Many of you that have followed along in my journey so far know that I use protein powder for many things other than protein shakes. Protein pancakes, waffles, brownies, ice cream, you name it! To be honest, I’m just not a fan of just drinking a protein shake unless its a. my Phormula 1 and Ignition post workout shake (which serves a very different purpose) or b. if I’m really in a crunch and need something quick.
Now, this is NOT a protein powder you would want to have post workout, which is why it’s different from the Phormula 1 I just mentioned. Level 1 protein is a slower digesting protein meant for a meal replacement. It is a whey / casein protein, which processes slower in the body making it ideal for times you aren’t able to get your hands on a whole food meal, or in my case, anytime I want something sweet but know I shouldn’t indulge in something that I’ll pay for later.
Before I found Level 1, I had tried various brands of protein powder including, Optimum Nutrition, Dymatize, Syntrax Matrix, Syntha 6, PEScience, Isopure and Betancourt. Many of them I enjoyed the taste of but they left me with what I call the ‘bubble guts’. Level 1 however, is a meal replacement shake that keeps me full and satisfied without my stomach feeling gurgley. That’s what made it stand out to me, so I decided to try more of the flavors. Level 1 comes in:
Chocolate Peanut Butter Cup
Vanilla Ice Cream
Ice Cream Sandwich
Cinnamon Cookie Batter
Flavor Breakdowns and How I use Level 1
I have tried all of them except the Chocolate Peanut Butter Cup and Caramel Latte. Whenever I am trying a new protein powder I start with Vanilla. Because I mainly use meal replacement protein for baking and whatnot, it’s a very neutral flavor that can be added to, to change the flavor if needed.
When I tried the Vanilla Ice Cream Level 1, it was honestly probably another 8 months before I tried another flavor. Although I feel vanilla flavors are very generic, this one REALLY gave that rich vanilla ice cream flavor that you’d get from your favorite ice cream shop. Again, I used this mainly for pancakes, waffles, microwave brownies, protein bars and cookies but in the times I did just need a quick meal on the go, Vanilla Ice Cream Level 1 did the trick.
The next flavor of Level 1 I tried was the Ice Cream Sandwich. The reason I tried this is because I began making protein soft serve with my Vanilla Ice Cream Level 1 (1 scoop + 1 cup cashew or almond milk + 7-8 large ice cubes in the blender) and I thought the Ice Cream Sandwich Level 1 would be a great candidate for this. Man was I correct and then some. This took my protein soft serve to a whole new level!
Luckily, it was also versatile enough to use in my baking recipes as well. I mean who doesn’t want cookie pieces in their pancakes? I sure as hell am okay with that. It really does taste like a blended ice cream sandwich, just like you ate in your childhood. There are tons of companies that make cookies n creme flavored protein powder but trust me Level 1 Ice Cream Sandwich is different and in a VERY good way.
I would have definitely been content if these were the only flavors Level 1 came in but since I had such a good experience so far, I figured why not try some more. So I ordered Milk Chocolate and Strawberry Milkshake. Now, these are two flavors are very out of my comfort zone. I am very much a plain ol vanilla type of person. I’m picky about when I want things to be chocolate flavored and probably once every two years I’ll crave a strawberry milkshake.
At first, I had yet to think of anything else to do with the Strawberry Milkshake Level 1 aside from making the protein soft serve with it or just having it with a cup of almond milk but then I was reminded of the berries and cream Quaker Oats I used to love and decided to try it as overnight oats! (1/2 cup oats + 1/2 cup almond milk + 1/2 scoop Strawberry Milkshake Level 1) To be honest, nothing beats those little packets of happiness but this was pretty damn close.
Strawberry Milkshake Level 1 was perfect both as soft serve and a regular ol shake as well. Actually, one of my favorites to use as just a meal replacement shake. VERY true to the strawberry flavor, not artificial tasting at all compared to other strawberry protein shakes I’ve had in the past. Any time I really want to switch it up, Level 1 Strawberry Milkshake is my go to but I don’t purchase it as often as the others.
Milk Chocolate Level 1 has been great for microwave brownies (1 scoop Level 1 + 1 Tbsp cocoa powder + 1/4 tsp baking soda + 1-2 stevia +1/4 cup water. Mix all ingredients together and microwave for 45 seconds). It’s not my favorite for protein soft serve or as is with almond milk but I enjoy it with this brownie recipe and I also made chocolate oat bars as well. However, if you are a chocolate person, you would most likely enjoy Level 1 Milk Chocolate in any fashion : )
Click here for the recipe tutorial!
Last but %1000 not least, Cinnamon Cookie Batter Level 1. For a while (and I mean a while) Ice Cream Sandwich Level 1 was my all around go to…and then Cinnamon Cookie Batter Level 1 came into the picture. I felt like I was having a love affair. The first thing I tried with this flavor was protein pancakes because cinnamon. cookie. pancakes. They were amazing as they sound, like doughy, warm, cookie cakes. I really wasn’t expecting it to take the place of my beloved Ice Cream Sandwich Level 1 in the soft serve department but it impressively did.
Level 1 Supplement Facts and Benefits
The calories and macros for the Level 1 Protein are: 139 calories 2.5g fat 5g carb 24g protein which is pretty standard for a slower digesting meal replacement protein but the kicker with 1st Phorm is that they process all of their protein at a low temperature, which prevents the protein from becoming denatured (less bioavailable).
When protein is cooked at a high temperature, many of the essential nutrients are lost and therefore serve little purpose in your body and actually cause indigestion, bloating, gas etc. (aka bubble guts). Unfortunately, this is why you’ll find huge 5 lb tubs of protein sold for super cheap (because it was cheap to make). While you think you may be getting a good deal, what you’re really getting is low grade, denatured protein sprinkled with some useless fillers.
1st Phorm also processes all of their supplements in an FDA inspected facility, so you know there will be no ‘pixie dust’ and everything that is in the protein is on the label.
I really love that there is 24 REAL grams of protein in one scoop! This really helps me hit my protein needs for the day in such a delicious manner. There’s only so much egg whites and chicken I can do.
There are 30 servings per container of Level 1 Protein and at 49.99 a tub that’s about $1.70 per meal. Pretty cheap meal if you ask me. And if you haven’t noticed by now, Level 1 is pretty versatile ; )
As always, if you have any questions about Level 1 or anything fitness/nutrition related, send me an email at [email protected]
To try Level 1 for yourself and receive free shipping click here!
All my best,