If you’re in the market for some serious gains, then you’re in the right place!
Weightlifting can promote muscle growth, but it needs to be paired with a high-calorie diet. To help you out, we’ve compiled a carefully curated list of the best bulking supplements, to enhance your strength, boost performance, and increase muscle mass.
Let’s dive in.
If you just want to know what our recommended bulking supplement is, that honor goes to Mass Gainer by Transparent Labs.
It delivers 750 clean calories and 53 grams of protein in each serving, helping pack on muscle and successfully recover from the toughest workouts.
Table of Contents
- 1 The Top 8 Recommended Supplements for Bulking
- 1.1 1. Mass Gainer – Transparent Labs
- 1.2 2. 100% Grass-fed Whey Protein Isolate – Transparent Labs
- 1.3 3. Vegan Naked Mass – Naked Nutrition
- 1.4 4. Extreme Mass – NutraBio
- 1.5 5. Home-Made Whole Food Meal Replacement – Axe and Sledge
- 1.6 6. Naked Mass – Naked Nutrition
- 1.7 7. Mass Gainer – Crazy Nutrition
- 1.8 8. Mass Revolution Mass Gainer – Muscle Sport
- 2 Setting the Record Straight on Bulking Supplements
- 3 What to Look For in a Bulking Supplement
- 4 Benefits of Bulking Supplements
- 5 Bulking Tips
- 6 FAQs
- 7 Final Words
The Top 8 Recommended Supplements for Bulking
- Mass Gainer – Transparent Labs
- 100% Grass-fed Whey Protein Isolate – Transparent Labs
- Vegan Naked Mass – Naked Nutrition
- Extreme Mass NutraBio
- Home-Made Whole Food Meal Replacement – Axe and Sledge
- Naked Mass – Naked Nutrition
- Mass Gainer – Crazy Bulk
- Mass Revolution Mass Gainer – Muscle Sport
1. Mass Gainer – Transparent Labs
Best Overall Bulking Supplement
Mass Gainer by Transparent Labs is an easy pick for the best overall bulking supplement. It’s a high-quality supplement that’s designed to help you build muscle by providing a complete package of key nutrients.
This mass gainer’s carefully formulated blend has ingredients such as creatine and MCT oil to aid muscle growth, recovery, and overall performance. It’s packed with enough protein to drive you toward your bulking goals while still maintaining high standards of quality and transparency.
With this product, the online reviews practically speak for themselves. So, it’s an excellent choice for those who want a bulking supplement that’s trusted and well-rounded.
- Protein – 53 g
- Carbohydrates – 109 g
- Creatine Monohydrate – 5 g
- MCT oil – 5 g
2. 100% Grass-fed Whey Protein Isolate – Transparent Labs
Best Protein Powder for Bulking
If you're looking for a high quality, clean protein powder, Transparent Labs' 100% Grass Fed Whey Isolate is an excellent choice.
With a slew of delicious flavors and a totally transparent, clean label, this is a premium product.
LV10 = 10% off at Transparent Labs
If you want a top-quality protein powder for bulking, then look no further than Transparent Labs’ 100% grass-fed whey protein powder. It’s perfect for those seeking a clean and pure source of protein to support muscle growth and recovery.
As the name suggests it’s made from the milk of grass-fed cows, which is not very common with protein powders. This approach ensures the highest standards of quality and nutrition that more generic protein powders can’t match.
Like the above, it has a transparent and minimal ingredient list, making it a premium protein powder without unnecessary additives or fillers. Another bonus with this option is that it has no artificial sweeteners or coloring and is gluten-free. This is why we consider it to be the best protein powder for bulking.
- Grass-fed protein powder – 28 g
- Fat – 1 g
- Carbohydrates – 1 g
- Sugar – 0 g
3. Vegan Naked Mass – Naked Nutrition
Best Vegan Bulking Supplement
Next up on our list, we have the best vegan bulking supplement, Vegan Naked Mass. Naked Nutrition really outdid themselves when they made this mass builder. This premium plant-based mass gainer is designed to provide an effective solution for people chasing muscle growth on a vegan diet.
It offers a high-calorie blend of vegan ingredients to support bulking without compromising dietary preferences in any way.
You’ll also be pleased to know that Vegan Naked Mass mixes well and tastes great but the downside is that it’s relatively expensive compared to similar options.
- Pea protein – 50 g
- Organic Maltodextrin – 252 g
- Branched-chain amino acids – 10.3 g
- Complex carbohydrates – 248 g
4. Extreme Mass – NutraBio
High-Quality Mass Gainer
Extreme Mass combines 70% high-quality, fast-absorbing whey protein concentrate (WPC80) with 30% slower-absorbing casein protein to help ensure maximum recovery and muscle growth.
NutraBio is known for delivering the absolute best when it comes to product quality and their Extreme Mass weight gainer supplement is no exception.
LIFTVAULT = 15% off at Nutri Cartel
This high-quality mass gainer provides a comprehensive blend of nutrients for building muscle and optimizing recovery. The ingredients in it give you a sustained release, so it’s much slower acting compared to other supplements for bulking. However, its outstanding combination of vitamins and minerals makes it worth exploring.
Given that it has over 50 grams of protein, Extreme Mass is right up there with the big names. The flavors with this supplement are relatively basic but if you can look past that, it may be a solid and relatively affordable way of packing on some pounds.
- Protein – 50 g
- Carbohydrate complex – 85 g
5. Home-Made Whole Food Meal Replacement – Axe and Sledge
Best Bulking Supplement with Whole Food Ingredients
Home Made is the overall best meal replacement & mass gainer option for folks looking to get bigger. It uses a 1:1 protein to carbs ratio.
Home-Made Whole Food Meal Replacement is the perfect solution for those seeking convenience and progress. This power-packed supplement provides a balanced blend of essential nutrients, making it an ideal choice for individuals with busy lifestyles.
Do note that it’s a bit limited in terms of flavor options and doesn’t haven’t the highest protein content. It’s also slightly more expensive compared to other meal replacement options. But, it’s still a high-quality product. So, if you’re looking for the best bulking supplement with whole food ingredients, then you’ve found it!
- Protein – 30 g
- Complex Carbohydrate Matrix – 40 g
- Essential Fatty Acid Blend – 10 g
6. Naked Mass – Naked Nutrition
Best Bulking Supplement with Clean Ingredients
Naked Mass is an excellent weight gainer supplement for anyone looking for clean, transparent ingredients.
It has just three ingredients: organic tapioca maltodextrin, whey protein concentrate, and micellar casein (aka casein protein, a slow-release version of protein).
Naked Mass has no artificial sweeteners, flavors, or colors.
Like its vegan counterpart, Naked Mass is another solid choice for making clean gains. It’s a top-tier bulking supplement with a good macronutrient profile. One downside of this product is that it does have a relatively high carbohydrate content, so it may not be suitable for people on low-carb diets. But, if you can look past that, it’s still brilliant.
Another reason why it’s the best bulking supplement with clean ingredients is that it also has an unflavored option. This basically means that you won’t be overly restricted in terms of how you can incorporate it into your diet.
- Protein – 50 g
- Organic Maltodextrin – 252 g
- Organic coconut sugar – 12 g
7. Mass Gainer – Crazy Nutrition
Mass Gainer by Crazy Nutrition is the ultimate low-sugar nutritional supplement designed for effective and healthy bulking. This complete meal replacement supplement supports muscle growth, improved stamina, and faster recovery times between workouts, making it the perfect choice for those looking to bulk up without unwanted side effects like gas and bloating.
Crazy Nutrition’s Mass Gainer prioritizes muscle-to-fat ratio and features a balanced blend of high-quality ingredients that promote muscle repair and growth. With a superior 2:1 ratio of complex carbs to protein, it delivers an impressive 50 g of protein per 100 g of carbohydrates, ensuring that you pack on lean muscle mass instead of unwanted weight gain.
Mass Gainer is not only focused on muscle mass development but also overall health and well-being. It’s free from soy, gluten, and artificial fillers, opting for Carb10 as a quick energy source.
- Protein: 40 g
- Carbohydrates: 55 g
- Fat: 10 g
8. Mass Revolution Mass Gainer – Muscle Sport
LIFTVAULT = 15% off at Nutri Cartel
Our next honorable mention and last entry is another budget option. As you might expect, it has all the ingredients you need to put on some size. But, it also has four different types of complete, high-leucine proteins that quickly increase blood amino acid levels.
Mass Revolution has some mixed reviews but its attractive pricing and high-protein content make it well worth trying. It comes in some exciting flavors like coconut caramel, and cookies and cream. So, maybe you might want to give one of those a try if your taste buds get bored easily.
- Protein – 50 g
- Carbohydrates – 249 g
- Fat – 12 g
Setting the Record Straight on Bulking Supplements
One of the major issues with muscle-building supplements is that there’s a lot of misinformation out there. To make this look at the best supplements for bulking even clearer, here’s a breakdown of the common misconceptions about these muscle-building products:
Magic pill theory
People often think that bulking supplements are magical solutions when they actually aren’t. They primarily serve as a means to complement a diet, hence the term “supplement.” They are tools to gain weight and build muscle, but consistency in nutrition and exercise is essential.
Supplement industry regulation
Some argue that there are “grey areas” within the supplement industry. While this could be true in some regards, it’s largely the case for most industries, particularly when it comes to proprietary blends.
There is regulation within the industry but it’s still important to purchase products from reputable sources and to ensure the product has visible indicators to signify testing taking place and regulations being adhered to.
Although supplements like weight gainers and protein powders are formulated with the aim of helping people build muscle, not all people will see the same result. The simple explanation behind this is that we are all physiologically different. So, what works for others might not necessarily work for you. This is where consulting a dietician comes in handy.
Supplements are anabolic steroids
This is something that you typically hear from concerned parents when their child is looking to make some muscle gains. Fortunately, supplements, such as mass gainers, are most definitely not anabolic steroids.
Steroids are substances that increase testosterone production in an abnormal manner. Whereas, supplements are just concentrated forms of nutrients like amino acids, protein, and essential fatty acids.
What to Look For in a Bulking Supplement
All the bulking supplements on the market and their vivid packaging can make choosing one relatively difficult. So, here are a few things that you should look for when shopping around for one:
This is generally where most people start and it’s where you should start too. The selection of ingredients in bulking supplements is a key aspect of whether it’ll be suitable for your needs.
When searching for supplements to build muscle, prioritize the ones that contain key ingredients such as whey protein, branched-chain amino acids, creatine, and other ingredients that support muscle growth.
It’s advisable to steer clear of supplements that have excessive amounts of artificial preservatives, additives, and other synthetic ingredients. If need be, you’ll also have to ensure that the particular blend doesn’t contain any potential allergens.
Opt for supplements that have natural and high-quality ingredients to ensure you’re giving your body the best support for muscle development.
When entering the world of muscle building and supplementation, it’s easy to be overwhelmed by the sheer number of technical terms out there. But, you need to do your best to familiarise yourself with and conduct as much research as possible.
Many supplement brands will make bold claims in an attempt to make a sale. Because of this, it’s important to do your research on the ingredients in the product and to see if there’s any scientific backing behind the claims.
Reputable supplement brands perform vigorous tests to determine how effective their product is. This then gives users a better idea as to how the product could benefit them.
Looking at what the public says is another part of doing your research. The best supplements for bulking often have numerous online reviews. These reviews can serve as a good indicator of a product’s quality and potential throughout the bulking phase.
Because you’ll be investing your hard-earned money in a product, it’s crucial to look at both positive and negative reviews to determine whether the dietary supplement is ideal for muscle building.
Quality and safety
Always ensure that the supplement you pick has been produced in a reputable facility. You should also make sure that it’s undergone quality and safety tests. It’s also beneficial to choose supplements for bulking that feature a label from an independent third-party testing organization. This is a good way of confirming the product’s quality, purity, and potency.
Price is another huge determining factor when choosing between supplements for bulking. It’s important to remember that a huge price doesn’t necessarily mean the product is best for you or of the best quality. Having no budgetary restrictions is nice but look at supplements that offer good value for money and are reasonably priced.
If this and all of the above still don’t provide clarity, then a strong recommendation would be to consult a qualified dietician. They’ll be able to properly assess the supplement and gauge its potential effectiveness in line with your individual needs.
Benefits of Bulking Supplements
Bulking supplements offer a wide variety of benefits, let’s break them down:
Muscle growth and strength
One of the major benefits of bulking supplements is increased protein synthesis. This is simply because they function as a concentrated source of protein, which is essential for muscle repair and growth.
Certain supplements may also help in reducing muscle soreness and speeding up the recovery process. This allows you to train harder and more frequently.
Lastly, some supplements contain ingredients that support anabolic (muscle-building) processes in the body, such as EAA supplements. This, in turn, promotes muscle protein synthesis and reduces muscle tissue breakdown.
Performance and energy
Some bulking supplements are known to enhance endurance by increasing oxygen delivery to muscles. This then delays fatigue and improves stamina and one’s overall workout performance.
You could also benefit from a boost in strength and power, meaning you may be able to lift heavier weights and perform at a higher intensity.
If you get a bulking supplement with ingredients such as creatine, you could benefit from a boost in energy. This may be the key to pushing through challenging workouts. Intra-workout supplements are also great for an extra kick if you have long training sessions.
Mass gainers and weight gainers may help people struggling to meet their caloric needs for muscle growth. They do this by providing a convenient and calorie-dense source of nutrition.
Many people struggle with obtaining a macronutrient balance. Supplements for bulking could assist in achieving a balanced intake of macronutrients that are necessary for muscle growth. This is inclusive of protein, carbs, and essential amino acids.
[Discover the best lactose-free weight gainer]
Another major benefit of bulking supplements is that they offer a quick and easy way to consume nutrients. This is particularly useful for people with busy lifestyles or those who don’t have enough time for meal preparation.
Beyond just consuming boundless calories, supplements also allow for precise control of nutrient intake. The increased control makes it easier to track and adjust macronutrient ratios, as needed.
It’s important to note that we’re all different, so responses to bulking supplements can vary, and not all supplements work equally for everyone. Additionally, supplements shouldn’t be complete meal replacements, unless the product states that it can function as one.
Even so, consulting a healthcare professional or registered dietician is highly recommended. They’ll be able to give you personalized guidance tailored to your specific needs and goals.
Here are eight tips that can make it easier to gain weight and put on muscle mass:
1. Don’t skip breakfast
Not skipping breakfast is key to bulking for several reasons. Breakfast kickstarts your metabolism and provides the energy you need to fuel your body and support muscle growth. Try to consume a balanced breakfast that includes proteins, carbohydrates, healthy fats, and amino acids.
Breakfast also plays an important role in optimizing nutrient timing. Having protein-rich foods in the morning helps distribute protein intake evenly throughout the day, which promotes the creation of proteins by cells.
Additionally, skipping breakfast may result in increased hunger and cravings later, potentially leading to overeating or poor food choices. The result of this could be an increase in body fat, as opposed to putting on lean muscle mass.
2. Eat every three hours
Timing your meals is an important part of increasing your muscle mass. Stay ahead of your food intake so that you won’t be hungry. One of the easiest ways to do this is by snacking in-between your main meals. Get in your usual breakfast, lunch, and dinner but be sure to have pre and post-workout meals, in addition to snacks in between.
Like skipping breakfast, going hungry for long amounts of time may cause overeating at the next meal or filling up on unhealthy snacks. So, try to eat every three hours to stop cravings and to get your body into a bulk-oriented routine.
3. Have protein with every meal
As you’ve probably figured by now, protein is one of the main components of muscle growth. The most common method is to consume 1 g of protein per pound of body weight. You can do this by eating a whole protein source with each meal, here are a few examples:
- Red meat – Beef, lamb, pork
- Poultry – Chicken, duck, turkey
- Fish – Tuna, sardines, mackerel
- Dairy – Milk, cottage cheese, yogurt
- Whey protein – Not a must but highly convenient
- Vegan options – Lentils, tofu, nuts
5. Eat fruit and vegetables with each meal
A lot of fruits are low in calories, so you can eat them and get full while reducing the chances of putting on body fat. They’re also full of key vitamins, amino acids, and antioxidants which can aid digestion. Just be mindful of the sugar content of some fruits and remember that not all fruits are low-calorie.
6. Consume healthy fats
Despite what many believe, consuming fats is necessary for muscle growth. However, you have to consume healthy fats, as they often help improve fat loss and overall health. Be sure to balance your fat intake and avoid trans fats, one of the most notorious examples being vegetable oils.
7. Drink plenty of water
An intense training session causes water loss through sweating. If you don’t rehydrate sufficiently, you may impair muscle recovery, and any further training until then would be ineffective for gaining muscle. So, make sure you’re drinking enough water and not under or over-hydrating.
8. Watch your carb intake
Carbs are necessary for energy but many people tend to eat more carbs than they actually need. Try to watch your carb intake both before and after workouts to improve your chances of building lean body mass. Another tip would be to avoid white carbs and eat whole-grain carbs instead, when possible.
9. Ensure you’re primarily eating whole foods
To boost your muscle mass significantly, around 90 percent of your food intake should be whole foods. You should always try your best to avoid processed foods, as much as possible. To help you out, here’s the difference between the two:
- Whole foods: These are foods that come as close as possible to their natural state. They undergo little to no processing. Good examples are meat, eggs, fruit, and oats.
- Processed foods: Foods such as bagels, frozen meals, cereals, and fruit bars are examples of processed foods. They typically contain trans-fats, sugars, corn syrups, and preservatives that may be detrimental to putting on lean muscle.
With supplements, there’s always the risk of the ingredients being unregulated or impure. Additionally, some mass-building supplements could strain the liver and kidneys if used for prolonged periods. Bulking supplements may be effective in promoting muscle growth, but it’s important to be aware of these risks. If possible, consult a dietician prior to supplementing.
Getting the best results with supplements requires one to set goals that are realistic, specific, and achievable. You’ll also have to do your research and choose your supplements wisely. This involves looking for reputable brands and prioritizing transparency, quality, and safety.
Follow recommended doses and stay consistent with both training and supplementation. Also, remember that supplements are not a substitute for a well-balanced diet and proper training routine.
Mass gainers and protein powders serve different purposes, so it can’t be said that one is inherently better than the other.
Mass gainers are a high-calorie blend of nutrients, making them more suitable for individuals struggling to meet their calorie needs for bulking. Whereas, whey protein powder is typically formulated to provide a concentrated source of protein for muscle recovery and growth. The choice between the two depends on individual goals and dietary requirements.
Yes, creatine supplements can be beneficial for bulking. It can boost insulin sensitivity in your muscle cells, so more of what you eat will go toward muscle growth. Also, studies have shown that it may increase IGF-1 which is a key hormone for muscle growth.
Creatine is a naturally occurring compound but when taken as a supplement it may provide several benefits for those looking to gain muscle mass.
With that said, taking creatine alone is not sufficient to bulk up. The most important factor for bulking and adding mass is being in a caloric surplus. If you’re not in a caloric surplus, nothing else you do will help you bulk up. The easiest way to enter a caloric surplus is to eat more food. If that’s a challenge, cheap mass gaining supplements can help.
Do your best to consume a well-rounded diet, inclusive of lean proteins, complex carbohydrates, and healthy fats.
Maintain a slight caloric surplus by consuming more calories than you burn.
Rest and recovery
Ensure you’re getting a sufficient amount of sleep and adequate rest between workouts to aid muscle repair and growth.
Hydration supports overall health and muscle function. So, try to stay properly hydrated throughout the day.
And so concludes our list of the best supplements for bulking. Always remember, when it comes to selecting the best supplement to support your bulking journey, it’s crucial to consider the quality, effectiveness, and transparency of the product.
While all options mentioned offer their own unique benefits, one product stands out as the top choice overall: Mass Gainer by Transparent Labs. With its commitment to transparency and clean ingredients, Mass Gainer by Transparent Labs is miles ahead in the market.
But, before you rush to get a tub of mass gainer, make sure that you develop a healthy diet and solid training regime first. After you do this and get a high-quality mass gainer, you’ll build muscle in no time!