You may want to consider a diet for weight gain veg. There are a few different things you can do to ensure that your diet is working for you. You must take it slow, and learn how to get the most out of your body. Weight gain can be difficult if you don’t have the right information.
High-Calorie Vegan Foods for Healthy Weight Gain
Legumes, such as lentils, beans and chickpeas, all pack a good amount of protein, fiber and calories.
Black beans, for example, pack 227 calories and 15 grams each of protein and fiber in 1 cooked cup (172 grams)
Legumes are also generally high in important vitamins and minerals, including folate, magnesium, iron, zinc and potassium
Try adding beans to vegan meatballs or burgers, as well as salads, soups, casseroles, dips and spreads.
Legumes — which range from lentils to black beans — are high in calories, protein and fiber, as well as many important vitamins and minerals.
Sweet potatoes are a popular starchy vegetable favored for their vibrant color, delicious flavor and stellar nutrient profile.
They’re high in calories and fiber, plus a number of essential vitamins, minerals and antioxidants.
One cup (200 grams) of cooked sweet potato contains 180 calories and 6.5 grams of fiber
A single serving can also knock out your entire daily needs for vitamin A — and give you ample vitamin C, manganese, potassium and vitamin B6
Try this orange root vegetable roasted, baked, mashed or grilled.
Sweet potatoes are high in calories, fiber, vitamins and minerals and can be prepared in many different ways.
Vegan smoothies are a quick and convenient way to get a concentrated dose of calories in a single serving.
If you use a nutritious source of protein like vegan protein powder or soy yogurt, you can maximize the potential health benefits.
Nut butter, dried or fresh fruits, avocados, almond milk, coconut oil and seeds are all excellent add-ins for a nutritious, calorie-dense smoothie.
Drink your smoothie between or after meals instead of as a meal replacement to maximize your calorie consumption and support weight gain.
Vegan smoothies are an easy way to increase your calorie and nutrient intake. For best results, blend a few high-calorie ingredients with a good source of protein.
Rice is a cost-effective, versatile and calorie-dense carbohydrate that can promote gradual weight gain.
It also provides a bit of extra protein and fiber, in addition to several important vitamins and minerals.
One cup (195 grams) of cooked brown rice gives 216 calories alongside 5 grams of protein and 3.5 grams of fiber
It’s also a good source of manganese, selenium, magnesium, phosphorus and niacin
You can combine rice with a serving of protein for an easy meal on the go.
Rice can also be cooked ahead of time and refrigerated for use for several days. While opinions differ on how long you can safely store rice, recommendations range from a few days to a week.
Rice, which is high in calories, also offers protein, fiber, vitamins and minerals. It can be combined with a good source of protein and enjoyed as part of a nutritious snack or meal.
Coconut oil has garnered significant attention in the health world thanks to its beneficial effects on everything from cholesterol levels to brain function
As it’s rich in calories, it can also help you gain weight.
In fact, a 1-tablespoon (15-ml) serving of coconut oil packs 116 calories and 13.5 grams of fat
Coconut oil is easy to use and can be swapped for most other fats and oils. It can also be mixed into smoothies or added to sauces and dressings.
Foods for Vegan Weight Gain
#1: Homemade Granola
|Calories per Cup||Calories per 100g|
|597 calories||489 calories|
Nutrition Facts for Granola Homemade.
Granola is a high-energy food that can be very healthy if you choose shop-bought products carefully or make your own. Granola makes a great high-energy snack as well as breakfast. Make or choose products made from oats, to supply energy, fiber, B vitamins, and minerals. Also add plenty of nuts, seeds, dried fruits, and shredded coconut for extra energy and nutrients. Avoid products with added refined sugars, refined grains, or unhealthy oils.
#2: Firm Tofu
|Calories per Cup||Calories per 100g|
|363 calories||144 calories|
Nutrition Facts for Firm Tofu.
Tofu is a top vegetarian source of protein. All types of protein supply the body with the amino acid building blocks required to form new muscle, but some foods contain a better profile of amino acids than others. Tofu is one of the only plant foods containing all nine essential amino acids, which must be obtained through diet, as the body cannot manufacture them
#3: Healthy Fats (Avocados)
|Calories per Avocado||Calories per 100g|
|322 calories||160 calories|
Nutrition Facts for Avocados.
When trying to gain weight and increase your calorie intake, it is important to include plenty of healthy fats in your diet. Gram for gram, fats have a higher calorie content than protein and carbohydrates (9 calories per gram of fat versus 4 calories per gram of protein or carbohydrate). Top vegan sources of healthy fats include avocados, hummus, coconut products, olive oil, nuts, seeds, and nut butters.
|Calories in 1 Smoothie||Calories per 100g|
|390 calories||129 calories|
Homemade smoothies are an excellent way to get more healthy calories, fats, and protein into your diet. They make a great snack between meals. You can add many of the aforementioned foods, such as nuts, seeds, nut butters, avocados, along with vegan protein powders, fruits, vegetables etc. Avoid shop-bought, packaged smoothies though which are not the same and are often highly processed and high in sugar.
#5: Pulses (Lentils)
|Calories per Cup||Calories per 100g|
|230 calories||116 calories|
Nutrition Facts for Lentils (Cooked)
Pulses including beans, lentils, and chickpeas provide a healthy dose of plant-based protein for muscle building. Pulses are also a great energy food, as they contain slow-releasing carbohydrates and fiber, which help keep blood sugar levels balanced. Combining brown rice or other wholegrains with pulses helps provide a wide range of amino acids.
|Calories per Cup||Calories per 100g|
|222 calories||120 calories|
Quinoa is botanically a seed but eaten as a grain. It is packed with protein, fiber, vitamins, minerals and antioxidants, plus all the amino acids needed for muscle growth. In fact, quinoa is the ideal grain for anyone looking to build muscle, as it is higher in protein than most other grains with a good amino acid profile. It is also an excellent high-energy food, containing slow-releasing carbohydrates and the minerals magnesium and iron, which are required for maintaining energy levels.
#7: Peanut Butter
|Calories 2 Tblsp||Calories per 100g|
|188 calories||589 calories|
Peanuts are not technically nuts, but legumes (from the same family as beans and lentils), which accounts for their higher protein content compared with other nuts. Peanuts and peanut butter contain around 24g protein per 100g. In one study, elderly patients were given peanut protein in combination with resistance training for 6 weeks and it significantly increased both muscle growth and strength
#8: Dark Chocolate (85% Cocoa)
|Calories per 1oz Square||Calories per 100g|
|170 calories||598 calories|
Good quality dark chocolate with a high cocoa content is actually a very nutritious food and makes a great vegan, high-energy snack. It is a top dietary source of antioxidants, in particular, a type of antioxidant called flavonols, associated with various health benefits including lowering blood pressure, improving blood flow through vessels, and improving blood sugar and fat processing.
Tips for Gaining Weight As A Vegan
Below are 11 tips for gaining weight as a vegan. These tips will help you add calories to your meals to assist you in gaining weight.
1) Add Nuts, Nut Butters, and Seeds to Meals
Adding nuts, nut butters, and seeds to your meals is a great way to add some flavor and a healthy source of extra calories. Nuts are also rich in protein, healthy fats, vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants.
Example: ¼ cup of chopped walnuts contains approximately 195 calories, and 4.5 grams of protein.
- 1 Brazil nut contains over 100% of the Recommended Daily Allowance (RDA) for selenium.
- ¼ cup pumpkin seeds contain approximately 28% of the Zinc RDA for women and about 21% for adult men.
- While all nuts are regarded as having anti-inflammatory effects, nuts and seeds like walnuts, chia, flax, and hemp seeds have an added benefit due to being rich in omega-3 fatty acids. These may reduce the risk of developing heart disease, type 2 diabetes, and several types of cancers
2) Include Avocado
Adding avocado to dishes is a good way to add some extra nutrient-dense calories. Avocado contains healthy fats and is a significant source of vitamins, minerals, fiber, and antioxidants.
Example: A half cup of avocado contains approximately 195 calories, 2 grams of protein, and almost 8 grams of fiber.
- A ½ cup of avocado contains a significant source of Riboflavin (B2), Niacin (B3), Pantothenic acid (B5), Pyridoxine (B6), Folate, and vitamins C, E, and K. It contains over 15% of the RDA for all these nutrients.
- A ½ cup of avocado contains almost 8 grams of fiber, helping maintain a healthy gut and microbiome, and can lower cholesterol levels.
- A ½ cup of avocado contains a significant source of copper and potassium having more than 15% of the RDA.
- It is also a good source of magnesium, manganese, phosphorus, and zinc containing over 10% of the RDA for each of these nutrients.
3) Swap Some Cardio for Resistance Exercise (Weight-lifting)
If you are currently working out, then swapping a day or two of cardiovascular exercise (cardio) for weightlifting (resistance) is a good way to increase muscle mass and decrease the total amount of calories burned.
Weightlifting has more rest in between sets and on average burns less calories. Plus, there is the added benefit of being stronger and reducing the risk of disability in adulthood.
Note: It is still important to perform cardiovascular exercise to maintain proper cardiorespiratory health.
Fun Facts (5):
- Individuals who do not perform resistance exercise are at a significantly increased risk of becoming disabled in adulthood.
- Resistance exercise assists in lowering cholesterol, blood pressure, and balancing blood sugar levels.
- Resistance exercise improves balance and posture.
4) Include Oils & Vegan Cheese
Oils, vegan butter, and vegan cheeses are a great way to add a boost in flavor to dishes as well as some extra calories. Olive oil when used in place of other oils has shown to have protective properties against several chronic diseases (6).
Example: 2 tablespoons of olive oil contain approximately 240 calories.
- Oils contain no protein or carbohydrates and are 100% dietary fat.
- 2 tablespoons of olive oil contain approximately 26% of the RDA for vitamin E.
- 2 tablespoons of olive oil contain approximately 18% of the RDA for vitamin K.
Note: Consume vegan butter, vegan cheese, coconut oil, and palm oil in moderate amounts due to their high saturated fat content.
5) Include Tofu, Tempeh, & Mock Vegan Meats
Tofu, tempeh, and mock vegan meats are great foods to add an extra source of calories, protein, and nutrients. These foods are excellent options for those looking to add more muscle mass.
Example: half a block of extra-firm tofu contains approximately 190 calories and almost 23 grams of protein.
Fun Facts (7):
- Soy foods such as tofu, tempeh, and soy milk do not increase estrogen in the body because plant estrogens are completely different than human and animal estrogens. In fact, soy foods are correlated with reduced risk of certain types of cancer and heart disease.
- Tofu is a significant source of Pantothenic Acid (B5), Pyridoxine (B6), and Choline, containing over 15% of the RDA for these nutrients. It is also a good source of Thiamine (B1) and Riboflavin (B2), containing 10% or more of the RDA for these nutrients.
- Tofu is an excellent source of calcium, copper, iron, magnesium, manganese, phosphorus, selenium, and zinc containing far over 25% of the RDA in half of a block.
6) Include Plenty of Legumes
Lentils, beans, soy foods, and chickpeas are types of legumes and are one of the richest sources of fiber. They are also a significant source of protein, vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants.
Example: A half cup of black beans contains approximately 115 calories and almost 8 grams of protein.
- Legumes have been identified as a longevity food; they were identified as a key staple in Blue Zone populations. Blue Zones are population subgroups that have the highest amount of people that live to 100 and low risk of contracting chronic diseases throughout their lifetime (8).
- A half cup of black beans contains a significant source of Thiamine (B1), Folate, Copper, Magnesium, Manganese, and Phosphorus, containing over 15% of the RDA. They are also a good source of iron and zinc, having more than 10% of the RDA for these minerals.
- A half cup of black beans contains 7.5 grams (30% RDA) of fiber which improves gut health, the microbiome, and may lower cholesterol.
7) Utilize Dried Fruit
Dried fruit is a delicious and healthy snack that can be eaten between meals or when you need something to hold you over for 30 minutes to an hour. Dried fruit is a good source of fiber, carbohydrates (energy), and minerals.
Example: a half cup of dried apricots contains approximately 160 calories.
- A half cup of dried apricots is loaded with vitamin A and contains approximately 100% of the RDA in the form of beta-carotene. Dried apricots are also loaded in vitamin E (19% RDA), Copper (25% RDA), Potassium (29% RDA), and Fiber (20% RDA). It is also a good source of iron (10% RDA for women).
- Dried fruit are a great way to add sweetness, vitamins, minerals, and fiber to smoothies.
- Raisins are a nutrient-dense and contain antioxidant compounds. They have shown to decrease blood pressure, help control blood sugar, and decrease inflammatory markers (9).