True Protein Gemma Protein Isolate Review (Vegetarian Protein Powder)

My True Protein order arrived today in a big cube of cardboard. I opened the box to find my vegetarian protein powder order (1 lb. citrus lime-ade gemma isolate, 1 lb. French vanilla cream gemma isolate, 2 lbs. Dutch chocolate soy isolate, and the premium flavor sampler of a dozen single serving whey isolate packets) wrapped up in a big translucent plastic bag. The 1 lb. and 2 lb. powders were shipped in heavy-duty food-grade plastic bags sealed with black zip ties and labeled with printed stickers describing the contents. The individual samples were stored in small ziploc baggies marked with a Sharpie marker. There was an option to have the powders shipped in plastic tubs, but I opted for the bags because I didn’t want any more giant plastic canisters cluttering up my cabinets.

True Protein order

I just poured my new protein powders from their somewhat ghetto-looking bags into some old empty protein powder canisters I hoarded for just this situation and tasted some of the dry gemma pea protein isolate in the citrus lime-ade flavor. I was pleasantly surprised. The texture is a lot more like cornstarch than whey protein–very fine grained and sort of clingy. The flavor was light and pleasant without being cloying. There is a distinctively beanie flavor to the protein that reminds me a bit of soy and/or Asian red bean paste, but I actually prefer it to the nauseating, sour milk aftertaste of whey.

I decided to go ahead and bake a batch of my much-missed granola choco chip protein cookies with the French vanilla cream gemma isolate. It turns out that the pea protein does not reduce and turn into super sticky paste like whey does when mixed with a liquid like the 1/2 cup of SF maple syrup used in the recipe. Instead, it absorbed all of the fluid and stayed sort of fluffy. I had to add another 1/2 cup of water to get the mixture to stick together, and I opted to use a muffin tin instead of just pressing 12 big cookie-sized patties onto a baking sheet because the mix just wasn’t sticky enough on its own. This gave me twelve 1″ thick rounds that I baked for 10 minutes at 350 degrees.

I just tried half a granola biscuit and WOW. Even BETTER than the original version using whey protein powder! This flat out tastes like a Chinese bean paste dessert with melted chocolate and nutty grainy things embedded in it. No sweetener aftertaste, no funky whey protein flavor, no bloating/gas from dairy, no migraine from mysterious additives, and no gunky whey paste stuck between my teeth or threatening to pull off my expensive porcelain crowns!


More tomorrow when I make my first shake/smoothies from the citrus lime-ade gemma isolate and Dutch chocolate soy isolate powders. If the others are as good as the French vanilla cream, I’m never buying whey again.


UPDATE: I made my first gemma protein + fruit smoothie this morning using the following:

– 1 scoop French vanilla cream gemma isolate powder
– 1/2 c. frozen strawberries
– 1 c. water
– 2/3 c. ice

I blended the whole thing on the ice crush setting on my blender until it looked smooth. The powder mixed pretty well with no clumps, but there is still a slightly powdery mouth feel to the drink.


Product – Gemma Protein Isolate – French vanilla cream

Mixability – Very high with a blender. Slightly powdery mouth feel–not granular.

Taste – Very sweet. No additional sweetener was needed. I actually think that the addition of something tangy would improve the mix. It DEFINITELY tastes like sweetened Chinese bean paste, which I like, but some of you may not. If you’ve ever had a Chinese moon cake before or a steamed bun filled with sweet red bean paste, it is reminiscent of that.

Uses – Great in protein bar and cookie recipes due to it’s fluffier texture compared to whey. Might also make a great healthy version of the steamed roll filled with bean paste or a good base for a post-workout “boba/bubble tea” drink with tapioca pearls as the fast carb.

Maggie’s Supplement Sensitivity Factors:

Migraine – None to low. I find the sweetness level a bit high, which sometimes has a way of setting off a headache, but so far I haven’t noticed any signs of a migraine.

Nausea – None to low. I LIKE the taste of sweetened bean paste, so I rather enjoy the distinctive flavor of this protein powder. No gag reflex yet!

Bloating – None.

Allergic Reactions – None observed yet.

This entry was posted in Reviews.

7 thoughts on “True Protein Gemma Protein Isolate Review (Vegetarian Protein Powder)

  1. Hey Maggie!

    Have you ever tried/used Gemma Protein before? If so, did you handle it well or did it cause problems?

    I ask because like yourself, whey and I do not get along. The bloat and gas alone is enough to warrant staying away from it. Soy gives me wicked acne and has been known to cause menstrual issues as well. My cycle is messed up enough on it’s own, it doesn’t need further disturbances.

    I’ve felt like ripping my hair out as I didn’t know about any of the alternatives out there. Everybody insists that I just eat cottage cheese and that will fix everything. Blech! Apparently being lactose intolerant is just a figment of my imagination. :em28:

    I look forward to your feedback on this issue. There has got to be something out there that will agree with me.

  2. If gemma tastes anything like the asian bean paste desserts, then I’m going to love it! Have you tried blending it with frozen fruit for a smoothie?

  3. Stacy – This is the first time I’ve used gemma protein isolate, so I can’t tell you if it will give me skin issues yet, but I’ll be using it at least once a day for the next week in my PWO and snack shakes, so I’ll update my review in 7 days. So far, at least in the PWO cookie recipe, it seems to be wonderfully free of digestive side effects and allergic reactions. The taste is also much less vile than whey.

  4. FlatGreg – French vanilla cream gemma protein tastes amazingly like the filling in a Chinese moon cake or the red bean paste inside a steamed Chinese bun. Even the consistency is similar when mixed with low amounts of water and sugar-free maple syrup. Seriously, I am contemplating a recipe for whole wheat or ground oatmeal steamed buns stuffed with gemma protein paste–it’s THAT close. There’s no more aftertaste with the gemma than there is with sweetened bean paste.

    I haven’t made any smoothies with it yet, but that is on deck for this week’s meals.

  5. Just realized that the Premium flavors are pre-sweetened, which is why you don’t get a choice of sweeteners. I think I’m going to have to go with a pound of french vanilla gemma, a pound of unflavored gemma, and that flavor assortment pack.

  6. Wow, thanks for this review. The “may not mix well etc etc” footnote on the True Protein page for Gemma had originally made me cancel my order when I first considered it last month. However, coming from a half Chinese family, I’m all too familiar (and in love with) red bean paste buns/desserts/everything — so basically you totally sold me, and right after I hit “Submit Comment” I’ll be logging on to TP!

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