This NativePath content is medically reviewed or fact-checked to ensure factually accurate information.
With strict editorial sourcing guidelines, we only link to academic research institutions, reputable media sites, and, when research is available, medically peer-reviewed studies. Note that the numbers in parentheses (1, 2, etc.) are clickable links to these studies.
The information in our articles is NOT intended to replace that of a qualified healthcare professional and is not intended as medical advice.
15 Ways To Sneak Collagen Into Your Meals
Looking for a new way to add collagen to your daily meal plan? Sure, you can just add a scoop to your morning coffee or throw it into a smoothie with some bananas and berries -- but if you want to branch out a bit, there are many more ways to sneak this nutrient-dense food into your diet.
In this article, you'll learn
- What collagen, and why you should be getting it into your meals every day.
- How to get creative with your protein shakes
- Some novel ways to sneak collagen into your snacks and desserts
What Is Collagen?
Collagen is one of the primary building blocks of your connective tissue and plays a role in the health of your skin, tendons, joints, cartilage, bones, and muscles.
As you age, your levels of collagen naturally start to decline, and as a result, you begin to notice more wrinkles on your face, your joints may start to ache, and your bones might become more frail.
Although collagen loss with age is a natural process, outside factors can increase the rate at which you lose this crucial structural protein. Too much UV exposure on your skin can result in more wrinkles, too much pressure on your joints can result in premature aches and pains, and poor diet or smoking can interfere with healthy bone formation .
While a balanced diet and healthy lifestyle can make a huge difference in how you age, collagen supplements have proven to be an incredible ally in slowing down the aging process.
Research shows that supplementing with high-quality collagen can reduce skin wrinkles while enhancing elasticity, it can calm the pain associated with osteoarthritis (joint pain), and it can increase bone mineral density to help protect against osteoporosis .
15 New Ways To Sneak Collagen Into Your Meals
#1 Chia Seed Pudding
Chia seed pudding is an excellent way to get some extra soluble fiber into your diet, and it makes a tasty breakfast, snack, or dessert option. Here are three delicious chia seed pudding recipes that kick up the protein with added collagen powder.
Classic Chia Seed Pudding With Collagen Boost
Pumpkin Chia Seed Pudding
Chia Pudding Collagen Smoothie
#2 Vanilla Caramel Collagen Waffles
Waffles are a classic breakfast treat, but they're typically all carb and no protein. When you add collagen to the mix, however, you get the best of both worlds, delicious waffles plus protein.
Vanilla Caramel Collagen Waffles
#3 Apple Nut Porridge
This apple nut porridge makes a perfect fall breakfast with zero grains, no added sugar, and lots of protein.
#4 Chocolate Almond Butter Smoothie Bowl
A smoothie bowl offers a new take on your standard protein shake. Instead of just chugging it down in a glass, pour your smoothie into a bowl with some extra toppings and enjoy it slowly with a spoon.
#5 Skin Boosting Pumpkin Pie
If you're looking for a healthy dessert option, this pumpkin pie is lightly sweetened with honey, contains zero grains and gluten, and is packed with healthy fats and protein.
#6 High-Protein Guacamole
Guacamole is naturally rich in healthy fats but traditionally doesn't do much in the way of protein. This creamy high protein guacamole is the perfect way to sneak extra collagen into your diet without altering the taste or texture.
#7 No-Bake Collagen Protein Bars
If you prefer your protein-boost in a bar form, try these no-bake collagen protein bars. Enjoy them as an on-the-go snack, for a quick and easy breakfast, or as a tasty dessert.
#8 Collagen Margarita
Who says you can't have a little fun with your protein shakes? Add a shot of tequila to make it a delicious adult beverage, or if you just like the taste of margaritas, make it a virgin.
New Takes On The Classic Smoothie
Of course, adding collagen to a smoothie is always a great option and is often the easiest way to get a significant amount of collagen each day. With that being said, if you've been drinking the same smoothie everyday things can get a little boring, so here are some ideas to spice up your smoothie game:
#9 Turmeric Carrot Smoothie
Enjoy the anti-inflammatory benefits of turmeric in your morning smoothie with this sweet and satisfying turmeric carrot smoothie.
#10 Coconut Coffee Smoothie
Tired of your regular coffee routine? Grab some Native Path coffee and start your day with this delicious and refreshing collagen-rich smoothie.
#11 Native Colada
Who doesn’t love a Pina Colada? You don’t have to be on a tropical beach to drink like you’re on a tropical beach. This recipe also includes the Native Nutrients powder, so you get an extra hit of nutrition.
#12 Watermelon Collagen Cooler
There's nothing more refreshing than a juicy piece of watermelon in the summer. This watermelon cooler is the perfect way to sneak some collagen into your day when you need a little sweet hydration.
#13 Supercharged Matcha Latte
Not a coffee drinker? No problem. This rich and creamy matcha latte is packed with antioxidants and supercharged with collagen and Native Nutrients powder.
#14 Collagen Ginger "Pick Me Up" Smoothie
All you need are some flax seeds, strawberries, raw ginger, and collagen to whip up some of this delicious beverage.
#15 Berry Beet Smoothie
Adding beets to your smoothie is an excellent way to sneak this nutrient-dense veggie in, plus it gives it a beautiful purple color.
Collagen is all the rage these days, and with new research coming out to support its benefits all the time, it doesn't look like the trend is going to end any time soon.
Don’t let your collagen routine get old, try out new ways to sneak this nutrient-dense food into your diet. In addition to the above options, you can incorporate collagen powder into pretty much any soup, stew, or liquid format you’re consuming.
- Knuutinen, A., et al. "Smoking affects collagen synthesis and extracellular matrix turnover in human skin." British Journal of Dermatology 146.4 (2002): 588-594.
- Al-Bashaireh, Ahmad M., et al. "The effect of tobacco smoking on bone mass: an overview of pathophysiologic mechanisms." Journal of osteoporosis 2018 (2018).
- Jariashvili, Ketevan, et al. "UV damage of collagen: insights from model collagen peptides." Biopolymers 97.3 (2012): 189-198.
- King, Lauren K., Lyn March, and Ananthila Anandacoomarasamy. "Obesity & osteoarthritis." The Indian journal of medical research 138.2 (2013): 185.
- König, Daniel, et al. "Specific collagen peptides improve bone mineral density and bone markers in postmenopausal women—A randomized controlled study." Nutrients 10.1 (2018): 97.
- Bello, Alfonso E., and Steffen Oesser. "Collagen hydrolysate for the treatment of osteoarthritis and other joint disorders: a review of the literature." Current medical research and opinion 22.11 (2006): 2221-2232.
- Bolke, Liane, et al. "A collagen supplement improves skin hydration, elasticity, roughness, and density: Results of a randomized, placebo-controlled, blind study." Nutrients 11.10 (2019): 2494.
This content is for informational and educational purposes only. It is not intended to provide medical advice or to take the place of such advice or treatment from a personal physician. All readers/viewers of this content are advised to consult their doctors or qualified health professionals regarding specific health questions. Neither Dr. Chad Walding nor the publisher of this content takes responsibility for possible health consequences of any person or persons reading or following the information in this educational content. All viewers of this content, especially those taking prescription or over-the-counter medications, should consult their physicians before beginning any nutrition, supplement, or lifestyle program.