Top Protein Shakes for Kids: Ready-to-Drink Complete Nutrition for Growing Bodies

else protein shakes for kids 2y+

Navigating the world of protein shakes for kids can be tricky. Are they safe? Can they meet the dietary needs of active youngsters or children with food sensitivities? Our direct, down-to-earth guide breaks down how to choose and use these shakes to support your child’s growth and health, without overcomplicating things.

Key Takeaways

  • Protein shakes are a convenient supplement for children with dietary challenges or needs, such as those who are picky eaters, have food intolerances, or engage in sports, but should complement a balanced diet, not replace it.

  • Choosing quality ingredients in protein shakes is essential for children’s health, and one should avoid genetically modified ingredients and high-fructose corn syrup for safer, purer nutrition.

  • While protein is the focus, shakes also supply other crucial nutrients for immune support and development; dairy-free options exist for those with allergies or intolerances, and shakes should be tailored to individual dietary needs.

The Importance of Protein Shakes for Kids

Healthy plant-protein shake- Else ready to drink shake for kids

Protein shakes can offer an excellent solution to a variety of challenges you might face when trying to maintain your child’s nutritional balance. These nutritional drinks can be particularly beneficial for children who are actively engaged in sports, have food intolerances, or are the picky eaters in the family.

In some instances, children may have certain medical conditions that prevent them from getting adequate nourishment from their regular meals. Here, protein shakes can serve as a significant dietary supplement, filling any nutritional gaps and ensuring they get enough calories to thrive.

However, it’s essential to remember that while protein shakes can provide nutritional support, they should be included as part of a well-balanced diet. They are not intended to serve as the sole source of nutrition for children.

So, how can you make these shakes appealing to your little ones? By incorporating delicious ingredients like berries, chocolate, or even leafy greens cleverly disguised by stronger flavors.

Comparing Top Brands of Ready-to-Drink Protein Shakes for Kids

When it comes to ready-to-drink protein shakes for kids, there are several brands to consider. PediaSure Grow & Gain, Kinder Farms, and Else Nutrition, for instance, all offer different options to cater to varying nutritional needs. 

Else Nutrition Plant-Powered Complete Nutrition Shake Ready to Drink for Kids

Else Nutrition’s Plant-Powered Complete Nutrition Shake stands out for its nutritious and delicious formula, making it a healthier choice for children’s nutrition needs. It’s important to note that this shake can be used daily or occasionally, but it shouldn’t serve as the sole source of nutrition.

The ready-to-drink shake is designed for kids aged 2 years and above, providing clean, whole-plant-powered nutrition for their growing bodies. What’s more, compared to powder shakes, the ready-to-drink recipe provides additional energy and protein per serving.

Else Kids products are designed to provide a source of complete nutrition for children over 2 years. You can incorporate them into your diet on a daily basis or enjoy them occasionally as a part of a balanced eating plan. Including them in your meals can contribute to a healthy lifestyle. Plus, Else Kids is gluten-free, made from core plant ingredients that are all gluten-free.

Imagine the convenience of packing this nutritious drink in your child’s lunchbox for a delicious midday boost.

Gluten-Free Weight Gain Smoothie Recipes

If your child needs to gain weight, high-calorie, gluten-free smoothies can be a great addition to their diet. These smoothies can provide necessary nutrition while also being easily digestible and enjoyable to drink.


Chocolate Craze Smoothie

One such recipe that kids are sure to love is the Chocolate Craze Smoothie. This nutritional drink is packed with ingredients like chocolate protein powder and peanut butter, offering a healthy dose of proteins and fats that are essential for a child’s growth.

The base of the Chocolate Craze Smoothie is almond milk, making it a great choice for those who prefer non-dairy options. The almond milk also gives the smoothie a creamy texture that kids love. Other ingredients like raw cacao powder, spinach, and fresh cranberries add essential nutrients without adding any extra sugar. And let’s not forget the chia seeds – a topping that elevates the smoothie’s nutritional value with fiber, omega-3 fatty acids, and various micronutrients.

For more kid-friendly recipes, check out our recipe section. 

Nutritional Drink Shakes for Kids: The Best Ingredients


When it comes to preparing protein shakes for your kids, choosing high-quality ingredients is crucial. These 5-star ingredients are the building blocks that support your child’s healthy growth and development.

Natural and clearly defined ingredients are key in nutritional drink shakes. This ensures that children receive beneficial nutrients without exposure to potentially harmful substances. Avoiding genetically modified ingredients, high-fructose corn syrup, and undefined ‘natural flavors’ can further ensure the purity and safety of the product. After all, choosing shakes with the best ingredients can directly influence a child’s nutritional intake, supporting overall health and development.

Kid-Friendly Ways to Incorporate Protein Shakes into Meals

kids protein shakes - else complete nutrition ready to drink shake


How about adding protein shakes to everyday meals? Picture this: Oatmeal Apple and Cinnamon Muffins made with protein shake mix and whole grains, serving as a hearty snack without added sugars. Or, imagine adding protein powder to oatmeal to make it a more nutritious meal for children, with the added benefit of reducing the need for sugary additives.

Taking this idea a step further, homemade toaster waffles can be enriched with protein shake mix, prepared in advance, and frozen for a quick and nutritious breakfast. And who can resist Cinnamon Swirl Pancakes made with whole wheat flour, Greek yogurt, and protein shake mix? Talk about a nutritious, child-friendly breakfast!

For a tasty and protein-rich snack, try making Vanilla Cake Balls that incorporate:

  • oats

  • almond butter

  • unsweetened coconut

  • protein shake mix

PB&Me Powdered Peanut Butter is an excellent gluten-free protein powder suitable for baking, providing 6 grams of protein per serving.

Immune Support and Essential Nutrients in Protein Shakes

But it’s not all about the protein. Protein shakes are also packed with essential nutrients that provide immune support. Vitamin C and zinc, for instance, are critical micronutrients for children’s growth and immune functions, and deficiencies can have measurable impacts,.

Vitamin C enhances various cellular functions within the immune system in children. It supports:

  • Skin health as a defense against infections by promoting collagen synthesis

  • The immune system’s response to infections by supporting phagocytic cell activities and clearance

  • The proliferation and function of crucial adaptive immune system cells, B- and T-lymphocytes, in children

  • The immune response by modulating cytokine balance, essential for children’s immunity, inflammation, and hematopoiesis

Picky Eaters: Tips for Making Protein Shakes More Appealing

kids protein shake- else ready to drink kids shake

If your child is a picky eater, there are several ways to make protein shakes more appealing with a kid approved taste. One effective trick is to incorporate playful smoothie combinations like Strawberry Avocado or Chocolate Peanut Butter to entice them with flavors they enjoy.

You can also adjust sweetness to the child’s liking by adding natural sweeteners such as stevia drops, honey, or agave, like in the Chocolate Craze and Banana Nut Breakfast Smoothies. Even reducing ingredients like spinach in smoothies to achieve a more chocolatey appearance can help avoid off-putting colors for children. Incorporating cocoa powder can also enhance the flavor and color, making it more appealing to kids.

Texture also plays a huge part in how a child perceives food. Enhancing the texture of smoothies by using homemade almond butter can provide a nutty flavor and creamy consistency without a powdery texture. Plus, involving children in making chocolatey mug snacks or creating delectable chocolate yogurt using protein powders can be an engaging way for them to get their protein.

Dairy Alternatives for Protein Shakes

For children with lactose intolerance or dairy allergies, there are several dairy alternatives available for protein shakes. Almond, hemp, and rice milk are good dairy-free options.

Certain plant-based milks, such as oat milk and flax milk, provide more fiber than many other milk substitutes and contain healthy fats, with no saturated fats or cholesterol. Some of these milks are even fortified with additional nutrients like calcium, vitamin D, and folic acid.

And if you’re looking for plant-based proteins, pea protein and chia seeds are suitable for children with dairy allergies or those following a vegan diet, providing essential amino acids.

How to Choose the Right Protein Shake for Your Child

Choosing the right protein shake for your child depends on their individual needs and their child’s diet. Underweight or malnourished children, as well as vegan or vegetarian children, might require additional protein in their diets.

For older children, nutritional supplements like the Healthy Heights Grow Daily 10+ Shake Mix Powder are designed to meet the evolving nutritional needs during their developmental years. Remember, the priority is to find a protein shake that best fits your child’s dietary needs and preferences.


In conclusion, protein shakes can be a valuable addition to a child’s diet, providing essential nutrients, supporting weight gain, and even boosting immune health. They can be particularly beneficial for children who are active in sports, have food intolerances, or are picky eaters.

Remember, it’s essential to choose high-quality ingredients, consider dairy alternatives if necessary, and make the shakes appealing for picky eaters. With the right choices, protein shakes can make a significant impact on your child’s health and development. So why not shake up your child’s nutrition today?

Frequently Asked Questions

How can I make protein shakes more appealing to my child?

To make protein shakes more appealing to your child, try creating fun smoothie combinations, adjusting sweetness to their preference, and improving the texture of the shakes. This will make the shakes more enjoyable for your child to drink.

What are good dairy alternatives for protein shakes?

You can try almond, hemp, rice, or oat milk as dairy alternatives for protein shakes. Additionally, consider pea protein or chia seeds for plant-based protein options.

How can I incorporate protein shakes into my child's meals?

You can easily incorporate protein shakes into your child's meals by adding protein shake mix to oatmeal, muffins, waffles, pancakes, or even cake balls. It's a convenient way to increase their protein intake while enjoying their favorite foods.

kids protein shakes for weight gain -else kids shake


The content and advice provided in this article is for informational purposes only and is not a substitute for medical diagnosis, treatment, advice for specific medical conditions. Always consult a pediatrician to understand the individual needs of your child. The article expresses the views of the brand editor.

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