Bret's Soylent: Oat, Wheat. More protein, low price. Tasty!

by hess8
Last updated July 31, 2023 Copy
AmountVolumeIngredient$ / daySource
83ml0.37cupCanola Oil$0.14Local, 5qt (Costco)
46gSugar or sugar+sucralose (see notes)$0.13Amazon
1pillKirkland Signature Daily Multi$0.03Amazon
5.2gPotassium chloride$0.10Amazon
1.23gCholine Bitartrate$0.03Amazon
0.08pillVitamin K$0.00Amazon
91gWheat protein isolate 80%$0.54Honeyville farms
0.6gOrange flavor, unsweetened$0.04Amazon
1.1pillCalcium and vitamin D$0.05Amazon
0.4gCardamom spice$0.02 Amazon
0.9gtspXanthan gum (see notes on amount)$0.03Amazon
5g1tbspHershey's Cocoa$0.08Amazon
196gOat Flour Honeyville Farms$0.89Honeyville
Amounts for:
Total Daily Cost:
$2.13Add Ingredients
to Amazon Cart

Both the cardamom and the orange are pretty subtle, and round out the natural wheat aftertaste. Don't leave them out. You can drop the chocolate.

See my other recipes using whey protein , corn and wheat protein, and rice protein. They each taste very different.

If you don't have a preference, I suggest starting with the rice or whey versions, or get samples (below).

This has 22% of calories from complete protein, higher than my other recipes (17%). I don't have an opinion that higher protein than in my other recipes is necessarily healthier (above 15% is great), but some people want a higher protein diet, and this came naturally in the goal to limit the number of ingredients, since this protein source is inexpensive.

Yes, the great price is for real and I update the ingredient prices when I buy more. You need to buy in bulk (see the links) to get these savings. And an Amazon prime account might help. Costs: The recipe editor on this site automatically calculates price per day. It shows you how many days that each purchase lasts... look at the recipe editor tab, column "days/unit".

See instructions here for how to use this mix and adjust to soylent.

If you want to try it before you invest in ingredients, I'll send you a day's supply of powder to try by priority mail (2-3 days), if you send me $23 ( $30 for 2 days, $50 for 4 days, $65 for 6 days, $80 for 8 days) by SquareCash ($brethess), Venmo (BCHess), Google Wallet or PayPal to: bret dot hess at (replace the "dot" and "at" with the real symbols). Be clear about whether you want the rice, wheat or whey version, or a combination. I sell only samples (no continuing orders). A "day" here is 2000 calories.



My family used official Soylent (1.1 through 1.4) for about 5 months for about 2 meals a day. At the same time, I experimented with my own recipes, while matching the official Soylent nutrition, and finding the right prices for the ingredients. In Feb 2015 I found a rice protein recipe that was a hit with the family, who said it tastes better than the official product (v1.4). I now rotate between all of my recipes.

I find that weight loss/maintenance is a lot easier with soylent for two meals a day than eating traditional meals. It's very satisfying, and you know you're getting complete nutrition. I could have marked this "Weight Loss!"...just watch your total calories.



I mix a month's supply of powder (everything but the oil and water) in a 5 gallon bucket with a mixer that's powered by my drill in reverse. Pour it into a second bucket (to turn it upside down) to do the final mixing of what was on the bottom of the first bucket. I measure amounts on a digital scale in a very large bread mixing bowl (holds about 3 kg of flour) and put it into the bucket for mixing. You'll be glad if you get a lid like this for the bucket.

Here's a spreadsheet calculator for mixing any number of days you want of the mix or the vitamin mix. Just replace "Days to Mix" number with the number of days you want to mix.

To save time, I mix about 4-6 months at a time of the vitamins and minerals (the pills go in the blender with a tight lid...I put plastic over the blender and then the lid...the dust is not pleasant) including salt and xanthan, and mix all in the big bowl with a whisk and store. Then just add the number of grams of this vitamin mix that the calculator above says. This method means you can get good vitamin accuracy with a scale with 1 g resolution.

For example, for 180 days of vitamins/minerals, I go to the recipe calculator and choose 180 days. This is many multivitamin pills, but I don't count them, I just weigh them. The calculator gives the number of grams of multivitamins to use, and the number of other pills (I just round to whole or half pills) Then I blend them all up. Then add this to the powders in the big bowl and whisk.



The protein comes from wheat and oats. I added lysine to achieve the balance for complete protein. See the protein essential amino acid analysis (blue columns are the summary). This recipe provides at least 200% of the WHO recommended of each essential amino acid, and the balance is very good. There is a lot of tryptophan in oats, but in amounts similar to meats, fish, cheeses and beans (ref). Larger amounts of tryptophan in foods does not seem to change the blood levels of tryptophan, as opposed to the purified form in supplements (ref).



All my recipes have some oat flour. It's easy to digest and has excellent protein and fiber (why add a fiber supplement when this grain is so good?).


Xanthan gum

This adds a little thickening for texture, and keeps it from separating as you drink it (It will separate in the fridge). It also reduces all tastes somewhat, including sweetness (slips right past those tastebuds if you put in a lot). Optional. I mix it in with my big powder batches so I don't have to add one more ingredient on a daily basis. If you do choose to add it separately into the blender each day, use only half as much! It's a more effective thickener before it's mixed with the other powders.



Most nutritional and medical associations have lowered their recommendations to 1500 mg/day (down from 2300 mg). The amount here (1250mg per 2000 cal) is below that, and below that in official Soylent 1.5 (1440).

I actually don't recommend lowering the salt further: two recent major studies (2016 and 2018) have shown that there is a sweet spot in sodium intake (around 3 g sodium, which is 7.5 g of salt). There is increased disease at both high and low intake. I think the study of disease as the final judgement on sodium intake is the right one. See This may convince me to raise the salt in the recipe, but for now I don't want to get into the controversy.



The potassium comes with chloride. In the past I used some potassium citrate for part of the potassium to keep the chloride within the typical "maximum" amount. But I researched this, and there is no chloride toxicity from chloride in the range of double the "maximum" amount. Because there is no danger from chloride itself, the "maximum" amount was simply set to match the amount of chloride that comes in the recommended amount of salt. In other words, it's sodium that can be dangerous, and whoever set the "maximum" amount of chloride was making things up: "The AI for chloride is set at a level equivalent on a molar basis to that of sodium, since almost all dietary chloride comes with the sodium added during processing or consumption of foods."(ref) In fact studies of patients taking potassium chloride (in addition to a steady salt intake) showed a reduction in sodium levels in the body.(ref), caused by the presence of potassium.



The sugar amount is "within" the WHO guidelines: - "In both adults and children, WHO recommends reducing the intake of free sugars to less than 10% of total energy intake (strong recommendation). • WHO suggests a further reduction of the intake of free sugars to below 5% of total energy intake (conditional recommendation). • Free sugars include monosaccharides and disaccharides added to foods and beverages by the manufacturer, cook or consumer, and sugars naturally present in honey, syrups, fruit juices and fruit juice concentrates."

As written the recipe has 7% of calories from sugar (disaccharide), which is better than their "strong recommendation (10%)" and close to their "hopeful" one (5%). Their 5% goal doesn't count fruit eaten, so if you're replacing some fruit consumption with this, it could easily meet the health effects of the 5% goal.

To further reduce sugar, you can replace half of it with the equivalent volume (not weight) of sucralose (Splenda). Tastes the same.



Official Soylent went from 30% to 40% of calories by fat in version 1.4 and 1.5, and I've followed that here. I think this reflects the increasing understanding that getting a significant portion of our calories by healthy fats can be very healthy and satisfying. The problem with our diets wasn't too much fat, but too many calories, too much sugar and unhealthy fats.

Oil preference is more a matter of fad than science these days, so if you're against Canola, find a new oil...I don't mind. It won't really change the price or calories. But the research in these notes has convinced me that canola oil is quite healthy:

"Canola oil is low in saturated fat and contains both omega-6 and omega-3 fatty acids in a ratio of 2:1. If consumed, it also reduces low-density lipoprotein and overall cholesterol levels, and as a significant source of the essential omega-3 fatty acid is associated with reduced all-cause and cardiovascular mortality" Wikipedia. "In 2001, researchers at a conference sponsored by the National Institutes of Health concluded that the two classes of fatty acid should be consumed in a 1:1 ratio. As of 2007, the Japanese government recommended a ratio of 4:1, while the Swedish government recommended a ratio of 5:1, and the Institute of Medicine of the National Academy of Science in the United States recommended a ratio of 10:1. (In all cases, the number to the left of the ratio is omega-6 fats, while the number to the right is omega-3s.)" Wikipedia.

"Several sources of information suggest that human beings evolved on a diet with a ratio of omega-6 to omega-3 essential fatty acids (EFA) of approximately 1 whereas in Western diets the ratio is 15/1-16.7/1. Western diets are deficient in omega-3 fatty acids, and have excessive amounts of omega-6 fatty acids ... A ratio of 2.5/1 reduced rectal cell proliferation in patients with colorectal cancer, whereas a ratio of 4/1 with the same amount of omega-3 PUFA had no effect. The lower omega-6/omega-3 ratio in women with breast cancer was associated with decreased risk. A ratio of 2-3/1 suppressed inflammation in patients with rheumatoid arthritis, and a ratio of 5/1 had a beneficial effect on patients with asthma, whereas a ratio of 10/1 had adverse consequences" [2002 study][22].

So the ratios are all over the place. But the info above makes me think that the high ratio of omega-6 to omega-3 in western diets is probably an extreme to avoid. This recipe has a total ratio of about 3:1.

Another issue in the oils controversy that wrongly criticizes canola and is not an issue in this recipe is the form of vitamin E, gamma vs alpha. One correlation [study][23] suggests that the consumption of higher gamma over alpha in the US could reduce the lung capacity for 1% of people. Another [study][24] says that the gamma form might guard against cancer and dementia. So it's not decided, but regardless, high gamma consumption in the US is due to soybean oil (76% gamma) and corn oil, not canola (7% gamma).

In any case, the multivitamin vitamin E used here has the alpha-form, which is where almost all of the vit. E comes from, and so the vitamin E in this recipe is overwhelmingly alpha form; the gamma form is very small here (about 1%), and you probably should be glad to get a little of it, since just one form is probably not great.

So canola seems to work well with a good ratio of omega-6 to omega-3, and no issues with vitamin E.

Nutrition Facts

Amount Per Day
36% Carb, 21% Protein, 43% Fat
% Daily Values*
Total Carbohydrate184g
Dietary Fiber 28g
Total Fat95g
Saturated Fat9g
Monounsaturated Fat54g
Polyunsaturated Fat28g
Omega-3 Fatty Acids7g
Omega-6 Fatty Acids20g
Vitamin A
Vitamin B6
Vitamin B12
Vitamin C
Vitamin D
Vitamin E
Vitamin K
Pantothenic Acid
* Percent Daily Values are based on "Higher protein macro profile, 38-40-22 carb/fat/protein, other U.S. government DRI male 19-50, Aug 2015". You may use the Nutrient Calculator to personalise your own profile, then select it from the list on the Recipe Editor tab.
Nutrient Profile: Higher protein macro profile, 38-40-22 carb/fat/protein, other U.S. government DRI male 19-50, Aug 2015Change

4 Reviews

1 review
2 years ago
Excellent overall taste
Higher than average energy level
A little gritty
Reviewer tried this recipe more than 10 times
Reviewer is currently using this recipe

I've been eating this as the majority of my calories for 5 years now, and I have every intention of continuing to do so for the foreseeable future. Cheap, easy, and fast- I always appreciate that Bret keeps the ingredient links up to date <3 Flavor is very neutral (It tastes like oats and canola oil.. like what are you expecting?) and you can spice it up however you want. My personal favorite is just a subtle chocolate and mint, which I do 90% of the time. And I personally find it more appetizing than most other foods. I'm in my mid 20s and perfectly healthy. I scale the ingredients up to 3000kcal when I'm trying to gain weight and I make good progress.

4 years ago
Good overall taste
Higher than average energy level
Snacky betwen meals
Somewhat gritty
Lots of flatulence
Reviewer tried this recipe once
Reviewer is not currently using any type of Complete Food

The complete food is a website from where you can get nutritional food in reasonable prices. But you can visit to get quality work easily. It has all the food ingredients available with full details of carbs, protein and fats. Join their website to buy it from Amazon as well.

1 review
4 years ago
Excellent overall taste
Reviewer tried this recipe once
Reviewer is currently using this recipe

I have listended a lot about your blog benefits and it is indeed a very good way not to ease down your diet complexities but also to deal with your fitness issues.Why don’t you think to write for it is best place for earning and you have also very good writing skills.I am sure you can have a better career here.Thanks a lot for sharing this post.

1 review
6 years ago
Excellent overall taste
Higher than average energy level
A little gritty
Reviewer tried this recipe more than 10 times
Reviewer is currently using this recipe

My first experience using DIY soylent, and I was pleasantly surprised. From what I read abut most diy recipes, I was expecting a taste similar to bread dough. This isn't at all unpleasant, I'd compare it to chocolatey oatmeal. The price is fantastic, and I've had no unpleasant side effects. Lucked out on my first try and found a winner. I haven't been measuring how much water I use in each meal, but I would advise mixing it thicker rather than thinner. If it's thicker it tastes more substantial, if it's thinner you notice a slightly grittier texture and it's not quite as good. Also, this doesn't apply to the original recipe but amazon was out of the orange flavor packets and I bought mcormick orange flavoring which, I didn't notice, is like 90% alcohol and gives a sort of boozy aftertaste. Definitely buy powdered flavoring instead. I just started leaving the orange out until I can implement powdered flavoring.