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GU Recovery Brew How-To

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Let’s get this right out in the open: GU Recovery Brew really works. It has recently earned its spot as my go to recovery drink after any long ride due to its great taste, and noticeable benefits. While I previously utilized energy drink mixes that contained protein while riding, my lack of diligence to quickly clean the bottles caused me to give protein drinks up as I was simply running out of bottles. However, immediately following the ride I find myself much better at keeping my bottles from molding, so GU Recovery Brew has become somewhat of a ritual.

Clearly, the taste is great, and it seems to work, so what’s with this post? Well, if you have tried to mix a bottle of GU Recovery Brew yourself, you have probably suffered the same frustration that I have, and ended up with a rediculously sticky and foamy mess after no short amount of time.

How can you avoid this? Find out after the break!

If you have tried GU Recovery Brew, than this may look familiar. According to GU’s directions you should:

  1. Fill 16oz bottle halfway with water
  2. Add 60g (3 scoops) Recovery Brew mix
  3. Cap bottle and shake vigorously for 20 seconds
  4. Uncap bottle and add remaining 8oz of water
  5. Cap bottle and shake vigorously for 20 seconds

First of all, I don’t think you could ever possibly mix 16oz of GU Recovery Brew in a 16oz bottle properly, due to how much it foams up. I have been using at least a 24oz bottle to mix 16oz of drink, and even with that size when following the directions as pictured above, you end up with so much foam that you have to drink it down to add more water.

Not only is the foam an issue, but the printed instructions say to shake for a total of 40 seconds, only, shaking for that amount of time will still leave you with a tremendous amount of sediment in the bottom of the bottle. Perhaps there is some scientific reasoning, which I am unaware of, behind GU’s printed instructions, but after having tried both the “proper” way, and the alternative way, I have found no difference in taste or performance.

So Just how should you go about mixing GU Recovery Brew so your bottle ends up like the one on the right, and not the left?

  1. Use as large of a bottle as you can. You are still only going to mix up 16oz of drink, but the extra head space allows for easier mixing. Also do this even if you follow the printed instructions, as it is about the only way to add the other half of the water without causing the foam to overflow and make everything sticky. I’m using at least a 24oz bottle, or even this huge 25+oz Bontrager bottle shown here.
  2. Pour three scoops of powder into the bottom of the bottle.
  3. Add in 16oz of water, slowly so that it does not disturb the powder and cause it to foam up.
  4. Cap bottle, and shake for about a minute.
  5. Drink.

In order to test this theory, I challenged my friend Riley to a timed Mix Off. He would be faced with the challenge of mixing it according to the printed instructions and I would be allowed to use my method. Riley went first, and very quickly got to the point of the photograph above, where he couldn’t add water because there was so much foam. So after drinking it down, adding the necessary water, and continuing to shake, he eventually got tired and gave up after more than 5 minutes in. Keep in mind, that if you need a recovery drink, you probably just exercised quite hard, so most likely you will be tired so shaking a bottle for 5 minutes is harder than you think. When I went, using my method I had a well mixed, ready to drink bottle in 1 minute 20 seconds. If you were to compare the two bottles after we finished, they looked very much like the two pictures above. Mine was very well mixed with a good amount of foam, while Riley’s was over half foam, and still wasn’t very well mixed at the bottom.

So if you’ve given GU Recovery Brew a shot, only to cast it away because it is difficult to mix, pick up another single serve packet and give this a try. I think you will be glad you did.



Serv. Size 3 Scoops (60g)
Servings Per Container
approx. 14
Amount Per Serving
Calories 250
Calories from Fat 0
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 0g 0%
Saturated Fat 0g 0%
Trans Fat 0g
Cholesterol 0mg 0%
Sodium 160mg 7%
Potassium 70mg 2%
Total Carb 52g 17%
Dietary Fiber 0g 0%
Sugars 17g
Protein 8g 16%
Vitamin A 0%
Vitamin C 130%
Vitamin E 150%
Calcium 5%
Iron 0%
Magnesium 3%
L-Glutamine 2800mg
L-Arginine 1400mg
*Percent daily values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet
†Daily Value not established.


Maltodextrin (glucose polymers), Fructose, Whey Protein Isolate (contains Soy Lecithin), L-Glutamine, L-Arginine, Citric Acid, Sodium
Citrate, Natural Flavors, Fruit and Vegtable Juice (as color), Vitamin C (Ascorbic Acid), Potassium Citrate, Vitamin E (D-Alpha Tocopheryl Acetate).

Allergen Information:

Contains milk and soy ingredients


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13 years ago
13 years ago

Don’t forget their Energy and Roctane gels: http://youtu.be/cJeFQw6qX70?hd=1

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