8 Of The Best High Calorie Shakes For Weight Gain In 2022

High calorie shakes are some of the easiest tools to use when looking to gain weight. You can drink easily drink 600 to 1,200kcal in one go with high-calorie drinks; which anyone putting on weight knows it’s no easy task.

After the summer, I have regularly put on 10kg of mass (autumn-winter period). I could’ve not done this without using high calorie drinks to supplement my food intake.

In fact, I used two types of high calorie drinks for weight gain:

  • High calorie meal replacement shakes. Shakes that contain all the nutrients you need (fats, protein, carbs, vitamins and minerals). Slightly more balanced and more healthy long term.
  • Weight gainers (mass gainers and protein drinks). Mix of carbohydrates and protein powder. Usually cheaper per calorie.

Alternatively, you can DIY your own drinks that are high in calorie. A mix of oats or maltodextrin, with some peanut butter, fruits (banana), and full-fat milk. Doing these every day can be a chore, so that’s why I tend to prefer to use the ones above.

Here, I compile the best drinks to gain weight; including meal replacement shakes for weight gain and traditional weight gainers.

Best Weight Gainers & Calorie Drinks for Men

Before diving any deeper, I wanted a short foreword on the top weight gainers for men.

Generally speaking, men will require more calories than women (even more if you live an active lifestyle). Thus, I would recommend you choosing a higher calorie drink like Naked Mass to put some extra lean mass on.

Similarly, adding milk, peanut butter, bananas, honey or cocoa powder to your protein shakes can be an easy way to add up calories. In fact, having a couple protein shakes can help you boost your calorie intake by 300 to 600kcal without much effort.

For instance, you can take one with whole fat milk in the morning, and another before you go to bed (or around work-outs).

Some might even look for testosterone boosters, but I don’t think they are necessary. If you choose to do so to help you in your journey, make sure to use one of the best.

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Weight Gainers for Women

Unfortunately, this industry is not very developed. Most products are oriented to men (visually and nutritionally). Furthermore, it’s worth considering that the nutritional needs in women are different. Most noticeably, women will require less calories to put on weight.

As such, I would recommend starting with smaller servings of the recommended products here, or having a look to meal replacements.

Something like HLTH will provide you with 400kcal that are easy to consume, 27g of protein, all the necessary nutrients, and even extra ingredients to take care of your gut. This is important considering that you will be eating more than normal. Plus, the sweet flavours are really enjoyable.


Best High Calorie Meal Replacement Shakes and Protein Powders for Weight Gain

Naked Mass Whey Best High Calorie Shake

Naked Mass

Best Weight Gain US

  • Up to 1,360kcal per serving and 50g of protein
  • Clean, quality ingredients and no bullshit
  • Easy to drink, and enjoyable (go for Chocolate)
  • Available in vegan and whey based versions
  • Made in the US, Trusted by Sport
  • Fast free shipping in the US
Total Mass Extreme Protein Works

Total Mass Extreme

Best Weight Gain EU

  • Up to 1,000kcal per serving and 60g of protein
  • High in fibre, complex carbs and quality protein
  • Blends well, and it’s easy to drink.
  • Available in 10+ flavours so that you don’t get bored easily
  • Smooth Chocolate is super tasty
  • Ships to UK, EU, US
Ample Plant based high calorie drink

Ample

Editor’s Choice

  • Easy to drink, natural, and with plenty of nutrients
  • No artificial sweeteners, preservatives or synthetic multivitamins
  • Macros: 23C/20P/57F
  • Now with the new formula; recover you can get up to 34g of protein per 400kcal
  • Manufactured in the US

Other Top Vegan Meal Replacement Shakes

MOST POPULAR –> Serius Mass

BEST VEGAN MASS GAINER –>Naked Mass


Best Weight Gain Powders

1. Vegan Weight Gainer

Best Vegan

High calorie Weight gainer Naked Nutrition
Pros
  1. 1,230kcal and 50 of soy free protein
  2. Orgaic pea + rice protein blend
  3. Plant based, gluten-free, soy-free and GMO-free
Cons
  1. It is mainly carbs
  2. Low in fats
  3. Flavoured versions have some added organic sugar

It’s about time that I discuss a vegan high calorie drink. Naked Nutrition’s Weight Gainer is just the ideal choice if you are looking for a vegan nutritional drink for weight gain.

Each humongous serving includes 1,230kcal, 50g of soy-free protein, and 10.3g of BCAAs. Instead, they use a rice and protein blend to deliver a complete amino acid profile. Perfect for those who are looking to put some muscle on.

Nutritionally, it’s very simple since it only includes 3 ingredients: organic maltodextrin and the two protein sources mentioned above. This simplicity is what will bring you the gains that you are looking for. There’s 0 crap on this weight gain drink.

You can also enjoy Chocolate and Vanilla flavours, which contain organic coconut sugar. Simple, great, and filled with calories.

This is also available in whey-version.

Naked Mass Whey
Naked Mass Whey.

Nutrition

  • Energy (kcal): 1,230kcal per serving
  • Protein (g): 50g from pea and rice protein
  • Carbs (g): 252g
  • Fats (g): 2.5g
  • Sugars (g): 21g
  • Best Flavour: Chocolate

2. Serious Mass

Most Popular

Serious Mass ON best high calorie shake
Pros
  1. Extremely high in calories: 1,250kcal per serving
  2. Includes 25 vitamins and minerals
  3. 50g of protein and only 9g of sugars
  4. Great taste and flavour choices
  5. Best for extreme weight gain
Cons
  1. Low in fats
  2. Better if you can use a blender

Serious Mass by Optimum Nutrition best drink to gain weight with. A namesake that most avid gym-goers recognize. Serious Mass is a high calorie powder that will provide you with up to 1,250kcal per serving!

I would recommend this high calorie for weight gain to those who are extremely active or desperate to put on mass; due to the sheer amount of calories that this drink provides. I’ve used it multiple times in the past and it’s the perfect solution to put on weight (I went from 80kg to 90kg in 4months).

It comes mostly from high quality carbohydrates and 50g of premium protein. On top of that, it includes 25 vitamins and minerals that will boost your daily nutrient intake.

Plus, I can personally say that it tastes fantastic. I was an avid Chocolate Serious Mass user in the past; however, you can also get other flavours like, Banana, Chocolate Peanut Butter or Strawberry.

Nutrition

  • Energy (kcal): 1,230kcal per serving
  • Protein (g): 50g from whey protein concentrate
  • Carbs (g): 252g
  • Fats (g): 2.5g
  • Sugars (g): 18g
  • Best Flavour: Chocolate

3. Total Mass Extreme

Best in Europe

Total Mass Matrix Extreme weight gainer Europe
Pros
  1. Designed as weight gainer: 1,000kcal and 60g of protein
  2. Thin shake, easy to drink
  3. Multiple delicious flavours available (10)
  4. Affordable pricing and multiple discounts
Cons
  1. Exact protein might vary with flavour

Total Mass Matrix Extreme is one of the best drinks to gain weight for men: 1,000kcal per serving, 60g of protein and a mix of vitamins and minerals. Thus, this is a meal replacement shake that you can enjoy when trying to gain those extra pounds.

Nutritionally, it has a great balance of macros and a premium blend of protein to help you put on muscle. It also includes some MCTs, multiple sources of carbs (for more nutrients), and some creatine.

Unlike other meal replacements, Total Mass is quite thin and mixes very well with water; which makes it easier to drink. Plus, it is available in 10 flavours, so you don’t get bored easily. I would recommend starting with Smooth Chocolate or Chocolate Hazelnut heaven. Also, get a big bag or you will run out very fast.

Three are always discounts running, like Latestfuels12 for an extra 12% OFF.

Nutrition

per serving Total Mass RI (%)
Energy (C/P/F) 64/22/12
Energy (kCal) 966 49
Fats (g) 13.0 19
Saturated (g) 6.6 33
Carbs (g) 161.0 62
Sugars (g) 38 42
Fiber (g) 6.9 35
Protein (g) 54.0 108
Salt (g) 0.8 13

4. Muscle Milk Gainer

Most Affordable

Muscle Milk gainer high calorie
Pros
  1. Very competitive price
  2. Chocolate is delicious
  3. 650kcal per serving
  4. Rich in micronutrients
Cons
  1. Could be higher in protein

Muscle Milk Gainer is a more affordable high calorie drink. While it is not at the same premium level as other choices, it still offers 650kcal per serving and 32g of protein from milk.

In fact, milk is a complete source of protein and efficient on promoting muscle growth. It is also low in sugars, with only 6g per serving and rich in dietary fiber.

Out of the three flavours they offer (Vanilla, Cookies’N Creme, and Chocolate), I think Chocolate is the best. However, it is not as good as the ready-to-drink bottles you might find on 7-Eleven and other retailers.

Nutrition

per serving Muscle Milk DV (%)
Energy (C/P/F) 68/20/12
Energy (kCal) 650 33
Fats (g) 9.0 14
Saturated (g) 3.5 18
Cholesterol (mg) 25 8
Carbs (g) 109.0 35
Sugars (g) 6.0
of which added (g) 0.0 0
Fiber (g) 5.0 20
Protein (g) 32.0 64
Sodium (mg) 200.0 8


5. Clean Gainer

clean gainer high calorie nutritional drink
Pros
  1. High quality calories
  2. 560kcal per serving
  3. Includes essential fatty acids
  4. Mixes easily without a blender
  5. No banned substances certified
Cons
  1. Contains fructose (not naturally ocurring)
  2. Lower protein % than others

Clean Gainer is another high calorie powder designed for those who want to put some mass on. It contains 560kcal per serving, with 90g of carbohydrates from 8 sources, and 30g of protein. Furthermore, it has a varied fatty acid profile and includes essential fatty acids like omega-3.

On top of that, Clean Gainer has more flavours to choose from than other high calorie supplement drinks: Chocolate, Chocolate Peanut Butter, Cinnamon Toast Cereal, Cookies & Creme, S’mores, and Vanilla. I haven’t had the chance to taste all of them, but the ones I have blended pretty well and were nice to drink (if a little sweet).

Nutrition

per serving Clean Gainer DV (%)
Energy (C/P/F) 68/21/11
Energy (kCal) 560 28
Fats (g) 7.0 11
Saturated (g) 2.0 10
Cholesterol (mg) 75.0 12
Carbs (g) 90.0 34
Sugars (g) 8.0
of which added (g)
Fiber (g) 2.0 7
Protein (g) 30.0 50
Sodium (mg) 350 5

Best Weight Gain Meal Replacements

1. Ample

Editor’s Choice

Ample recover high calorie
Pros
  1. Delicious, sweet and smooth shakes
  2. Opt from: Plant based, whey based and keto
  3. Gluten-free, soy-free, and without artificial additives
  4. Contains probiotics and prebiotics, more gentle than other weight gainers
  5. 600kcal per serving
Cons
  1. Not a real weight gainer
  2. Can be expensive

When it comes to Ample, it is not truly designed to be a weight gainer meal replacement, but it can function like one. For once, you can buy the 600kcal bottles. Otherwise, you can buy the canister and increase the recommended serving to that of your liking.

Because of how smooth and tasty the shakes are, you will find Ample meals to be a delight to drink. Thus, you will be able to consume a large amount of calories without suffering. Perhaps, this is not the best for hardcore weight gainers; but for those who are looking for more natural and balanced shakes.

In fact, because Ample is made with real food ingredients and contains probiotics, as well as digestive enzymes, you won’t suffer from any bloating or stomach ache issues.

Thus, the combination of great taste, easiness to drink, and premium nutritional input make Ample the best meal replacement for weight gain.

There are 4 variations of Ample: Keto, Recover, Vegan and Original. I suggest you choose the plant-based or the Original version.

Nutrition

per serving Ample V DV (%)
Energy (C/P/F) 23/20/58
Energy (kCal) 400 20
Fats (g) 26.0 39.0
Saturated (g) 13.0 63.0
Carbs (g) 23.0 8.0
Sugars (g) 4
Fiber (g) 11.0 44.0
Protein (g) 20.0 40.0
Sodium (mg) 380 15.0


2. HLTH Complete Meal

High in Nutrients

HLTH for weight gain

Pros
  1. 400kcal per serving
  2. 27g of protein per serving
  3. 4g of net carbs
  4. 50% of daily vitamins and minerals
  5. Thin, delicious and easy to drink
Cons
  1. I would increase the serving size to 1.5x at least
  2. Not carb rich

If for some reason you are looking for a low-carb mix to use as a high-calorie meal replacement; then HLTH Complete Meal will be the ideal choice. It has only 4g of net carbs, and a whopping 27g of protein.

Furthermore, even if the recommended serving is just 400kcal; you can easily up to 600 or even 800kcal by adding one or two more scoops. Because the shakes are so thin, and tasty; you will drink it fairly easily.

On top of that, due to the digestive enzymes, apple cider vinegar and prebiotics, you won’t have any stomach issues; unlike with other keto shakes. In my experience, this is one of the most pleasant low-carb shakes to drink.

Finally, because it’s loaded with 50% of your daily values for all vitamins and minerals; you can make sure that you are getting all the quality nutrients that you need.

Nutrition

  • Energy (kcal): 400kcal per serving
  • Protein (g): 27g from whey protein isolate, grass fed collagen, egg whites
  • Carbs (g): 13g
  • Fats (g): 27g
  • Sugars (g): 2g
  • Best Flavour: Chocolate Macadamia

3. Huel Black

High Protein

Huel Black High calorie drink

Pros
  1. 40g of protein per 400kcal
  2. Vegan, soy free, gluten-free and nutritionally complete
  3. Includes healthy fats, vitamins and minerals
  4. Only 4g of added sugar
  5. Salted Caramel is delicious
Cons
  1. Very filling
  2. Can cause gas problems

Huel Black is a meal replacement shake packed with protein and low in carbs. It has quickly become one of the most popular drinks among those who are trying to put on weight and muscle mass.

In fact, there are very few vegan shakes out there that will provide you as much protein as Huel Black at this value. Plus, it’s not only about protein, but also healthy carbohydrates, essential fats (like omega-3s), and vitamins and minerals. This ensures that you are gaining weight without sacrificing health (eating low nutrition foods).

My favourite flavour from Black is Salted Caramel, and in fact, I would stay away from some of the others like Chocolate. I would stick to Vanilla and Caramel mostly.

The one downside of Huel Black is that the shakes are thicker than some of its competitors, and does keep you full for a while. I would recommend using a blender and making a big (double serving) portion in order to avoid this.

Nutrition

  • Energy (kcal): 400kcal per serving
  • Protein (g): 40g from pea and rice protein
  • Carbs (g): 17g
  • Fats (g): 17g
  • Sugars (g): 4g
  • Best Flavour: Salted Caramel


Weight Gain

Putting on weight can be a struggle for those who have a high metabolic rate, are very active during the day or wrestle to eat tons of food. In fact, it is usually a chore to think and cook to get to 3,000kcal or more. Even more in a world where the most popular choices are low fat and low calorie.

For those, the highest calorie weight gain shakes can be really helpful. Each shake can pack up to 1,250kcal, and be much easier to prepare and drink than a meal that size. However, not all high calorie protein drinks are that large.

Nevertheless, if your aim is to put on weight you should be looking for caloric surplus. This is, consuming more calories from food than what you burn during the day.

Healthy Weight Gain

In order to do so, the easiest way is to start with a calorie tracker or a calorie calculator (like Myfitnesspal). These will give you an estimate of the amount of calories you need per day, and how many over that you need to put weight.

A popular method of adding weight is the “dirty bulk” or basically eating as much as you want of whatever you desire. Nonetheless, I think that meal replacements can be healthy high-calorie drinks that can help you achieve the same goal in a more sustainable manner. They contain higher quality ingredients, more macronutrient balance, and include micronutrients. You could also look at green powders to ensure that you are getting enough nutrients from vegetables and fruits.

Using The Best Meal Replacements For Weight Gain

There are many factors that make Ample so great to gain weight with and add muscle mass:

  • Meal replacements make drinking calories easy.
  • They are healthier and more balanced than standard weight gainers.
  • The best meal replacements include vitamin and minerals, plus essential fatty acids.
  • You can have vegan, gluten-free, soy-free or dairy free shakes.
  • Convenient. You can have them on the go and make sure you don’t skip any meals.
  • Tasty. In general, meal replacements have better consistency, texture and taste when compared to protein powders.

What High Calorie Drinks are Best?

When it comes to deciding for the best meal replacements for weight gain or the best high calorie protein powders; it depends a lot on the preference.

Meal replacements are going to be usually more balanced and might contain less protein than traditional weight gainers. They might even be smaller in size with about 600kcal per drink; but also easier to use in the long run. Thus, more sustainable.

High calorie protein powders on the other hand are usually made with more processed ingredients and aim to boost your calorie intake and protein intake mainly. Hence, they do not look at essential fats or micronutrients. Nonetheless, they can be a great high calorie supplement to help you reach your goals.

Other Tips and Tricks

I’m not going to share any major trick here, but just a couple of ways you can easily and healthily increase your calorie count.

  • Drink milk. Ideally you would drink full fat milk, since it’s the most calorie rich option. Nonetheless, adding milk to your high calorie nutrition drink will add another 200-400kcal easily.
  • Peanut butter, banana and honey. Particularly if you are using drinks, blending these to your favourite meal shake can add few extra calories that you won’t notice while drinking.
  • Eat green powders. When you are looking to add calories, you tend to ignore vegetables in favour of more calorie rich not nutrient dense alternatives. Green powders can be a great way to ensure you get your nutrients. You could also look at multivitamins.
  • Eat often. Another trick is to getting used to eat every 3h. That’s where the high calorie drinks will come in handy, too.

Do Your Own High Calorie Shake

So let’s say you want to save some money. You could do your own weight gainer drink at home without the need for any of the abovementioned shakes.

Key ingredients that you will need:

  • Full fat milk or plant-based alternative. Cost: $1/L or $3.77/gallon
  • Protein powder of your choice. I personally like Impact Whey: $0.75 per serving (1 scoop). A good plant-based alternative would be:
  • Oats. Cheap and good quality source of carbs. Cost: $0.13/ounce. Alternatively, you can use maltodextrin, which makes shakes smoother.

Some good fillers include:

  • Bananas. Great source of potassium and key vitamins and minerals. Good amount of calories for a fruit.
  • Peanut butter. Superb source of healthy fats and protein, plus it tastes great.
  • Honey or maple syrup. Adds sweetness and some extra calories.
  • Cacao powder. For those who like to make it chocolate flavoured.

Here are some ideas for high calorie drink recipes:

Simple Weight Gain Drink

Ingredients

  • Milk (500ml or 17 oz)
  • Oats (100g)
  • Banana x2
  • Peanut butter (2 tablespoons)
  • Protein powder – Impact Whey (2 scoops)
  • Cacao powder (optional)

Nutrition:

  • Energy: 1296kcal
  • Macros (C/P/F): 43/25/32
  • Carbs: 146g
  • Protein: 80g
  • Fats: 46g

Tips:

  • You can add water, and remove milk as you wish (50/50, 40/60) or use a plant-based alternative.
  • If you don’t like Bananas swap for other fruit

Extravaganza Weight Gain Drink

Ingredients

  • Milk (500ml or 17 oz)
  • Oats (100g)
  • Ice cream 2 scoops – Personal pick: B&J Brownie Chocolate
  • Protein powder – Impact Whey (3 scoops)
  • Oreo Cookie 3 (optional)
  • Whipped Cream (optional)

Nutrition:

  • Energy: 1395kcal
  • Macros (C/P/F): 39/28/33
  • Carbs: 142g
  • Protein: 96g
  • Fats: 51g

Berry Blast

Ingredients

  • Oat Milk (240ml or 8 oz)
  • Maltodextrin (100g)
  • Frozen Berries (2 cups)
  • Protein powder – Impact Whey (32 scoops)
  • Kiwi 2
  • Full fat greek yogurt (8oz)
  • Honey or maple syrup (2 teaspoon)

Nutrition:

  • Energy: 1203kcal
  • Macros (C/P/F): 65/22/13
  • Carbs: 198g
  • Protein: 69g
  • Fats: 18g

More High Calorie Meal Replacement Shakes for Weight Gain

Besides the ones mentioned above, there are more meal replacement shakes that can help you support your active lifestyle. Some of these are could easily be among the best meal replacements for weight gain.

Kcal/servingShips to
Queal Athletic766World*
Jake Sports743World*
Jake Original670World*
Feed. Sports500EU
SBF Athlete Fuel650World*
Runtime600EU, US
Besides this, thin shakes like YFood and Saturo can also make drinking 500kcal very easy.

You might have heard of others like Ensure high calorie or Boost high calorie drinks; but in reality, those tend to have less than 350kcal per serving.

Conclusion: High Calorie Shakes

… can be great for gaining weight or fueling your active lifestyle. While some of them are for more extreme cases, like Serious Mass, many high calorie drinks can be used regularly as part of a healthy diet.

In fact, the best high calorie meal replacements can help you sustain your caloric needs in a balanced manner. Look for quality ingredients and complete nutritional profiles to ensure you eating good nutrients.

No matter what you choose, though, make sure you never feel bloated, sick or have unwanted secondary effects. Because there’s something out there that will suit you better if that’s the case.

Sources

1.US Dietary Guidelines 2015-20.

2. FDA Daily Values.

3. Ultimate Meal Replacement List.

4. Latestfuel’s Best Meal Replacement Shakes.

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