There are two types of whey protein that are best for weight gain:
- Whey protein isolate sources that support lean muscle gains
- Mixed-nutrient whey protein sources that support calorie surplus and weight gain
Let’s look at the most important factors in whey protein for weight gain, and which sources are our favorite in each of these two equally-important categories.
Pure Whey Protein Isolate: Best For Weight Gain Quality
Pure proteins are the best type of whey protein for weight gain without fat gains.
They’re typically whey protein isolates and are multi-filtered to get the highest protein content per scoop.
This also means reducing the lactose content significantly and they can be the best whey protein for lactose-intolerant people.
Super pure proteins are great because they’re all protein and no fluff.
This makes them useful when blending into homemade protein shakes, as a post-workout carb and protein shake, or just as a boost of protein throughout the day.
It is important to keep protein availability high to spur maximum muscle gains as well as reducing fat gain when you’re using a calorie surplus.
This is great for lean gains and building muscle mass on a small bulk.
Mixed Whey Protein: Best For Calorie Surplus And Hardgainers
On the other end of the spectrum, whey proteins with a higher calorie content – that are mixed with fats and carbs – are a great choice.
These are the best type of whey protein supplement for weight gain since they help support calorie intake and use a carb and protein mixture to drive up muscle growth.
These are lower in protein per scoop but drive up calorie content and typically have other benefits – like tasting fantastic and mixing well.
These are not lean weight gain powder in the same way. They’re high in protein content but also offer a weight gain stimulus to more effectively support your calorie surplus.
These are specifically useful for hardgainers and those trying to get a great mixture of weight and muscle gains, using protein shakes as more of a super-lean mass gainer.
This type of whey protein is best for weight gain for hardgainers. They’re also more useful during daily use when not blended than their super pure counterparts.
They offer a mixture of nutrients that are more realistic for muscle nutrition to support better function and performance – and are more sustained release than a super-fast absorbing super-pure whey.
They’re also a little more useful by themselves as post-workout shakes, where they provide more carbs and proteins to spur muscle growth.
If you compare a 2-scoop shake for muscle gain after workouts, these “dirty” whey proteins are a great choice.
What Type of Whey Protein Is Best for Weight Gain?
The best type of whey protein for weight gain is usually a high-purity whey protein isolate as it offers the most protein, making it a versatile and easy-to-use choice.
High-purity whey protein isolates can be used in homemade mass gainer shakes, can be taken after workouts for huge protein content, or just top you up on all-important protein intake during the day.
More protein means better quality of weight gain, as well as being more efficient per-scoop in your diet – and on your wallet!
Lower-purity whey protein concentrates that are mixed with carbs and fats can be the best niche whey protein for weight gain in hard gainers.
They have more calories per scoop which gives them built-in weight gain support.
This is a great choice if you’re just using whey protein in your shakes and you want to make sure that they’re delicious, effective, and contribute more calories to your daily intake to boost weight gain!
Conclusion: Our Final Thoughts
The best type of whey protein for weight gain is either a high-quality whey protein isolate or a high-calorie whey like Syntha-6 from BSN. The former promises maximum protein-per dose, while the latter helps drive up weight gain.
For quality, purity is most important, while the best whey protein for weight gain quantity is a mixed-nutrient choice with more calories-per-dollar, like Syntha-6.
Stay close to your weight gain goals and be sure to choose around this balance.
You can use a protein powder for sheer protein intake, where you may even consider an egg white protein powder, or you can go to the opposite extreme with a mass gainer powder for maximum weight gain quantity.
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Rohan Arora is a Certified Personal Trainer and Sports Nutritionist and has been actively involved in sports and fitness for over 8 years. He now leads the team of fitness specialists and personal trainers who help people around the world with personalized workout and nutrition plans, along with providing the right information on sports supplements.