Without enough calories in your diet, your perfect muscle-growth workout plan is destined to disappoint. There's no way around it; you need to consume more calories than you burn in order to grow. Focusing on calories from protein is especially critical for growth.
One well-known way to meet your daily calorie and protein goals is to snack on a protein bar. Because bars are calorically dense and an excellent source of protein, they can provide a mass-building boost to a wide range of meals.
If you're struggling to hit your calorie or protein goals per meal, start using these recipes featuring the bar that Bodybuilding.com customers chose as their favorite in the 2016 Supplement Awards: MusclePharm's Combat Crunch Bar!
1. Cinnamon Combat Overnight Oats
There are a few foundational foods that should be on almost every mass-gaining grocery list, and oats is definitely one of them. While the standard half-cup, 150-calorie serving is a great place to start, you'd be better served by doubling it to a full 300-calorie cup when growth is the goal.
That might sound like a lot of oatmeal, but when you serve it up with cinnamon, yogurt, and a Combat bar, you'll gladly figure out how to get it all down.
For easier cutting, place the bar in the refrigerator overnight.
2. Combat Granola
Granola is an ideal go-to muscle-building snack, because it's easy to travel with and packs a mighty calorie punch. However, traditional granola's nutritional profile is often less than ideal. It's packed with sugar, but pretty much devoid of protein. If you're not getting enough protein every few hours, you're missing out on growth.
Flip the muscle-building switch with this protein-packed homemade granola. Eat it on the run, toss it on your morning pancakes, or add it to your nightly Greek yogurt parfait!
3. Chocolate Banana Cake Ice Cream
Chocolate. Cake. Ice cream. Do you really need to continue reading? This high-protein treat is not only delicious, it can be easily customized to meet your macros. Plus, if you eat it soft-serve style rather than refreezing it for later, it will go down even easier.
Bonus points if you eat it right out of the blender. Maybe you'll finally hit your daily calorie goal after all.