Best Foods to Gain Weight Quickly and Safely Reviewed
There are many reasons you want to gain weight. You may be trying to build muscle mass to enter a bodybuilding competition. You may be trying to go up a weight class in your wrestling league. You may just be a skinny person trying to bulk up into a more toned physique. Whatever your reasons, the best way to do that, first and foremost, is through your diet of foods to gain weight. Adding in the right foods can have a world of effect into helping you reach your goal weight.
In a Hurry? The test winner after 4 hrs of research
Free from many allergens
Top 10 Picks
1. SunButter Sunflower Butter
Free from many allergens
Small item size
SunButter was established once the founders realized the need for a peanut-free nut butter in the marketplace. Looking around, they saw the potential in sunflower butter, and quickly set up shop. In 2001, they partnered with the USDA to establish the SunButter brand and quickly rose to dominance. SunButter contains seven grams of protein in each serving and a high concentration of vitamins and minerals. It also provides almost half of the daily recommended dose of Vitamin E. It has no trans fats and very few saturated fats.Read more
Measuring out individual serving sizes from one large container is a hassle, and can involve a lot of guesswork. Besides just wasting time, you may also end up guessing the proportions incorrectly. This product comes conveniently divided into six one-ounce containers. It takes the possibility of inaccuracy out of the equation and saves you time and frustration to boot.
Easy, Nutritional Additions
Nut butters are wonderful in their ability to be added quickly and easily to other foods for a quick calorie bump. Aside from easily being put on crackers or sandwiches, they can also be added to smoothies and yogurts for a flavorful addition. They are incredibly easy to incorporate into a variety of recipes. Plus, if you don't have the time to sit down and eat a snack or meal, you can just add nut butter to a shake or smoothie and drink it on the go.
Cost and Value
This is one of the most expensive products on our list. Despite the fact that it comes in a pack of six, those six canisters are not the largest. Some detractors have said that this product is pricier than what you could purchase at the grocery storytime savings the time-savings that you'll get from not having to measure out individual portion sizes may be worth spending a bit extra, especially if you have a busy lifestyle and not a lot of time.
2. CLIF BUILDER'S Protein Bar
Higher cost than grocery store
The Clif Bar was invented by Gary Erikson and Lisa Thomas in 1986. Nowadays, the Clif Bar & Company is privately held and headquartered in Emeryville California. They specialize in organic food and drink products. Clif Bars are staples in the market for people looking to gain weight and mass, especially athletes looking to bulk up their muscle mass. These bars are high in calories, which is important. To gain weight, it is necessary that you eat more calories than you burn. In order to get more calories, it's important that you be able to eat more without feeling overly full. That's where this product comes in.Read more
For someone who is undergoing intense training and specifically looking to gain weight in muscle mass, protein-dense foods are a must. CLIF BUILDER'S - Protein Bar - Chocolate Mint pack in twenty grams of protein in each bar, which is a boon to the bodybuilder. For those who are looking to gain other kinds of weight, this is still a great option. Most protein bars only pack in about 230 calories, but this one comes in at 270 calories per serving.
Low Glycemic Index
A common problem with trying to gain weight is that many of the high-calorie foods are also high in sugar. Either this or they have a high glycemic index. For people who have blood sugar difficulties, either through type I or II diabetes, hypo or hyperglycemia, etc., this is a seemingly insurmountable hurdle. However, this food has a how glycemic index, and won't cause any unwanted spikes in blood sugar.
Cost and Value
This product has a mid-range cost when compared to other items on this list. However, you get a lot for your money. This is a bulk package of twelve. You could eat one every day for almost two weeks and not run out. This makes a great addition to any daily snack regimen or meal. You end up paying just slightly over one dollar per bar. Overall, the value of bulk can't be topped.
3. Chosen Foods Avocado Oil
Bottle may arrive broken
Carsten Hagan was a naturopathic doctor who traveled the world. In his journeys, he became fascinated with the roles that traditional foods played in the lives of indigenous peoples around the globe. He made it his mission to share these indigenous superfoods with the world. One of these foods is the avocado and its oil. Healthy oils and fats are some of the most calorically dense foods on Earth. You can add as much as 135 calories to sauces, salads, or during cooking with just one tablespoon of oil.Read more
The heat at which you can cook varies from oil to oil, as each oil has a different smoke point. The smoke point is the temperature at which, as named, the oil will start to smoke, break down, and give off noxious fumes. At its most basic level, when a cooking oil begins smoking, it not only loses its nutritional value and gives the food an unpleasant taste, but can also generate toxic fumes and free radicals. Free radicals are associated with cell death. To avoid this, you want an oil with a high smoke point; avocado oil has one of the highest smoke points of any oil.
While some companies use cheap, fast and dirty methods to extract oil, Chosen Foods is not one of them. They never use chemicals or harmful processes to extract the oil from their avocados. Additionally, their products are minimally refined. Keeping the refining to a minimum preserves the beneficial nutrients locked into this superfood.
Cost and Value
This product has a mid-to-high cost when compared to other items on this list. However, most people aren't going to be cooking up meals in oil for every meal, so one 33 ounce bottle should last you a while. Overall it's worth the cost, especially when you consider its high smoke point and calorie density.
4. JoJo's Guilt Free Bark
May melt during shipping
The JOJO's brand was created after the founder, nicknamed Jojo, was diagnosed with breast cancer. Her personal journey to restore her health led her to create this nutrient-packed product. Similar to other high-fat foods, dark chocolate is calorie dense. Every 100 grams of dark chocolate has 600 calories; in addition to this, it also is chock-full of micronutrients, fiber, magnesium, and antioxidants.Read more
Just because you're health conscious doesn't mean you should have to struggle to gain weight. People go on paleo diets for a lot of reasons, the main one being that they're looking to clean up their nutritional act. Though many associate the paleo diet with weight loss increased health and vitality doesn't necessarily mean the scales go down. If you're looking to raise your mass, this product is paleo-friendly and high on calories.
Sometimes it's difficult to feel full after eating food. If you're looking to feel satisified after you've eaten your snack, this product has 5 grams of protein. This added protein is helpful, especially if you're training to increase your muscle mass.
Cost and Value
This product has a mid-range price when compared to other items on our list. As a snack food, it is excellent and full of nutrients. The only downside of this product is that the chocolate it contains may melt during shipping, especially if it is ordered during the hot summer months. Each bag contains a week's supply worth of bars. If you're looking to purchase a week's worth of snacks, this product may be the right fit for you.
5. KIND Breakfast Bars
5 super grains
0g Trans Fat
Hard on teeth
KIND Bars, based out of New York City, was founded in 2004 by Daniel Lubetzky. As a food company, they have seven product lines. Cereal bars are a great way to get a calorie-packed snack on the go. They're a fantastic choice either after or before a training session, as they contain a mixture of fast and slow digesting carbohydrates. They're extra healthy when sourced from whole grains, and many contain tasty, nutrient-packed ingredients such as dried fruits, nuts, and seeds.Read more
5 Super Grains
This product is jam-packed with nothing but the highest-quality grains. It contains oats, millet, buckwheat, amaranth, and quinoa. Oats, we know, are a great source of insoluble fiber. Buckwheat is a great source of antioxidants, manganese, magnesium, and phosphorus, among other nutrients. Amaranth has more protein than any other grain. Quinoa has a low glycemic index and is loaded with amino acids. All of these super-grains are loaded into one convenient bar.
Sometimes we want variety in our snack foods. Oftentimes when we're looking to gain weight or mass, we can get locked into one monotonous, boring diet. You won't have to worry about being shortchanged on flavor with this product though. The KIND Breakfast Bars Variety Pack is just that, a variety pack. They include two separate flavors to keep your taste buds guessing.
Cost and value
This product hs a mid-range price when compared to other items on our list. However, it is easily portable and can be eaten on the go, wherever you are. Many other products on this list come in a single large container. If hauling a giant canister of nuts around sounds like a pain, instead you can reach for the individually-wrapped breakfast bars. Overall, the convenience makes this mid-range cost worth the price.
6. Purely Elizabeth Granola
Goes stale quickly
In 2008, the company's founder, Elizabeth, set up a booth at a fair. She made hundreds of baked goods to entice people to sign up for her health counseling practice. No one wanted to sign up, but everyone wanted her baked goods. While high-sugar cereals can add too much junk to your diet, healthier cereals like oatmeal and granola can add beneficial nutrients, fiber, and antioxidants.Read more
Trying to gain weight while having dietary restrictions can be a challenge. This is especially so if you're vegan. Many of the mainstays of weight and mass gain, such as protein shakes, are based on animal products such as whey. However, this product is 100% vegan and contains no trace of animal products anywhere in its makeup.
Being gluten-free is a common dietary restriction many people abide by nowadays. This can make it difficult to gain weight, as you are forced to avoid many grains and bread which are great and easy sources of calories. If you have celiac disease then this is doubly important, as gluten can cause severe and acute health problems. The good news is that this product contains no gluten whatsoever, and so you can still meet your weight gain goals without worrying about that pesky gluten.
Cost and Value
This product is far and away the least expensive product on our list. Keep in mind that it comes in an eight-ounce bag, so you're going to end up paying somewhere less than a dollar per ounce of product. While this may seem like a good deal, for some, there are savings to be had in buying in bulk. However, for the layperson who either doesn' t have a lot of up-front money to invest into buying bulk, or who just don't want several pounds of granola lying around, this inexpensive item is a great deal.
7. Sunrise Fresh Dried Cherries
No added sugar
Sunrise Fresh is a small, family-owned company run out of California. The founder is a first-generation farmer from Italy, who is now 84 years old. This family gives special attention to their cherries. Dried cherries are high in sugar, which makes them ideal for gaining weight--and as an added bonus, they taste great. This makes them great for packing on pounds, especially since they’re convenient to eat and taste great. Dried fruits area great source of fiber and most of their vitamin and mineral content remain intact through the drying process. As an added bonus, they can be easily mixed in with yogurt or can be added to meat dishes or protein shakes.Read more
Rich in Antioxidants
Free radicals are byproducts of metabolism and have a role in speeding up cell death. You also have more free radicals in your system after exposure to cigarette smoke or radiation. Antioxidants bind to free radicals and prevent them from doing harm to your cells, allowing them to stay intact and live longer. Longer life for your cells means a longer life for the rest of you.
Some of the best nutrient and calorie-dense foods also, unfortunately, are hotbeds for allergens. This is the case with nuts and nut butters, as well as for products that are processed at facilities that also process allergen-laden foods on their lines. However, you won't have to worry about that with this product. They are free from allergens and you can eat them without worry.
Cost and Value
This product has a mid-range price when compared to other items on this list. Some have stated that their flavor runs toward the bland side, but many who add this product to their morning yogurt, or into their meat dishes, would beg to disagree. Overall, it is a great source of nutrients, is packed with calories, and is loaded with antioxidants; the health benefits of this product ensure it is stuffed with value.
8. Bob's Red Mill Oats
Steel cut oats
100% whole grain
More expensive than supermarket brands
Bob's Red Mill Natural Foods was founded in 1978 and is now an employee-owned whole-grain foods company based in Milwaukie, Oregon. Oats are a form of starch, an easy and quick form of calories. Starches increase the stores of glycogen in your muscles. Glycogen is the most important source of fuel for your muscles during intense activities. Oats are also a great source of fiber and resistant starch, which nourishes the helpful bacteria in your gut.Read more
When we're looking to modify our diets to affect specific changes in our bodies--such as weight gain--this can mean we have to spend more time in the kitchen. However, we're all busy people and don't always have the extra time. Whether you're bodybuilding or looking to go up a weight class in your wrestling league, you won't have to spend a lot of time preparing this food. These quick-cookiing steel cut oats can be prepared quickly so that you can get out the door and get on with your day.
Steel Cut Oats
Steel cut oats have many nutritional benefits, such as being high in insoluble fiber. The insoluble fiber in steel cut oats is made up of beta glucans. When dissolved in water, they form a gelatinous substance that may help to lower blood cholesterol levels and to also stabilize levels of blood sugar. If you're keeping an eye on your blood sugar, steel cut oats are also a low glycemic index food.
Cost and Value
This is one of the more expensive products on our list. Detractors of this product say that it is more expensive than similar brands you can buy at the supermarket. However, if you're looking for the convenience of purchasing online, the slightly higher cost may be worth it to you. Additionally, if you're busy and crunched for time, this calorie-dense, quick-cooking food can be a lifesaver.
9. Planters Premium Unsalted
5 kinds of nuts
Cannister seals in freshness
Not compatible wiht nut allergies
Planters, founded in 1916, is best known for its snack nuts. In fact, the company is symbolized by their infamous logo, the Mr. Peanut mascot. Nuts are extremely nutrient- and calorie-dense foods. Adding just a few handfuls of nuts a day can add a lot of calories, which in turn can help you bulk up. They are incredibly easy to add to meals, or you can just snack on them throughout the day. You just need to ensure you're not purchasing products with a large amount of added sugars.Read more
Planters Premium Blend Mixed Nuts Unsalted contains no fewer than five varieties of nuts in its mix. This mix contains cashews, almonds, hazelnuts, pecans, and pistachios. Nuts are a great source of a variety of vitamins and minerals, and the variety ensures you're getting maxed out nutrition as well as calories. This mix is bound to contain your favorite variety of nut in its mix.
Unlike many products on this list, Planters Premium Blend Mixed Nuts come in a hardy cannister. Whereas other products on this list are in bags that rip during shipping, or bottles that can break in transit, this plastic container will arrive at your door in one piece. Additionally, this resealable cannister locks in freshness for a longer shelf life.
Cost and Value
This is one of the more expensive items on our list, but one has to keep in mind that this price is for a 34-ounce container. That is a decent amount of nuts, especially if you're only eating a few handfuls a day. Considering the size of the cannister and the rate at which you'll be consuming them, it's likely one canister would last you a fair amount of time. Additionally, this is one of the few snack foods on our list.
10. RiceSelect Royal Blend
4 kinds of rice
May recieve incorect product
RiceTec, which owns Rice Select, has been in business for over 35 years when they introduced the first Basmati rice to be successfully grown in American soil. Rice is especially calorie-dense, with 190 calories per serving and 43 grams of carbohydrates. Even if you don't have a huge appetite, this nutritionally dense food can help you pack in the calories in a single serving. Additionally, rice is extremely easy to add to other dishes and is easy to cook.Read more
Multiple Rice Varieties in Mix
This product contains multiple kinds of rice for a varied experience in flavor and texture. This blend contains four kinds of rice. Among them are Texmati brown rice, red rice, pearled barley, and rye berries. Variety is truly the spice of life, and aside from just being filling, this product's diversity ensures that you're getting top-notch nutrition in addition to meeting your weight gain goals.
We live in the age of the factory where food items are processed beyond recognition into near-inedibility. These processed foods are detrimental to your health and can cause all sorts of problems in your body. RiceTec understands that the purity of their product is important to their consumers, and this has led them to ensure that there are no additives in their products. When you purchase RiceSelect Royal Blend, you're purchasing rice, and only rice.
Cost and Value
This is the most expensive product on our list. However, this is slightly mitigated by the fact that it comes in a pack of four. Buying in bulk may mean that you spend more up front, but ultimately leads to savings over time. If you can afford the higher cost of this product to start off with, ultimately you'll be spending less money down the road.
Criteria Used for Evaluation
Meals: Some foods are more intensive to prepare than others. You’ll need to learn how to cook certain high-calorie foods and incorporate them into your diet. Some are easy to prepare, like quick-cooking oats. Others, such as nutrient-dense vegetables with exotic names you’ve never heard of, may take more research.
Snacks: Some foods are perfect to eat on the go. These are generally in smaller containers and can pack a lot of calories into a small space. You’ll want to make sure you are snacking throughout the day to keep your calorie intake up. Pick snacks that are easy to carry; it’s inconvenient to carry around a one-pound tub of nuts.
Calorie Density: When looking to gain weight, you want to make sure that you find foods that are high in calories, but that doesn’t fill you up. To gain weight you need to consume more calories than you expend. Make sure that you keep an eye on your energy intake and output.
Vitamins and Minerals: Keeping an eye on your nutrition is vital. Calories aren’t the only thing that you should be looking at in your foods. Making sure you have adequate levels of vitamins and minerals will improve your overall feelings of health and vitality.
Antioxidants: Antioxidants are useful in snapping up free radicals. Free radicals are those byproducts of metabolism that are cause cell death and shorten your lifespan. Eating foods that have lots of antioxidants can combat free radicals and hold them in check.
Nutrition is vital to a healthy body. Gaining weight doesn’t necessarily mean that you’ve started loading up on cake and donuts. The best way to gain weight safely and healthily is to incorporate whole, calorie-dense foods into your diet. Once you’ve made these changes, you’ll notice the scale start to climb in no time.
Lots of people gaining weight means you can jump off the healthy bandwagon, but if you're not considering what you're consuming on your journey of weight gain you'll have more issues than you bargained for. You should never skip on quality and healthiness. The better the ingredients will help nourish your body as well as helping you gain the necessary weight you desire.
The brand is super important and often missed a lot. Being sure that the Brand you purchase your foods from care about the quality and materials that go into making the food we eat are important. Lots of brands nowadays are evaluated more than ever before, so simple researching offers a ton of knowledge about the process taken to make our food as well as what exactly goes into it.
We took the time to comb through and find some really good brands that offer the quality, quantity and price that we feel everyone would benefit from.
Expert Interviews & Opinions
Low glycemic foods mean that they won’t greatly affect your blood sugar levels. This is especially important to people who have either high or low blood sugar (hyper or hypoglycemia) or type I or II diabetes.
Other Factors to Consider
There’s just one problem: what kinds of food do you add in? There is an entire world out there, full of foods from different countries, cooked and prepared different ways, and sold under different brands. For as long as humans have been walking the Earth, we’ve been eating food. This has led to a depth and breadth of culinary diversity that is amazing to see–but also confusing to navigate.
A few things to keep in mind are that you want items that aren’t loaded down with sugar, or that are packed with lots of unhealthy ingredients that will give you nasty side effects. Generally, avoiding processed foods is a must. Whole, natural foods are where you’re going to get the best nutrition. Listed below are ten products that will show you how to put this advice into action, as well as more information to help you navigate this world of healthy weight gain.
Frequently Asked Questions
q: How do I know I’m getting the right levels of nutrients?
You’ll need to take a look at the FDA’s recommended daily values of various nutrients, and track your daily intake.
q: How can I keep track of my calorie intake?
One of the best ways to keep track of your calorie intake is to start a food journal and log all of the food you’re eating. There are also a variety of apps that can help you with this problem.
q: What if I don’t have time to cook large meals?
Many foods, such as rice, are quick and easy to cook. Simply add a serving of protein and a vegetable, and you have a meal! Cooking doesn’t have to be labor-intensive. There many quick and easy dishes that can help you gain weight.