The Soylent 2.0 formula is actually pretty good

by | May 31, 2016 | General Productivity

Takeaway: The Soylent 2.0 formula comes in premixed plastic bottles instead of as a powder, tastes much better than the old version, and is more convenient. It’s worth keeping some bottles of it in your fridge.

Estimated Reading Time: 2 minutes, 40s.

SoylentI recently spoke at a private conference, and for fun, arranged to serve everyone in attendance a glass of Soylent. Soylent is a powdered food substitute that contains everything your body nutritionally needs over the course of the day—carbs, protein, fats, vitamins, minerals, etc.

Here’s a productivity experiment I conducted a while back to drink only Soylent for a week.

I was curious what people would think. Sure enough, out of the 60 people in attendance, only a handful finished their glass. Most couldn’t stand how it tasted.

What I disliked the most about the old Soylent powder was also the taste: the old formula tasted like thick oat water—though not entirely in a bad way. I found it okay at first, but it grew old pretty quickly.

Recently, though, I decided to order a few cases of Soylent’s newest formula: Soylent 2.0 (which came out last September). This formulation varies from the previous one in a few ways:

  • Soylent 2.0 isn’t powdered—it ships in premixed bottles. Each bottle is 400 calories, and serves as one balanced meal replacement.
  • Taste is subjective, but in my opinion this formulation tastes way better than the previous formulation, and a lot of the reviews I’ve stumbled upon tend to agree. It tastes like the milk that’s left over after you eat a bowl of cereal.
  • It’s more expensive than the old powdered formula (which is still available). The powder is $1.54 for a 400-calorie portion, while the premixed bottles cost $2.42 for a 400-calorie portion (or $2.83 each if you don’t buy them on Soylent’s monthly subscription service). No matter how you slice it, though, it’s still pretty cheap.
  • It’s slower burning. The new formulation has a significantly lower glycemic index rating compared to the previous version (49, versus 65), so your body will release its energy over a longer period of time, and the drink won’t spike your blood sugars as sharply.

The two formulations are quite different when it comes to preparation. It used to take an extra step to mix the powder with water; now, you just twist the top off a bottle and knock it back. The bottles are premixed, so it’s convenient to keep a few in your fridge for when you need them, and you can store unrefridgerated bottles for about a year.

Over the last couple months, I’ve maintained a steady stock of bottles in my fridge, for when I’ve wanted to have a quick and healthy meal. I would never want to consume Soylent 100% of the time, but I’ve found myself cracking open two or three bottles a week, especially:

  • Whenever I’ve wanted a healthy, nutritious breakfast, and haven’t had time to prepare one
  • When I’ve been on-the-go—like at conferences or heavy travel days
  • Whenever I’ve been deeply focused on my work, and didn’t want to interrupt my flow state to eat

Because Soylent 2.0 is cheap, healthy, and convenient, I highly recommend picking up a case or two. You probably don’t want to consume Soylent for every meal, but the stuff is a godsend for when you want to eat relatively healthy, but don’t necessarily have the time, energy, or inclination to make something.


Written by Chris Bailey

Chris Bailey has written hundreds of articles on the subject of productivity and is the author of three books: How to Calm Your Mind, Hyperfocus, and The Productivity Project. His books have been published in more than 40 languages. Chris writes about productivity on this site and speaks to organizations around the globe on how they can become more productive without hating the process.

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