• Top 10 Best Instant Breakfast Drinks in 2020 (Soylent, Huel, and More) 1
  • Top 10 Best Instant Breakfast Drinks in 2020 (Soylent, Huel, and More) 2
  • Top 10 Best Instant Breakfast Drinks in 2020 (Soylent, Huel, and More) 3
  • Top 10 Best Instant Breakfast Drinks in 2020 (Soylent, Huel, and More) 4
  • Top 10 Best Instant Breakfast Drinks in 2020 (Soylent, Huel, and More) 5

Top 10 Best Instant Breakfast Drinks in 2020 (Soylent, Huel, and More)

Many of us lead busy lives and don’t have time to prepare breakfast in the morning. Enter instant breakfast. They come in either liquid or powdered forms, and in a range of dietary variations to suit your needs. Some drinks double as meal replacements, others as simply snacks to jumpstart your morning!


To save you even more of your valuable time, we've compiled a list of our 10 favorite instant breakfast drinks. For instance, Boost Optimum's Creamy Vanilla Drinks are practically bursting with protein, nutrition, and flavor. See what else made list, and read our buying guide that outlines how you can find a great breakfast drink on your own!

This article's specialists

Kara Swanson
  • Last updated: 09-30-2020
  • 23,123 views
Table of Contents

Compare the Best Instant Breakfast Drinks

Image
1
Boost High Protein Balanced Nutritional Drink with Fiber 1

Boost

2
CLICK Coffee and Protein Drink Mix 1

CLICK

3
Soylent  Ready-to-drink Meal 1

Soylent

4
Huel Nutritionally Completed Food 1

Huel

5
Ambronite Drinkable Supermeal Smoothie Mix 1

Ambronite

6
Orgain All-in-One Nutritional Shake 1

Orgain

7
Iconic Grass Fed Protein Drink 1

Iconic

8
Ensure Plus Nutrition Shake 1

Ensure Plus

9
Carnation Breakfast Essentials Nutritional Drink 1

Carnation

10
Nestle Ovaltine 1

Nestle

Name

High Protein Balanced Nutritional Drink with Fiber

Coffee and Protein Drink Mix

Ready-to-drink Meal

Nutritionally Completed Food

Drinkable Supermeal Smoothie Mix

All-in-One Nutritional Shake

Grass Fed Protein Drink

Nutrition Shake

Breakfast Essentials Nutritional Drink

Ovaltine

Features

Our Best Pick! Advanced Nutrition Protein-Dense Drink

Caffeinated Protein Powder to Jolt You Awake

Breakfast Replacement Drink for Sustained Energy

A Cheaper, Synthetic Superfood Option

An All-Natural Superfood Powder in Smoothie Form

Non-GMO, High-Protein, Ready-to-Drink Breakfast Carton

A Low-Calorie, Low-Carb Drink Without GMO Ingredients

A Protein-Rich Breakfast Drink for Weight Gain

A Highly-Processed but Ready-to-Drink Option

A Cheap, Sweet, Chocolatey Drink from Switzerland

Price$29.88$17.62$39.00$89.95$23.49$23.00$35.99$24.97$19.98$23.64
Amount8 fl. oz. per bottle15.8 oz.14 fl. oz. per bottle3.85 lbs. per bag13.3 oz. per bag11 fl. oz. per carton11.5 fl. oz. per bottle8 fl. oz. per bottle8 fl. oz. per bottle12 oz. per tub
Available flavors3445345343
Formulated withMilk protein concentrate, sugar, vegetable oil, soy protein isolateCalcium caseinate, spray-dried coffee, cocoa, nonfat milkSoy protein isolate, maltodextrin, natural coffee flavor, high oleic sunflower oilPea and rice protein, oats, flaxseed, brown rice proteinOat protein, almonds, applesGrass fed organic milk protein concentrate, organic whey protein concentrate, organic brown rice syrupGrass fed milk protein isolate, organic blue agave, chicory root inulin, cocoa powderMilk protein concentrate, soy protein isolate, sugar, corn maltodextrinGlucose syrup, sugar, milk protein concentrateSugar, malt extract, whey
Nutrition factsSodium: 230mg; Carbs: 29g; Fiber: 3g; Protein: 20gSodium: 120mg; Carbs: 11g; Fiber: less than 1g; Protein: 16gSodium 300mg; Carbs: 37g; Fiber: 3g; Protein 20gSodium: 410mg; Carbs: 47g; Fiber: 9g; Protein: 37gFiber: 3g; Protein: 10gSodium: 260mg; Carbs: 32g; Fiber: 2g; Protein: 16gSodium: 220mg; Carbs: 8g; Fiber: 4g; Protein: 20gSodium: 210mg; Carbs: 50g; Fiber: less than 1g; Protein: 13gSodium: 160mg; Carbs: 41g; Fiber: 0g; Protein: 10gSodium: 70mg; Carbs: 9g; Fiber: 0g; Protein: 0g
Calories per serving24012040050016025013035024040
Link

Top 10 Best Instant Breakfast Drinks

Instant breakfast drinks are great because they are a fast and nutritional way to get your most important meal of the day. The following are our recommendations of the best instant breakfast drinks to buy online. If you like them enough, don’t hesitate to eat them for lunch, too!

※These rankings were decided based on user reviews and popular rank lists from Amazon gathered on July 16th.

1

BoostHigh Protein Balanced Nutritional Drink with Fiber

Very Vanilla, 24 pack

$29.88

Amount8 fl. oz. per bottle
Available flavors3
Formulated withMilk protein concentrate, sugar, vegetable oil, soy protein isolate
Nutrition factsSodium: 230mg; Carbs: 29g; Fiber: 3g; Protein: 20g
Calories per serving240
2

CLICKCoffee and Protein Drink Mix

Mocha

$17.62

Amount15.8 oz.
Available flavors4
Formulated withCalcium caseinate, spray-dried coffee, cocoa, nonfat milk
Nutrition factsSodium: 120mg; Carbs: 11g; Fiber: less than 1g; Protein: 16g
Calories per serving120
3

Soylent Ready-to-drink Meal

Cafe Mocha, 12 pack

$39.00

Amount14 fl. oz. per bottle
Available flavors4
Formulated withSoy protein isolate, maltodextrin, natural coffee flavor, high oleic sunflower oil
Nutrition factsSodium 300mg; Carbs: 37g; Fiber: 3g; Protein 20g
Calories per serving400
4

HuelNutritionally Completed Food

2 pack

$89.95

Amount3.85 lbs. per bag
Available flavors5
Formulated withPea and rice protein, oats, flaxseed, brown rice protein
Nutrition factsSodium: 410mg; Carbs: 47g; Fiber: 9g; Protein: 37g
Calories per serving500
5

AmbroniteDrinkable Supermeal Smoothie Mix

Original

$23.49

Amount13.3 oz. per bag
Available flavors3
Formulated withOat protein, almonds, apples
Nutrition factsFiber: 3g; Protein: 10g
Calories per serving160
6

OrgainAll-in-One Nutritional Shake

Creamy Chocolate Fudge, 12 pack

$23.00

Amount11 fl. oz. per carton
Available flavors4
Formulated withGrass fed organic milk protein concentrate, organic whey protein concentrate, organic brown rice syrup
Nutrition factsSodium: 260mg; Carbs: 32g; Fiber: 2g; Protein: 16g
Calories per serving250
7

IconicGrass Fed Protein Drink

Chocolate Truffle, 12 pack

$35.99

Amount11.5 fl. oz. per bottle
Available flavors5
Formulated withGrass fed milk protein isolate, organic blue agave, chicory root inulin, cocoa powder
Nutrition factsSodium: 220mg; Carbs: 8g; Fiber: 4g; Protein: 20g
Calories per serving130
8

Ensure PlusNutrition Shake

Vanilla, 16 pack

$24.97

Amount8 fl. oz. per bottle
Available flavors3
Formulated withMilk protein concentrate, soy protein isolate, sugar, corn maltodextrin
Nutrition factsSodium: 210mg; Carbs: 50g; Fiber: less than 1g; Protein: 13g
Calories per serving350
9

CarnationBreakfast Essentials Nutritional Drink

24 pack

$19.98

Amount8 fl. oz. per bottle
Available flavors4
Formulated withGlucose syrup, sugar, milk protein concentrate
Nutrition factsSodium: 160mg; Carbs: 41g; Fiber: 0g; Protein: 10g
Calories per serving240
10

NestleOvaltine

Chocolate Malt, 6 pack

$23.64

Amount12 oz. per tub
Available flavors3
Formulated withSugar, malt extract, whey
Nutrition factsSodium: 70mg; Carbs: 9g; Fiber: 0g; Protein: 0g
Calories per serving40

How to Choose an Instant Breakfast Drink – Buying Guide

Here, we'll be introducing the following three important points to check when you choose an instant breakfast drink.

Points to Consider:

  1. Choose a Nutrient Profile That Matches Your Diet
  2. Decide Between Powdered and Liquid Drinks
  3. Consider Whether Taste or Nutrition Matters More

1. Choose a Nutrient Profile That Matches Your Diet

We often consider breakfast drinks to be chocolatey, fatty beverages like Nesquik that fill your tummy up and only that. That’s simply not the case. There are high protein, nutrient-rich, and--yes--very sweet options to choose from. Let’s examine them.

High Protein for Fitness-Minded Individuals

High Protein for Fitness-Minded Individuals
Breakfast is the most important meal of the day. Don’t get us wrong. If you have time in the morning to cook, bacon and eggs are usually a classic option. It’s partially classic because, well, it tastes good, but also because it has lots of protein.

You should space out your protein intake throughout the day. Taking some in early, as breakfast, is a good way to make sure you do that. Our bodies can’t metabolize large sums of protein at once, anyways. For individuals who exert lots of physical strength, you need to ingest between 25-35 grams of protein in a meal.

If you work out in the early morning before work, a protein-rich breakfast drink is a great way to make sure you maintain your muscle mass. When you work out, you’re essentially breaking muscle fibers apart. Protein is required to repair them. To maximize muscle protein synthesis, consume your breakfast drink within 30 minutes of working out.

Full Vitamin and Mineral Profile if You Don’t Have Time to Eat Breakfast

Full Vitamin and Mineral Profile if You Don’t Have Time to Eat Breakfast
If you find yourself listless or snacking in the late morning hours before lunch, that’s because you’re not eating a healthy enough breakfast. It’s an important balance to strike. 

In order to be satisfactorily full for the next 5-6 hours, you’re going to need to choose a breakfast drink that has 600-800 calories. That sometimes might mean adding milk or drinking two at once.

Also, ensuring you get enough protein, fiber-rich carbohydrates, and fats will help keep you full until lunch. How much is enough? Well, if you’ve got no dietary restrictions, go for about 70 grams of carbs. About 20 grams of protein has been shown to fend off sudden cravings.

Full Vitamin and Mineral Profile if You Don’t Have Time to Eat Breakfast

And, there’s no minimum amount of fat, per se–just get some in so both your mood and energy levels stay high. Instant breakfast drinks are designed to get you the necessary macro (carbs, proteins, fats) and micronutrients. Check the nutritional chart on the back to make sure you’re getting enough calcium, iron, Vitamins A, C, and B.

High Fiber for Diets

High Fiber for Diets
Fiber is a complex carbohydrate that is found in most plant based foods. Since fiber can not be completely broken down by our bodies, it helps keep us full. As it passes through our bodies, it acts as somewhat of a scrub brush that cleans out your intestines. This promotes a healthy gut, along with a ton of other health benefits.
A diet high in fiber makes your food easier to digest. When you have a good amount of fiber in your breakfast drink, you’ll find it easier to focus for the rest of the day. According to the American Dietetic Association, it’s better to get your fiber from actual foods (including instant breakfast drinks) rather than pills or supplements.

The ADA recommends that males get at least 38 grams of fiber per day and females ingest 25 grams of fiber per day. A high fiber diet leads to “normal” and healthy bowel movements, too.

2. Decide Between Powdered and Liquid Drinks

So, you opted for a breakfast drink because you don’t have time to cook breakfast. We don’t blame you. It can be hard to factor in that extra 15-30 precious minutes in the morning to make breakfast. You’d rather be sleeping, and so would we.

Instant breakfast drinks come in powdered or liquid forms, and your decision will boil down to social factors and how much time you have.

Powdered Drinks are Easily Shared and Applied to Other Foods

Powdered Drinks are Easily Shared and Applied to Other Foods
A powdered breakfast drink is not as instant as a liquid one, although we admit the difference is slim. Oftentimes, powdered drinks require 1-2 minutes of mixing with water (or milk), which can seem like forever if you seriously overslept, we guess.
Additionally, powdered foods can be added into other foods like soup, pasta, and even stir fries if you’re feeling bold. But you probably aren’t going to want to add a chocolatey powdered drink into a tomato soup. The meal replacement powders (like Huel and Ambronite) or smarter for this choice because they taste more basic.
If you like to eat breakfast with your family, think about getting a powdered drink. It might take more prep time, but you also get the ability to mix it in with others’ foods.

Liquid Drinks Save You the Most Time

Liquid Drinks Save You the Most Time
The idea behind “instant breakfast drinks” is that they’re instant. Well, this is as close to instant as you can get. If you’re trying to chug and go, then a liquid form is best. Literally just grab it out of your refrigerator and drink it while you walk or drive to work (but keep your eyes on the road!).
The liquid breakfast drinks are meant to give you the nutrients you need to start your day in as little time as possible. If you’ve got other things on your mind and don’t want to mess with the prep work involved in powdered drinks, go liquid.

3. Consider Whether Taste or Nutrition Matters More

Why is it that medicine is bitter and poison is so sweet? Unfortunately, even with breakfast drinks, you’ll have to choose between flavor and nutrition as well–one just can’t have it all.

Choose Classic Brands Like Carnation for Flavor

Carnation is probably the most well-known instant breakfast drink brand, and their liquid forms come in three flavors: rich chocolate, french vanilla, and strawberry. Their powdered forms add dark chocolate, chocolate malt, and café mocha to the menu. Ensure has even more variation: chocolates, vanilla, strawberry, butter pecan, and coffee latte.

If you want liquid deliciousness, then, by all means, go for these big brands. They’ve even got variety packs, if you’re looking to shake things up. But, they’re fairly high on sugar and use synthetic nutrients as opposed to natural ones.

When you look at the list of ingredients on a Carnation bottle, for example, corn syrup and sugar are listed second and third. Ingredients in food are listed in descending order of predominance, meaning the first listed ingredient is the most plentiful. That’s a lot of sugar.

Go With Modern Meal Replacement Brands for Nutrition

On the other hand, newer or lesser-known companies like Ambronite, Huel, and even Soylent focus more on the nutritional component rather than the flavor. Their brands are targeted more towards simply getting the nutrients you need rather than crafting a delicious drink.

Now, taste is all a matter of opinion, so you might enjoy the chalky, “oatmealey” taste of the aforementioned brands. Huel, for example, touts itself as having at least “100% of the FDA’s Daily Values of all 27 essential vitamins and minerals.”

If you buy enough of it, each breakfast will set you back 2 bucks, and the powder is good for a year! Ambronite has a similar nutritional and mineral spectrum to Huel, but is also non-GMO and minimally processed. It’s more expensive, though.

Other Great Options to Start Your Day With

Other Great Options to Start Your Day With

Here are some delicious options to consume when you do have the time to enjoy a full meal.

Summary

No matter how busy you are, you don’t have any excuse to skip breakfast. We’ve given you a bevy of powdered and liquid forms that can be added into your diet or replace your breakfast entirely.

Don’t be afraid to give the superfood options a go. Your future self may thank you for being ahead of your diet, and ahead of the trend!

Breakfast Drinks Our Experts Love

If you're looking for even more options for instant breakfast drinks, then check out this recommendation from certified nutritionist and Life Well Lived founder, Kara Swanson. It's filling, healthy, and tastes great!

Specialist's
mybest

ApresProtein Drink

12 pack, Sea Salt Chocolate

$39.99

Related Articles

Popular Articles

  • Top 10 Best Healthy Energy Drinks in 2021 (Guru, Celcius, and More)
    Top 10 Best Healthy Energy Drinks in 2021 (Guru, Celcius, and More)
    We all get it—that mid-afternoon slump. It can be tempting to reach for an energy drink for that little boost that can get you through the rest of the day. But most energy drinks are full of sugar and processed ingredients that can quickly leave you feeling worse than before.Luckily, there is an increasing number of healthier energy drinks with less sugar and less junk that provide an easier, more sustained energy boost. In this guide, we’ll go over the factors you should look for when choosing a healthy energy drink. At the end, we’ve also got a list of our 10 favorites to get you started on your search, including our absolute favorite, Guru's Organic Energy Drink!
    Food and drinks
    47,739 views
  • Top 10 Best Spicy Ramen Noodles in 2021 (Samyang, Nongshim, and More)
    Top 10 Best Spicy Ramen Noodles in 2021 (Samyang, Nongshim, and More)
    Instant noodles are the star food item of university life – easy, simple, and quick to make. And they’re tasty to boot! But sometimes a cup of classic instant noodles just doesn’t cut it. If you love spices—that tingling sensation lingering on your lips and your tongue after a good bowl of extra spicy ramen noodles, then you need to find the right pack!We’re here to help you pick out what’s spicy and what’s not with our handy buying guide and top 10 list. Personally, we loved Samyang’s 2x Spicy Hot Chicken Ramen for its extra-hot blend of spices, broth, and notoriety. Check out some more of our favorites below!
    Food and drinks
    17,063 views
  • Top 10 Best Healthy Mayonnaises in 2021 (Sir Kensington’s, Chosen Foods, and More)
    Top 10 Best Healthy Mayonnaises in 2021 (Sir Kensington’s, Chosen Foods, and More)
    Gone are the days of low-fat everything. Full-fat products are back, and as a result, mayonnaise is having a bit of a moment. But we’re a little more conscious now—a bit warier of the kinds of mayonnaise that we’re eating, and luckily there have arisen a number of healthy options to cater to our needs.With so many options, though, it can be overwhelming to choose which to buy. So in this guide and armed with advice from nutritionist Kara Swanson, we’ll talk about the differences between various mayonnaises, how to find one that’s actually healthy, and how to choose one that’s best for you. Our favorite was Sir Kensington's Organic Mayonnaise. Read on for why!
    Food and drinks
    12,074 views
  • Top 10 Best Salts in 2021 (Morton, McCormick, and More)
    Top 10 Best Salts in 2021 (Morton, McCormick, and More)
    No spice rack is complete without salt. In fact, it's the most used spice in the world, highlighting and enhancing the flavor of virtually all foods. Salt doesn't need to be used just for cooking, either! It can be used for spa treatments and creating various skincare products. But with so many different kinds, it’s important to know what features to look for when purchasing salt. You'll need to find out where it’s from, how it's used, and what people have said about it. We've done all the hard research and picked the San Francisco Salt Company's Sherpa Pink Himalayan Salt as our number one. It can be used in multiple ways, is packed with trace nutrients, and tastes great. Take a look below for more!
    Food and drinks
    19,239 views
  • Top 9 Best Sweet Japanese Sakes in 2021 - Tried and True! (Ozeki and More)
    Top 9 Best Sweet Japanese Sakes in 2021 - Tried and True! (Ozeki and More)
    Japanese sweet sakes have a smooth, mellow flavor that makes them easy to drink and popular among people who enjoy cocktails and wine. However, it's surprisingly difficult to find actual sweet sakes on the market. Among those you can find, we tested to find what was the most delicious.We searched Japanese e-commerce sites (such as Amazon, Rakuten, and Kakaku.com) for the best sweet Japanese sakes, chose the 9 most popular products, tested them along with three sake specialists, then rated each sake's deliciousness by analyzing its level of sweetness and the strength of its aroma and flavor. Lastly, we compiled our results into a buying guide about and list of the best sweet Japanese sakes available online with extra tips from expert Sandra Gwee.
    Food and drinks
    11,762 views
  • Top 10 Best Healthy Jellies in 2021 (Crofter's, Nature's Hollow, and More)
    Top 10 Best Healthy Jellies in 2021 (Crofter's, Nature's Hollow, and More)
    Breakfast is hardly complete without a large shmear of jelly, but most conventional jellies are full of preservatives, stabilizers, and excessive sugars. That’s why we decided to figure out what makes a great healthy jelly!In our research, we found that the best jellies contain just fruit, sugar, and pectin, fit your macronutrient needs, and are non-GMO. They might not even be jellies at all but jams and preserves instead. Keeping these things in mind, we’ve come up with a list of our favorite healthy jellies available online, including our top pick by Crofter's. We've also prepared a handy buying guide with extra tips from nutritionist Kara Swanson.
    Food and drinks
    18,393 views
  • Top 13 Best Japanese Emergency Bread Rations to Buy Online 2020 - Tried and True!
    Top 13 Best Japanese Emergency Bread Rations to Buy Online 2020 - Tried and True!
    Today, we will introduce Japanese emergency bread rations, which is almost essential in countries where natural disasters frequently occur. There are a lot of different food manufacturers out there selling a number of emergency ration products, but aren't you curious to know which ones stand out among the rest?Our editors searched Japanese e-commerce sites (Amazon, Rakuten, and Yahoo! Shopping, etc.) for the most popular selling emergency rations and put them to the test to give you our highest recommendations! Under the supervision of a disaster prevention professional, we examined each bread ration for the following 3 criteria. TasteShelf LifeEase of DisposalSo, use our guide to see which bread ration gets our "best buy" recommendation!
    Food and drinks
    3,005 views
  • Popular Item Lists

    Search by Category