Creatine Pills vs. Powder (Which Is Better?)


Creatine monohydrate is a supplement that can improve performance and increase muscle mass. However, when investing in a supplement like creatine, what is better pills vs powder?

Creatine pills are convenient, pre-measured, and quick to take in, while creatine powder offers the flexibility of dosages and the option to add it to drinks you already are taking, like your protein shake, making it easier to remember to take it every day. The choice between the two will depend on your individual preferences because there is no difference in the efficacy.

The choice of taking creatine in a pill versus powder form will depend on individual considerations and personal preference.

AspectCreatine PillsCreatine Powder
Convenience Easy to take on the go, pre-measured doses, no residue left in cup. Flexible dosing, can be mixed with habitual liquids (e.g., juice). Clumping and expiration issues if not stored properly.
Vegan Suitability Often not vegan due to gelatin in capsules. More likely to be vegan-friendly due to synthetic production process free from animal by-products.
Dosing Flexibility Convenient to travel with as you don’t need to mix it with the fluid. Allows for adjustable dosing based on needs.
Integration with Other Foods Can be easily mixed with other drinks. Possible residue if not dissolved properly; mitigated by using warm fluids or swirling the last bit of fluid.
Health and Safety Dry scooping poses a choking hazard and lacks scientific support for efficacy.
Travel Convenient to travel with as you don’t need to mix it with fluid. Can be more cumbersome to travel with.

Pros Of Creatine Pills

Creatine pills can be a convenient way to get in your dose of creatine, especially if you are traveling or on the go.

It is also already measured out for you, so you don’t have to worry about accidentally taking too much or too little.

Additionally, you will get in the full dose without having some residue left in your cup after you finish your drink.

Cons Of Taking Creatine Pills

Creatine pills are often not suitable for vegans. Creatine is naturally present in animal-derived foods such as chicken, beef, eggs, and pork [1].

On the other hand, creatine supplement powder is produced by synthesizing sarcosine and cyanamide, making it free from animal by-products and suitable for a “vegan-friendly” label [2,3].

Conversely, when creatine comes in a capsule (pill), the likelihood of the product being non-vegan increases, as capsules are commonly composed of gelatin, which includes animal by-products [4].

Pros Of Taking Creatine Powder

Creatine powder is more flexible regarding dosing, so you can upscale and downscale doses based on your needs.

In addition, you can mix creatine powder with some liquid you are already taking, like whey protein or juice, making it easier to remember taking it (i.e., it is already a habit).

Cons Of Taking Creatine Powder

If you do not store your powder properly (in a cool, dry space), it can clump together and creatine can expire quickly.

Furthermore, numerous athletes engage in dry scooping, a practice lacking scientific evidence of efficacy and posing a choking hazard.

Some of the creatine may not dissolve completely in cold water, and there might be some creatine residue left in the bottom of your glass when you take powdered creatine you can negate this by taking creatine in warm fluids [5, 6] or swirling your last bit of fluid before swallowing.

Should You Take Creatine Pills Or Powder?

Contrary to popular belief, no difference exists between how well creatine pills or powders are absorbed. Creatine is 99% bio-available [6], and stomach acids quickly digest the layer that encapsulates a creatine pill once it reaches the stomach.

The choice between creatine pills or powder depends on your preferences and convenience.


  1. Benzi, G., & Ceci, A. (2001). Creatine as nutritional supplementation and medicinal product. Journal of Sports Medicine and Physical Fitness, 41(1), 1.
  2. Fazio, C., Elder, C. L., & Harris, M. M. (2022). Efficacy of Alternative Forms of Creatine Supplementation on Improving Performance and Body Composition in Healthy Subjects: A Systematic Review. J Strength Cond Res, 36(9), 2663-2670. doi:10.1519/jsc.0000000000003873
  3. Han, C. H., & Sillerud, L. O. (1986). Synthesis of [guanidino13C] creatine and measurement of the creatine phosphokinase reaction in vitro by 13C NMR spectroscopy. Magnetic resonance in medicine, 3(4), 626-633.
  4. Kaviani, M., Shaw, K., & Chilibeck, P. D. (2020). Benefits of Creatine Supplementation for Vegetarians Compared to Omnivorous Athletes: A Systematic Review. Int J Environ Res Public Health, 17(9). doi:10.3390/ijerph17093041
  5. Kreider, R. B., Jger, R., & Purpura, M. (2022). Bioavailability, Efficacy, Safety, and Regulatory Status of Creatine and Related Compounds: A Critical Review. Nutrients, 14(5). doi:10.3390/nu14051035
  6. Kreider, R. B., Kalman, D. S., Antonio, J., Ziegenfuss, T. N., Wildman, R., Collins, R., . . . Lopez, H. L. (2017). International Society of Sports Nutrition position stand: safety and efficacy of creatine supplementation in exercise, sport, and medicine. J Int Soc Sports Nutr, 14, 18. doi:10.1186/s12970-017-0173-z