There are two things that bodybuilders and fitness people like – training and eating.
You need the food to recover from the gym so you can grow. That means that you shouldn’t be going to bed hungry. You might wake up the next day hangry (hungry and angry). No one wants that.
But you shouldn’t feel like you have to cook a big meal and commit a lot of time either.
Unfortunately some people feel that they either have to go the extra mile so they can stay healthy or give in and eat something simple and less healthy.
Having a few recipes on standby for those times you need an extra muscle building meal would be nice, wouldn’t it?
7 Best Bedtime Muscle Meals & Snacks
There are seven recipes below that can help you turn those hunger pains into muscle gains. Some of them can help satisfy the sweet tooth. Others will help with other types of cravings. No doubt you’ll enjoy them all.
For those of you focusing on weight loss, you might need to make adjustments to some of these recipes based on your particular dietary needs. If quality size is your prize, these are definitely for you.
Keep in mind that the macros and calories will vary depending on the brands of the various ingredients you use for these recipes.
1. Chocolate Protein Pudding
This one is as simple as it gets. It only takes a couple ingredients and around 20 minutes. Pudding isn’t just for kids, you know?
- 1 scoop of chocolate protein powder.
- 1 tablespoon corn starch
Mix your protein with one cup of water like you would a normal shake. Put it in a non-stick pot and warm it on your stove over medium heat. If you prefer sweeter pudding, add stevia or your sweetener of choice before mixing.
Mix your corn starch with 2 tablespoons of water in a bowl. Stir until the starch is dissolved and add it to your protein in the pot.
Stir until it reaches the thickness you prefer. Place the mixture in a bowl and store it in your fridge to cool and thicken to completion. It should be around 10-15 minutes.
Of course if you want a different flavor pudding, you can use any flavored protein powder.
Macros: 160 calories, 25 grams protein, 10 grams carbs, 2 grams fat.
2. Blackberry Cobbler Power Shake
Blackberry cobbler is awesome. If only we can drink it. Oh, wait. We can! All you need is the ingredients below and around five minutes.
- 1 scoop vanilla protein powder
- 1 cup of your preferred milk (almond is a popular choice)
- ½ cup fresh blackberries
- ¼ cup of regular oats
- ½ teaspoon cinnamon
- 1 cup ice
Combine all of your ingredients into a blender and blend on high for around 30 seconds. If you want it thinner, go a little longer.
If it’s still too thick, add more milk and keep blending. If it’s too thin, add ice and blend again.
If you don’t like blackberries, you can use whatever fruit you like. Just don’t substitute canned fruit. Most are stored in syrup and it won’t be as healthy. Fresh is best.
Macros: 250 calories, 30 grams protein, 25 grams carbs, 3 grams fat.
3. Protein Peanut Butter Cookies
No one wants one cookie. If you’re going for cookies you’re going for a handful at least. With this recipe you can enjoy them without any of the guilt.
- ½ cup natural peanut butter
- ¼ cup stevia
- ¼ teaspoon kosher salt
- 1 large egg
- 1 large egg white
- ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
- ¼ teaspoon baking soda
- ½ cup of vanilla protein powder
- 2 tablespoons coconut flour
Place a rack in the oven and preheat to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
Combine the peanut butter, stevia, salt, egg, egg white, and vanilla extract in a bowl. Mix until well blended. Add the baking soda over the top. Work in your protein powder with a rubber spatula. Mix in the coconut flour also. It will appear dry but will come together as you stir.
Your mix should be slightly sticky but may not be according to the protein powder you use. Add protein powder if it needs to be more firm. If it’s too firm, add a small amount of milk.
Portion the cookie dough with a tablespoon and place on that baking sheet. If you did it right, you could have 12-15 cookies. Flatten each one out a bit because they will rise as they bake, not spread. Bake for around 6-8 minutes or until the edges are light brown and dry to the touch. The middle should’ve been slightly soft. At this point you can take them out.
Once the cookies are cool enough to touch, place the cookies on a rack to cool for around 3-4 minutes.
You can make more than one batch to have later or on another day. If you want chocolate peanut butter cookies, simply substitute chocolate protein powder.
Marcros: 65 calories, 4 grams protein, 8 grams carbs, 2 grams fat per cookie
4. Pineapple and Blueberry Fruit Salad
It really doesn’t get simpler than this. It’s a matter of throwing everything in and stirring it up. Pineapple has an enzyme called bromelain that is great to help with digestion. Blueberries are loaded with fiber, potassium, folate, vitamins C and B6, and other great vitamins. You can use (or add in) whatever fruits you want of course but those two are the best in my opinion.
Flax seeds are a great source of omega-3 fatty acids and those fats are muscle building allies.
- 1 cup plain greek yogurt
- ½ cup pineapples
- ½ cup blueberries
- 1 tablespoon flax seeds
Place flax seeds in a bowl. Add greek yogurt followed by the blueberries and pineapples. Stir together and store in the fridge for around 3-4 minutes before enjoying. If you don’t want it to be any cooler, you can eat immediately.
You can also store this in the fridge and save them overnight for a healthy breakfast tomorrow too.
Macros: 255 Calories, 23 grams protein, 9 grams carbs, 6 grams fat
5. Mini Taquitos
There might be nights that you’re craving Taco Bell but that would lead to the wrong type of size gain. Fortunately, this option is healthier and just as pleasing to the pallet. This recipe makes 8 which you can split up into two servings unless you’re starving.
- ½ pound 90/10 ground beef
- ¼ cup refried beans
- 8 slices of deli sliced ham
- ½ cup shredded cheddar cheese
- 1 packet taco seasoning
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Place slices of ham on a baking sheet. Once oven is ready, bake ham for 2-3 minutes. Remove the sheet, flip the ham with a spatula, and return to oven for 2-3 more minutes.
While the oven is preheating, place the ground beef in a non-stick skillet along with taco seasoning on medium heat and cook until done to your desire (well or medium well preferred).
Once the beef is finished, drain excess grease. Add the refried beans to the beef. Remove the ham slices from the oven. Add a tablespoon of the beef combo to each ham slice. Add cheese on top. Roll up and secure with a toothpick. Serve with salsa if desired.
Macros: 480 calories, 35 grams protein, 34 carbs, 15 grams fat per 4 taquitos
6. BBQ Chicken Sliders
Sandwiches are satisfying at the end of a day. These sliders are satisfying and healthy too. These are great at bedtime or anytime. This recipe makes four sliders.
- 1 Pack Multigrain Sandwich Thins
- ½ pound of chicken breast
- 4 slices of mozzarella cheese
- Barbecue sauce
- Salt and pepper to taste
Preheat a non-stick skillet to medium heat. Season your chicken with salt and/or pepper and place in the skillet for 3-4 minutes per side. After flipping, baste with barbecue sauce. Place sliced cheese on top of chicken for 1 additional minute or until melted.
Remove from skillet, place on thins, enjoy!
Macros: 400 Calories, 65 g Protein, 28 g Carbs, 9 g Fat per 4 sliders
7. Roasted Chickpeas
This is a great snack that is vegan friendly and gluten free. It does take the longest but once you make them, you can have them now or store them in an airtight container for later. These go great with a salad. Obviously since this takes the longest and you can store them, you might as well make a big batch. This recipe is for an entire can.
- 15 ounce can chickpeas (aka garbanzo beans)
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 teaspoon sesame oil
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- ½ teaspoon sea salt
- 1 tablespoon sesame seeds
Drain and rinse your chickpeas. Remove skin that is extremely loose but don’t be concerned with skinning them all. Spread your beans on a towel to dry.
Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Spread your dry chickpeas on the sheet. Bake for 50 minutes. Check to see if they are crunchy. If so, they’re ready to come out.
Transfer them to a bowl and add the olive oil. Add the sesame oil, garlic powder, sea salt, and sesame seeds. Let sit for a couple minutes and you’re good to go!
Macros: 390 calories, 16 g protein, 54 g carbs, 12 g fat per 3 ounces