8 of the Best Meal Replacement Shakes for Weight Loss (2021)
Product NameFormatReasonBuy Now
HLTH MealPowderBest Keto
Ample OPowderBest Meal Powder
Diet ExtremePowderBest Weight Loss
Did you know that one in two adults have tried to lose weight in the last 12 months? Furthermore, most of these fail to stay lean after they achieve their goal.
Yes, you are not alone. Trying to lose weight to get to our ideal shape is something we’ve all gone through.
I’ve personally experienced the painful weight loss journey and the difficulties of changing our diets. In my case, I had to go from 100kg to 80kg (44lb weight loss) after I let myself get way to overweight for my frame (1m74cm or 5ft 9in).
It was partially due to meal replacements that I was able to improve my eating habits, shave the extra pounds and stay that way. As such, I’m delighted to share with you the best meal replacement shakes for weight loss, for both men and women.
A Foreword On Weight Loss
Obviously, I did not use all these shakes in my journey; but these are products that I’ve tested afterwards and I believe they could help you.
Even the best nutrition shakes for weight loss are just but a tool that you need to use efficiently. Thus, following the analogy, I’m just listing the tools that are best suited for the job.
Fun fact: In a survey in 2018, 40% of participants stated that consuming meal replacements helped losing some weight (even if this was not always the main goal). Most also stated that they felt healthier.
Hence, I will mention different types of shakes; from keto meal replacements, to low-calorie shakes and high protein drinks. I won’t, however, provide you with any miracles pills or similar, because they simply don’t work.
Instead, with some determination and balanced meals I will help setting yourself for success.
Looking to lose the extra pounds that you’ve gained over Christmas? Have you decided to stick to your new year resolution this year? Don’t worry; the best weight loss shakes in 2021 will massively help you making this goal a reality.
Meet the Expert
Hi! My name is Enaut and I’m the owner of Latestfuels. Welcome to the home of meal replacements, protein powders and latest nutritional trends.
I drink meal replacement shakes on a daily basis, and I’ve been consuming protein powders for over 10 years now. I enjoy analyzing them, breaking them down and sharing my thoughts with my readers.
Enjoy your shake!
Top Meal Replacement Shakes for Weight Loss at a Glance
Diet Meal Replacement Extreme
- 207kcal, 24g of protein, 5g of fibre
- Up to 13 delicious flavours; I recommend Chocolate Peanut
- Includes extra ingredients for weight loss help: glucomannan, CLA…
- 98% positive reviews
- Available in US and UK
Orgain All in One RTD
- 250kcal, 20g of protein
- Convenient RTD format, best to drink on the go
- Smoother shakes
- Also available in vegan
- Nutritious superfood blend included
Other Top Weight Loss Drinks
BEST KETO –> HLTH Code Complete Meal
BEST NATURAL POWDER –> Ample O
BEST RTD WITHOUT ARTIFICIAL SWEETENERS –> OWYN
BEST WEIGHT LOSS POWDER FOR WOMEN –> Ideal Shake
Best Weight Loss Meal Replacement Shakes
1. Orgain All-in-One
- Easy to consume anywhere
- USDA organic, gluten free and dairy-free*
- Choose between vegan and whey-based
- Smooth and easy to drink
- Low in fiber and high in sugars
- Only available in the US
Orgain is a US brand that specializes in organic meal replacement shakes. However, what makes this one of the best nutrition drinks for weight loss is the combination of low calories and high protein content.
Besides that, it also comes with a fruit and vegetable blend that will provide you with quality nutrients. While the sugar content is on the high end for my liking, it is otherwise well balanced and a good drink to satiate your cravings.
Enjoy your soy free and gluten free meal shakes in both Smooth Chocolate and Vanilla Bean.
|per serving||Orgain All in One||DV (%)
2. Ample O
- Top quality ingredients filled with nutrients
- 3 formulas that adapt to you: Plant based, whey based and keto
- Easy to digest: contains probiotics, prebiotics and digestive enzymes
- Very filling and tasty; easy to drink often
- Doesn’t include all vitamins and minerals
- Only one flavour per variety
I love Ample shakes because they offer quality meal replacements that are extremely tasty and satiating. The last two are very important the top meal replacement shakes for weight loss; since they allow you to stick to them and keep a healthy diet.
Furthermore, Ample O will provide you with you 25g of grass fed whey protein and 10g of fiber; two key ingredients to keep you full. They also contain probiotics (4 bilion CFU), premium fats and organic greens (with antioxidants). Everything to ensure a healthy digestion. Plus, if you want a top vegan shake you can get Ample V (or even a keto version).
Nonetheless, the smoothness and fantastic taste of the shake is what will end up hooking you up to Ample. This is one of the best tasting meal replacement shakes for weight loss.
|per serving||Ample O||DV (%)
3. HLTH Code
- One of the best tasting keto shakes
- No artificial sweeteners; no-GMO ingredients, no soy, no gluten, no added sugars
- 27g of protein per serving
- 4g of net carbs per meal, formula to burn fat
- Available in US, EU and UK
- High in fats, optimal for keto
- Only 2 flavours available
Ketogenic diets are very popular among people who are looking to lose weight. I personally think that they can be hard to stick to; but I can’t deny the success many people find following them.
If you are looking to make that transition easier, HLTH Complete Meal will be ideal for you.
For once, these shakes taste like delicious thin sweet milkshakes; an absolute delight. Personally, I like the nutty chocolate shake better; but Creamy Vanilla is really good, too.
Besides, this is an incredibly nutritious shake with 50% DV of all your vitamins and minerals. Plus, they add digestive enzymes, probiotics and apple cider vinegar to help you with digestion and overall health. You can truly appreciate how gentle is in your stomach.
You can get all of this for $3.3/meal and enjoy a further 15% discount when you use the code LATESFUELS!
|per serving||Complete Meal||DV (%)
- RTD with improved texture and taste
- Vegan, hypoallergenic
- Most convenient format
- All the nutrients your body needs, only 300kcal per bottle
- Only available in the US
- High in sodium
300kcals and 20% of your daily nutrients per bottle. Only What You Need is exactly what the name name says. A meal replacement shake that is soy-free, gluten-free, nut-free and vegan-friendly; plus it provides you with the necessary nutrients and nothing else.
What makes OWYN one of the best meal replacement for weight loss is that contains more micronutrients than the rest. It also comes in an RTD format, which allows you to take it with you anywhere; and stops you from cheating.
Get your OWYN from Amazon and enjoy the two lovely flavours that they offer: Chocolate and Chai.
|per serving||OWYN RTD||DV (%)
|of which added (g)||5.0||10|
5. Diet Extreme
Best in Europe
- Only 200kcal per serving
- 24g of protein, 5.4g of fiber to keep you full
- Added CLA, acetyl-L-carnitine and green tea extract
- Up to 13 flavours to choose from
- Only available in Europe
- Not vegan friendly
I’m honestly sorry that this option is only available in Europe, since it is one of the best weight loss meal replacement shakes in the list.
Why? For starters, they have a very interesting high-protein and low-fat formula (unlike the low-carb options); that’s very efficient at keeping you full. The 200kcal shake does an excellent job at it. Plus, they use their knowledge on nutrition supplements and add CLA, konjac glucomannan, green tea extract and acetyl-L-carnitine to help you with the process. These are popular supplements among those looking to trim down.
Besides, they also have an extensive catalogue of flavours, with Banana Sundae, Caramel Latte, Dark Choc Raspberry and more.
Diet Meal Replacement Extreme is the best diet shake you can buy, period. It has over 400 reviews with 98% rating by customers; all the people I referred have loved it. This is my personal choice, too.
|per serving||Diet Extreme||RI (%)
6. Lean Body
- 35g of protein per 290kcal
- 8 flavours to choose from
- High in fiber and protein, great for satiety
- Great sweet taste
- It can be too sweet
- Only in the US
Truth to its name, Lean Body is a low-calorie high-protein meal replacement shake for weight loss. It provides you with 300kcal, and 35g of protein per serving; as well as, essential fatty acids, 7g of fiber and all the micronutrients.
Unfortunately, Lean Body contains more processed ingredients than other choices in this list. If that’s not an issue for you; then Labrada’s weight loss meal replacement will be perfect.
In fact, you will be able to enjoy a wonderful tasting shake, particularly if you don’t mind sweet. Lean Body is available in 8 flavours; including, Chocolate Peanut Butter, Cinnamon Bun or Strawberry.
|per serving||Lean Body||DV (%)
|of which added (g)||0.0||0|
7. Ideal Shape
Best for Women
- Multiple delicious flavours
- Very high user reviews
- Low-calories per serving: 110kcal
- Low in sugar and high in protein
- Nutrient dense; tons of micronutrients
- Only 2 vegan flavours
- Not the cheapest
Ideal Shake is one of the best meal replacement shakes for weight loss for women.
On one side, they are designed with a lower calorie intake in mind. Each shake has only 110kcal; but plenty of nutrients to power your. For instance, each shake has 80% of DV of Vitamin A, or 100% of Vitamin C. This is perfect for women.
Besides being nutrient rich, they are also slightly sweeter than other alternatives. They have 6 flavours available; Chocolate, Vanilla, Mocha, Strawberry… included.
One of the best ways to start out is to get the starter pack for just $24 (8 meals). For longer consumption, I recommend the tubs, which are cheaper per meal.
On top of that, they can also provide you with weight loss plans that incorporate Ideal Shake to make your life easier.
|per serving||Ideal Shape||DV (%)
|of which added (g)||0.0||0|
- Available also in low carb
- Low GI, gluten free, soy-free
- Great to consume regularly; not a sickening flavour
- Over 4 flavours to choose from, including unsweetened
- Taste can be bland
- Need to pay extra for gluten-free
One last meal replacement worth mentioning is Huel. The British brand does shakes where “nutrition comes first, taste a close second”. As such, they are not the tastiest you’ll find in this list, but one of the most well balanced.
Another very distinguishable feature of Huel’s shakes is that they are incredibly satiating. Perhaps, it’s due to the 30g of protein per shake, or the thick texture; but without a doubt it’s one of the most filling. I’ve personally used Huel for prolonged periods of time, and I have no major complaints.
Nutritionally, each Huel shake gives you 400kcal, less than 2g of sugar, plenty of omega-3 fatty acids and all the vitamins and minerals that you need. Plus, it has a glycemic index of 27 (very low). Huel is the ideal long term solution.
|per serving||Huel Powder||DV (%)
|of which added (g)||1.0||2.0|
Weight loss is a process that most adults have gone through at one time on another. By no means an entertaining or fun period; but the right choice for a healthy life most of the times. In fact, while losing weight is often considered a single process; I believe that there’s a second, perhaps more crucial step: maintaining your new weight.
As such, I reiterate that weight loss is not a diet, but a change in lifestyle. One that will get rid of old habits, introduce new ones and enable you to evolve into a healthier status.
However, without getting too philosophical, the underline message is that unless you lose the extra pounds in a balanced and sustainable (key word) way; you are far more likely to gain it back. Hence, the yo-yo effect.
Why Meal Replacements Can Help You Lose Weight?
There are many reasons why I think meal replacement shakes can be helpful on this journey. I outline 5 in the picture above, taken from my in-depth guide on how to lose weight with meal replacements.
In reality, there are 3 pillars:
- Counting calories and calorie restriction. One of the main positives is that meal replacements will make you very aware of how much you eat. The basics of weight loss is simple: calories in need to be less than calories you burn (out). Thus, it is important you know how much you are eating, and meal replacements make that easy.
- Convenience. Often when we are on a diet, we see ourselves forced into situations where no healthy alternative is to be found. This is where we fall, and buy some junk food. Because you can take them anywhere, meal replacement shakes will prevent you from those pitfalls. They are also easy to make, thus will decrease your urge for those take-aways.
- Adaptability. Lastly, meal replacements can be very personal. It does not matter if you are coeliac, or are looking for soy-free food, or vegan alternatives. There’s a meal replacement out there that will suit your needs. Thus, you won’t have to worry about your diabetes, IBS or allergies.
How to Use Meal Replacements to Lose Weight
Below I show a mock plan taken from my infographic on losing weight with meal replacements that you can find here: Weight Loss Infographic and my weight loss guide. Here, you will find more info on problems you might face, or what to do and what not. Feel free to share.
What is the Best Meal Replacement Shake for Weight Loss?
In reality, there is no simple answer. It will largely depend on what you need and what you like. Thus, I mentioned very different shakes above; all of which I consider to be great.
For instance, what are the best meal replacement shakes for women that can lose weight with? Personally, I would recommend something low in calories, high in micronutrients and that has sweet flavours available. Something like OWYN or Garden of Life. That’s not to say that the rest won’t work.
On the other hand, Labrada’s Lean Body or something more caloric like Ample might be best meal replacement shakes for men’s weight loss. Men require more calories than women, which also relates to more protein.
Can I Use a Ketogenic Diet and a Keto Shake to Lose Weight?
Yes, of course you can, and in fact, many people have done so successfully. I recommend you having a look at reddit.com/r/keto to get inspired. However, in my experience, keto diets are not very noob friendly, since they are the very opposite of what most people are used to: high fat, almost no carb diets. This means literally almost 0g of carbohydrates (bread, pasta, rice, cereals, donuts, bakery….).
Not only they can be hard to start, but also hard to follow in the long run. They might limit your choices at social events (dinners etc.), and they can be hard to stick to.
Nonetheless, the best keto meal replacement shakes can definitely solve some of those issues. In that regard, both Ample K and Keto Meal Shake from Ambronite are fantastic. I highly recommend using either of them.
Meal Replacement Shakes That I Didn’t Include
Perhaps you have a friend or have heard about other popular meal shakes that I have not included here. Shakes such as Slimfast, Herbalife or Shakeology that you might have seen in best meal replacements for weight loss 2018 and similar. The simple answer is that I don’t consider them to be good enough.
- Shakeology. Like I explain in my Shakeology alternatives list, I consider this to be an overpriced meal replacement shake. It can still be useful to lose weight with, but something like Lean Body or Ample O is a much better alternative.
- Slimfast. Another company that produces multiple weight loss products. Unfortunately, these are often made considering taste the most important factor. Consequently, they can be high in sugars, have poor quality ingredients, miss out of fiber and not be very satiating at all.
- Herbalife. Sadly, this is one of the companies that puts a negative connotation of meal replacement shakes. The objective of the company is not to make healthy meals; but to make profit out of you. I would avoid this at all cost.
Protein Shakes and Weight Loss
Alternatively, you might have look at protein shakes as your healthy weight loss meal. While tempting, I don’t think this is the right approach. Mainly due to the fact that protein shakes are neither balanced nor complete.
This is, protein shakes will be missing many essential nutrients that your body absolutely needs for healthy living. Namely, omega-3 fatty acids, vitamins and minerals will be missing. Plus, they are also usually too rich in protein, and will fall short in carbs and fats.
Therefore, I would advise against using protein shakes for weight loss, and I would recommend you looking to the best nutritional shakes or meal replacement shakes, instead.
Conclusion: The Best Meal Replacement Shakes for Weight Loss Are
… Ample O and Diet Extreme. Sadly they are only available in the US and Europe, respectively. Both offer very nutritious meals that are designed to be healthy, tasty and satiating.
Nonetheless, I want to reiterate the idea that meal replacement shakes are but a tool to losing weight. The real progress will come from your willpower to change your lifestyle and the calorie deficit that you are in. The shakes will be your support or scaffolding.
Make the first step now, and commit to a healthier lifestyle!
2. FDA Daily Values.
8. Examine.com‘s Weight Loss Supplement Guide.