Vista, California-based PaleoPro has been in the supplement game for a while. The founders, Douglas Smith and Bill Fitzsimmons, started the brand as an off-shoot to their sourcing and manufacturing business several years ago when the Paleo diet first began its ascent.
Today, the company has a variety of protein and bone broth collagen powders derived from egg, beef and a blend that is solely created from plant-based proteins (used by world champion climber Sasha DiGiulian)
Regardless of whether you identify with the Paleo diet and lifestyle, just about anyone with a health-conscious eye to sourcing their food can appreciate PaleoPro’s minimal ingredient list (most of their protein powders have about 5 or 6 total ingredients, all of which are easily pronounceable and recognizable).
“This has always been our mantra,” Fitzsimmons tells ASN. “I hate it when you look at the back of a package and there’s a whole paragraph of ingredients.”
The business partners – who both hail from active outdoor backgrounds – say the goal was to get away from the majority of protein powders (like whey) which are typically derived from by-products. “We wanted to do the opposite – we wanted to create an easily digestible protein that was easy on the stomach and delicious at the same time.” This was not an easy task, both founders admit.
The process they created hinges on extracting protein from eggs and beef by shooting a high-pressure spray into a heat tunnel, and in the process removing the solid particles from the liquid. It sounds complicated, but it’s free of chemicals – a cornerstone that Fitzsimmons and Smith have built the brand around.
In fact, they’ve taken a “farm-to-table” approach to the business, responsibly sourcing their beef from farmers in Sweden (some of the only farmers in the world that can legally guarantee their cattle are truly grass-fed and-finished) and sourcing their eggs from pasture-raised, cage-free suppliers.
And to control quality, the PaleoPro team blends and packages all their products in-house, right down to applying the finishing details – such as their product labels – all by hand.
From an athlete-nutrition perspective, PaleoPro has a Recovery Powder that highlights one of nature’s most significant superfood: sweet potatoes. This source of carbohydrates is preferred by many within the paleo space for post-workout recovery because of its ability to help rebuild glycogen – the body’s backup source of fuel.
With PaleoPro’s Recovery Powder, they combine sweet potato with egg white protein, monk fruit extract and sunflower lecithin. The simple ingredients are also a direct reflection of the taste and texture of the product.
The recovery powder is a great addition to a shake or smoothie, mixed with almond or non-dairy milk, but is perhaps put to its best use when added to a pancake or waffle mix for a protein boost that will stick with you.
The taste has a slightly sweet note from the monk fruit, but not as overpowering as other protein powders we’ve tried that contain Stevia. One scoop contains about 5 grams of sugar and 130 calories, and also boasts 9 grams of protein, 11 grams of vitamin A, 21 mg of vitamin C and 33 mg of calcium.
We also put the Paleo Greens Powder to the test, mainly because it contains some of our favorite superfood ingredients: hemp seed protein, kale and spirulina powder. To round things out, the blend also has alfalfa powder and monk fruit extract. The fact that it’s vegan-friendly is also hugely appealing.
Hemp seeds provide protein and fiber to regulate digestion and insulin, while alfalfa and kale provide minerals and vitamins. Spirulina, a green algae, is also a source of protein and has a very high concentration of bio-available iron.
What we liked about this blend is that it contains some fat (about 1 gram) per single-serving scoop, as well as 30 calories, 5 grams of protein and zero grams of sugar. For those looking to clock more bang for their buck, Paleo Greens also has 33 mg of iron, 85 mg of Vitamin A and 9 mg of vitamin C.
The color and texture of this blend is definitely reminiscent of a green drink. Blended with some non-dairy milk (we used unsweetened vanilla flax milk), it makes a delicious (and filling) drink, reminiscent of a matcha green tea smoothie. This plant-based protein definitely just got pushed to the front of our everyday smoothie staples line up.
All in all, PaleoPro’s emphasis on minimal, responsibly-sourced and nutrient-dense ingredients seems to be paying off. We’re really looking forward to their seasonal holiday flavors (we’re talking maple pecan and mocha mint), not to mention a brand new energy protein that incorporates two highly touted ingredients: coffee and MCT oil. The new flavors and offerings are set to role out in the next few months, at which time another taste test will most definitely be in order.
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