If you’re looking for the perfect post-workout dinner, you’re in luck. There are plenty of foods that will help refuel and rebuild your muscles, and they’re all very tasty.
In this post, we will specifically recommend healthy dinner options for after the gym, and explain why they are good for your health and nourishment.
13 Healthy Dinner Ideas for after the Gym:
As muscles start to heal and recover, they need proteins to help them grow. A healthy meal after a workout will replenish the glycogen stores and satisfy hunger.
Meal ideas for dinner post workout:
1. Steak And Spinach with Mashed Potatoes
Mashed potatoes are a classic American dish that is often served with gravy or some other type of sauce. But mashed potatoes are also delicious when they are mashed with other hearty vegetables, like spinach, garlic, and onions.
The combination of mashed potatoes, spinach, and steak is all that you need to make the ultimate comfort dish for a post workout dinner.
2. Turkey Bolognese with Veggies
Turkey Bolognese with veggies is a perfect dish for family dinners. It’s made with ground turkey, veggies, and herbs. The pasta sauce is made with carrot, celery, onion, garlic, tomato paste, and dried oregano.
Turkey Bolognese with veggies is a good choice for a healthy post workout dinner. It is delicious and will fulfill both your needs and wants from food post workout.
3. Pulled BBQ Chicken
The thought of pulled BBQ chicken as a post workout dinner may sound appetizing, but it is actually a very good idea for cheat day eating.
Pulled BBQ chicken is usually high in sodium and saturated fat, but when eaten with healthy food such as salads and vegetables, the meal can be more balanced.
This dish contains a small amount of protein and carbohydrates making it moderately healthy.
Though it is not a good post-workout meal because the protein will not provide enough sustained energy, but you can eat it as your cheat day meal.
Pulled BBQ chicken is a filling dinner or lunch option, it should not be considered a post-workout dinner too often.
Instead if you want to eat some healthy fast food, then do check out the options here.
4. Quinoa Bowl
Quinoa is a good source of protein and other essential nutrients. It is also an excellent meal to serve your family and friends following a workout.
The grains are rich in complex carbohydrates, fiber, and protein.
The protein content in the grain is not as high as that of animal products such as meat or eggs but it is still significant at about 8-10 grams per 100 grams of the product.
Quinoa also contains essential amino acids such as methionine which can help with muscle recovery after a strenuous workout.
As for its nutritional content, quinoa contains approximately 5-6 grams of protein per cup which translates to 8-10 grams per 100g depending on how it has been boiled and prepared.
Eating quinoa after working out helps your body recover from the exercise.
5. Grilled Salmon with Loaded Baked Potato
First, let’s have a closer look at the ingredients. Grilled Salmon is rich in omega-3 fatty acids that are good for the heart and brain. Loaded baked potato is a great source of potassium, magnesium, calcium, and vitamin C.
Next, let’s have a closer look at the nutrients they provide.
Both foods are high in protein which will help you build muscle mass due to its ability to increase muscle strength after an intense workout session.
Both foods are also high in carbohydrates which will help regenerate muscle glycogen stores post-workout session to fuel your next workout session or active day.
Lastly, salmon contains healthy fats that can reduce the risk of cancer and heart disease while baked potatoes are low in fat content but they do contain carbs that can contribute to high Glycemic Index (GI).
Overall grilled salmon with loaded baked potatoes is a healthy post-workout dinner option, but you just need to keep the amount of potatoes low because of the high Glycemic Index.
6. Stir-Fried Beef With Chinese Broccoli
It is a delicious dish that contains all the nutrients and protein needed after a workout.
Stir-fried beef with Chinese broccoli is a low calorie dish that only has 375 calories per serving making it a good post workout dinner for weight loss.
It also has a lower fat content than most dishes with similar ingredients.
7. Tuna Salad Sandwich
There is a debate on whether tuna salad sandwich is a good post-workout dinner meal or not. Let’s take a look at the two sides of the debate and what they have to say.
A lot of people believe that tuna salad sandwich is not a post workout meal as it does not provide any protein.
Apart from protein, it doesn’t contain most essential nutrients as well.
The other side believes that a tuna salad sandwich is a great post-workout meal as it contains low-calorie and low-fat ingredients.
Apart from that, it has carbohydrates for energy and recovery. The sodium content in this dish also helps in hydration which reduces muscle soreness.
As a result, it is better to consider tuna salad sandwich only in post workout dinner for weight loss. If you are in muscle building program, this dinner is not for you.
8. Grilled chicken with roasted vegetables
Grilled chicken and roasted vegetables are good sources of lean protein and whole grains. They provide a lot of energy since they are high in carbohydrates and fiber.
9. Egg omelet with avocado spread on toast
This post-workout dinner consists of eggs, avocado, and toast.
Eggs provide a balance of protein and fat to help you stay fuller for longer, while avocado is high in healthy fats that will help you maintain your weight.
Avocado spread is an easy way to get your recommended intake of fruit for the day, with only 60 calories per serving.
Overall egg omelet with avocado spread on toast is a good combination of post workout dinner for muscle gain.
10. Salmon and Sweet Potatoes
If you are an avid runner, then salmon and sweet potatoes would be a great post-workout dinner.
If you are someone who performed high-intensity workouts or weightlifting exercises, then consuming protein shake is recommended.
The benefits of eating fish after a workout are not only attributed to its protein content but also its omega 3 fatty acids which help in reducing inflammation and joint pain.
Salmon is one of the best sources for omega 3 fatty acids as well as vitamin D levels which help with muscle building and bone strength.
11. Tuna salad sandwich with whole-grain bread
Tuna salad sandwich with whole-grain bread is a commonly used post workout dinner. Here are some of the benefits of having a tuna salad sandwich as a post workout dinner.
- It is high in protein, which has been scientifically proven to help recovery from workouts and injuries better.
- It is rich in Omega-3 fatty acids, which can promote muscle recovery.
- It contains a greater range of vitamins and minerals than most people would get from any other type of food in one sitting.
- It has fewer calories than most other meals–only about 300 calories for the average sandwich making it also favorable for post workout dinner for weight loss.
12. Pita with hummus
Different food nutritionists have different views on whether or not pita is a good post-workout meal for dinner or not, but there are many factors to consider about the carbs content of this type of bread.
It may be beneficial to know what your goals are before making this decision.
If you are looking to bulk up, then the carbs content in pita is good for you, but if you are looking to lose weight, it may be better for you to choose another type of sandwich.
13. Grain Bread and Raw Peanuts
Research reveals that grains are an excellent post-workout meal.
Grains are rich in complex carbohydrates, which are the primary fuel source for muscles. Grains also contain protein, which is essential for muscle repair.
While peanuts are high in protein and healthy fats that will help to restore glycogen in your body.
What nutrients do you need after a workout?
Proteins, carbs, and low fats are the basic nutrients that the body needs after workout. To make things even more clear, it is better to eat foods that digest easily and quickly, because in that time, the body is in need of quick energy.
But if you want to be sure that you are getting all the necessary nutrients in your post-workout meal then it’s best to consult a nutritionist before proceeding, because not all workouts are same, and different people need different kinds of nutrients to stay healthy and fit.
Post-workout nutrition is essential for repairing and rebuilding the muscle tissues that were damaged during the workout.
In this article, we’ve listed 13 food ideas for dinner after gym. We hope you find this information useful! Please share this post on your favorite social media platform.