Is there any Huel without probiotics now?

I’m not doing well at all with them - do all versions of Huel now contain probiotics?

I’m sorry to hear this Karl! Huel Hot & Savoury, RTD and Bars don’t contain any probiotics.

Thanks Dan - I’d no idea that RTD was probiotic free, so that at least gives me an option.


@Dan_Huel Are there any plans at all to re-introduce a Huel powder without probiotics? This seems like something people would like to be able opt in or out of.

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At the moment, no. I’ve taken your feedback on board though and will share it with the wider team.

What is the problem with probiotics?

For me the addition of probiotics is one of the main advantages of Huel compared to the products of competing companies…

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Bacillus coagulans are for the most part fine for everyone but occasionally can trigger the reverse effect they are supposed to help with (gas, bloating, diarrhoea etc) - this is only a temporary side effect though until the digestive system balances out. They can also interact with some medications reducing their effectiveness.

Not temporary for me - nor for the subjects referred to in these studies:

For some the effects may be transitional “until the digestive system balances out”, for some they are not.

Given the lack of wider understanding of probiotic and prebiotic effects and the varied response in individuals it seems that the blanket inclusion of them in a food that is meant to replace some or all meals is not particularly wise.

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Very interesting @Karl_H I used to tolerate v2.3 much better than the newer versions. It’s not too big a deal for me but I’m sure removing probiotics would make a difference.

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A retrospective study with n=43 is not really what I would call “evidence”.

On the other hand there are not really that many large randomized controlled clinical trials. Just smaller ones with diverse and often contradictory results.
In summary I would say that there is neither evidence for nor against probiotics.

I would like to keep them, though. If they were to be removed from Huel I’d expect a lower price. Without such additions the current price would not be justified any longer. It’s always the same; there is a good ingredient like Kelp, probiotics, sucralose etc., then a few people complain about it and it is removed. And I doubt that these people are nearly as critical of other things they consume…

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While I understand your desire for the formula to remain as it is, because it suits your individual needs, attacking the motives and consistency of those it does not suit, does not strengthen your argument.


If Huel removed the probiotics from its formula and as a consequence lowered the price significantly this would be fine, too…

why on earth do you think doing this would reduce the price significantly? they are the smallest ingredient by volume in Huel and buying food grade Bacillus Coagulans from trade suppliers can be done for as little $3-6USD/kilo - significantly less than the bulk cost of sweeteners such as Sucralose. There’s simply no logic in that assertion.

Is it really that cheap? So why is Huel - at least to my knowledge - the only brand that adds probiotics? I thought it might have to do something with the fact that Huel is also one of the more expensive brands for meal replacements…

yes - even if you paid $100/kilo, by volume - removing it from the mix would reduce the cost by literally a cent.

no idea if it is or why

the reasons for the pricing increase were given at the time it happened - the pricing may also be indicative of the quality of the main ingredients used vs. competitors - the costs of which have increased sharply since Huel first came to market. By the end of last year, the bulk costs of ingredients such as flaxseed and brown rice had increased by 31.25% and 18.55% respectively since the original price was set for example.

I had a quick look around their sites and brands such as Ample, Ideal Shape, Soylent and Jimmy Joy all use probiotics in their products now.

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If that’s the case, then there’s a stronger, choice based market argument for a probiotic free version of Huel.

Personally, I had come to rely on Huel quite significantly before lockdown and will be trying RTD when I have to start commuting again. I am at a stage in my journey of discovery where I wish that I had bought a year’s worth of 2.3 in February…

yes and no - while the individual component is cheap - setting up the infrastructure to produce a parallel line without it isn’t. It would certainly be an interesting proposition to have a single ‘raw’ product flavour reformulated to appeal to a different segment but you would probably find you end up paying more for it. A bit like when you buy a convertible car - superficially you’re actually buying less but have to pay quite a bit more than a coupe for it because of everything you don’t see in the background.

I’d actually be happier in this case to pay a bit more (if I have to switch to RTD, I will anyway) - not sure that others would.

Of course, the test is whether there is a sufficient number of people who either a) like me, have had to give up using Huel since V3.0 or b) have some other objection to the inclusion of probiotics, to justify the ROI.

absolutely - yes. I think this is often the case with ‘niche’ products and certainly something the New Product Development Team at Huel could consider as a USP over other brands. whenever the market gets crowded its often hard to leverage some unique features - knowing that they won’t stay unique for long.