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Story time: Five meat lovers ordered a bunch of vegan protein powders and tried them out. You can imagine how that went.
Of course, we thought all of them fell short in the flavor department compared to our beloved whey protein powders. But we’re GGR, and we make every effort to rate products through the lens of the proper consumer.
That’s how I’m tackling this KOS vegan protein review—although you may be just as surprised as I was to learn that I don’t actually hate this protein powder.
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. GGR also recommends choosing a product that has been third-party tested for quality.
More Than 50 Protein Powders Tested
Our roster of product testers includes long-time fitness enthusiasts and credentialed industry professionals in a variety of disciplines. Two things set us apart from other product reviewers in the fitness industry: We’re formally educated in our fields and hold professional certifications, and we actually test, taste, and try products we review.
KOS Vegan Protein Powder
- Multi-source vegan protein powder
- USDA-certified organic, soy-free, gluten-free, dairy-free, non-GMO
- Digestive support via DigeSEB to help maximize absorption
Pros & Cons
- Manufactured in the USA
- 20 g protein per serving
- Chocolate flavor is rich
- Enhanced with digestive support enzymes
- Under $1.50 per serving
- Customers say it has a gritty/chalky flavor
- Some users reported protein gave them stomach issues
- Reports of strong sweetness and bad aftertaste
A Quick Look at KOS Vegan Protein Powder
KOS vegan protein powder is a protein supplement available in seven flavors. The main protein source is pea protein, but it also contains a blend of other plant proteins. Sweetened with monk fruit, stevia, and coconut sugar, this powder is free of artificial sweeteners and sugar alcohols. The ingredients list is robust and clean, and the taste is actually tolerable by me, a near-carnivore.
Before You Buy
- KOS Organic Plant-Based Protein Powder is exactly that: organic, plant-based protein powder. If you’re used to whey protein shakes, you’re likely going to find this to taste… not great.
- However, if you already eat a plant-based diet, you’re likely to enjoy this protein powder. It’s one of the only vegan protein powders I can tolerate as someone who primarily drinks whey.
Is KOS Vegan Protein Powder Worth It?
KOS vegan protein powder costs about $1.50 per serving. This is a good price point, especially because the ingredients list is so solid and this is a complete protein source (which can be hard to find with plant proteins). If you’re someone who eats a plant-based diet, KOS is one of the better options out there.
- Vegans and vegetarians looking for a high-protein shake
- Anyone who wants organic vegan protein powder
- People who want to avoid sugar alcohols and artificial sweeteners
Not recommended for:
- People who drink whey protein powder and tolerate it fine
- Individuals looking for a protein powder designed to support muscle growth, rather than general wellness
KOS Vegan Protein Powder Specs
|Price per serving
|$1.50 (may vary depending on where you buy)
|Chocolate, Vanilla, Blueberry Muffin, Chocolate Chip Mint, Chocolate Peanut Butter, Salted Caramel Coffee, Unflavored
|Protein per serving
|Carbs per serving
|9 g (3 g fiber)
|Fats per serving
|Calories per serving
|BCAAs per serving
|Organic coconut sugar, organic stevia extract, organic monk fruit extract
|Other notable ingredients
|Organic fruit and veggie blend, digestive enzymes, and micronutrient blend
|USDA Organic, California Certified Organic Farmers
|Vegan, vegetarian, organic, gluten-free, soy-free, non-GMO, and dairy-free diets
KOS Vegan Protein Review
So you already know I don’t eat a vegan diet. I’m not afraid to admit I love a good steak. Or three. Perhaps I’m not the best person to test vegan protein powders, but also, that means these words carry a lot more weight: I do not mind drinking KOS vegan protein powder.
I’m not going to say I love it (I’m not a liar). But I don’t mind drinking it—I can say that honestly!
In fact, this protein powder is the only vegan option I have that I’ll willingly drink. It’s definitely different from the whey protein I’m used to gulping, but it’s not bad.
The chocolate flavor isn’t terrible. It’s pretty rich, which I feel is rare with plant protein powders. I tried it three separate times: with almond milk, regular 2% milk, and water. Even with water, the taste is decent. It’s not great, but it’s not offensive, and honestly, what more can a meat lover ask for when drinking vegan protein powder?
One thing I don’t like about this protein is that one serving is two scoops. That’s a LOT of powder, so blending it requires some elbow grease or a lot of liquid. However, one serving has 20 grams of complete protein, which is great.
Price Per Serving
On Amazon, KOS vegan protein powder costs a little over $1.50 per serving. This is in line with what we generally recommend—anything less than this, we recommend investigating to see how the manufacturer cuts costs. Anything more, start asking questions about the quality of ingredients and manufacturing processes and if those things are worth it to you.
The 20 grams of protein come from a protein blend made with the following:
- Organic pea protein
- Organic chia seed
- Organic flax seed
- Organic pumpkin seed protein
- Organic quinoa
It’s great that this protein powder contains pea protein as the very first ingredient, because peas contain all nine essential amino acids. They are a little too low on methionine to be a true “complete protein” on their own1, but they are very close so it’s easy to check all the boxes when combined with other sources of plant-based protein. Quinoa is another great plant-based protein source that includes all nine essential amino acids, which makes it an excellent choice to mix with the pea protein in this blend.
There’s an “organic fruit and veggie blend” that contains the following for their superfood properties, according to KOS:
- Shiitake mushroom extract
A digestive enzyme blend called DigeSEB for digestion support, which includes amylases, lactase, proteases, lipase, and cellulase. These enzymes may reduce discomfort like bloating and gas, especially if you are sensitive to any of the ingredients in the protein powder.
Other ingredients include:
- Organic inulin (fiber)
- Organic acacia gum (fiber)
- Himalayan salt (pink sea salt)
- Organic monk fruit extract (sweetener)
- Organic stevia extract (sweetener)
- Organic coconut sugar (sweetener)
Finally, there’s a vitamin and mineral blend. You may also see ingredients specific to the flavor, such as “natural chocolate flavor.”
Taste and Solubility
I tried the chocolate protein powder this time around, but I have tried the vanilla flavor in the past. You already know I don’t eat a vegan diet, so I probably don’t have to tell you again that I don’t like this protein as much as I like whey protein.
It has nothing to do with the powder not being high-quality enough; it’s the simple fact that plant protein just doesn’t dissolve or taste like proteins from lactose-containing sources do.
That said, I can honestly say that KOS vegan protein is the tastiest of all the vegan protein powders I’ve tested for GGR and of my own accord. It’s the only one in my pantry that I return to of my free will. That’s saying a lot.
It doesn’t dissolve perfectly, but the solubility is acceptable. If you shake it enough in a shaker bottle, ideally with a thicker liquid (say, oat milk), it turns into a decently creamy, cold shake.
Most people will have no problem drinking this as a protein source. People who have tree nut allergies should avoid it, as this protein supplement is sweetened with coconut sugar. Some bloating is possible, since the formula contains a decent amount of fiber.
KOS says that “nearly every ingredient is certified organic and made without hormones, antibiotics, pesticides, artificial sweeteners, colors, and GMOs.”
KOS products are manufactured in California and its ingredients are certified by the USDA and California Certified Organic Farmers (CCOF) organization.
The brand also says the protein powder is free from artificial ingredients, but there isn’t a third-party verification to attest to that.
KOS Vegan Protein Powder vs Vega Sport Premium Protein
Vega Sport Premium Protein
- Multi-source vegan protein powder
- NSF Certified for Sport, vegan, and gluten-free
- Includes BCAAs, probiotics, and tart cherry
Pros & Cons
- 30 grams of protein per serving
- Contains all essential amino acids but two that are made by the body
- 5 flavor options
- Supports recovery with tart cherry, probiotics, and turmeric extract
- Customers share new formula doesn’t blend well
- Pricey at over $2 per serving
Vega Sport Premium Protein won the title of “best-tasting” on our guide to the best vegan protein powders. The mocha cappuccino flavor transported product tester and GGR performance editor Anthony O’Reilly to the type of instant cappuccino vending machine found in Italy.
Anthony also loves this protein because one scoop comes with a whopping 30 grams of protein—something virtually unheard of among plant protein powders.
Like the KOS protein, the Vega Sport also comes with digestion support, but in the form of 2 billion probiotic CFUs. Even so, Anthony says, “I should let you know that shortly after drinking this powder I noticed some…rumblings. So maybe don’t take this right before going on a date.”
KOS does something a lot of supplement brands don’t: It offers a 60-day trial period for its vegan protein powder. The guarantee says that if the product doesn’t meet your expectations for any reason, you can let the company know within 60 days of your purchase for a full refund. You don’t need to return the container or anything.
Ordering KOS Vegan Protein Powder
You can order KOS protein directly from the KOS website or on Amazon, as well as from third-party retailers like GNC and The Vitamin Shoppe. I’m pretty sure I’ve seen it IRL at stores like Target and Walmart, too. I ordered from Amazon and it shipped for free in a day with Amazon Prime.
Customer reviews on the KOS website are overwhelmingly positive—at the time of writing, this supplement has an average rating of 4.9 out of 5 stars with customers praising the protein for its taste and texture, and the fact that it doesn’t upset their stomach. On Amazon, reviews are a bit less enthusiastic, but the product still has a high rating of 4.3 out of 5 stars with over 14,000 reviews.
Final Verdict of Our KOS Vegan Protein Review
As far as vegan protein powders go, KOS has a good taste and decent solubility. As someone who drinks whey protein, plant protein powder will never truly compare, so I commend KOS for creating a formulation with high-quality plant-based ingredients that still tastes decent to a meat-eater.
KOS Vegan Protein Rating
KOS Vegan Protein
In our KOS vegan protein review, find out how this plant protein stacks up to Orgain, Vega Sport, and more.
Product Currency: $
Product Price: 46
Product In-Stock: InStock
KOS Vegan Protein FAQs
IS KOS protein good for weight loss?
If you’re using KOS as a meal replacement, it may help with weight loss. But it is a source of calories, so just adding it to your diet without changing anything else won’t assist with your weight-loss goals. Protein in general can help you feel more full and regulate your appetite.
Can I eat KOS protein on a keto diet?
KOS vegan protein powder isn’t the best option for a keto diet because it has 6 grams of net carbs (9 grams of carbs and 3 grams of fiber). Someone on a keto diet will probably want to look for a protein powder with 1 to 2 grams of carbohydrates.
Which is better, KOS or Orgain?
KOS and Orgain both make plant-based protein products. Our product tester who tried Orgain organic vegan protein powder wasn’t a fan of the taste or texture, but she also typically drinks whey protein. As far as ingredient quality goes, the two brands are similar.
Is KOS protein or Garden of Life better?
Likewise, Garden of Life and KOS make similar products. I tried the Garden of Life Vegan Sport Protein Powder and wasn’t impressed. I liked the taste of the KOS better, although there are plenty of positive customer reviews for the Garden of Life protein.
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.
- Liu J, Klebach M, Visser M, Hofman Z. Amino Acid Availability of a Dairy and Vegetable Protein Blend Compared to Single Casein, Whey, Soy, and Pea Proteins: A Double-Blind, Cross-Over Trial. Nutrients. 2019; 11(11):2613. https://doi.org/10.3390/nu11112613
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