8 Best High Calorie Shakes in 2020 (Review)

  • Product Name
    Price
    Reason
    Buy Now
  • Total Mass Extreme
    £5.36
    Best in Europe
    LATESTFUELS40 40% OFF
  • Ample O/V
    $4.50
    Editor’s Choice
  • Serious Mass
    $3.12
    Best Weight Gain
  • Naked Vegan
    $5.44
    Best Vegan

High calorie shakes are some of the easiest tools to use when looking to gain weight. You can drink 600 to 1,200kcal in one go fairly easily at any point; which anyone putting on weight knows it’s not easy. I’ve been through periods where I tried to eat as much as I could. But getting to my calorie goals day in and day out soon became a chore. That’s where I started looking for high calorie drinks to supplement my food intake.

In fact, I found two types of high calorie drinks for weight gain: meal replacement shakes and weight gainers (protein drinks).

The first are complete food that contain all the nutrients your body needs. The second are usually a mix of carbohydrates and some protein; often found in protein powder manufacturer’s shops.

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


Best High Calorie Meal Replacement Shakes and Protein Powders at a Glance

1. Ample V

Editor’s Choice

best high calorie meal replacement shake
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 powder format 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 large amount of calories without suffering. Perhaps, this is not the best for hardcore weight gainers; but 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 of any bloating or stomach ache issues.

There are 3 variations of Ample: Keto, 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. Total Mass Extreme

Best in Europe

Total mass extreme powder for weight gain
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: 1,000kcal per serving, 60g of protein and with 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.

You can use the code Latestfuels40 for 40% off, too.

To buy it from the US, start in the UK and then choose your country at checkout. Shipping is free for orders above £80 ($100).

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

3. Pro Gainer ON

High Protein

Pro Gainer meal replacement shake for weight gain
Pros
  1. 60g of premium protein per 650kcal
  2. One of the best chocolate flavours
  3. Available in tubs and bags
  4. Only 2g of added sugar
  5. Mixes well without a blender
Cons
  1. Can be hard on the stomach
  2. Slightly more expensive than alternatives

Optimum Nutrition is king of weight gainers and high calorie nutritional drinks. The Pro Gainer version is their more balanced, and protein rich formula which also contains 32 vitamins and minerals.

Per serving, Pro Gainer contains 60g of premium protein (whey isolate, egg protein and whey peptides), but also carbohydrates and necessary fats. It is this blend of macros, combined with the protein that makes this a great nutrition shake to gain weight with.

Unfortunately, it is more expensive than other alternatives, including ON’s Serius Mass itself. However, that premium is worth for the improved nutrition and the Double Rich Chocolate flavour. As any ON connoisseur might know, the best flavour they offer.

Nutrition

per serving Pro Gainer DV (%)
Energy (C/P/F) 52/37/11
Energy (kCal) 650 33
Fats (g) 8.0 10
Saturated (g) 4.0 20.0
Cholesterol (mg) 80.0 27.0
Carbs (g) 85.0 31
Sugars (g) 7.0
of which added (g) 2.0 4
Fiber (g) 5.0 18
Protein (g) 60.0 120
Sodium (mg) 380 17

4. Redcon1 MRE

Best Low Fat

Redcon1 MRE for weight gain
Pros
  1. 523kcal per serving
  2. 0g of added sugars and 0 cholesterol
  3. Real food based protein sources
  4. Good taste and multiple flavour to choose from
Cons
  1. Low in fats
  2. Does not have all micros

Redcon1 is a very popular US supplement brand. However, besides doing protein powders, they also make meal replacements like this one. In this case, this is a high calorie meal replacement that you can use to put on weight.

Each recommended serving will provide you with 530kcal, 47g of protein and 0g of added sugars. In fact, the protein blend is an odd one, since they use real food protein from beef, salmon and chicken. While this might sound disgusting at first, the taste is actually one of the strengths of this high calorie drink; as attested from the overwhelmingly positive reviews on Amazon and their own site.

Unfortunately, it lacks some of the essential vitamins and minerals, thus you might want to use a multivitamin to supplement your diet.

Nutrition

per serving Redcon MRE DV (%)
Energy (C/P/F) 58/35/7
Energy (kCal) 530 25
Fats (g) 4.0 5
Saturated (g) 0.0 0
Cholesterol (mg) 100 33
Carbs (g) 75.0 27
Sugars (g) 5.0 0
of which added (g) 0.0 0
Fiber (g) 8.0 28
Protein (g) 47.0 94
Sodium (mg) 200.0 9

Best Weight Gain Powders

1. Serious Mass

Best Weight Gain

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. 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

per serving Serious Mass DV (%)
Energy (C/P/F) 81/16/3
Energy (kCal) 1250 63
Fats (g) 4.5 6
Saturated (g) 2.5 13
Cholesterol (mg) 110.0 37
Carbs (g) 252.0 92
Sugars (g) 20.0
of which added (g) 9.0 18
Fiber (g) 4.0 14
Protein (g) 50.0 100
Sodium (mg) 570 25

2. 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

3. 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

4. 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. 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. Nutritionally, it’s very simple since it only includes 3 ingredients: organic maltodextrin and the two protein sources mentioned above.

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

Nutrition

per serving Vegan Weight Gainer DV (%)
Energy (C/P/F) 81/16/3
Energy (kCal) 1230 62
Fats (g) 4.0 6
Saturated (g) 0.5 3
Cholesterol (mg) 0.0 0
Carbs (g) 248.0 83
Sugars (g) 24.0
of which added (g) 0.0 0
Fiber (g) 4.0 16
Protein (g) 50.0 80
Sodium (mg) 290.0 12

Weight Gain

Putting on weight can be a struggle for those who have 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.

What High Calorie Drinks are Best?

When it comes to deciding for the best meal replacements for weight gain or 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.

More High Calorie Meal Replacement Shakes

Besides the ones mentioned above, there are more meal replacement shakes that can help you support your active lifestyle.

Kcal/servingShips to
Queal Athletic766World*
Jake Sports743World*
Jake Original670World*
Feed. Sports500EU
SBF Athlete Fuel650World*
Runtime600EU
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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