Best Snacks for Bulking

Are you on a mission to bulk up and build some serious muscle mass? Well, apart from hitting the gym regularly and following a strength training routine, your diet plays a crucial role in achieving your bulking goals. That is why I made a list of snacks for bulking to help you meet your goals.

Whether you’re an athlete, bodybuilder, or simply looking to add some size to your frame, selecting the right snacks is essential for fueling your gains.

Hey, I’m Jenn, a Registered Dietitian who has a passion for helping individuals fuel, think, and move towards the best versions of themselves without sacrificing their relationship with food. If you want practical, evidence-based nutrition advice to improve your performance and wellness — Learn how I can help

In this article, we will explore some of the best snacks that can help you pack lean muscle while satisfying your taste buds. From protein-rich options to nutrient-dense choices, get ready to discover the perfect snacks that will support your bulking journey like never before!

What is bulking?

Bulking is a process of changing one’s body composition to increase muscle mass through strength training and eating in a caloric surplus. 

Some do this by eating whatever they want, whenever they want it which can lead to more of an increase in fat mass.

While that may work for some individuals, there is a way to bulk that increases muscle mass while minimizing increases in fat mass.  

Why nutrition is important when bulking

When it comes to bulking up and building muscle, many people focus primarily on their exercise routine. While exercise is crucial for gaining strength and size, nutrition plays an equally important role in achieving your bulking goals. Adequate nutrition not only provides the necessary fuel for intense workouts but also supports muscle growth and recovery.

To gain weight and build muscle, you need to consume more calories than you burn (caloric surplus). To limit excess fat gain, a 0.25-0.5% (% of body weight) weekly weight gain is recommended. This surplus allows your body to have excess energy available for muscle growth. To achieve this caloric surplus it is recommended to eat 5-20% above maintenance. 

Protein is the building block of muscles, making it a fundamental component of any bulking diet. Consuming adequate amounts of protein throughout the day stimulates muscle protein synthesis, which is essential for repairing damaged muscle fibers post-workout and promoting new muscle growth. Protein intake should be between 1.6-2.2 grams per kilogram of body weight per day. 

Healthy fats are also essential as they support hormone production and absorption of fat-soluble vitamins. Fat intake should be between 0.5-1.5 grams per kilogram body weight per day

Carbohydrates provide energy for workouts while proteins aid in repairing and building muscle tissues after training sessions. The remaining calories for the day should come from carbohydrates and be around or more than 3-5 grams per kilogram of body weight per day. 

Nutrition Recommendations for Bulking

Snacks for Bulking

Yogurt Parfait

Greek yogurt is packed with protein and makes for a versatile snack. Add toppings like granola, nuts, seeds, or fruits for extra calories and nutrients.

Yogurt Partfait: Best snacks for Bulking


Blend ingredients such as milk (dairy or plant-based), whey protein powder, bananas or berries, nut butter, avocado, and oats for an easy-to-consume high-calorie treat. Smoothies are a great option when you aren’t very hungry but need more calories for the day. 

How to build a smoothie for bulking

Trail mix

Create your own trail mix by combining nuts, dried fruits, seeds, and even dark chocolate chips if you want something sweeter. For a convenient snack, pick up a pre-made trail mix from the store.  This nutrient-dense snack provides healthy fats, proteins, carbs, and fiber.


Nut butters like peanut butter are rich in healthy fats and calories. Enjoying two tablespoons of peanut butter with two slices of whole wheat bread provides your body with 15 grams of protein and all nine essential amino acids. Pair the PB&J with a glass of milk for additional protein and fruit for some color. 

Energy Balls

Make your own energy balls using ingredients like oats, nut butter, protein powder, honey or maple syrup as binders, along with add-ins such as chocolate, chia seeds or dried fruits. These are a great snack to prep and have on hand when you are in a hurry and need a quick snack.

How to Make Energy Bites


Nutrition plays an important role in bulking while limiting an increase in fat mass. My clients find that energy and nutrient-dense snacks help them meet their daily nutrition goals. 

Utilizing specific personalized nutrition goals along with a strength  exercise program is crucial for gaining strength and size. That is where I can help, I help my clients accomplish their bulking goals while eating foods they enjoy and improving their overall wellness. 

Schedule your FREE 15-minute discovery call today to learn how we can work together to meet your nutrition goals. 

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Registered Dietitian Nutritionist | Website | + posts

Jenn Schmidt is a licensed and board-certified Registered Dietitian Nutritionist based in Minnesota. Her specialty is in performance nutrition and wellness, which focuses on helping individuals fuel, think, and move towards their best selves without compromising their relationship with food. Jenn is passionate about all things food-related and enjoys making complex science easy to understand for her clients and readers.

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