Can You Mix Whey Protein With Cereal? (Pros & Cons)

Whey protein is a great way to get additional protein in during the day, but what if you’re getting sick of protein shakes. 

Can you mix whey protein with cereal? Yes, mixing protein with cereal is great as it increases the overall protein intake, keeping you full longer and making it easier to skip your mid-morning snack. It’s also the right mix of protein and carbs for pre-or post-workout. However, always consider what milk you’re using as this can add additional calories.

With that said, before you start mixing whey protein with cereal, you should know the pros and cons, and how to do it properly for optimal results.

In this article you will learn: 

  • 3 pros and cons of mixing whey protein with cereal for bodybuilding 
  • How much and when to consume whey protein and cereal 
  • Whether it’s best to mix whey protein with milk or water
  • How to ensure your whey protein dissolves in cereal

This article is part of our series on What Can You Mix With Whey Protein (13 Examples)

Pros of Mixing Whey Protein with Cereal 

pros and cons of mixing whey protein with cereal

The pros of mixing whey protein with cereal are:

  • It will keep you full for longer after you eat
  • It will help you hit your daily protein goal
  • It is an easy way to switch it up from your usual protein shake

1. Mixing Whey Protein With Cereal Will Keep You Full for Longer After You Eat

Adding whey to your cereal will increase the protein content, taking longer for your meal to digest. This keeps you full for longer after you eat, this is especially helpful for people who are cutting/trying to lose weight.

Those who are cutting are consuming fewer calories than they are burning in a day which can often lead to hunger. Eating a quick digesting carb, like cereal, alone can leave you hungry again in an hour or two. By adding whey protein to your cereal, it can help keep you full for longer after you eat. 

When you are more full and satisfied after you eat, you are also less likely to find yourself reaching for that mid-morning snack. Many snacks like granola bars are high in calories causing you to eat more than what would result in successful weight loss. 

Are you a bodybuilder?  Check out my article on Is Cereal Good or Bad For Bodybuilding?

2. Mixing Whey Protein With Cereal Will Help You Hit Your Daily Protein Goal

Cereal is low in protein so pairing it with whey will provide a protein source, making it easier to get enough protein in your day to get the muscle repair and recovery benefits that most active people are looking for.

When you are consuming a food that is low in protein, it’s important to always pair it with a protein source otherwise you are likely to find it difficult to get enough protein in your day to assist with building muscle mass. 

Since cereal is a sweater breakfast food, it’s often unlikely you would want to consume a meat-based protein source with it. By mixing whey protein into your cereal, you’re able to add a protein source to your meal without sacrificing the taste or enjoyment. 

3. It’s an Easy Way To Switch Up Your Whey Protein

Opting for whey protein with cereal is an easy way to switch it up from your usual protein shake and add some variety to your diet.

Many people struggle with eating the same food day after day, especially when they are meal prepping a lot of their food. This can lead to less satisfaction with your food and increase the likelihood that you will go off plan and over-consume your calories. 

Adding your whey protein into cereal instead of your usual protein shake is simple and easy to do without any additional preparation. It will give you a fresh new meal option and you can switch up the cereal for even more variety. 

Cons of Mixing Whey Protein with Cereal

The con of mixing whey protein with cereal is:

  • Mixing whey protein with cereal is a high carb way to consume protein

1. Mixing Whey Protein With Cereal Is a High Carb Way To Consume Protein

Mixing whey protein with cereal is a high carb way of consuming protein that likely isn’t best for someone looking to lose body fat. 

If you are cutting, you are likely to be consuming fewer carbohydrates. While mixing whey protein with cereal is a high protein meal option, it’s also high in carbs. If high carb protein sources are consumed throughout the day, you’re likely to go well over your daily calories by trying to hit your protein goal. 

This is a better meal choice for pre-or post-workout or for someone that is bulking and struggling to eat enough calories. 

How Much Whey Protein Should You Add to Your Cereal?

It’s best to stick to one scoop of protein per cup of cereal to provide a meal that has a balance between carbs and protein. 

Most people who lift weights will be aiming for a ratio of 30% protein, 40% carbs and 30% fat for optimal body composition. To achieve this ratio for your entire day, it’s best to keep your meals as close to this ratio as possible. Aiming for 1 scoop of protein powder per 1 cup of cereal is best to keep this protein and carb ratio in check. 

If you are eating this before a workout, I recommend increasing the cereal to 1.5 – 2 cups for every scoop to provide you with quick energy for your workout. 

Don’t forget, protein and cereal is likely quite low fat, especially when mixed with almond milk or skim milk. You can add additional fat to your meal by having a handful of nuts along with your meal. 

Cereal and Protein Powder: When to Consume 

Can You Eat Cereal and Protein Powder Pre-Workout? 

Yes, cereal and protein powder are a great option as it’s a quick source of carbohydrates that will provide you with the energy you need throughout your workout. Aim for 1 scoop of protein powder along with 1.5 – 2 cups of cereal. 

Cereal and Protein Powder before workout

It’s important to mix your protein with a liquid that is low in fat such as almond milk, skim milk or water. Fat slows down our digestion and our body won’t be able to get the energy we need as quickly from the carb we ate. 

Similar to fat, fibre slows down our digestion so when choosing a cereal, make sure you are selecting one with less than 5g of fibre per cup. 

Can You Eat Cereal and Protein Powder Post-Workout? 

Yes, cereal and protein powder is a great choice of meals post-workout. It provides both carbs and protein, both of which our body needs to repair our muscles and replenish energy stores. 

Mixing Whey Protein with Cereal

Post-workout it’s also important to consume some fat. Since cereal and protein powder has very little fat, it’s best to mix your protein powder with a liquid that will provide some fat. My recommendation is one cup of whole milk as it provides the right quantity of fat, as well as some additional carbs and protein. 

If you are consuming dairy-free milk like almond milk that is low in fat, I recommend adding in a handful of nuts with your meal to provide the fat you’re looking for. 

Add some fruit into your meal to provide extra micronutrients and create a balanced, well-rounded meal. 

Check out these articles when deciding what fruit to add: 

Is Whey Protein and Cereal Good for Breakfast?

Yes, whey protein and cereal is a great way to add protein into your breakfast helping keep you energized and feeling full until lunch. 

Have you ever enjoyed a big bowl of cereal for breakfast but found yourself hungry by 10 am?

You’re not alone, cereal is a quick digesting carb so you’ll find you have plenty of energy first thing but that quickly fizzles out by mid-morning. Adding protein from the whey into your breakfast will slow your digestion and provide you with a steady stream of energy all morning.

This can be especially helpful for those who are cutting as those mid-morning snacks you’re likely to reach for, like a granola bar or trail mix, are high in calories and can quickly push you over your daily calorie goal. 

Is Whey Protein and Cereal Good Before Bed?

Whey protein and cereal before bed can be a great way for those that are bulking and struggle to get all their calories in during the day. However, it’s not recommended for those maintaining or cutting as quick carbs are better utilized earlier in the day or around a workout. 

Cereal is a quick digesting carb, meaning it will give us a quick burst of energy but won’t fill us up for as long after we eat. For my clients bulking, they often have trouble stomaching all their carbs and protein. In that case, something like cereal and milk before bed to finish up their macros is always my recommendation. 

However, for those cutting, you are likely on a lower carb intake so we want to prioritize those carbs earlier in the day or around a workout for when that energy can be best put to use. 

Who Should Mix Whey Protein With Cereal?

Bodybuilders or those who are bulking/looking to gain muscle mass should mix whey protein with cereal as it’s an easy way to get extra calories into your day while also hitting your daily protein goal. 

Cereal and Protein Powder

Many people find when they are bulking that the volume of food is too high and they feel physical discomfort. When this is the case, I recommend quick digesting carbs, like cereal, as your body can quickly use them up leaving you with an appetite within an hour or two. 

It’s important though to also increase your calories through protein, which is why mixing protein into your cereal gives you the most bang for your buck increasing your calories while also helping you to hit your daily protein goal.

Who Should Not Mix Whey Protein With Cereal?

Those who are on a ‘cutting diet’ should not mix whey protein with cereal unless it is before or after a workout as it provides too many carbs along with the protein.

When people are losing body fat, their carb intake is often reduced with no change to their required protein. By eating protein sources that are also high in carbs, like whey protein and cereal, you’re likely to go over your daily calories to consume enough protein. 

Instead, it’s best to opt for whey protein in a shake with a few berries to keep your carb and fat intake low while still getting in your protein. 

If you are consuming whey protein with cereal, it’s best to do so before or after a workout when those carbs can provide you with energy and recovery benefits.

Is It Better To Mix Protein Powder with Water or Milk for Cereal?

It’s better to mix protein powder with milk to get a consistency that is closest to cereal and milk. The type of milk that you choose to mix the cereal with can be customized based on your calorie and dietary needs. 

Mixing protein with whole or 2% milk will provide a higher calorie meal option best for those that are bulking and looking to sneak in some extra calories. 

For those that are maintaining or cutting, almond milk is the best low calories option. This is also great for those that are lactose intolerant or plant-based. 

Will Protein Powder Dissolve in Cereal?

To get protein powder to dissolve in cereal, it’s best to mix the whey protein powder with your milk of choice in a shaker bottle first before pouring it over the cereal. 

While whey protein mixes quite well in milk if you don’t use the right method you are going to end up with a clumpy mess that is not very tasty. It’s important to always start with mixing the protein powder with just the milk until it’s fully dissolved. A ratio of 1 scoop of protein powder to 1 cup of liquid is recommended.

A shaker bottle is the easiest and most convenient way to mix it, especially on the go, however, a blender would work too. I don’t recommend just a spoon as this is also likely to end up clumpy. 

Once you have your protein mixed in with your milk then it’s ready to be poured over your cereal.

What Else Can You Mix Whey Protein With?

Check out other articles:

Frequently Asked Questions

Here are some frequently asked questions for mixing whey protein and cereal as a bodybuilder.

Can You Eat Muscle Milk With Cereal?

Yes, muscle milk is a good brand of protein to mix with cereal. In particular, the pre-mixed protein shakes are often available at gas stations and stores to make for an easy on the go option for protein. Muscle milk does have more fat and carbs than mixing whey with almond milk making it better for those bulking.


About The Author

Laura Semotiuk

Laura Semotiuk is a Precision Nutrition Level 1 certified nutrition coach. She works with athletes and active individuals looking to improve performance and develop healthy nutritional habits and behaviors. She has a passion for cooking, meal prepping, and creating simple and healthy recipes. You can connect with Laura on Instagram or through her Website.