Alternatives to Recovery Drinks

Looking at different options for sports nutrition and seemingly a lot stuff geared for post-ride protein/carb replenishment are drink mixes.

So I have a weird tick: I have an aversion to thick drinks. With that being said what are good alternatives to recovery drinks either it be bars or anything marketed for sports nutrition or simply something I could buy at a grocery store?

Chocolate milk. I sometimes use whole milk with some Hersey chocolate ‘syrup’ (at least when the kiddos haven’t finished it off, first). :rofl:


You can change the ratio of liquid to powder to get a thinner drink. I do it all the time.


Any sort of real food with some protein and carbs will do. Turkey sandwiches are great.


I don’t understand Recovery drinks. Cut up some fruit in a bowl, add raw traditional oats like you would to a bowl of cereal, pour some milk in it.

More carbs and protein than you need. It’s cheap as chips, it’s real food and it tastes good.


Burrito and a glass of milk is my favorite afternoon recovery meal if dinner is hours away. If I’m out of burritos, then its cereal, blueberries, and milk. If no blueberries then strawberries or bananas.

A meal. A proper meal.

Ideally, something that was prepared and cooked the day before.

Fall off the bike. Throw the food in the oven. Get a shower. Take food out of the oven. Eat.

Failing that - toast. Or a bagel. Or granola with milk and cereal.

If your preferred ‘real food’ option isn’t giving you the ideal amount of protein you can also add a scoop of unflavoured protein powder to quite a lot of dishes. Changes flavour profile a bit and might not be palatable to everyone, but I’ve had acceptable results in several situations (oatmeal, vegetarian pasta sauces, soups, etc.)

A few things I use regularly (that aren’t my roommate’s leftover pizza or half a jar of pickles :shushing_face:)

  • yogurt or cereal with whatever fruit I have in the fridge
  • toasted cheese and whatever sandwiches
  • oatmeal with protein powder
  • latte and a banana (or a baked good if I’m feeling frisky)
  • rice with a fried egg (I usually make rice for an army, but the little microwave packets are convenient too)
  • pita bread and hummus

Whats not to understand about chocolate milk?! Nectar of the gods.

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I like to have a meal waiting for me- some grilled chicken with rice and veggies is my go to. I can pack that in cooler when I am riding away from home. If I don’t have that I pack a good protein bar - Clif, Rx or whatever I pick up at the grocery store.

I use orgain grass fed whey protein and depending on what i mix it with the consistency is not all that thick. Water would probably get you the loosest consistency but I find almond “milk” (which isn’t far off from water) yields similar results. It got real thick when I used fair life chocolate milk to mix, almost like a milk shake and rather decadent. If you want additional carbs pair with a banana. It’s been said that recovery shakes aren’t all that necessary unless we’re doing double days but I find I recover better in general if I get a post ride protein shake in. Real food takes care of the rest.