You can drink this vanilla chai latte protein tea hot or cold, for a great start to your morning or mid-day power snack.
I’m going to start off this recipe with a scarring childhood story. I’m sure my dad will love that this is up here. Once upon a time, he sold and/or bought a protein powder from a health MLM. He thought we needed to drink it before school, and tried to get me to gag down this thick, chalky protein every morning. “It’s healthy,” he said. “It tastes like a chocolate milkshake,” he said. I cried and held my nose nearly every day that I was strongly encouraged to drink 8 ounces of the gross. That being said, it has taken me nearly a decade to try and come back around to protein powder as a viable source of protein. Consider this post a tale of my protein powder journey. You’ll learn more than you ever wanted to know about me…
I started trying powders again when people reassured me things have changed and it dissolves completely in liquid now, and water is even a viable option, to avoid the “shake” texture. I still wasn’t sold. I figured I could try to hide it in food, and it would be manageable (like these awesome cookie dough protein bites!), but I wasn’t able to get the full serving amount by doing things like baking with it. Liquifying it is clearly the easiest way (whey…puns).
For me, the final hang up has been the sugar. I couldn’t find a decent-flavored powder that didn’t taste so painfully fake, and assumed it had something to do with the sugar alcohols being used to sweeten the products. Sugar alcohols are often used in health foods (think protein bars, shakes, etc.), because they are zero calorie. It’s extremely hard to find a protein with cane sugar in it! However, I gave one made with stevia a try, and I find it to be more tolerable than I was expecting. (I used this brand of protein powder-affiliate).
When brainstorming ways to get in my protein for the morning, I realized that the whey protein powder would create a creamy, “milky” product. I think the biggest thing for me was to not compare it to actual milk. It has to be its own category of liquid. Then came the “ah-ha!” about using it as the “latte” part of a chai. A great way to enjoy my favorite coffeehouse treat without the sugar, and with the protein! A few experiments with different types of powder and liquid combinations led me to this recipe: just stir the powder straight into the prepared tea! To heat my water, I have an electric tea kettle (similar here, affiliate). I didn’t really know how prevalent they were until I went to Scotland, where everyone owned one because they drank so much tea. I knew I needed one ASAP. When warm, the powder stirs in surprisingly very well, without the need of a blender or shaker bottle.
The result is a delicious chai latte that is packed with protein and spices! It’s creamy, and makes you want to savor it, but also a small amount of liquid, so it can make a quick drink if you just want to gulp it down really fast! Get in your macros with a tasty drink – and no more bad-tasting memories!
What is your favorite morning drink? Do you think you could stir in some morning power into it?
Vanilla Chai Latte Protein Tea
- 1 C. water
- 3 bags chai spiced tea
- 2 scoops vanilla protein powder
- cinnamon optional for garnish
- nutmeg optional for garnish
Bring water to a boil.
Pour 1 C. water into a mug with 3 tea bags in the bottom. Cover and steep for 5 minutes.
Remove tea bags.
Stir in protein powder (can also use shaker bottle).
Serve hot or over ice with cinnamon and nutmeg garnish.