargy, rapid loss of muscle mass, and rapid fat loss. On the other hand, the human body can sometimes get the message that it should start losing fat even if it is eating as many net carbs as possible. This is the reason why the majority of people who go on a keto diet see a rapid loss of weight in the beginning. You can try to figure out if you are losing fat. Try to eat only one scoop of ice cream per day and see how your hunger pangs start gradually becoming less frequent.
Is Almond Milk Keto-Friendly?
Many health-conscious people swear by the goodness of low-fat almond milk. Low-fat almond milk is indeed a great substitute for dairy milk, but the question is whether it is keto-friendly? Almond milk contains a certain amount of lactose and butterfat. In fact, almond milk is 35 percent higher in butterfat than other milk. The fat in almond milk will quickly melt when heated and harden, especially when heated to a high degree.
So, it’s recommended to drink almond milk slowly in order to enjoy the benefits of almond milk without going into ketosis. Almond milk is high in sodium, so you should avoid adding it to any food or drink. This is because the sodium in almond milk binds to the proteins in your body and will prevent you from absorbing essential nutrients such as calcium, potassium, iron, vitamin B12, and zinc.
If you’re looking for a quality, convenient, keto-friendly meal replacement shake that will take care of all your keto needs and then some, Perfect Keto is my favorite option.
It has all the macros you need and offers great muscle support without overdoing it on protein. It also offers a relatively low-calorie count per serving, which will help with fat loss and give you more options for mixing.
The results are that you can use it whenever, wherever, and however you need it. Whether you need a post-workout supplement, an extra dose of calories to gain weight, or a replacement to keep your calories down, Perfect Keto has you covered.