How to Store Protein Powder

Protein powders are a convenient and easy way to get protein in your body. It’s also beneficial in muscle building and weight loss. But how do you store protein powders to ensure they stay fresh with such wide varieties of protein powders on the market?

Protein powders come in various flavors, so you can mix them into shakes, smoothies, and other recipes. But before you start using protein powder, it’s essential to learn how to store it properly.

There are different options that you can choose from when deciding how to store protein powder. Whether it’s whey protein powder or protein shake powder, keeping them is the same for different types and brands. 

This article will show you each method to store them and the different things you need to consider. Read on if you want to know how to keep protein powder properly!

What’s the Best Way to Store Protein Powder?

To answer that question, we need to understand the different types of protein powders:

  1. Whey protein powder
  2. Casein protein powder
  3. Soy protein powder
  4. Egg protein powder
  5. Pea protein powder
  6. Hemp protein powder
  7. Rice protein powder
  8. Blended protein powder

Now that we know the different types of protein powders let’s look at the different ways of protein powder storage. You can keep protein powders differently, but the most important thing is to keep them away from moisture and light.

Here are some of the best ways to store your protein powder:

  • In the fridge In a cool, dry, and dark place
  • In an airtight container

If you want to store your protein powder in the fridge, ensure it’s in an airtight container. It’s also important to note that whey protein powder doesn’t need to be refrigerated, but casein protein powder does.

An airtight container is still necessary if you’re storing it in a cool, dry place. You can keep it in food storage or a pantry, as long as it’s away from any heat sources. 

How Do You Store Protein Powder After Opening?

Like storing protein powder before opening, you want to ensure it’s in an airtight container. You also want to ensure that you keep the container in cool and dry conditions. Also, it’s important to note that most protein powders will come with a scoop, and it’s essential to use it when measuring protein powder. 

If you use a different measuring device, there’s a chance that you might not get an accurate measurement.

It’s also important to note that you should consume it within three months of opening the container, which is the typical shelf life. However, it’s always best to check the expiration date on the container. 

Protein powder can accumulate moisture over time, leading to bacterial growth and causing the protein content to degrade. Now, you don’t want to drink spoiled protein shakes!

If you want to ensure that it is fresh, it’s best to buy smaller storage containers. This way, you can finish it before it expires.

Should Whey Protein Powder Be Refrigerated?

We do not advise keeping whey protein in the fridge for several reasons. Here is why:

  • The whey may separate from the protein
  • It can cause clumping
  • The taste may change
  • If you still want to refrigerate your whey protein, make sure to do so in a sealed container.

Firstly, to better understand, whey protein is a dairy product, and you shouldn’t keep milk products in the fridge for more than two hours. Secondly, whey protein absorbs moisture from the air, making it clump.

And third, whey protein is a highly concentrated source of protein, so it doesn’t need to be refrigerated. However, storing whey protein in the fridge might be necessary to prevent it from spoiling if you live in humid and hot conditions.

The proper storage of whey protein can also preserve its taste and quality. This is somewhere with no direct sunlight and in a cool, dry place. An airtight container is also necessary to keep the whey protein from going bad.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is it OK to freeze whey protein powder?

Freezing whey protein powder is the least ideal way to store it because it can cause the powder to clump. Plus, keeping them inside your fridge or freezer isn’t necessary as long as it’s in a cool, dry place and an airtight container. 

However, if you’ve already mixed your protein shake, placing them in the refrigerator can preserve them, but never freeze them.

How long can whey protein last in the fridge?

A mixed whey protein shake can last up to 48 hours; anything longer than that is best discarded. Otherwise, it may smell bad or change color, indicating that it has gone wrong. 

However, consuming it within 24 hours is always best to get the most benefits. Additionally, if you’re using a protein powder in your fridge for a while, shake it well or stir before using it. 

Why do protein shakes say do not freeze?

For one, protein shakes are to drink cold, so freezing them would make them solid. Second, it can clump up when frozen, making it harder to mix. Lastly, it will affect the consistency since protein doesn’t respond well to moisture. 

Plus, protein shakes are meant to be consumed fresh, so it’s best to make them as you need them. However, if you have leftovers, then storing them in the fridge is the best way to go but remember to consume them within 48 hours.

Does heating up protein powder destroy it?

Not literally destroy it, but it will denature it. Denaturing protein means changing the shape and structure of the protein, which can affect its function.

So, while heating protein powder won’t harm, it will change the protein content, which can affect how well it works. Just like freezing protein shakes, they will eventually lose their protein content if you plan to cook or heat them.

How can you tell if whey protein has gone wrong?

One way to tell if whey protein has gone wrong, it’s best to discard it. If it smells sour or off, then it’s best to discard it. If it’s lumpy or has changed in color, it’s best to throw it away.

And finally, if the whey protein is more than two years old, it’s probably time to get a new batch. Protein powder doesn’t last forever, so it’s best to use it within the timeframe listed on the label.

Final Thoughts

how to store protein powder

It’s best to store protein powder in your pantry to be safe. Like most food items in your home, keeping them in a cool, dry place that’s out of direct sunlight is advisable.

And always make sure to use an airtight container to keep the protein powder from going bad. When it comes to mixed protein shakes, it’s best to consume them within 24 to 48 hours.

Overall, protein powders aren’t that complicated to store. Just make sure you leave them somewhere that’s not too hot or humid for them to go wrong. If you follow these simple storage tips, you’ll enjoy your protein powder for a long time.

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Nathan Lloyd, MSc

I’m a personal trainer, based in Boulder, Colorado.
I service clients physically in the Boulder area, mainly in the ONE Boulder Fitness Gym, but am also available for online consulting and coaching.

If you’re interested in my personal coaching programs, please contact me via the contact page.