8 Top High-Calorie Nuts and Nut Butters for Weight Gain

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Are you struggling to gain weight, bashing your head against the wall eating the same chicken and rice meals every day? 

Worried that you’re not going to turn around the bulk and build the muscular physique you want?

We’re here to save you from mediocre massing phases, with nature’s best tasting fats (in our opinion): high calorie nuts and nut butters for weight gain and muscle growth.

Essentials Of Nuts For Weight Gain

If you’re gaining weight, you want to get familiar with nuts and nut butters. These are the easiest ways to build up your calorie content while balancing health, cost, and results. 

Nuts are cheaply available, easy to build into your diet, and a fantastic source of calories from healthy fats. We’re going to look at some of the best – both nuts and nut butters – to help you make that bulk work. 

Why Use Nut Butters To Bulk

Nuts and nut butters are powerful for weight gain specifically because they’re high in fats. These are over 200% more calorie-dense than carbs or proteins, so that every gram of fats you take in is pulling double duty in your bulk.

Why Use Nut Butters To Bulk

It offers you a greater density of calories, an easier time bulking, and even a broad range of nutrients that are hard to get elsewhere. Nuts offer this experience even more potently in a concentrated, even more delicious format as nut butter. This makes it easier to consume more calories in less time, in more ways.

This means getting more from less, which is always great for bulking. 


Nuts and their butters can go on toast, in oatmeal, or just with fruits. This is one of the best, easiest, most delicious ways to boost your calorie content. With the selections on today’s list, you’re going to have an easier time building muscle mass.

1. High Calorie Content

Calories are king when it comes to forcing your weight up. They’re the driving force behind muscle growth, and none of your other efforts – proteins, carbs, and minerals – don’t matter to your long-term weight change if you don’t eat enough total calories (1).

High Calorie Content

Nuts can offer up to 400 calories per 100g, above what any healthy carbohydrate can offer. This makes them a powerful source for calories where other sources fall down, with some of the best calorie-density on the market for a healthy food source.

Nut butters are even more powerful in this regard, offering 600+ calories per 100g, an easy thing to do with the versatility and flavor they offer. This is a huge boost on anything you can get from carbs, though it pairs perfectly with high-quality carbs like wholegrain cereals.

2. Versatility

Nuts aren’t versatile on their own, but they can be used in all kinds of ways to increase your calorie intake. By using nuts, nut butters, nut flour, and other options, you can dramatically increase the quality and quantity of your weight gain.


Nuts alone are a great snack if you’re partial to the flavor. You can build your own trail mix for easy weight gain and a between-meal snack to gain weight. You can chop walnuts for salads, you can add chopped nuts to bakes, yogurts, or a simple protein mousse.

Nut butters go on toast, in oatmeal, or a high-calorie weight gain shake. These are easy to use and they’re strong options for improving your total calorie intake alongside foods and meals you could already be using. 

Nut flours – like almond flour – are a great choice for adding more calories to your bakes, as well as replacing over-simple flours from wheat. These can be a problem for metabolic wellbeing, while fats are more stable and slow digesting, offering a better alternative for health and growth.

3. Vitamin And Mineral Content

Not only are nuts and their butters good for weight gain, they can be great for health. Options like almond and cashew butter, for example, are rich in mono- and poly-unsaturated fats, which are great for heart health.

Vitamin And Mineral Content

Others – like walnuts – are packed with Omega 3 fats. These are essential – your body can’t make them – so you need to get them from your diet.

4. Nut Micronutrients For Health

Nuts as a category of foods also have higher rates of minerals than most high-calorie foods. They are packed with magnesium, iron, B6, calcium, and more. These are hard to get in most diets – especially from plant sources – and this makes it a great choice for plant-based diets in particular.

All of these ingredients have a powerful impact on your body, supporting health and wellbeing. These are the basis for your muscle growth and a range of processes that go into high quality weight gain. Sufficient mineral and vitamin content is the foundation for energy balance, which is the foundation for growth (2).

Boosting your total micronutrient intake is going to help you in every area of life: strength and muscle growth, but also mental performance, sleep quality, and long-term health. You’ll experience whole-person changes that support your goals – they add up quickly!

High Calorie Nuts And Nut Butters For Weight Gain

These are the best nuts and nut butters for weight gain – but not just because they have the highest calories! These are 8 of the best choices for a well-rounded diet with plenty of nutrients, fats, and calories to drive high-quality weight gain.

We’re also considering where you can use them in your diet. We’ve experimented with all of these nuts and nut butters – putting dozens of hours into research and cooking (real hard work!) – so you can get the best from your weight gain diet. 

1. Almonds


Almonds are a great choice for weight gain because they’re mild and versatile, packed with magnesium, calcium, potassium, and iron. 

Almonds are great because you can eat them a bunch of ways – the nuts themselves are good, almond butter is very mild and easy to use (especially in shakes), and almond flour is a fantastic high-fat alternative to wheat flour.

These all make almonds a perfect choice for bulking up your diet and improving your weight gain. These make it one of our favorites for all-purpose weight gain and health.

2. Macadamia Nuts

Macadamia Nuts

Macadamia nuts are the most calorie dense nuts on the market. They offer almost 720 calories per 100g, which is an incredible boost to your daily calorie intake with such a small handful of food.

Macadamia nuts also have a great, sweet flavor that makes them a favorite in cookies. You can bake them into cookies, but they also take just as well to salads (when chopped), or crushed as a crust for salmon or other fish dishes.

One of our favorite ways to boost calorie intake at the end of the day is simply dipping macadamia nuts in melted dark chocolate. The fact that something so delicious could be part of a healthy weight gain diet feels great!

3. Pecans


Pecans are a soft nut with great flavor and texture. They’re common for pecan pies, which is obviously high in calories, but they’re also available in healthier meals – or just by themselves.

Just like peanuts, pecans make an amazing snack because they take so easily to other flavors. Candied pecans aren’t the only option; East Asian cuisines bring you sweet and spicy pecans, one of the best weight gain snacks that adds a little sugar and a lot of spice to your snacking nuts.

You can make pecan butter, but it’s not as versatile as some others. Pecans work really well in other sweet foods, however, like high-protein, high-fat “bombs”. These are a mainstay of Keto diets and other high-fat diets, as a sweet alternative to store-bought snacks.

You can also try out pecan almond fruit loaf for a moist, healthier dessert.

4. Walnuts


Walnuts are some of the healthiest nuts – and they’re perfect in a wide range of settings. We’ve already talked about nut versatility, but walnuts are the king of this. You’ll find them in cakes, salads, snack mixes, and more.

Walnuts are packed with Omega-3 fats – ALAs – to improve total health and wellbeing (3). These aren’t as powerful as the fish-derived alternatives (EPA and DHA) but they’re a huge step up on most of the other high-calorie snacks you’d expect.

Whether chopped or whole, walnuts are a great staple to keep around for weight gain and muscle growth.

5. Brazil Nuts

Brazil Nuts

Brazil nuts are a real treat, offering a rich and deep taste, as well as a huge calorie content from healthy fats. One Brazil nut is 33 calories, which is insane, helping you gain weight while snacking or as part of a whole meal. 100g of Brazil nuts offers 660 calories.

They’re also packed with magnesium – one of the most important and impactful minerals for muscles. This helps regulate muscle recovery, sleep, and energy levels. As with other nuts, you’re also going to get potassium, calcium, and iron to support recovery and wellbeing.

You can use Brazil nuts to bulk up your pesto, as an ingredient in high-fat cookies, or as a snack. Brazil nut butter is an amazing choice for a simple, decadent addition to your diet and a luxurious alternative to peanut butter. 

6. Hazelnuts


Hazelnuts have some of the most iconic flavor around, lending their delicious tones to popular foods like chocolate cookies and Nutella. While those aren’t super healthy, the nuts themselves are a great choice for balancing health and flavor in one place. 

Hazelnuts are a great snacking choice for a trail mix, they’re super powerful in your baked goods, and chopped hazelnuts will make most chocolate-themed sweet foods better. 

Hazelnut butter is one of the most pleasant choices around, giving you those classic flavors with none of the guilt of high-sugar spreads. You can also get roasted hazelnut butters with cocoa in – or make your own – to get the very best of your weight gain diet while maximizing muscle mass and weight gain!

7. Peanuts and Peanut Butter

Peanuts and Peanut Butter

You can’t discuss nuts and nut butters without mentioning the king: peanuts.

While peanuts don’t offer the best nutritional profile or overall health benefits, they’re where nuts and nut butters start. Peanuts are a common and easy snack that can be eaten alone or combined with a wide variety of ingredients or seasonings to make the most of snacking.

Peanut butter is the first name in nut butters and deserves recognition. It’s a hugely popular and delicious source of calories that works with oatmeal, toast, fruit, and protein shakes (4). It’s one of the most versatile high-calorie foods around and is responsible for incredible amounts of muscle growth over the years.

If you want to gain weight – and you’re serious about that – get a natural peanut butter. You can make your own, too, if you feel fancy or want to add specific ingredients to this old favorite.

8. Coconut


Coconuts are technically nuts, and that makes them our final “wildcard” favorite for this article. Everything that comes out of coconuts is good for you: the water is packed with electrolytes, the flesh has incredible nutrient composition with healthy fats, and coconut oil is an amazing butter-alternative.

Coconuts are great in all their forms and both types of coconut milk are great for health. Try and lean towards denser milks, which are blended with the flesh, to provide a higher-calorie and more decadent option for your diet.

You can also use coconut flour, desiccated coconut, and dried coconut in your own ways. They’re super easy to add to bakes, bombs, and more. Coconuts are a great choice anywhere in your diet.

Final Thoughts

You should use nuts and nut butters for weight gain. Nuts aren’t all the same – a Macadamia nut has far more calories than a pistachio – but they’re all united around things you need (5): 

  • Healthy fats
  • Important minerals (especially for LCHF diets)
  • Great calorie density for their size
  • Versatile for snacking, cooking, and more
Final Thoughts

If you’re struggling to gain weight and you want to build high quality muscle mass, nuts and nut butters could be the solution. They are much healthier than comparable foods for the calories – like burgers and pizzas – while boosting your nutrient intake and offering a surprising range of options.

If you want to gain weight like an elite bodybuilder, start taking nuts seriously, and put time into working these into your staple snacks, shakes, and meals!

  1. https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/0264041031000140518 
  2. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4004098/ 
  3. https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s11745-010-3501-5 
  4. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nXIe4It4kd4&pp=ygUmYmFuYW5hIG9hdCBwZWFudXQgYnV0dGVyIHByb3RlaW4gc2hha2U%3D 
  5. https://pubs.rsc.org/en/content/articlehtml/2012/fo/c2fo10152a 

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