TRIAL AND ERROR
The following tips have been gathered to help you in succeeding when cooking with protein powder! In case you’re wondering, the answer is yes: tastebuds were harmed in the making of this list. And yes, ingredients were sacrificed and feelings were hurt. But it’s the only way one learns, you know? By failing, learning, falling, getting back up, and trying again.
Possibilities are endless on what masterpieces can be created, such as succulent cakes and muffins, soft indulgent cookies, super soft cheesecakes and punching pancakes! All of these sweet goodies are also packed with protein to help you reach goals while satisfying that sweet tooth! There may be a lot of trial and error, but here at the Protein Works we’ve got you covered in our step by step guide in getting you up to scratch.
So soak up these tips, jot them down, and learn from what NOT to do when cooking with protein powder so you don’t have any ‘kitchen’ nightmares.
1. DON’T SUB PEA WITH WHEY OR CASEIN
Don’t substitute pea protein powder for whey protein powder in ANY recipe you see. They’re both protein powders, sure, but they have totally different textures, tastes, and consistencies. Which takes us to the second tip:
2. DON’T IGNORE THE CHART
Make sure you consult a Protein Powder Substitution Chart so you know which powders are substitutable with which. Using a chart is a great first step to acquaint you with the powders.
3. DON’T USE TOO MUCH POWDER
Never bake a batter comprised of primarily protein powder – this is particularly the case when they’re making pancakes or protein muffins/cakes. If your batter is over 1/2 protein powder, your food WILL turn out really dry and rubbery, especially if the powder you’re using is whey or casein.
4. DON’T FORGET TO MOISTURIZE
Always use a moisturizer when making protein pancakes or baking protein cakes or muffins. What’s a moisturizer? A moisturizer is an ingredient that will ‘weight down’ your protein powder and add moisture to your food. You NEED a moisturizer when you’re cooking with whey and casein (otherwise will food will come out dry and rubbery). You also need one when you’re cooking with the veggie powders (like pea, rice, and hemp) because they tend to be very dense and need moisture to start singing. Here’s a list of favourite moisturizers: bananas, Greek yogurt, cottage cheese, quark, cooked sweet potatoes, pumpkin puree, applesauce, and (cooked) beets.
5. DON’T TREAT COCONUT FLOUR LIKE YOU WOULD OTHER FLOURS
Use coconut flour sparingly. If you use too much coconut flour, whatever you’re making will turn out ridiculously fibrous, dry, and compact. Too much coconut flour makes things hard to swallow too! This is quite literal it can be dangerous. So use it carefully. Contrary to what it’s name may suggest, it is NOT like most other flours – e.g. oat, tapioca, buckwheat, rice, or even wheat flour. Gram for gram, you get FAR more fiber from coconut flour than you would from another flour. It’s FAR denser and lower in carbs. So don’t treat it like you would any other flour, OK? If conceptualizing it as ‘coconut powder’ helps you avoid its conflation with other flours, go for it. Call it coconut powder. Call it ground coconut. Just don’t call it late for dinner.
6. DON’T FORGET THE FAT WHEN YOU’RE MAKING PROTEIN COOKIES
If you’re baking Protein Cookies, you MUST use fat. This can be coconut oil, nut butter, actual butter, or even lard if you want to go ‘paleo’ on your cookies. Using either coconut oil, nut butter, or a combo of the two. What I want you to remember is that, if you want to end up with a moist and crunchy cookie, you NEED to use some sort of fat. If you don’t, they’ll end up like ‘cookie-breads’ instead of cookies and they’ll never be crunchy. They won’t even be soft. They’ll just be like… thick cardboard. Mmmm, right? No.
7. DON’T FLUFF BY HAND
You cannot make Protein Fluff without an electric apparatus like one of the ones drawn to the left here. In other words, you can NOT whip up protein fluff by hand. You can’t make protein fluff by hand; it’s just humanly impossible (unless, of course, you have a specially-designed bionic arm whose sole function is electrical blending and whisking).
8. DON’T FORGET TO USE FROZEN FRUIT/VEG
You can’t make Protein Fluff with fresh fruit or vegetables. Your fruit (or vegetables) have to be frozen. If your fruit or veg isn’t frozen, you’re in for a smoothie, not fluff. What kind of vegetables can you use to make protein fluff? You can use frozen (cooked) cauliflower, frozen (cooked) sweet potato or butternut squash, or frozen carrots (if you use vanilla whey and then top it with cinnamon, you can make a pretty gnarly carrot cake protein fluff using frozen carrots!)
9. DON’T LEAVE YOUR EGG POW ‘UNCONSTITUTED’
When cooking with egg protein powder,(can be subbed with whey protein powder ) remember that you HAVE to ‘reconstitute’ it. That means adding enough liquid to it to turn it into liquid egg whites. If you don’t reconstitute it (i.e. bring it back to ‘life’), whatever you’re making will end up like a weirdly rubbery and salty ‘thing’ that’ll leave you with sadface and nothing else.
10. Never bake a Protein Cheesecake until it’s solid and your knife comes out clean.
As with every cheesecake, you have to take it out from the oven while it’s still a bit wobbly in the centre. The reason for this is that the cheesecake will continue cooking once it’s out. It’ll set as it cools. So you don’t want to bake it until it’s all solid because then a lot of its creaminess will have been obliterated. How do you know how wobbly it should be? Just eye it up: if it wobbles just a bit (kind of like a set panna cotta), it’s done – take it out. If it wobbles like crazy and looks wet in the centre, leave it in. You basically want a subtle wobble – not a sludge.
11. DON’T ADD EGGS TO YOUR CHEESECAKE BASES
Since we’re on the topic of cheesecakes, remember to never add egg – or egg whites – to your cheesecake bases. You don’t want to make a cake out of the base mix, you want something that’ll be densely packed and ‘crumble-cookieish’ in texture. We’ve got your back by suggesting you try a three ingredient Cheesecake base. This is compromised of three ingredients: 1. nut/seed butter, 2. honey/agave, 3. ground nuts. That’s it. You don’t need anything else. Just mix those three ingredients together, press them onto the bottom of a springform pan, and kapow-POW! You got yourself the best protein cheesecake base on the planet.
12. DON’T FORGET TO ENJOY YOURSELF AND HAVE FUN!
To end a more positive note, consider this approach to protein powder cooking in general:
1. Don’t be overly rigid or scared about experimenting with your powders, ingredients, and flavors. 2. Throw your hat into the air. 3. Turn up your music. 4. Dance +/- The Funky Chicken (while, for example, waiting for your pancakes to cook or your cake to be ready) 5. Sing or whistle while you bake. 6. Sample your batters. 7. Listen to your tastebuds. 8. Draw outside the lines and think outside the shake!
You must be logged in to post a comment.
You didn’t come right out and say we can use protein powders in baking. Can we bake with powders? Any we choose? Comparing casein and pea is fine, but I just need to know if protein powders can take oven heat. There’s nothing about the general ability to bake with powders.
Hi! You can absolutely cook and bake with protein powders! I wrote an article about that here: https://proteinpow.com/denaturing