Rankings

The 5 Best Tasting Pre Workouts of 2018: Our Tested No B.S. Reviews

By October 31, 2018 January 10th, 2019 No Comments
Best Tasting Pre-Workout Supplements

Whether you’re trying to hit a personal best in the gym or just looking for that edge to give you the energy you need to reach your fitness goals, there is a seemingly endless range of pre-workout supplements to choose from.

Given the competitive nature of the supplements industry, fitness and nutrition brands are always looking for ways to stand out from the crowd. While there are certainly differences in pre-workout formulas, one common method of differentiation among supplements brands is by highlighting their product’s taste.

The following products on our best tasting pre-workout rankings list were used by the author of this article.

He used each of these supplements through the duration of a full container. Sample packs were not used in determining the rankings.

Stop relying on faulty information that is influenced by outside writers and money. This pre-workout list is the real deal. Here at Fitness Informant, we don’t steer you wrong.

Be Informed. Live Fit.


A Comparison of The Top 5 Pre Workouts for Taste

OUR #1 RATED

VMI Sports K-XR bottle

VMI Sports K-XR

Our Top Pick For:


  • Taste

8.7 out of 10

in the Pre-Workout Category

OUR #2 RATED

NutraBio Pre Extreme

NutraBio
PRE Extreme

Our Top Pick For:


  • Ingredients Profile

8.8 out of 10

in the Pre-Workout Category

OUR #3 RATED

NutraKey TRU Pre bottle

NutraKey TRU PRE

Our Top Pick For:


  • BCAA Infused

8.2 out of 10

in the Pre-Workout Category

OUR #4 RATED

Pitbull Labs Pre-Workout bottle

Pitbull Labs PRE

Our Top Pick For:


  • Sustained Energy

8.0 out of 10

in the Pre-Workout Category

OUR #5 RATED

Sparta Kraken Reformulated Version

Sparta Nutrition
Kraken

Our Top Pick For:


  • Pump & Value

8.7 out of 10

in the Pre-Workout Category

PRODUCT

DETAILS

OUR RATING

Our Top Pick For:


  • Taste

Highlights:


  • 3.3g Pump Blend
  • 632.5mg Energy Blend
  • 503 mg Focus Blend
Fitness Informant Logo

Our #1 Rated

8.7 out of 10

in the Pre-Workouts Category

NutraBio Pre Extreme

Nutrabio
PRE Extreme

Our Top Pick For:


  • Ingredients Profile

Highlights:


  • 350mg Caffeine
  • 6g L-Citrulline DL Malate
  • 1.75g Nitric Oxide
Fitness Informant Logo

Our #2 Rated

8.8 out of 10

in the Pre-Workouts Category

NutraKey TRU Pre bottle

NutraKey TRU PRE

Our Top Pick For:


  • BCAA Infused

Highlights:


  • 1.5g HydroMax
  • 6g BCAAs
  • 350mg Caffeine
Fitness Informant Logo

Our #3 Rated

8.2 out of 10

in the Pre-Workouts Category

Our Top Pick For:


  • Sustained Energy

Highlights:


  • 315mg Theacrine
  • 135mg Caffeine
  • 155mg Di-Caffeine Malate
Fitness Informant Logo

Our #4 Rated

8.0 out of 10

in the Pre-Workouts Category

Sparta Kraken Reformulated Version

Sparta Nutrition
Kraken

Our Top Pick For:


  • Pump & Value

Highlights:


  • 300mg Vaso6
  • 2g HydroMax
  • 15mg Cocoabuterol
Fitness Informant Logo

Our #5 Rated

8.7 out of 10

in the Pre-Workouts Category




2018 Preworkout Rankings for Taste: Our Top Rated Picks

Now the moment you’ve all been waiting for, here’s who topped our list of our top tasting preworkout supplements:

  1. VMI Sports K-XR
  2. NutraBio PRE Extreme
  3. NutraKey TRU PRE
  4. Pitbull Labs PRE
  5. Sparta Nutrition Kraken

#1 VMI Sports K-XR

8.7 out of 10

VMI Sports K-XR bottle

The Highlights:

  • 6 Great Tasting Flavors
  • 400mg of Caffeine
  • Great Focus
  • Awesome Value
  • Mixes Great

K-XR is not only the best tasting pre-workout we've ever tried, it is also a solid pre-workout all around. Obviously, you are here for taste, and VMI Sports K-XR is available in 6 great flavors: Hawaiian Hurricane, Patriot Pop, Miami Vice, Cotton Candy, Cherry Lime Italian Ice (our favorite) and Blueberry Razz.

Taste is important to many people, as it should be, but the overall effectiveness of the product should be more important. As we mentioned earlier, K-XR is actually a solid pre-workout all around. It features three different blends (yes, we wish these were broken out) for Pump, Energy and Focus. K-XR's best feature will be it's energy blend of 632.5mg containing three-stage caffeine.

The label can be intimidating, but know that this product works very nice. It tastes fantastic (hence why it's our #1 rated pre-workout for taste), hits hard on energy and dials up the focus for your workouts. If taste is important and you also want a hard-hitting pre-workout, then K-XR is the way to go!

Who Makes It?

VMI Sports has a lot of experience in this world. Their owners come from a wholesale account. They've seen many products come and go. With this experience, they are able to create great tasting, effective products, especially best tasting pre-workout powders.

What's In It?

One serving contains:

What's In It?

One serving contains:

  • 3,300mg Intense Pump Blend – contains patent CarnoSyn® Beta-Alanine, L-Taurine and Theobromine to enhance blood flow into your muscles to provide an epic pump
  • 632.5g Maximum Energy Blend – contains 400g of total Caffeine which provides an immediate energy kick, within 15-minutes of taking it and long lasting energy throughout your workout
  • 503mg Focal & Cognitive Enhancing Blend – provides great focus and increased cognitive functions
K-XR Label

Bottom Line:

This is going to be the best tasting pre-workout you can find. VMI has a flavor lab like any other that I have seen. They make phenomenal tasting preworkouts but also protein powders and more. Their unique flavors give you a range to choose from, none of which you will be disappointed in. Oh, and it works too!

75%
Ingredients Profile
90%
Mixability
85%
Effectiveness
85%
Value
100%
Taste
87%
Overall Rating
VMI Sports K-XR bottle

#2 NutraBio PRE Extreme

8.8 out of 10

NutraBio Pre Extreme

The Highlights:

  • 3 Great Tasting Flavors
  • Insane Energy
  • Massive Pumps
  • 100% Transparent Label
  • Highest Quality of Ingredients Available

NutraBio PRE Extreme is a hard ass hitting pre-workout that is clinically dosed on almost every level that is a best tasting pre-workout! This is VERY hard to find in this area. It is such a large serving size you're actually be surprised how well this tastes. PRE Extreme is available in the following flavors: Green Apple, Raspberry Lemonade and Watermelon.

Taste is so important to most, but you can sleep well at night knowing that PRE Extreme is FULLY loaded with active ingredients that do great things for your workout. When you get to the "What's In It" section below, you are going to be amazed at how well this thing is dosed. What does this mean to you? It really hits hard on all cylinders including pump, strength, energy, focus and endurance.

PRE Extreme is going to be one of the best pre-workouts that you can find out there. It might not be our #1 rated for best taste, but it is damn close and is an amazing PWO that anyone would love. If the caffeine amount scares you, there is a regular version of this and a stim free too!

Who Makes It?

NutraBio won our 2017 Brand of the Year award for their commitment to label transparency and product consistency. They care about the consumer, and what we are putting into our bodies. They also care about creating best tasting pre-workout supplements.

NutraBio has a 3rd party testing website called CheckMySupps.com where you can track the validity of the supplements you buy. Can you find another company with that kind of commitment to the consumer? Good luck.

What's In It?

One serving contains:

  • 15g Highly Branched Chain Dextrin – pre-workout energy in the form of fast digesting carbs
  • 6g L-Citrulline – increases your body nitric oxide production increasing your pump
  • 2.5g  CarnoSyn® Beta-Alanine – maximizes your strength, power and endurance while fighting fatigue
  • 2g Creatine Monohydrate – promotes muscle strength and gains
  • 1g Creatine Hydrochloride (HCL) – increases lean body mass while maximizing strength
  • 3.5g L-Leucine – activates mTOR which induces protein synthesis aka muscle recovery
  • 1.5g Taurine – increases muscle strength and endurance
  • 1.2g N-Acetyl-L-Tyrosine – enhances drive and alertness improving your focus
  • 350mg Caffeine – increases energy and alertness
  • 300mg TheaPure™ L-Theanine – increases focus
  • 1g Agmatine Sulfate – promotes production of nitric oxide and increased pumps
  • PRE-Extreme Label

    Bottom Line:

    PRE Extreme is not only a great tasting pre-workout, it is one of the best pre-workouts available on the market today, especially those who need the caffeine. You are getting fully dosed ingredients (based on clinical studies) that will give you one helluva workout.

    Yes, you are here for taste, and this is a great tasting pre-workout, but having a great tasting pre-workout that kicks ass is also a solid benefit.

    90%
    Ingredients Profile
    90%
    Mixability
    90%
    Effectiveness
    80%
    Value
    90%
    Taste
    88%
    Overall Rating
    NutraBio Pre Extreme

    #3 NutraKey TRU PRE

    8.2 out of 10

    NutraKey TRU Pre bottle

    The Highlights:

    • 4 Great tasting flavors
    • Awesome pumps
    • 6g BCAAs
    • Transparent Label
    • 350mg Caffeine
    • plus
      NutraKey Quality

    Refreshing comes to mind when I think of the taste of TRU PRE from NutraKey. It is a great tasting pre-workout that goes down easy, and quickly, even at a higher serving size. TRU PRE comes in 4 great flavors: Blue Rock Candy (yum), Rainbow Blast, Sour Gummy Worm and Tahitian Fruit Punch.

    Let's just not focus on taste. NutraKey's TRU PRE is going to give you one big ol' pump. It features a clinical dosage of L-Citrulline at 6g and the addition of HydroMax at 1.5g. This means you are going to get swole, quickly, and help your muscles recovery and rebuild faster. This is the highlight of this ingredient to us. We love a good pump (and a great tasting product).

    TRU PRE is also equipped with 350mg of Caffeine and 6g of 2:1:1 BCAA. You are able to get great energy, and speed up muscle protein synthesis as you start your workout with the additions of these great ingredients. Everyone loves a great tasting pre-workout, but you shouldn't buy on taste alone. You also need to get a benefit from that pre-workout. With TRU PRE, you get that benefit.

    Who Makes It?

    NutraKey is synonymous with quality. They have been around for a long time, consistently delivering high quality products across many various categories and great tasting pre-workout supplements. They have the consumer's health in mind as they formulate their products, not just the green stuff called money. TRU PRE falls in-line with that philosophy.

    What's In It?

    One serving contains:

    • 6g Citrulline Malate - increased pumps by transporting more blood to the muscle
    • 3.2g Beta Alanine - promotes strength output
    • 6g 2:1:1 BCAA - helps with muscle recovery with increasing the speed of muscle protein synthesis
    • 1.5g HydroMax - awesome pump ingredient that turns your muscles into a sponge (essentially)
    • 1.5g Betanine - helps with endurance and strength
    • 1g Taurine - increases strength output and endurance- 500mg Acetyle L-Tyrosine - enhances focus
    • 500mg Choline Bitartrate - cognitive enhancing ingredient to improve focus
    • 350mg Caffeine - energy baby!
    • 50mcg Huperzine A - another focus enhancing ingredient
    TRU pre label


    Bottom Line:

    This is a clean pre-workout powder that tastes great. This was formulated for those who love a great pump, enjoy energy rushes and appreciates BCAAs in their pre-workout. NutraKey is a brand you can stand behind, and TRU PRE not only tastes awesone, it works well too!

    80%
    Ingredients Profile
    80%
    Mixability
    80%
    Effectiveness
    80%
    Value
    90%
    Taste
    82%
    Overall Rating
    NutraKey TRU Pre bottle

    #4 Pitbull Labs PRE

    8.0 out of 10

    Pitbull Labs Pre-Workout bottle

    The Highlights:

    • 2 Great tasting flavors
    • Solid, Sustained Energy
    • Transparent label
    • Charitable Donation
    • 3 Energy Sources
    • plus
      2g Taurine

    Pitbull Labs PRE does a lot of things right, one of them is they nailed the taste. One thing is for certain, the owner of Pitbull Labs really wants to make sure they get that right every time (they have one of the best tasting BCAAs I have ever had too!) Pitbull Labs PRE comes in 2 awesome flavors: Cherry Limeade (fav) and Blue Raz.

    As you approach any pre-workout, you should enjoy the taste, but you should more importantly look at the ingredients to ensure that this is a good product as well as a best tasting pre-workout. PRE from Pitbull Labs also hits on several other aspects you need to have in a pre-workout powder. The one area I really enjoyed is the euphoric energy you get from the combination of two caffeine sources and Theacrine. It's not a rush of energy that you want to punch your hand through the wall, but one that lasts and does not give you a crash.

    Another big area is strength output. Leveraging big doses of Beta Alanine, Betaine and Taurine, Pitbull Labs Pre-Workout will be contribute to your overall strength output and muscular endurance, allowing you to go longer and harder. By focusing on great tasting pre-workout, energy and strength, Pitbull Labs Pre-Workout is a solid choice.

    Who Makes It?

    Pitbull Labs is owned by a CEO who has spent many years within this industry. Over those years he gained experience and expertise in formulation and in creating great tasting pre-workout supplements.

    Pitbull Labs is a quality supplement company making great tasting pre-workouts and awesome supplements. They also donate a portion of their proceeds to rehome pitbull labs who need help. How awesome is that?

    What's In It?

    One serving contains:

    • - 2.5g Betaine - improves endurance and strength output
    • 2.4g Beta Alanine - increases strength output
    • 2g Taurine - strenght enhancer and prolongs muscle endurance
    • 1.5g N-Acetyle L-Tyrosine - improves overall focus
    • 850mg DMAE Bitartrate - improves memory and focus
    • 315mg TheaCrine - improves focus and decreases crash, similar to caffeine
    • 155mg Di-Caffeine Malate - slow acting caffeine source for energy
    • 135mg Caffeine Anhydrous - fast acting caffeine, hard hitting
    • 50mg Higenamine - energy producer/fat burner
    • 1mg Rauwolfia Vomitoria - dilates blood cells, better nutrient flow
    Pitbull Labs Pre-Workout label

    Bottom Line:

    Pitbull Labs Pre-Workout is a good tasting pre-workout powder that should also be considered for the other benefits that come with the pre-workout including energy and focus. You're here looking for the best tasting pre-workout, Pitbull Labs Pre-Workout falls in line with that, along with added kick-ass benefits.

    70%
    Ingredients Profile
    90%
    Mixability
    80%
    Effectiveness
    70%
    Value
    90%
    Taste
    80%
    Overall Rating
    Pitbull Labs Pre-Workout bottle

    #5 Sparta Nutrition Kraken

    8.7 out of 10

    Sparta Kraken Reformulated Version

    The Highlights:

    • 7 Amazing Tasting Flavors
    • Best Pumps
    • Transparent Label
    • Branded Ingredients
    • Solid Energy

    Kraken by Sparta Nutrition has constantly been a pre-workout that ranks high on a lot of lists. Kraken is ranked so high due to how great this pre-workout is. It is also ranked high for the great tasting pre-workout powder that it is. Kraken is available in 7 great tasting pre-workout flavors: Cola Pop (unique and awesome), Rainbow Candy, Watermelon Rancher, Sex On The Beach, Bombsicle, Sour Gummy Bear and Cotton Candy. As you can see, a lot of the flavors are based on popular candy choices. That's not a bad thing.

    Kraken is also, overall, a great pre-workout on top of a best tasting pre-workout. Packed with pump and energy ingredients. Kraken excels on pump with the addition of Vaso6 and HydroMax (not cheap ingredients). The pump is more than just a look, it actually serves a purpose to repair and rebuild damaged muscle tissue.

    Unlike the previous version of Kraken, which was stim heavy with DMHA, this new version only uses 250mg of caffeine. This isn't a bad thing. They add in Cocoabuterol which is a new ingredient designed for weight loss and energy production. You still get great energy on-top-of a great tasting pre-workout.

    Who Makes It?

    Sparta Nutrition is killing it in the game right now. They have a full conventional line and a keto line. Their products are high quality and great tasting, including this best tasting pre-workout supplement. Sparta keep releasing new products leveraging new ingredients, which propels them into one of the most respectable companies in this industry.

    What's In It?

    One serving contains:

    • 4g L-Citrulline – increases your body nitric oxide production increasing your pump
    • 3.2g  Beta-Alanine – maximizes your strength, power and endurance while fighting fatigue
    • 2g HydroMax – fantastic pump enhancer
    • 1g Taurine – increases muscle strength and endurance
    • 500mg N-Acetyl L-Tyrosine – cognitive enhancing ingredient
    • 300mg Vaso6 – increases Nitric Oxide in the body
    • 250mg TeaCrine – increases energy and alertness much like caffeine
    • 250mg Caffeine – increases energy
    • 50mg Theobromine – blood vessel dilator to increase pumps
    • 30mg N-Methyl-Tyramine HCl – burns fats and increases energy
    • 15mg Cocoabuterol -increases energy through fat loss
    • DMHA – insane energy
    Kraken V2 Facts

    Bottom Line:

    Great tasting pre-workout with the epic kick of a pump. That sums it up, no? Kraken is a solid pre-workout with hard hitting energy, great pumps and is an amazing tasting pre-workout. We were worried when they reformulated, but they nailed this reformulation and made it more "safe" for all.

    90%
    Ingredients Profile
    90%
    Mixability
    80%
    Effectiveness
    90%
    Value
    85%
    Taste
    87%
    Overall Rating
    Sparta Kraken Reformulated Version

    Does Taste Even Matter In a Pre-Workout?

    When you go to purchase supplements to help you achieve your fitness goals, you often start with the best intentions. However, if you end up buying a supplement that tastes terrible, it’s very unlikely you’ll get in the habit of consuming the pre-workout before you head to the gym. That being said, just because a supplement tastes good doesn’t mean it’s healthy or even effective in helping you set personal bests in the weight room.

    The reason you should be cautious about a pre-workout that comes in your favorite flavor is that many times, to get that desired taste, the formula adds artificial ingredients that ultimately can end up negatively affecting your health. The purpose of going to the gym and eating clean is ultimately to improve your overall fitness, but if you’re regularly taking a supplement that is filled with artificial chemicals, you might end up hurting your progress for the sake of pleasing your taste buds.

    While you shouldn’t hate consuming your pre-workout supplement, you should be cautious about putting taste before everything else.  The results are clear; consuming excess amounts of artificial ingredients and sweeteners can lead to a whole host of health issues. Unfortunately, while many healthy living enthusiasts think twice about chugging several cans of diet soda, they don’t always put the same amount of thought into what goes into their pre-workout. Nutritional supplement companies know that if they promote the great taste of their supplements, many of their consumers won’t think twice before pulling out their credit card.

    Given the consistent innovation in the nutritional supplement industry, it is absolutely possible to have a pre-workout drink that both tastes good and provides the nutrition and energy you need, but finding the perfect pre-workout for you will take some time. Ultimately, when choosing a pre-workout, you should always select the brand that will help you reach your goals rather than the supplement that tastes the best. If you’re in the market for a pre-workout drink, make sure to take a moment and do your research beforehand. Just because it promises to taste like your favorite guilty pleasure doesn’t mean that it’s the one you should choose.

    If you want to see the results in the gym and for your health, you should look first at how the pre-workout formula will help you from a nutritional standpoint. Be on the lookout for formulas that are loaded with ingredients that might hold you back.

    If you want to see the best results, choose a pre-workout that does what it was created to do. The taste of your pre-workout matters, but never at the cost of an effective workout at the gym. Be diligent in which supplement you choose, so that at the end of the day, you’ll be that much closer to your fitness and health goals. When in doubt, go for the formula that is effective, not the one that tastes the best.

    This completes our pre-workout supplement rankings for taste. The products listed above earned the right to be in the top 5 category. 

    Stay tuned to Fitness Informant throughout the year for updates as new products are tested and reviewed. Thoughts? Comment below!

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