The Best Meal Replacement Shakes in 2020 (Expert Review)
Over the past year I have had the pleasure to try over 50 different products from various brands. I have tried ready to drink products, vegan powders, keto shakes, savoury flavours and many more. It has been a wild ride with multiple positive surprises and very few disappointments. Nevertheless, this is a compilation of the very best meal replacement shakes that I have tried.
I am currently developing more specific best of articles, such as the best keto shakes or the best organic meal replacements. You will find the link to those below. On those articles, I share with you my favourite shakes from the nutritional aspect; those who I consider the tastiest; as well as, products with the highest quality.
However, there are more topics that I have not touched yet, such as, the best meal replacement bars or the cheapest shakes you can get. There are also other products, that I personally like. Like that odd music album you hold so dearly. For now, this page is a vault for those picks.
Here you have, some of the best meal replacement shakes, in my honest opinion.
Huel – 4.5/5
Top quality powder meal replacement with good flavours. it also offers a granola based meal replacement option and it is developing its own RTD version. Furthermore, Huel has worldwide shipping and a worldclass customer support. Really easy to order from, fast delivery times and overall great experience.
Queal – 4.4/5
Really good price for all their shakes. They offer lite, standard and Sports version, as well as, a vegan iteration. On top of that, they have meal replacement bars (fairly good). Most of their products are really protein rich and taste really well (that is my main point to recommend Queal).
Powdermatter – 4.3/5
The best price/quality shake. A small company that offers both vegan and non-vegan shakes made in Europe. Great nutritional output very similar to Huel’s. A little to improve in flavours and website design. This is probably the best budget company out there.
Runtime Next Level Meal Coconut flavour
Next Level Meal comes in 7 different flavours.The Coconut flavour takes the crown. I was actually really sad when it ended.
- Absolutely delicious.
- Good consistency and texture.
- Filling, but easy to drink.
- Price a little expensive.
- Nutrition profile is not the best. Rich in sugars.
Queal Standard Chocolate Hazelnut
The best chocolate meal replacement by a mile (for now).
- Really good tasting.
- Flavour fidelity.
- Nutritional profile, high in protein.
- Minor lumps.
Huel Original Vanilla
The Huel product of excellence and one of the best well rounded products in the market.
- Great on its own or customized.
- Great ingredients and nutrition profile.
- Always evolving.
- Flavour can be a bit dull.
- Grainny consistency might not please everyone.
Best Vegan Shake
Perhaps the biggest brand in the market, because its own merits. Very high protein content, paired with high quality fats and complex carbs (GI of 27). Huel uses pea and rice protein mix to get a well rounded amino acid profile. Huel contains plenty of healthy fats, right balance of MUFA, PUFA and SFA, as well as, a great omega-3/6 ratio.
It comes in big bags of 14 meals of 500kcal and it is available in 6 flavours: Coffee, Berry, Mint Chocolate (or Chocolate in US), New Vanilla, Original and Unflavoured & Unsweetened.
The shakes are usually gritty, but feeling. Most flavours are mild and with a strong oaty background.
Runner Up: Powdermatter
Special mention: Satislent
Best Meal Replacement Shakes in the US
I set it as different category because some of the brands mentioned do not deliver to the US. My top picks for best shakes in the US are:
- Huel. For most the best quality/price shake in the market. Tons of protein, good carbs and healthy fats in a balanced shake.
- Ample. More premium shakes with real food ingredients and more natural taste. They have one of the best Keto shakes, as well as, top vegan shakes.
- Plenny Shake. One of the most affordable options in the US, with a great variety of flavours.
- Ambronite Complete Meal Shake. The top natural shake with plenty of protein and all the nutrients you need without any artificial additives (no synthetic vitamins/minerals, sweeteners etc).
Those are my top rated meal replacement shakes in the US.
Otherwise, the most affordable option is Superbodyfuel’s Milk Fuel which comes down to $0.8/400kcal with subscription discount and $1/400kcal without it. However, unless you are on a serious budget, I would consider buying Huel or Plenny Shake instead.
As for ready-to-drink shakes, I think Soylent is still the best alternative, due to the flavours available, the price and the availability. However, Huel RTD is starting to make a case to become the best RTD in the US.