We test and review fitness products based on an independent, multi-point methodology. If you use our links to purchase something, we may earn a commission. Read our disclosures.

As teens get older and more advanced in their sport, they may explore dietary supplements in an effort to maximize their athletic performance. The effects of creatine supplementation have been studied extensively in adults, but research has shown that creatine can be beneficial for teens if used under the right conditions. The International Society of Sports Nutrition1 position stand states that creatine monohydrate supplements are appropriate for adolescent athletes who are competing at a serious level and who are knowledgeable about its effects.

In our search for the best creatine for teens, we found nine strong contenders, each with their own highlighted benefits. Our team of testers analyzed every aspect of some of the best products on the market to give you an in-depth assessment and a clear picture of what to expect with these supplements. 

Medical disclaimer: This article is intended for educational and informational purposes only. It is not intended as a substitute for medical advice. For health advice, contact a licensed healthcare provider.

The Best Creatine for Teens

Best Creatine for Teens: XWERKS Lift

Good for: Young athletes who want a pure creatine powder that’s easy to digest

Best Overall

XWERKS Lift

GGR Score: 4.5 starstarstarstarstar

Product Highlights

  • Pure micronized creatine monohydrate
  • Unflavored
  • Each bag contains 80, 5-gram servings
  • Mixes into your favorite drink 

Pros & Cons

Pros

  • One simple ingredient
  • Easy to digest
  • Combined with strength training it increases the growth of lean muscle

Cons

  • Does not come in flavors

Bottom Line

Xwerks Lift is an affordable, clean, and effective creatine supplement that provides 5 grams of micronized creatine monohydrate per scoop. Anyone looking for a simple and budget-friendly creatine powder may be pleased with Lift.

Out of all the creatine supplements we researched for teens, XWERKS Lift took home the MVP, in our opinion. Since teens are still developing mentally and physically, we prioritized supplements that keep it simple. We appreciate that XWERKS Lift only contains creatine, allowing teens more control over what goes into their system.

Certified sports nutrition coach Amanda Capritto tested this creatine and gave its formulation a score of 5 out of 5, saying, “It’s just straight-up creatine monohydrate—love to see it! No additives, no flavorings, no nothin’.”

She rated the solubility an almost-perfect 4.75 out of 5. “I give this an almost-perfect score because it does leave some grainy residue in the bottom of the glass when mixed with plain water. However, it doesn’t have a grainy mouthfeel going down the hatch,” she said. 

RELATED: How To Use Creatine

A hand is shown stirring XWERKS Lift creatine into a glass of water

Each serving provides 5 grams of creatine monohydrate, and that’s it! No unnecessary fluff or questionable ingredients add to its cost or detract from its safety. Micronized creatine is made by breaking down creatine molecules into even smaller particles, with the idea that they are more readily absorbed for the body to use.

XWERKS Lift is unflavored, so it’s easy to mix into your favorite drink or stack with other safe supplements for teenagers. And with 80 servings per container, it costs around $0.61 per scoop, making it an affordable option for teens.

Unfortunately, there’s no mention of third-party testing on the product, which may be a deal breaker for some. It’s important to remember that the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) does not regulate dietary supplements, so third-party testing can add some peace of mind regarding their safety, especially for young athletes.

Still, XWERKS products are backed by science, and the studies are even linked on the website. Some of the linked sources are out-of-date—but to be fair, not much has changed with creatine over the last several years.

Price per serving$0.61
Servings per container80
Creatine per serving5 g
IngredientsMicronized Creatine Monohydrate
FlavorsUnflavored
Third-party testingNo

Best Creatine HMB for Teens: Transparent Labs Creatine HMB

Good for: Teens who want to improve their aerobic power

Best Creatine HMB

Transparent Labs Creatine HMB

GGR Score: 4.5 starstarstarstarstar

Product Highlights

  • Uses research-backed doses 
  • Available in 10 fruit flavors as well as an unflavored option
  • Free from artificial sweeteners, colored dyes, fillers, and harmful additives

Pros & Cons

Pros

  • 10+ flavors, 1 unflavored option
  • Includes B-Hydroxy B-Methylbutyrate (HMB)
  • 5 grams of creatine monohydrate per serving
  • Contains no added sugar, artificial sweeteners, dyes, or fillers

Cons

  • No stimulant (for those looking for pre-workout boost)

Bottom Line

Transparent Labs’ Creatine HMB puts a unique twist on the more traditional creatine monohydrate by adding HMB to more effectively build strength, stamina and recovery.

Creatine is one of the most widely studied sports supplements on the market. For years, we’ve seen creatine improve exercise performance by supporting muscle growth and strength gains. But recently, beta-hydroxy beta-methylbutyrate, or HMB, hit the scene and changed the game again.

HMB has been linked to improved workout performance2 when combined with creatine monohydrate. Not all creatine supplements contain HMB, but Transparent Labs Creatine HMB does, and we think they nailed it. 

Transparent Labs Creatine HMB is slightly more expensive than other creatine powders, but you might consider it a “you get what you pay for” situation. Each serving is around $1.67 but provides 5 grams of creatine monohydrate, 1.5 grams of HMB, 5 milligrams of BioPerine, and 12.5 micrograms of vitamin D. And the formula is free from artificial sweeteners, colorings, and preservatives.

BioPerine is a black pepper extract that has proven effective in increasing the bioavailability of supplement nutrients. It can help you absorb more of the supplement you bought with your hard-earned money. Vitamin D helps regulate calcium and phosphorus levels in the body, which are linked to muscle growth and mental sharpness. Plus, Transparent Labs Creatine HMB is available in 14 unique flavors, so you likely won’t get bored.

transparent labs creatine

Nicole Davis, GGR senior editor and certified nutrition coach, tested Transparent Labs Creatine HMB and while she rated the formulation a 5 out of 5, she was less impressed with the flavor and solubility. “I tried Black Cherry and I wasn’t a huge fan of the taste of this one—it tasted a bit watered down, even with the right amount of water,” she said. “Some people may prefer this though!” She rated the taste a 4 out of 5 and the solubility a 3.5 out of 5 because she experienced some floaties and said it didn’t dissolve completely.

Last but not least, Creatine HMB is tested by a third-party lab and Informed Choice certified. Teens can take this supplement with the confidence that no banned substances are sneaking in.

For a more detailed look at this creatine, check out our full Transparent Labs Creatine HMB review.

Price per serving$1.67
Servings per container30
Creatine per serving5 g
IngredientsCreatine Monohydrate, HMB, BioPerine, Vitamin D
FlavorsBlue Raspberry, Sour Grape, Tropical Punch, Peach Rings, Cherry Kiwi, Fruit Punch, Watermelon, Black Cherry, Orange, Hawaiian Splash, Peach Mango, Strawberry Lemonade, Blueberry Pomegranate, Unflavored
Third-party testingYes

Best Creatine HCl for Teens: Kaged Creatine HCl

Good for: Teens who want to take a smaller dose of creatine 

Best Creatine HCl

Kaged Creatine HCl

GGR Score: 4.35 starstarstarstarstar

Product Highlights

  • Only patented form of creatine HCL
  • Kaged Creatine HCl skips the loading phase
  • Available in capsule form as well
  • Third-party tested
  • Available as Unflavored or Lemon Lime
  • Free from artificial flavors and colors
  • Formulated to avoid gastrointestinal issues

Pros & Cons

Pros

  • Only patented form of creatine HCL
  • Clean formula
  • No loading phase
  • Available in capsule form
  • Third-party tested
  • Lemon Lime mixes well and tastes good
  • Helps avoids stomach issues

Cons

  • Expensive

Bottom Line

If you're looking for a pure creatine HCL and are willing to pay for high quality, Kaged Creatine HCl may be for you.

Creatine HCl is characterized by a creatine molecule with hydrochloride attached. The HCl is said to help with water solubility and absorption, thereby increasing the stability of the creatine molecule. With this increased stability, a creatine loading phase isn’t as essential as it is with other forms of creatine.

We tried several creatine HCl formulas, and Kaged was our favorite by far. Kaged Creatine HCl provides 750 milligrams of creatine HCl per scoop—much less than other creatine supplements, right? Yeah, we noticed that too. The idea behind their formula is that the HCl helps your body absorb the creatine more effectively, meaning less creatine per serving can have the same effects. However, there’s room for more research behind that claim.

RELATED: Creatine HCl vs Monohydrate

A shaker cup half full of Kaged Muscle Creatine

The lower creatine content is reflected in the product’s cost of around $0.33 per serving. Kaged Creatine HCl is available as a powder or in veggie capsules. You can get the powder in one of three flavors: fruit punch, lemon-lime, and unflavored. Kaged recommends taking multiple servings daily if you don’t consume other creatine-containing sources.

GGR Senior Editor Nicole Davis, CPT, PN1-NC, tested out this creatine and rated it a 5 out of 5 for taste. “I tried the Lemon Lime flavor and really liked it—it was tart and not too sweet,” she said.

The icing on the cake with this product is its Informed-Sport certification. Every batch of Kaged Creatine HCl is tested for banned substances, meaning you know exactly what you’re getting with your purchase. As a teen athlete, that’s some serious added peace of mind. 

Price per serving$0.33
Servings per container75
Creatine per serving750 mg
IngredientsCreatine Hydrochloride, Natural Flavors, Sucralose
FlavorsFruit Punch, Lemon Lime, Unflavored, Vegetable Caps
Third-party testingYes

Best Creatine Gummy for Teens: Swoly

Good for: Teens who prioritize convenience in their supplement routine 

Best Gummy

Swoly Creatine Gummies

GGR Score: 4.25 starstarstarstarstar

Product Highlights

  • Creatine in gummy form
  • Strawberry-flavored
  • 4 grams of creatine monohydrate per serving
  • 5 gummies per serving

Pros & Cons

Pros

  • Yummy way to get your creatine in
  • Some may prefer over the powder
  • Taste great

Cons

  • Does contain added sugar
  • Only 4 grams of creatine per serving
  • 5 gummies per serving

Bottom Line

Swoly's creatine gummies are a delicious way to take your creatine daily, especially if you don't care for the powdered form. You'll need five of these to reach a serving, and a serving is only 4 grams of creatine (not the research-backed dose of 5 grams that we like to see), but they taste great nonetheless.

Gummies are gaining momentum in the supplement world, and creatine hasn’t been left behind. Many companies offer creatine gummies, but we think Swoly Creatine Mono Gummies are the top choice for teens. Each serving of Swoly creatine gummies provides 4 grams of creatine, all in a convenient and satisfying handful of chewy candies. And we mean a handful because you have to eat five gummies to get the total dose. 

That may not be an issue, though. According to GGR Head of Content Kate Meier, who scored them a perfect 5 out of 5 for taste, these are, “Friggin delicious. Dangerously delicious. Like, need-to-make-sure-my-child-doesn’t-find-these-or-she-will-eat-them-all kind of delicious! They remind me of the BEST fruit snacks ever (Annie’s Homegrown Organic). I’d eat these as a snack every day.”

An image of Swoly creatine gummies

Swoly gummies are optimally dosed, as research shows that creatine supplements are best absorbed in doses of 3-5 grams3. Of course, it’s important to remember that much of the research has revolved around creatine powders—not gummies. And unfortunately, there is no mention of third-party testing on the website.

Each serving costs around $1.17, and you get 30 servings per container. There’s only one flavor available, so if you’re not a fan of strawberry, this may not be your jam. It also contains 2.5 grams of added sugar, which isn’t an alarming amount—just something to consider.

Price per serving$1.17
Servings per container30
Creatine per serving4 g
IngredientsSucrose, Dextrose, Maltodextrin, Natural and Artificial Flavors, Fruit and Vegetable Juice (for color), Stearic Acid, Citric Acid, Carnauba Wax 
FlavorsStrawberry
Third-party testingNo

Best Creatine for Teen Beginners: Bulk Supplements Creatine Powder

Good for: Teens who haven’t tried a creatine supplement before

Best for Beginners

BulkSupplements Creatine Powder

GGR Score: 3.7 starstarstarstarstar

Product Highlights

  • 5 grams of pure creatine monohydrate
  • Formulated to promote muscle mass, improve recovery time, and increase anaerobic strength
  • Available in multiple sizes as well as in capsule form
  • Dairy-, soy-, sugar-, yeast-, and gluten-free

Pros & Cons

Pros

  • Receives very positive reviews from the vast majority of users
  • Great customer service
  • Mixes well
  • Several sizes available
  • Both vegetarian and gelatin capsules available
  • Dairy-, soy-, sugar-, yeast-, and gluten-free

Cons

  • In capsule form, you must consume seven pills

Bottom Line

Bulk Supplements’ Creatine Powder is an effective supplement that is sugar-, dairy-, soy-, gluten-, and yeast-free so may be a good choice for anyone with dietary restrictions.

If you’re a teen new to the creatine game, we understand if you’re feeling overwhelmed by the hundreds of options out there. We’ve been there, so we went on the hunt for the best creatine for teen beginners, and we found—drum roll—Bulk Supplements Creatine powder!

Bulk Supplements Creatine Monohydrate Micronized Powder can be a great introduction to the creatine world, but it’s also good enough to keep taking once you’re a seasoned veteran. For beginners, we wanted to find an affordable creatine product with a simple ingredients list that was third-party tested and easy to stack with other supplements, and Bulk Supplements’ creatine checked all the boxes.

Nicole Davis, GGR senior editor and certified nutrition coach, tested this and scored Bulk Supplements Creatine a 5 out of 5 in the categories of taste, solubility, and formulation. She does note that it doesn’t come with a scooper; not a big deal but something to be aware of so you don’t waste time searching through the bag.

It contains 5 grams of creatine monohydrate per serving and nothing else. It’s free from gluten, soy, dairy, added sugar, and other additives. Since it’s unflavored, it’s easy to take on its own or mix with other supplements. And it’s only $0.55 per scoop when you buy the container of 20 servings, so it’s not an intimidating investment for those who aren’t sure what benefits to expect.

Plus, Bulk Supplements sends all their products for third-party testing, giving you peace of mind that what’s advertised on the label is what you’re putting in your body.

For more detailed information, check out our full Bulk Supplements Creatine review

Price per serving$0.55
Servings per container20
Creatine per serving5 g
IngredientsCreatine Monohydrate
FlavorsUnflavored 
Third-party testingYes

Best Creatine for Teens Post-Workout: Legion Recharge

Good for: Teens who want to maximize their workout recovery 

Best for Post-Workout

Legion Recharge

GGR Score: 4.4 starstarstarstarstar

Product Highlights

  • Nature-based post-workout drink designed to improve recovery and increase muscle growth
  • Contains 5 grams of micronized creatine, 2.1 grams of L-carnitine L-tartrate, 10.5 milligrams of corosolic acid
  • Research-backed levels of ingredients
  • Made in a cGMP, FDA-inspected, and NSF-certified facility
  • Money-back guarantee

Pros & Cons

Pros

  • Great customer service
  • Money-back guarantee
  • Can view actual lab results
  • All natural
  • No added sugar

Cons

  • Stevia flavor is too sweet for some
  • Unflavored is actually sweetened

Bottom Line

If you’re looking for an all-natural post-workout supplement that is made of research-backed ingredients, Recharge post-workout supplement is one worth considering. Its taste and positive impact on performance is appreciated by the vast majority of users.

There isn’t much concrete evidence surrounding the best time to take a creatine supplement4, but we think Legion Recharge is ideal for those who want post-workout creatine—”recharge” is in the name, after all!

RELATED: When Is the Best Time to Take Creatine?

Legion Recharge provides 5 grams of creatine per serving. However, the post-workout hype comes from the L-carnitine tartrate that’s included in the formula. Research has shown that L-carnitine tartrate improves short-term recovery5 in athletes through its role in energy production. But how? Great question. Carnitine6, derived from an amino acid, helps transport fatty acids to the mitochondria, where they’re oxidized to produce an energy source in the form of adenosine triphosphate (ATP).

Legion products are made in the U.S. in FDA-inspected facilities that meet Current Good Manufacturing Practice regulations. Plus, Legion is really big on testing its products for safety and purity, so Recharge is tested by a third-party lab for heavy metals, microbes, allergens, and other contaminants.

legion recharge creatine product shot

Recharge is offered in seven flavors, including strawberry lemonade, grape, blue raspberry, and fruit punch. GGR Senior Editor Nicole Davis tried the Strawberry Lemonade and said, “Pretty sweet, but also tart…I liked it.” She scored it a 5 out of 5 for flavor, as well as for formulation and solubility.

Each scoop costs around $1.00 when you buy the larger container of 60 servings, which is rather affordable considering the added nutrients. However, if you’re unsatisfied with the product for any reason, Legion offers a 100% money-back guarantee.

Price per serving$1.00
Servings per container60
Creatine per serving5 g
IngredientsMicronized Creatine, L-Carnitine L-Tartrate, Natural Flavors, Stevia Leaf Extract, Citric Acid, Silica, Beet Powder (for color)
FlavorsFruit Punch, Strawberry Lemonade, Blue Raspberry, Grape, Strawberry Kiwi, Watermelon, Unflavored
Third-party testingYes

Best Creatine for Teen Athletes: Onnit Creatine Monohydrate

Good for: Young athletes who follow a strict training schedule

Best for Athletes

Onnit Creatine Monohydrate

GGR Score: 4 starstarstarstarstar

Product Highlights

  • Unflavored to mix with your favorite drink
  • Dairy-free, soy-free, and vegan
  • Designed to improve anaerobic performance, muscle recovery, and explosiveness
  • One serving, or two scoops, provides 5 grams of creatine monohydrate
  • Third-party tested to be competition-safe and certified by Informed Sport
  • Formulated to promote the regeneration of ATP and  increases in muscle mass

Pros & Cons

Pros

  • Unflavored does not leave a poor aftertaste when mixed with a flavored drink
  • Dairy-free, soy-free, vegan
  • Informed Sport Certified
  • Affordable
  • Website provides studies on the effectiveness of creatine

Cons

  • Gritty
  • Small container

Bottom Line

If you're looking for a pure, low-cost creatine monohydrate, Onnit Creatine Monohydrate may be a good fit for you.

Onnit Creatine Monohydrate provides 5 grams of creatine per serving. But plenty of creatine products give you 5 grams per serving, so why did we pick Onnit as the best creatine supplement for teen athletes? It all came down to the serving size. Onnit’s serving size is two scoops, meaning each scoop contains 2.5 grams of creatine.

To maximize their competitive edge, athletes typically have their lifestyle and training schedule down to a science. They eat a high-quality, balanced diet, follow a fine-tuned workout regimen, and mindfully dose their supplements.

RELATED: Should I Take Creatine On Rest Days?

Adolescent athletes who want more control over their creatine levels may find Onnit Creatine to be the most user-friendly option. Since you can adjust your dose in 2.5-gram increments, you can tailor the supplement to meet your individualized needs more closely.

scooping Onnit creatine into a glass

Onnit’s Creatine Monohydrate powder only contains micronized creatine monohydrate. Each serving costs around $0.50, and the formula is unflavored, meaning you can stack it with other supplements—as many athletes do. Onnit does send some products to be third-party tested, but it is not explicitly mentioned on their creatine monohydrate. 

GGR editor Frieda Johnson tested Onnit Creatine and rated it a 4 out of 5 for flavor: “It has a little bit more of a bitter taste than other unflavored creatine monohydrates I’ve tried, but I still have no problem drinking it plain in water. It does have a tiny bit of an aftertaste, though,” she said.

Price per serving$0.50
Servings per container30
Creatine per serving5 g
IngredientsMicronized Creatine Monohydrate 
FlavorsUnflavored 
Third-party testingNot mentioned for this product 

Best Budget Creatine for Teens: Nutricost Creatine Monohydrate

Good for: Teens who want to spend less than $0.25 on each serving of creatine

Best Budget

Nutricost Creatine Monohydrate

GGR Score: 4.3 starstarstarstarstar

Product Highlights

  • Powder creatine monohydrate supplement 
  • 5 g of creatine per serving 
  • Improved strength and muscle growth 
  • May help prevent injuries
  • Supports cognitive and bone health

Pros & Cons

Pros

  • Subscribe and save 15%
  • Non-GMO and gluten-free
  • Manufactured in cGMP-compliant facility
  • Affordable at under $0.40 per serving
  • Unflavored variety has 1 ingredient, micronized creatine monohydrate

Cons

  • Some flavors sold out
  • Flavored versions contain sucralose which may cause stomach upset
  • Mixed reviews on mixability
  • Mixed reviews on taste

Bottom Line

Nutricost Creatine Powder contains 5 grams of creatine per serving and is available in both flavored and unflavored varieties. Nutricost shares that their creatine supplement can help with muscle building and strength, injury prevention, and cognitive and bone health. This supplement has mixed reviews on taste and mixability.

While many people want to start adding more supplements to their daily routine, unfortunately, a lot of people just don’t have the budget for it.

Nutricost Creatine Monohydrate costs 23 cents per serving as a one-time purchase and is even cheaper if you set up a subscription. That’s honestly a steal. You can save even more money if you purchase the 200-serving container rather than the 100-serving container. 

GGR editor and NASM-certified nutrition coach Frieda Johnson said, “Creatine is one of the more affordable sports nutrition supplements on the market, but this is impressively affordable even with that expectation.”

We tried the unflavored option and loved it and this one is the most affordable but they do offer three flavors as well, though you should expect to pay more for the luxury of flavor. The product says it’s third-party tested, though it doesn’t specify who did the testing. 

Someone scooping Nutricost creatine into a shaker glass

Sometimes a budget-friendly product can cause concern for low-quality ingredients, but luckily that is not the case with Nutricost Creatine Monohydrate. Every serving has five grams of creatine monohydrate, so you will be well on your way to achieving your strength and endurance goals thanks to the boost in muscle growth this creatine powder can help you out with.  

One downside of creatine can be feelings of bloat after taking it. GGR’s performance editor and a certified nutrition coach Anthony O’Reilly, however, says that’s not an issue with this supplement., “I really like this creatine because I don’t experience any bloating, like I do with other creatines.” For this reason, we scored it a five out of five for effects. 

Both of our testers appreciated that the unflavored creatine powder was tasteless, which makes it easy to stack with other supplements. We’re big fans of convenience here at GGR. 

If you’re a competitive athlete and plan to take this supplement you will definitely want to do a bit more digging into that to make sure it’s free of any banned substances.

For a more in-depth look at this budget-friendly creatine, check out our full Nutricost creatine review.

Price per serving$0.22
Servings per container100
Creatine per serving5 g
IngredientsCreatine Monohydrate
FlavorsUnflavored
Third-party testingYes

Best-Tasting Creatine for Teens: Jacked Factory Growth Surge

Good for: Teens who want variety in their creatine flavors 

Best-Tasting

Jacked Factory Growth Surge

GGR Score: 3.5 starstarstarstarstar

Product Highlights

  • Designed to build muscle and reduce fat
  • Three key ingredients: Creatine Monohydrate, Betaine Anhydrous, L-Carnitine L-Tartrate
  • The ingredients aide in muscle recovery, muscle building, and are formulated to reduce recovery time and soreness
  • Also contains BioPerine, which is said to improve absorption
  • Made in a cGMP-certified facility
* These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.

Pros & Cons

Pros

  • Creatine Monohydrate is scientifically shown to improve muscle growth
  • Tastes good
  • Mixes well
  • Can be used for recovery and muscle growth
  • Overwhelmingly positive reviews

Cons

  • Contains sucralose, which can cause digestive issues for some
  • No protein

Bottom Line

If you’re looking for a post-workout drink that tastes good and is designed to promote muscle growth and recovery, Growth Surge could be a good option.

Several factors go into choosing the best creatine supplement for your needs. The amount of creatine provided, additional ingredients used, and cost per serving are all critical aspects of a quality creatine supplement. But it would be silly to say that taste doesn’t play a role, too, so we made a note of our favorite-tasting creatine—Jacked Factory Growth Surge.

Growth Surge is available in 11 flavors, including fun ones like sour peach rings, cherry limeade, and swoleberry. Thousands of reviews are available online, and you’ll be hard-pressed to find one that doesn’t hype the taste of Growth Surge. So many customers rave about the flavors, especially cherry limeade and swoleberry.

Nicole Davis, GGR senior editor, rated the Cherry Limeade flavor a 5 out of 5, but was less impressed with the 3-gram serving of creatine and said she had floaties in her shaker cup, leading her to rate formulation a 3.5 and solubility a 3 out of 5.

You can buy Growth Surge in tubs of 30 or 60 servings, costing around $1.05 when purchasing the 30-serving container from Amazon. You may be discouraged at the cost, considering you only get 3 grams of creatine per serving, however Growth Surge also contains betaine anhydrous, L-carnitine L-tartrate, and BioPerine.

Betaine anhydrous is a noteworthy component linked to improved body composition7 through decreased adipose tissue. If your goal is weight loss but you still want to build muscle, Growth Surge may support your efforts. And we already know that L-carnitine L-tartrate can support your muscle recovery, meaning you can bounce back from that high-intensity exercise more efficiently and maximize your training schedule.

RELATED: Does Creatine Expire?

Price per serving$1.05
Servings per container30
Creatine per serving3 g
IngredientsCreatine Monohydrate, Betaine Anhydrous, L-Carnitine L-Tartrate, BioPerine, Citric Acid, Natural and Artificial Flavors, Silicon Dioxide, Calcium Silicate, Acesulfame Potassium Sucralose, Beet Root Powder (for color)
FlavorsSour Peach Rings, Cherry Limeade, Swoleberry, Black Cherry, Blue Raspberry, Blueberry Lemonade, Fruit Punch, Grape, Watermelon, Strawberry Lemonade, Unflavored
Third-party testingNo 

Other Creatine for Teens We Researched

The sports nutrition market is a hopping place full of products that are excellent, horrendous, and everything in between. As always, we left no stone unturned in our search for the best creatine supplement for teens, and while we’re confident in our list, we know that no list is genuinely comprehensive.

Here is a list of other creatine products that stood out but didn’t make the cut:

  • NOW Sports Creatine Monohydrate: This is a great budget pick, but we rated Nutricost Creatine Monohydrate product slightly higher. Plus, its serving size is 1.5 teaspoons, and we think that leaves a lot of room for error with teens dosing their creatine.
  • Klean Athlete Klean Creatine: We believe this creatine would be a good choice for athletes, as it’s third-party tested by NSF. However, it’s a bit more expensive than Onnit.
  • Promix Creatine: Promix is another good option for a basic creatine monohydrate, as it’s effectively dosed with no frills. However, it all came down to its cost. If you only want to purchase a 30-serving bag, it’s much pricier than the other options. 
  • BPN Creatine Monohydrate/Creapure: This product didn’t mix as well as many other creatine monohydrates we’ve tested, so we left it off the list. 
  • Gnarly Creatine: Same here—our testers had solubility issues with this one, so we left it off.

How We Picked and Tested the Best Creatine for Teens

Our team of testers is an eclectic bunch. We’re a group of certified personal trainers, registered dietitians, elite-level coaches, professional athletes, and, most importantly, people just like you who want to be the best versions of themselves. We know the drive it takes to get stronger every day—to test your limits and push your physical boundaries—and we understand the importance of being able to trust the dietary supplements that can help you get there.

Our research relied on our personal and professional experiences to comprehensively test these creatine supplements. We examined their nutrition profile, prioritizing creatines that were clinically dosed and backed by scientific research, and we highlighted companies that proudly stood behind their products and were transparent with their customers.

Top-down image of an open Nutricost creatine container next to a glass of mixed creatine

No two bodies are the same, and no two fitness journeys are parallel. So, we made it our mission to provide you with a list of supplements that could meet your needs from every angle. If your priority is post-workout recovery, we got you. If you need your creatine to taste good, no worries. On a budget? We found you a bargain.

Once we narrowed down our list, we tested the products consistently across the board following the GGR Supplement Testing Methodology and rated them on a scale of 1 to 5 based on a variety of factors such as price, solubility, formulation, and customer reviews. We mixed each creatine powder with water and took it according to the directions on the packaging. We made sure to note how they impacted our workouts and any unwanted side effects that we experienced as a result of the supplement. 

Benefits of Creatine for Teens

Creatine is a popular supplement among athletes as it has ergonomic benefits for high-intensity exercise and skeletal muscle mass. If taken safely, creatine offers adolescents many of the same benefits as adults.

Improved Energy Production

Creatine’s main gig in the body is to enhance energy production in the cells. Adenosine triphosphate is the energy source used to support many processes at the cellular level, but ATP runs out quickly with the increased demand from exercise. Taking creatine increases your body’s phosphocreatine stores, which your body uses to make more ATP, which you then use for sprinting, weight lifting, resistance training, or whatever workout your little heart desires!

Improved Muscle Strength

Creatine has been linked to enhanced muscle strength through increased muscle mass. Creatine plays a role in hydration, muscle retention, and muscle recovery, contributing to improved muscle strength. Interestingly enough, creatine supplementation has proven more effective for muscle growth in young subjects8.

RELATED: Does Creatine Make You Stronger?

Improved Recovery

Creatine can speed up the recovery time9 between workouts by mitigating muscle damage and prompting faster recovery. As you exercise, you create small tears in the muscle tissue. Creatine helps activate cells in your muscles to repair those tears.

Improved Cognitive Function

There is still a need for further research, but creatine may support brain function. The brain requires a great deal of ATP to function, especially when performing demanding tasks. Research has shown that supplementing with creatine increases creatine stores10 not only in muscles but also in the brain.

Dosing and Interactions 

The dated stance from the American Academy of Pediatrics questions the safety of creatine, recommending teenagers under the age of 18 avoid performance-enhancing substances, which would include the use of creatine. However, a more up-to-date stance from the International Society of Sports Nutrition states that creatine may be an appropriate supplement for teens when used correctly and under the right conditions. Teens should only use creatine in combination with a well-balanced diet, proper hydration, and adequate sleep. 

If you think about it in terms of dietary intake, the effects of creatine supplementation are less intimidating. Most people get creatine from red meat and seafood. Plus, our bodies make a small amount of creatine daily.

RELATED: Foods with Creatine

More research is needed regarding effective creatine dosing for young athletes. Still, much of the research with adults reports that 3-5 grams of creatine supplementation daily is most effective. Teens should not start a new supplement without talking with their doctor or sports medicine physician first. Common side effects of creatine powders include bloating, muscle cramps, dehydration, weight gain, and changes in kidney function.

Third-Party Testing

The FDA doesn’t regulate dietary supplements, so many supplement companies choose to send their products to an unbiased, third-party lab for testing. However, not all companies spend the money to have their products assessed.

Third-party testing offers peace of mind that the product you’re purchasing is safe and pure. While this benefits all customers, it is especially beneficial for teenagers. Teens are still growing and developing, so knowing precisely what is in their sports nutrition supplements is essential.

Buying Guide: What to Look for in Creatine for Teens

While the research indicates that creatine can be a safe supplement for teens, there are several factors to consider when buying a creatine supplement. To ensure a creatine powder’s safety and effectiveness, consider these factors:

Third-Party Testing

Since the FDA doesn’t regulate dietary supplements, it’s up to the supplement companies to test their products for safety and purity. However, some companies don’t make it a priority. For teenagers whose bodies are still growing and developing, it’s important to trust what’s in their supplements. Third-party testing can add that peace of mind surrounding the safety of their creatine of choice.

Creatine Type

While many types of creatine exist, creatine monohydrate has a well-established safety profile. It has been researched extensively, showing positive benefits for strength, muscle recovery, and athletic performance. As such, it can be a reliable choice for teenagers.

Beyond Raw Creatine Hcl Supplement Facts Label

Other forms of creatine can offer the same benefits. However, they have less research backing their mechanisms—something to consider when weighing your options.

Product Quality

Product quality is a significant concern for teenagers who want to incorporate creatine powder into their supplement routine. There are hundreds of options on the market, many with unnecessary ingredients that detract from the product’s safety. Opt for pure creatine when possible to ensure product quality and reduce potential unwanted side effects.

Best Creatine for Teens: FAQs

Is it safe for a teen to take creatine?

If you asked this question 20 years ago, the answer would be no. However, we’ve learned so much about the safety of creatine and have found that creatine can be a safe supplement for teens when taken safely and under the right circumstances. The International Society of Sports Nutrition1 position stand states that creatine monohydrate supplements are appropriate for adolescent athletes who are competing at a serious level and who are knowledgeable about its effects. Still, teens should talk with their doctor before adding creatine to their routine. 

What brand of creatine is the best?

The best brand of creatine will vary depending on your needs. Some brands offer pure creatine, some provide a budget-friendly product, and others offer added ingredients that support post-workout recovery. It’s best to analyze individual products instead of just brands. 

Which type of creatine is easiest on the stomach?

While it may vary between individuals, creatine HCl typically has the best reputation for its ease of digestion.

These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any diseases.

References

  1. Kreider, R.B., Kalman, D.S., Antonio, J. et al. International Society of Sports Nutrition position stand: safety and efficacy of creatine supplementation in exercise, sport, and medicine. J Int Soc Sports Nutr 14, 18 (2017). https://doi.org/10.1186/s12970-017-0173-z
  2. Fernández-Landa J, Fernández-Lázaro D, Calleja-González J, et al. Effect of Ten Weeks of Creatine Monohydrate Plus HMB Supplementation on Athletic Performance Tests in Elite Male Endurance Athletes. Nutrients. 2020;12(1):193. Published 2020 Jan 10. doi:10.3390/nu12010193
  3. Antonio J, Candow DG, Forbes SC, et al. Common questions and misconceptions about creatine supplementation: what does the scientific evidence really show?. J Int Soc Sports Nutr. 2021;18(1):13. Published 2021 Feb 8. doi:10.1186/s12970-021-00412-w
  4. Ribeiro F, Longobardi I, Perim P, et al. Timing of Creatine Supplementation around Exercise: A Real Concern?. Nutrients. 2021;13(8):2844. Published 2021 Aug 19. doi:10.3390/nu13082844
  5. Stefan M, Sharp M, Gheith R, et al. L-Carnitine Tartrate Supplementation for 5 Weeks Improves Exercise Recovery in Men and Women: A Randomized, Double-Blind, Placebo-Controlled Trial. Nutrients. 2021;13(10):3432. Published 2021 Sep 28. doi:10.3390/nu13103432
  6. National Institutes of Health. Carnitine.
  7. Cholewa JM, Wyszczelska-Rokiel M, Glowacki R, et al. Effects of betaine on body composition, performance, and homocysteine thiolactone. J Int Soc Sports Nutr. 2013;10(1):39. Published 2013 Aug 22. doi:10.1186/1550-2783-10-39
  8. Wu SH, Chen KL, Hsu C, et al. Creatine Supplementation for Muscle Growth: A Scoping Review of Randomized Clinical Trials from 2012 to 2021. Nutrients. 2022;14(6):1255. Published 2022 Mar 16. doi:10.3390/nu14061255
  9. Wax B, Kerksick CM, Jagim AR, Mayo JJ, Lyons BC, Kreider RB. Creatine for Exercise and Sports Performance, with Recovery Considerations for Healthy Populations. Nutrients. 2021;13(6):1915. Published 2021 Jun 2. doi:10.3390/nu13061915
  10. Forbes SC, Cordingley DM, Cornish SM, et al. Effects of Creatine Supplementation on Brain Function and Health. Nutrients. 2022;14(5):921. Published 2022 Feb 22. doi:10.3390/nu14050921

Further reading

The Tom Platz Leg Workout: A Path to Becoming The Quadfather Cover Image
The Tom Platz Leg Workout: A Path to Becoming The Quadfather

Want to build competition-worthy legs like Tom 'the Quadfather' Platz? Try the Tom Platz leg workout to improve lower body strength, size, and endurance! Read more

The Best Protein Powder for Weight Loss 2024, All Approved by a Dietitian Cover Image
The Best Protein Powder for Weight Loss 2024, All Approved by a Dietitian

We found not one, but 13 options for the best protein powder for weight loss—and our resident dietitian approves of these picks. Read more

BetterMe Review (2024): Our Experience Using This Pilates App  Cover Image
BetterMe Review (2024): Our Experience Using This Pilates App 

See how our tester fared using this Pilates app in our BetterMe review. Read more

Bowflex Max Trainer M9 Review (2024): Hybrid Cardio Machine Perfect for Total-Body Intensity Cover Image
Bowflex Max Trainer M9 Review (2024): Hybrid Cardio Machine Perfect for Total-Body Intensity

In this BowFlex Max Trainer M9 review, we’ll take a look at a low-impact calorie-burner that won’t gobble up all your precious workout space.  Read more