Members Mark Chocolate Protein Shake (Dollar Tree)

NOTE: I'm aware Members Mark is a Sams' Club product, but they are being offered in individual cartons at Dollar Tree stores, which is where I got them. 

A carton of Members Mark Chocolate Protein Shake sitting against a black backdrop
Possibly worth it for the right person...of which I am not one.

Have I started shopping at Sam’s Club? Ha, of course not...we learned our lesson several years ago when we, as a two-person family, got tricked into thinking we could benefit from a membership and proceeded to shop there precisely zero times after signing up. Even now that we’re a slightly larger three-person family, I just don’t really feel the need; I’m sure there are some good deals to be had, even for smaller families, but it’s just not worth the trip (or the membership cost) when there are so many other options around.

So then, how did I end up with this weird package of Members Mark Chocolate Protein Shake? Well, in a rather weird occurrence, this was on the shelf of Dollar Tree! I don’t know how it ended up there (maybe they’re discontinuing it; I thought it might be expiring soon but we’re still about seven months out from that), but considering these teeny things are usually over $1 per package, even in multi-packs (and even at Aldi), I didn’t hesitate long before grabbing a couple.

It smells chocolatey, like a typical chocolate nutrition shake. This little fact actually has me a little excited, because I usually like the taste of these shakes a lot. I’ve had a couple different brands of these before, including national brands, but always skimp out because of the aforementioned cost. Some store brands manage to stay around the $1 per carton mark, but they’re always in the also-aforementioned multi-packs; that’s why I like the “loose carton” approach here at Dollar Tree, where you just buy what you want without having to commit to a four- or six-pack. Because who wants four of something when they end up sucking? 

Speaking of which, let’s throw some of this down: Ooof...well, we start with the taste of water, right off the bat. It’s a thicker liquid, but there’s no flavor to speak of for the first few milliseconds; it’s like just this bland, tasteless mass (which also aptly describes most of the bodybuilders that drink this...haha, just kidding). Next is that the semi-smooth texture turns chalky and even more uninviting…it is also around that time that the terrible chocolate flavor comes in - or rather, the “chalkolate” flavor. It’s weak and tastes very watered down, although even if it came through stronger, it would still be awful...maybe it’s a blessing it’s relegated to secondary notes.

So why in the hell would anyone scoop this up, when it tastes like absolute shit? Well, the answer is quite simple: one carton of these shakes equals at least 25% of 25 different vitamins and minerals, including a whopping 30g (60% assuming a 2,000 calorie diet) of your daily protein. That’s actually a pretty impressive number, especially for a dollar store. There’s also just 1g of sugar (with none added), which also helps to explain the complete lack of sweetness, but also makes it a great option for those looking to cut sugar out of their diets.

In the end, this definitely isn’t a product for me, but the price is right, so if it’s something you’d be interested in, hightail it to Dollar Tree to stock up - I doubt that they’re going to stick around long. For better or for worse.

Overall: 5/10. Man, I’m kind of torn on this one. It tastes like absolute shit, and has a weird chalklike texture, which are both big knocks in the negative direction, but that is somewhat offset by the fantastic $1 asking price (per 11 oz. carton) at Dollar Tree stores, as well as the massive protein content (30g), and collection of 25 different vitamins. I guess it all comes down to how badly you need/want protein, and how broke you are...if you have more cash to spend, there are much better tasting options out there. But assuming you don’t mind the taste of disappointment, this will at least give you some added nutrition at an excellent price point. 


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