Ladder Whey Review (2024 Update) (2024)

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If Arnold Schwarzenegger made a protein powder would you buy it?

Ladder is banking on a “yes.” This is a very hot supplement company that’s not just backed by the Terminator it’s also got LeBron James, Lindsey Vonn, and Cindy Crawford as their founders.

If you’ve been taking supplements for a while, you may be wondering how anybody can do anything new or interesting with whey protein. It’s about the most common workout supplement you can find and you could be forgiven for thinking we’d done everything we can with whey.

Without overselling it, Ladder has produced something that stands out in the market. While it’s not super low in carbs it’s all natural, soy free, contains a surprising amount of vitamins, plus it delivers a hit of probiotic bacteria, which have a host of benefits for athletes.

Let’s take a closer look.

Ladder Whey

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Ladder Whey

Made with all natural, grass fed whey, Ladder's protein stands out from the crowd with the inclusion of probiotic bacteria, which may aid digestion.

Shop Ladder

What Is Ladder?

Besides Schwarzenegger, James, Vonn and Crawford, there are a few interesting things that are interesting about Ladder. The fact that there are such big name athletes attached to it means it has to be athlete friendly, so every one of their products is tested by NSF. That’s a product testing, inspection, and certification organization that makes sure there are no banned substances in the products. (Some might feel that’s unnecessary for a whey protein, but athletes can’t be too careful with supplements.)

Ladder is also only available direct to consumer, so you can’t get it in your local store, and the products are exclusively sold in little packets so that there’s no question of how much to take per serving.

Finally, the company offers customized supplement plans for you based on a short quiz you can take on their site. It’s pretty basic, asking if you take protein with every meal, if you take vitamin supplements, how often you work out, and so on. Then it delivers a recommendation for which of their supplements you should take and how often.

If you lift weights, it’s probably a good idea to take some whey every day. (At least, it makes that high protein intake easier to deal with.) Here’s what you’ll get with Ladder.

[Don’t miss our complete list of the best whey protein powders on the market!]

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Ladder Whey Nutrition

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One packet delivers:

130 Calories
26g protein
6g carbs (2g fiber, 3g sugar)
1g fat

The Chocolate and the Vanilla flavors have slightly different macronutrients — the Vanilla has 0.5 grams of fat and 1 fewer gram of carbohydrate. (Ladder still says they both have 130 calories, though Chocolate should be closer to 137 calories.)

But there’s more! This has a bunch of vitamins and minerals added to it and you’ll get 15 to 30 percent of your daily Vitamins A, C, E, magnesium, phosphorus, and a few others. It’s highest in calcium (44% of the RDI) and biotin (200%), a B-vitamin linked to healthy hair and skin.

Finally, there are 2 billion CFUs of probiotic bacteria in here from eight different strains.

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Ladder Whey Ingredients

Milk protein isolate and whey protein isolate are the first ingredients, meaning that whey isn’t actually the main protein in this product. (More on that below.) For the Chocolate flavor the rest of the ingredients are cocoa, cane sugar, natural flavors, salt, stevia, monk fruit extract, silica (an anti-caking agent), and a thickener blend (guar gum, xanthan gum, carrageenan).

The Vanilla flavor has pretty much the same ingredients but there’s no cocoa and it contains sunflower lecithin.

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Ladder Whey Benefits & Effectiveness

The ingredients are milk protein isolate (24.8 grams) and whey protein isolate (5.5 grams) and since milk protein is 80% casein, this actually has a lot more casein than whey. Casein is a slow digesting protein and whey digests more quickly, so combining the two may result in a shake that’s more filling and results in amino acids being released into the bloodstream more gradually over time.(1)

[Some say this makes casein more anabolic, others disagree — find out in our video comparing whey versus casein!]

The protein is also grass-fed, which is rare. Grass-fed whey has higher levels of beneficial fats like CLA, but there’s just 1 gram of fat per serving so the fact that it’s grass-fed won’t make much of a practical difference to your health.(2) But grass-fed cows are guaranteed to spend more time outside running around so it might bring some peace of mind in that respect.

It’s pretty remarkable that there are so many vitamins and minerals in this product, and it’s much higher in calcium than your standard whey, which might help with fat loss and testosterone.(3)(4)

Finally, the probiotic bacteria are a real standout. A very exciting area of nutrition research, having a gut with a lot of probiotic bacteria from a lot of different strains has been linked to better immunity, lower inflammation, and even better mental health.(5)(6)(7)(8)

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Ladder Whey Price

The more you buy, the cheaper the product gets. If you just want to try it out and not subscribe for regular shipments, you need to buy 8 bags, which come to a little over $3 per serving or 10 to 12 cents per gram of protein.

If you subscribe to 12 per month the cost drops to $2.40 to $2.60 each, or between 9 and 10 cents per gram of protein. Sign up for 30 per month and it drops to $1.90 to $2.10 per serving, or between 7 and 8 cents per gram.

Now, the average protein powder is between 3 and 5 cents per gram so this is on the pricier side, especially if you don’t subscribe. Then again it’s all natural, there’s no soy, it’s got vitamins, it’s got probiotics, amd it’s NSF certified, so there is a lot more going on here than with your standard whey.

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Ladder Whey Taste

I tried the Chocolate and the Vanilla flavors. The good news is the Chocolate is great: it’s not too sweet but not too bitter. I’d say it’s more like dark chocolate than milk chocolate but there’s also a real undercurrent of maltiness that helps to round out the flavor.

The Vanilla isn’t that great. It’s quite sweet, closer to an ice cream than a vanilla crème; I’d say it’s bordering on birthday cake. That’s not a problem for me, but it has chalky texture that coats the tongue after you drink it. That element is also there with the Chocolate but it’s more noticeable and unpleasant with the Vanilla.

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Ladder Whey: The Takeaway


  • All natural, grass fed, no soy
  • NSF certified
  • Extra vitamins
  • Has probiotics


  • Much higher in casein than whey
  • Pricy
  • Not particularly low carb
  • Gums can cause digestive discomfort

The biggest downsides here are that Ladder’s whey contains added sugar, isn’t that low in carbs, it’s expensive, and it has more casein than whey. (The casein content doesn’t make it any less anabolic, it just makes the label seem a little inaccurate.)

But it’s NSF certified, it’s all natural, the dairy’s grass fed, there’s no soy, it’s got a bunch of vitamins, and it delivers a big hit of probiotic bacteria. This definitely stands out in the market and if you like Chocolate, I think it might be worth the money, especially if you’re an athlete.

Other Great Protein Powders Reviews

  • Athletic Greens Whey Protein Review – Rating: 7.4/10
  • Xtend Pro Whey Isolate Review – Rating: 8.8/10
  • Designer Protein Native Whey Isolate Review – Rating: 8.4/10
  • FitMiss Delight Protein Powder Review – Rating: 7.5/10
  • AllMax IsoFlex Whey Protein Review – Rating: 8/10
  • BulkSupplements Whey Protein Isolate Review – Rating: 8.5/10

Related Best Protein Powders Content

  • The 7 Best Whey Protein Powders for 2019
  • What’s the Difference Between Grass-Fed Whey Vs. Regular Whey?
  • Whey Versus Casein: Which Is Better for Strength and Muscle Gain?
  • Orgain Organic Protein Plant Based Powder Review — Creamy and Vegan?
  • Optimum Nutrition Gold Standard Vs. Body Fortress Super Advanced Whey Protein — A Pretty Easy Winner
  • 6 Best Vegan Protein Powders you can buy in 2019 Reviewed


1.Boirie Y, et al. Slow and fast dietary proteins differently modulate postprandial protein accretion. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 1997 Dec 23;94(26):14930-5.
2.Dhiman TR, et al. Conjugated linoleic acid content of milk from cows fed different diets. J Dairy Sci. 1999 Oct;82(10):2146-56.
3.Cinar V, et al. Effects of magnesium supplementation on testosterone levels of athletes and sedentary subjects at rest and after exhaustion. Biol Trace Elem Res. 2011 Apr;140(1):18-23.
4.Christensen R, et al. Effect of calcium from dairy and dietary supplements on faecal fat excretion: a meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials. Obes Rev. 2009 Jul;10(4):475-86.
5. Carvalho BM, et al. Influence of gut microbiota on subclinical inflammation and insulin resistance. Mediators Inflamm. 2013;2013:986734.
6. Le Chatelier E, et al. Richness of human gut microbiome correlates with metabolic markers. Nature. 2013 Aug 29;500(7464):541-6.
7. Messaoudi M, et al. Assessment of psychotropic-like properties of a probiotic formulation (Lactobacillus helveticus R0052 and Bifidobacterium longum R0175) in rats and human subjects. Br J Nutr. 2011 Mar;105(5):755-64.
8. Schmidt K, et al. Prebiotic intake reduces the waking cortisol response and alters emotional bias in healthy volunteers. Psychopharmacology (Berl). 2015 May;232(10):1793-801.

Ladder Whey Review (2024 Update) (2024)


Ladder Whey Review (2024 Update)? ›

Without overselling it, Ladder has produced something that stands out in the market. While it's not super low in carbs it's all natural, soy free, contains a surprising amount of vitamins, plus it delivers a hit of probiotic bacteria, which have a host of benefits for athletes.

Which is the no. 1 protein powder in the world? ›

Momentous, the brand that makes the best-overall whey protein powder on this list, also makes my favorite plant-based protein powder. I like it because of its taste and mixability.

Is Ladder protein safe? ›

GMPs require all dietary supplement ingredients to be tested for identity, purity, and potency. In addition, all Ladder products are NSF Certified and are tested to confirm compliance with Ladder product quality and safety specifications.

What whey protein does Arnold Schwarzenegger use? ›

Here's how to make his protein shake and why we love his ingredient combination so much. Load up your shake with the premium protein powders that Arnold helped create: LADDER Whey and Plant Protein.

Who owns Ladder protein? ›

NBA player LeBron James and former California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger in Los Angeles, California. James and Schwarzenegger founded Ladder 2018, aiming to create nutritional products for athletes to combat cramping while in action.

What is the best protein powder for weight loss 2024? ›

Summary: Compare the Best Protein Powders for Weight Loss in 2024
ProductForbes Health RatingsLearn More
Orgain Organic Protein Powder5.0Shop Now On Amazon
Premier Protein 100% Whey Protein Powder4.5Shop Now On Amazon
NOW Sports Whey Protein Powder4.5Shop Now On Amazon
Ascent Native Whey Vanilla4.5Shop Now On Amazon
3 more rows
May 3, 2024

Is ladder protein grass-fed? ›

Ladder Grass-Fed Whey Protein sets itself apart by being the only brand to include essential amino acids and branched-chain amino acids.

Is plant protein safe for kidneys? ›

The benefits of plant proteins go beyond sodium and fats; since they contain calcium, magnesium and vitamin C, eating plant proteins can reduce the acid load in meals, which can actually improve kidney function. Plant proteins can lead to fewer deaths from kidney disease.

Do all protein powders have lead warning? ›

Protein & Multivitamins

While not every protein powder or multivitamin on the shelves has a Prop 65 warning, there's a good chance that many of them should. Protein powders are often plant-based, a common trigger for lead content.

Does Dwayne Johnson take whey protein? ›

Post-workout shake

The Rock also sometimes consumes a post-workout smoothie within 10 minutes of finishing his workout. According to his Instagram, his post-workout smoothie contains: 65–70 grams of whey protein.

Why does Arnold put alcohol in his protein shake? ›

Speaking via Zoom from Toronto, Canada, while drinking a glass of schnapps, Schwarzenegger said he originally started adding alcohol to his protein shakes in the hope that it might get the protein into his bloodstream faster.

Does LeBron James own Ladder? ›

LeBron James Launches Ladder, a Line of Nutritional and Performance Supplements. LeBron James.

Where is Ladder supplements headquarters? ›

We are thrilled to share that we have officially opened our new headquarters in Palo Alto, California. Since going remote with the rest of the world in March 2020, the Ladder team has more than doubled in size, welcoming new team members to help redeem life insurance for the digital consumer.

Does Ladder pre-workout have creatine? ›

Ladder Pre-Workout is third-party tested and NSF Certified for Sport. It's made with a combination of creatine monohydrate, beta-alanine, L-citrulline, L-theanine, phosphatidylserine, and caffeine. One serving contains 5 grams of creatine, 1.6 grams of beta-alanine, 200 mg of caffeine, and 6 grams of L-citrulline.

What is the best quality protein powder? ›

Best Overall

We love that Naked Nutrition's Chocolate Whey Protein Powder only has three ingredients, including grass-fed whey, raw cacao, and coconut sugar. Surprisingly, each serving contains only three grams of added sugar from the coconut sugar and provides just enough sweetness with a delicious taste.

What protein powder is best use? ›

If you are looking to build muscle, it is best to consume protein powder 20-30 minutes before your workout. This will give your body time to absorb the nutrients and put them to use. For muscle recovery, consuming protein powder and other protein supplements during the anabolic window is best.

What is the single best protein? ›

1. Salmon. “Animal protein sources are the most bioavailable, meaning they have the best absorption and a more complete amino acid profile than plant sources,” says Papanos. She recommends salmon, noting that it also provides other important nutrients, such as omega-3 fatty acids, which can enhance heart health.

What are the highest quality protein? ›

Meat – Most animal proteins are considered complete and high-quality. This includes red meat, poultry, and dairy products. Eggs – An average egg is a high-quality protein with approximately 6 or 7 grams of protein. Quinoa – This plant based food includes each of the 9 amino acids that are considered essential.

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