Tropical Strawberry Shakeology Review
So the new Shakeology flavor “Tropical Strawberry” has been released, adding a tropical, fruity twist to the Chocolate (chocolatey) and Greenberry (not so berry-ey) offerings already available. So how does it stack up on taste, mixability, nutrition and all the other stuff that’s made Shakeology so popular? Is it worth switching to? Read on.
Tropical Strawberry Shakeology Review
First off, there aren’t many Shakeology reviews you can find that aren’t written by coaches or feel overtly biased (one way or the other) and salesy. No question, I’m an Independent Beachbody Coach, so I will have a link to purchase Shakeology here in this review. I don’t shy from that but I do try to walk an honest line of integrity in my reviews and subscribe to this promise. If Shakeology interests you, awesome! If not, awesome! Of course, I truly believe you’re missing out but there’s no pressure here. We love you all the same!
As a note, I sampled Tropical Shakeology two ways by mixing in a Blend Tech (blender). The first was with just 8 oz water and ice and the second was with 8 oz. unsweetened almond milk, a scoop of vanilla protein, ice and some walnuts to bump up the fat/Omega-3. So hey, all that disclaimery stuff aside– let’s get to it.
You won’t find Shakeology in any retail outlets but the Tropical is easy to spot. Since it’s part of a new line of Beachbody products (the “Ultimate” line), Tropical Strawberry Shakeology comes in a white box/bag as opposed to the usual black used with Chocolate and Greenberry. That and it’s pink, so that’s kind of a give-away. But while images show Tropical Shakeology as very, very pink, mine didn’t mix up that way. More of an “earthy pink”, for what that’s worth.
What’s In It:
Tropical Strawberry Shakeology is Vegan, so it’s important to note what’s NOT in it first– namely, this version doesn’t use whey protein at all. Tropical Strawberry also loses the ingredient Suma Root, which has occasionally shown to give a false-positive for athletic drug testing, despite the fact it’s not a banned drug substance. It’s also devoid of added vitamins– the vitamins contained here are straight from the ingredients of the fruits and sprouted grains used in the formula. (For an exhaustive view of Shakeology, visit here)
As for what’s in it- since Shakeology Tropical Strawberry uses a lot of fruit so there’s a few minor trade-offs when compared to the original series. First, the calorie count is a bit higher. 160 compared to the usual 140. Pretty negligible but since it is fruit-boosted, it’s sugar content is higher as well: 10g per serving as opposed to the usual 9g. Again, negligible. Tropical Strawberry also has 15g of protein, about 2-4g less than listed on Chocolate. It’s got a full amino acid profile as well. In short, this is an even more bio-available Shakeology mix than previous versions and that’s saying something. As with others, it’s also packing a massive nutritional punch. Here’s a full nutritional detail rundown.
Beyond that, you might notice there are no “vitamins and minerals” listed on the bag. Here’s Beachbody CEO Carl Daikeler explaining why:
” The only reason vitamin and mineral supplementation first showed up on the market is because our foods started to decline in quality… In short, the vitamins and minerals your body needs are present in [Tropical's] natural ingredients and assimilated easier that way. The levels [In Tropical Strawberry Shakeology] will vary because we are leaving the foods in a pristine state. We are going back to the principles of relying completely on what you can find in nature.”
Like the other Shakeology flavors, Tropical Shakeology is easily mixable. But unlike the other versions, it mixes much thinner. With ice and water it was very “slushee-like” and doesn’t really thicken up like the others. Since Tropical Shakeology has made a lot about the fact it’s vegan but managed to eliminate “grit” I wanted to make note of that (plant based proteins and shakes are usually range from gritty to “wow this is chalk” in texture). While Tropical Shakeology is less gritty than most, there’s still some noticeable “texture” to it when compared to Chocolate or Greenberry. It’s not perfectly smooth. The “grit” isn’t off-putting (I like it) but it was more noticeable in the water mix than the almond milk version. The powder is finer than Chocolate or Greenberry and mixed well in the blender as well as in a shaker cup.
On the topic of shaker cups, whey tends to “go sour” and stink up a cup if it’s not rinsed immediately. With plant-based proteins, you won’t find that problem here.
As for mixing ingredients, there’s lots of fruit-based recipe ideas but I tend to avoid them as they jack the sugar content higher than I prefer. I’ve always been in the “Why go with a low sugar option with a low glycemic index when you plan on eliminating that with additions” camp.
So here it is- taste. To hear many previews, you’d expect the second coming of taste buds. Don’t set your expectations that high. Tropical Strawberry Shakeology’s taste didn’t blow my mind with fits of taste-tacular ecstasy but… it was really pretty good. Not in a “super sweet” way, but with a taste both mild and pleasant. With water and ice, Tropical Strawbery tasted “berry” (surprise) and was almost on the nose with what I was expecting in a non-overpowering, tropical flavor with a light banana top note.
Tropical Shakeology is tough to compare to an existing taste but if I had to come down on one, it would be strawberry/(light) banana ice cream or yogurt with the sweetness dialed down to a 6 or 7. I actually found it to be pretty refreshing with ice– light and a nice fruit change to the heavier (and always tasty) chocolate. I don’t often (ever) drink fruit juice and this was a fun foray back into that realm. With almond milk, protein powder and walnuts, Tropical Shakeology was thicker, creamier and certainly more milk-shaky and lost a bit of the banana flavor.
There is a slightly sharp, earthy aftertaste similar to Greenberry but I wasn’t bothered by it. We are, after all, dealing with whole food sources that aren’t always tasty in their pure form. What is surprising is how Shakeology does manage to make their flavors delicious ins spite of that.
To come down on one side, I’d rank it as a close second to chocolate– even an alternative. Definitely beats Greenberry by a mile, despite the fact I’ve warmed to that flavor lately.
Tropical Strawberry Shakeology was definitely satisfying and when I had it for breakfast, didn’t leave me thinking about hunger until about two and a half hours later. I was satisfied and energized and didn’t have any “ill gastrointestinal effects”.
I like it. I wasn’t sent into fits of bliss (marketing does tend to set high expectations) but it was a very pleasant change. And maybe that’s for the best– the more I reflect on my two taste tests, the more I appreciate the fact Tropical Strawberry Shakeology wasn’t overpowering with super sweetness. As for right now, it’s a nice alternative to Chocolate, my all time favorite. Still, for more nutritional punch without worrying about dairy, Tropical Strawberry Shakeology is a pretty impressive meal replacement/nutritional powerhouse. This new flavor makes a great addition to the line-up and gives a go-to option where Greenberry didn’t leave much of an option.
In all, Tropical Strawberry is a welcome addition to the Shakeology family and one you may find arrives pleasantly and grows on you with every new serving.