When I mix whey protein powder into warm porridge (that I cooked in the microwave), the thick porridge becomes much less thick.

I searched this, and I found several forum threads discussing this too so it seems to be a common phenomenon. Happens when cooking porridge on the hob too, not just from mixing protein in after cooking.

I make the porridge through simply heating porridge oats + cow's milk. It doesn't matter if the oats are steel-cut or rolled, part of a fast-cook microwave pack, or completely natural.

How come the porridge becomes more liquidy when whey is stirred into it?

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    $\begingroup$ Seasoned Advice SE often plays with disparate metallurgy and rheology stuff. $\endgroup$ – Alchimista Mar 2 at 11:49
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    $\begingroup$ I suspect that the thickness of the porridge is in fact, due to it being a non-Newtonian, shear thickening fluid. When the protein powder is mixed, perhaps the mixture becomes less non-Newtonian. That's just my guess though. $\endgroup$ – Shoubhik R Maiti Mar 2 at 12:09
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    $\begingroup$ @ShoubhikRMaiti according to this podcast I just found, porridge is shear-thinning $\endgroup$ – theonlygusti Mar 2 at 13:07
  • $\begingroup$ I found that whey proteins are used as thickeners, at least in yogurt. $\endgroup$ – Alchimista Mar 2 at 14:25
  • $\begingroup$ @Alchimista that's why this behaviour in porridge is very surprising $\endgroup$ – theonlygusti Mar 2 at 15:04

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