How long are protein shakes drinkable after mixing?

Protein shakes are a popular and convenient way for many fitness enthusiasts to meet their daily protein needs. Whether you are trying to build muscle mass or lose weight, protein shakes can offer a quick and easy solution to help you meet your goals. However, it is important to know how long you can leave your protein shake out after mixing it before it becomes undrinkable.

Protein Shake Basics

Before we delve into the question of how long protein shakes are drinkable after mixing, it is important to understand the basics of protein shakes. Protein shakes are primarily made up of protein powder mixed with water or milk – or other liquids like coconut water or almond milk – and blended to create a smooth consistency. Some people also add additional ingredients like fruits, vegetables, or spices for flavor and nutrition.

One big question that arises is how long your protein shake can stay fresh and drinkable after it has been made?

The shelf life of protein shakes after mixing

The shelf life of protein shakes after mixing depends on a variety of factors, including the type of protein powder you are using, the temperature of the environment, and the presence of other ingredients. Refrigeration is the option that prolongs the life of protein shakes. The length of time a protein shake can remain drinkable usually varies depending on whether it has been refrigerated or not.

If you have mixed your protein shake with plain water and it is kept at room temperature, it may be drinkable for up to 2-3 hours after it has been mixed and well blended. This depends on the microbe count in the water and other external factors.

However, if you have mixed your protein shake with a dairy product like milk, you need to refrigerate it immediately. Dairy products are highly perishable, and if they are left at room temperature beyond two hours, bacteria growth may occur leading to foodborne illnesses.

What happens if you drink a bad protein shake?

Consuming a previous protein shake may lead to food poisoning and other health complications such as diarrhea, stomach cramps, vomiting, and fever. If you are uncertain about the safety of the protein shake, then it is best to toss it to avoid any such consequences.

Safe Practices for Preparing Protein Shakes

To ensure you are safely enjoying your protein shake, consider the following tips:

Wash your hands and use sanitized equipment

Before preparing your protein shake, ensure that you have washed your hands thoroughly to prevent any bacterial or viral contamination. Also, use clean and sanitized equipment like a blender to avoid any contamination from previous usage.

Use a good quality protein powder

Using a good quality protein powder is important as it minimizes the chance of bacteria growth. Cheap protein powders may contain additive fillers and preservatives that are harmful to your health.

Follow mixing instructions and recommendations

Always follow the mixing instructions provided by your protein powder manufacturer. This ensures that the ingredients are properly mixed, and you are getting the recommended amount of protein in every serving of your shake.

Refrigerate your protein shake

Refrigerating your protein shake immediately after mixing maximizes its shelf life. This slows down the growth of bacteria.


Protein shakes have become a popular way for many gym-goers to consume adequate protein for their fitness goals. The life of protein shakes depends on factors like temperature, protein powder, and the presence of dairy products. It is advisable to refrigerate your protein shake once you’ve mixed your ingredients. Bacterial growth on protein shakes can lead to severe health complications. Better safe than sorry–always follow safe practices when preparing your protein shakes, and if you are in doubt, consider throwing it away.


How long can you keep a mixed protein shake?

Protein shakes are an excellent way to supplement your diet with nutrients that your body needs, especially if you lead an active lifestyle or have specific dietary requirements. If you make a mixed protein shake and are wondering how long you can keep it, there are a few factors to consider.

First, if the protein shake is made from fresh ingredients, such as fruits or vegetables, it is best to consume it immediately after making it. This is because fresh produce can go bad quickly and can cause the shake to spoil faster. Additionally, if you are using a protein powder that contains no preservatives, it is best to consume the shake within a few hours of mixing to ensure that it stays fresh.

However, if you have made a protein shake and want to store it for later use, it is important to keep it refrigerated. A refrigerated homemade shake can be kept safely for 72 hours, according to Dawn Jackson Blatner, a registered dietitian and nutritionist. However, it is important to note that separation can occur in the shake when it has been stored in the fridge. Therefore, it is crucial to re-blend or shake the mixture before consuming it.

The length of time that you can keep a mixed protein shake will depend on the freshness of the ingredients used and whether or not it has been refrigerated. While homemade protein shakes can be safely stored in the fridge for up to 72 hours, it is always best to consume them as soon as possible after making them. By following these guidelines, you can ensure that your protein shakes remain fresh and nutritious for longer.

Do protein shakes go bad after mixing water?

Protein shakes are widely used as a dietary supplement to provide the body with the necessary protein required for muscle growth and repair. When mixed with water, protein shakes become a convenient and easy way to consume protein on the go. However, it is essential to understand that protein shakes can go bad after mixing with water.

When protein powder is mixed with water, the protein molecules become hydrated, making them more susceptible to bacterial growth. Bacteria thrive in moist and warm environments, which is why protein shakes left out at room temperature for extended periods can lead to spoilage. As the protein shake sits, harmful microorganisms can contaminate it, making it no longer safe for consumption. Therefore, it is crucial to always store protein shakes mixed with water in sealed containers and refrigerate them immediately after use.

Another factor that can cause protein shakes to go bad after mixing with water is the quality of the water used. Using contaminated water or water from an unknown source can introduce bacteria and other organisms that can cause the shake to spoil. It is best to use filtered or bottled water to mix with protein powder.

Various environmental conditions can also cause protein shakes to go bad after mixing with water. Exposure to heat, air, humidity, or direct sunlight can lead to spoilage. Therefore, it is essential to store protein shakes in a cool, dry place to prevent spoilage.

Protein shakes can indeed go bad after mixing with water, depending on various factors such as storage conditions, quality of water used, and exposure to environmental conditions. When preparing protein shakes, it is essential to use filtered water, store them in a sealed container, and refrigerate them immediately after use to extend their shelf life and prevent the growth of harmful microorganisms.

Can I drink another protein shake after 2 hours?

Protein is an essential macronutrient required by the body to build and repair tissues and help transport vitamins and minerals. Consuming protein shakes is one way to ensure adequate protein intake in your diet. However, the question arises whether it is okay to drink another protein shake after two hours or not.

The answer to this question is a bit complex. The recommended protein intake for an adult is about 0.8-1gm/kg of body weight per day. So, depending on your body weight and physical activity level, you will need to consume a certain amount of protein daily. However, consuming a large amount of protein in one meal or shake does not increase muscle synthesis more than the recommended amount. Instead, having a protein shake or a protein-rich meal every four to five hours appears to be optimal for building and maintaining muscle mass.

It is essential not to rely solely on protein shakes as the primary source of protein, as they do not contain all the essential nutrients that whole food sources provide. Whole food sources such as meat, fish, eggs, pulses, nuts, and seeds are great sources of protein and provide other essential vitamins, minerals, healthy fats, and fiber.

Consuming another protein shake after two hours is not necessary unless you are unable to meet your daily protein requirement with food sources alone. Moreover, over-consuming protein can lead to some health complications, such as kidney disease, liver dysfunction, calcium loss, and osteoporosis. Therefore, it is important to maintain a healthy and balanced diet that includes various whole food protein sources and not dependent solely on shakes.

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