Published On By Rachel Nall

Bulking refers to a bodybuilding phase in which an individual aims to gain muscle mass while minimizing fat gain. To achieve this goal, it’s important to consume a diet that is rich in macronutrients such as protein, carbohydrates, and healthy fats.

In this article, we will discuss the 10 best foods for bulking, along with tips for incorporating them into your diet.

Best Foods For Bulking

10 Best Foods for Bulking

  1. Chicken Breast

    Chicken breast is an excellent source of lean protein, with each 3-ounce, around 86 grams of serving containing around 26.7 grams of protein. It is low in fat and carbohydrates, making it an ideal food for those who are looking to gain muscle mass while minimizing fat gain.

    In addition to its high protein content, chicken breast is a good source of essential vitamins and minerals such as niacin or B3 which has been shown in an animal study that it could help in improving endurance performance and enhances skeletal muscle fiber composition when exposed to regular exercises.

    The chicken breast could be prepared in a variety of ways, including grilled, baked, or sautéed, making it easy to incorporate into your bulking diet.

  2. Lean Beef

    Lean beef is another excellent source of protein, as well as essential vitamins and minerals such as iron, zinc, and vitamin B12.

    According to the University Of Delaware, beef, salmon, tuna, etc include sound 1.4-2.3 grams of creatine per pound which may support instant energy levels by converting (Adenosine Diphosphate) into ATP (Adenosine Triphosphate).

    A 3-ounce, around 85-gram serving of 90% lean beef contains around 22. 2 grams of protein, making it an ideal food for muscle building. You may opt for cuts such as sirloin, round, or flank steak, and avoid cuts that are high in fat.

  3. Eggs

    Eggs are a nutrient-dense food that is rich in high-quality protein and healthy fats. Furthermore, they include necessary nutrients and vitamins including selenium, choline, and vitamin D.

    One large raw and whole egg of 50 grams has around 6.3 grams of protein and around 28mg of calcium.

    In a study, consuming whole eggs are better for muscle protein synthesis than egg whites consumed after a workout with respect to muscle building.

    Eggs are versatile and can be prepared in a variety of ways, including boiled, scrambled, or as an omelet. Don’t skip the yolks, as they contain healthy fats and other essential nutrients.

  4. Brown Rice

    Brown rice is a complex carbohydrate that is an excellent source of energy for the body. It is also a great source of fiber, which may help keep you feeling full for longer periods of time and prevent overeating.

    It contains essential vitamins and minerals such as magnesium, selenium, and vitamin B6 which might support muscle growth and recovery.

    Adding brown rice to your bulking diet may help you gain similar benefits in body composition and exercise performance that you get from consuming whey protein when trained males took it  during an 8-week resistance training program.

  5. Sweet Potatoes

    Sweet potatoes are another great source of complex carbohydrates, which may provide sustained energy for the body.

    They are high in vitamin A, which plays a role in protein synthesis and can help support muscle growth.

    Sweet potatoes are also a good source of vitamin C, which has antioxidant properties that can help protect the body from oxidative stress caused by exercise and can suppress lipid peroxidation.

    Finally, sweet potatoes are a great food for bulking and can be baked, roasted, mashed, or even used in sweet treats like pies and muffins.

  6. Oats

    Oats are high-fiber carbohydrates that can help support muscle growth and recovery. They are also a good source of protein.

    One cup serving of around 81 grams of raw oats contains around 10.7 grams of protein and around 54.8 grams of carbohydrates.

    Oats are versatile and can be prepared in a variety of ways, including as oatmeal, granola, or in baked goods such as muffins or cookies.

  7. Greek Yogurt

    Greek yogurt is a high-protein food that is also rich in calcium and probiotics. A 100-gram serving of low-fat plain Greek yogurt contains around 9.95 grams of protein, which could be an ideal food for muscle building.

    In addition, proteins like slow-digesting casein protein and whey protein have been shown to support an increase in fat-free mass when taken alongside a high-resistance training program.

    It could support overall health and well-being during a bulking phase. Greek yogurt can be eaten on its own, or used as a base for smoothies, dips, or dressings.

  8. Salmon

    Salmon is a fatty fish that is rich in protein and healthy fats such as omega-3 fatty acids. These fats have been shown to have anti-inflammatory properties and can help support muscle growth and recovery. Approximately 16.8 grams of protein are present in every 85 grams of raw wild Atlantic salmon.

  9. Nuts

    The high-calorie content of nuts is one of their main advantages. Nuts can help you bulk up in a healthy way by providing you with more calories than your body can burn. One ounce of almonds, for instance, has about 160 calories, whereas one ounce of walnuts has about 190.

    Nuts do not provide as much protein, but an ounce of almond, around 23 kernels, retains about 6.1 grams of protein and about 164 calories, and 3.54 grams of total dietary fiber. They are a rich source of plant-based protein.

    Dietary Fiber may promote digestive health and may help in the regulation of metabolism by altering the gut microbiota. However, more research is required to assess how dietary fiber can be needed for metabolic problems.

  10. Beans And Legumes

    Beans and legumes are great vegetarian sources of protein, fiber, and complex carbohydrates. Examples of beans and legumes include chickpeas, black beans, lentils, and kidney beans. They can be added to soups, stews, and salads, among other foods.

    Adding beans to your bulking diet may help in adding dietary fiber, minerals, elevated proteins, and vitamins, but also include polyphenolic compounds and may contribute to reducing chronically degenerative disease problems.

Advice On How to Include These Foods in Your Diet

  • Plan your meals in advance to ensure that you are consuming enough of these foods throughout the day.
  • Use portion control to ensure that you are consuming the appropriate amount of calories for your body.
  • Meal prep to make it easier to consume these foods throughout the week.
  • Experiment with different recipes and preparation methods to keep things interesting.


Thus, adding these foods to your bulking diet can help support muscle growth and recovery while minimizing fat gain.

It’s important to remember that a balanced diet, regular exercise, and sufficient rest are all essential components of a successful bulking program.

By consuming various nutrient-dense foods and following a structured training program, you can achieve your bulking goals and may build the body you desire.

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