Best weight gainers 2024 to help you bulk up real quick

The best weight gainer supplements, including whey and vegan mass gainers, reviewed and ranked

Best weight gainer 2024: Jump Menu

If you’re looking to bulk up fast, then the best weight gainer – or best mass gainer as it’s sometimes called – can help. After all, you need to eat in a calorie surplus if you’re looking to gain weight, or pack on more muscle. But, despite how many of us love food, eating extra calories isn’t always easy, and that’s where this supplement can help.

A weight gainer is a type of protein powder that contains lots of calories to help you gain weight, or 'bulk up'. They’re a handy supplement to have alongside a balanced diet (not replace it) to ensure you have control over the amount of carbs, protein, and fat that you consume. There is a huge range of weight gainers out there, with some products containing less than 400 kcal while others have as much as 1,250 kcal per serving. It's therefore always a good idea to read the label before you buy.

Embarking on a bulk yourself? Check out our pick of the best weight gainers below, that we’ve trialed and tested whilst bulking ourselves. Also, don’t forget, consuming extra calories means more energy to push yourself during training. If you need to add some extra iron to your home gym, check out our pick of the best dumbbells, best barbells and the best kettlebells

T3 Active Writer
Bryony Firth-Bernard

As someone who spends 95% of their time in the gym, I've been able to test and trial a variety of strength, functional and cardio equipment, including supplements to fuel my workouts. When it comes to choosing the best weight gainer it's pretty straight-forward; you want something that tastes nice, is easy to drink and has good nutritional value.

T3's Top 3

Best weight gainers to buy right now in 2024

Why you can trust T3 Our expert reviewers spend hours testing and comparing products and services so you can choose the best for you. Find out more about how we test.

Best overall

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(Image credit: Optimum Nutrition)

1. Optimum Nutrition Serious Mass

Best weight gainer overall


Serving size: 334g
Energy: 1258 kcal
Carbs: 251g
Protein: 53g
Fat: 4.4g
Sugars: 22g

Reasons to buy

All the calories you need
High protein content
Many flavours to choose from

Reasons to avoid

Will go through the 5 kg bag in half a month

Optimum Nutrition recommends taking its Serious Mass weight gainer "between meals, after exercises or before bed." Now, we don't think many people like to go to bed with a full stomach, but even just one portion of the Optimum Nutrition Serious Mass will fill you right up. If you wish to take this supplement before bedtime, have half a portion only, that's still over 600 calories.

Even if you consume 3600 calories a day, which would imply that you are hitting the gym 4-5 days a week, having a serving of Optimum Nutrition Serious Mass would still cover one-third of your calorie intake. The Optimum Nutrition Serious Mass contains no added sugar, but it does contain 24 vitamins and minerals per serving. Better still, it comes in many different flavours, so you won't get bored too soon.

Best nutritional value

Naked Mass on white backgroundT3 Approved Award badge

(Image credit: Naked Nutrition)

2. Naked Nutrition Naked Mass

Best weight gainer for calories and nutritional value


Serving size: 321 grams
Energy: 1250 kcal
Carbs: 252 grams
Protein: 50 grams
Fat: 2.5 grams
Sugars: 5 grams

Reasons to buy

Only three ingredients
HUGE amount of calories and protein
Hardly any sugar or fat

Reasons to avoid

Amount of carbs might be a bit of an overkill for most

Our brain is funny and tends not to take calories that come in a liquid form into account, meaning if you want to sneak in some extra calories into your diet, you should drink calorific drinks. And if you want a healthy drink that's really calorific, try the Naked Mass weight gainer.

This meal replacement mix contains a staggering 1,250 calories and a whopping 50 grams of protein in each 321-gram serving. Better still, there is hardly any fat or sugar in the mix, although we recommend taking at least some dietary fats if you plan to bulk up and stay healthy.

Like all other 'Naked' products, the Naked Mass powder is GMO, soy, gluten, and hormone-free and has no rBGH or rBST. The Naked Mass is cold processed with no acid and bleaching involved: no need to spoil such a fine powder with synthetic processing methods. If you are a hard gainer boy or girl, try the Naked Mass, it's probably a better option than having yet another portion of rice and chicken for breakfast. 

Best consistency

Maximuscle Progain Mass Gainer on kitchen counter

(Image credit: Matt Kollat/T3)

3. Maximuscle Progain

Best consistency mass gainer (for those who prefer thinner shakes)


Serving size: 120g
Energy: 500 kcal
Carbs: 54g
Protein: 37g
Fat: 13g
Sugars: 5g

Reasons to buy

Produces a thinner shake – easier to drink
...  Yet high in fibre
Informed Sport certified

Reasons to avoid

Contains glucose syrup
Not quite as flavoursome as some other powders
Comparatively high in fat

Maximuscle's Progain produces a surprisingly thin shake which makes it all the easier to drink, so if you find it hard to stomach thick, hard-to-swallow mass gainers, this is your best option. 

Of course, this weight gainer mix has more going for it than only its easy drinkability. The Progain powder mixes easily and has a moderate calorie content (500 cal/120 g serving). It also has a balanced macro profile; carbs and protein content aren't over-the-top, making it more likely that your body can process them.

It's not a perfect concoction, though: the mix contains whey protein, so the Maximuscle Progain is certainly not vegan, and it wouldn't hurt if it were a bit more flavoursome. The tested vanilla option didn't caress our tastebuds too much, although we must add that the vanilla pods were visible in the shake, which fills us with confidence that the mix contains real vanilla.

For the best results, we recommend mixing the Progain with almond or coconut milk; those gave us the best results and made the end product taste richer. If you find it hard to consume a shake to gain weight, mix the Progain with water – you'll find it much easier to drink.

Best tasting

Protein Works Total Mass Matrix Extreme on white backgroundT3 Approved Award badge

(Image credit: The Protein Works)

4. The Protein Works Total Mass Matrix Extreme

Best weight gainer for taste


Serving size: 265g
Energy: 974 kcal
Carbs: 163g
Protein: 52g
Fat: 12g
Sugars: 38g

Reasons to buy

Blends really well
Many available flavours

Reasons to avoid

Higher sugar content

For whatever reason, The Protein Works recommends 1-3 servings a day of its Total Mass Matrix Extreme weight gainer. Three servings of this product contain a whopping 3000 calories, and we'd recommend covering that many calories from various sources, not just three shaker-fulls of weight-gainer powder mixed with water.

That said, Total Mass Matrix Extreme is a great mass gainer mix with a good balance of carbs and protein. What it also has, though, is relatively high sugar content, so be mindful of that when introducing it into your diet. Other than that, we can wholeheartedly recommend the Total Mass Matrix Extreme, if for nothing else, for all the great flavours, which include Tiramisu, Cinnamon Cereal Milk and White Choc Peanut Sundae.

Best vegan

bulk Vegan Mass Gainer on white backgroundT3 Approved Award badge

(Image credit: bulk)

5. Bulk Vegan Mass Gainer

Best vegan, zero animal cruelty, maximum lean muscle gains


Serving size: 100g
Energy: 367 kcal
Carbs: 43.6g
Protein: 31g
Fat: 6g
Sugars: 2.5g

Reasons to buy

Soya free
Gluten free
Lactose free

Reasons to avoid

Moderate protein content
Could be higher in calories, too

The Bulk Powders Vegan Mass Gainer is not only vegan and therefore 100% animal cruelty-free, but it also contains no gluten – the oats used to bump up the carb numbers are gluten-free – it is also soya and lactose-free, so it caters for people with a range dietary restrictions. As well as being high in fibre and low in sugar, this mass gainer powder contains no artificial sweeteners, colourings or flavourings either.

On the downside, the Bulk Powders Vegan Mass Gainer has fewer calories and protein than other weight gainers on this list. The blend used in this supplement is a combination of pea protein isolate, brown rice protein, pumpkin seed protein, flaxseed powder and quinoa flour. One can say it is a very healthy mix of ingredients.

Best low-fat

USN Muscle Fuel Anabolic on white backgroundT3 Approved Award badge

(Image credit: USN)

6. USN Muscle Fuel Anabolic

Best lean mass gainer (low-fat)


Serving size: 150g
Energy: 564 kcal
Carbs: 77g
Protein: 55g
Fat: 3g
Sugars: 26g

Reasons to buy

Carb to protein ratio is 1.4:1
Caramel popcorn flavour
Good for post-workout

Reasons to avoid

Contains egg, milk and wheat

You can count on the USN Muscle Fuel Anabolic tasting good, although it is at least partially due to the amount of added sugar this product contains. In fact, one-third of the carbs found in the USN Muscle Fuel Anabolic come from sugars. It is not ideal, but just to put it in context, a 36-gram bar of Mars contains 20 grams of sugar, so you are definitely better off with the USN Muscle Fuel Anabolic.

USN states that the Muscle Food Anabolic "should not be used by persons under the age of 18 years, nor should it be used for weight loss." Also, "It is only for bodybuilders and athletes or individuals on a mass gaining plan." So now you know. If you are trying to lose weight, don't take weight gainers. In case it wasn't clear.

Given the moderate calorie content, the USN Muscle Fuel Anabolic can be used as a post-workout drink. 500+ calories is still a decent amount, so please be mindful of that and should you have a smaller frame, take only a half portion at a time.

Best low calorie

MyProtein Weight Gainer Blend on white backgroundT3 Approved Award badge

(Image credit: MyProtein)

7. Myprotein Weight Gainer Blend

Best low-calorie mass gainer


Serving size: 100g
Energy: 388 kcal
Carbs: 50g
Protein: 31g
Fat: 6.2g
Sugars: 2.6g

Reasons to buy

Very low sugar content
Can be used post-workout

Reasons to avoid

Only standard flavours
Moderate calories and protein

The Myprotein Weight Gainer Blend can most certainly be used post-workout, given the moderate amount of calories this protein powder contains. Even better, it is super low on sugar, so you don't have to worry about going over your daily limit, either.

Since the Myprotein Weight Gainer Blend is low on carbs – compared to the rest of the entries on this list – it represents a good balance between regular protein powders and weight gainers. If you would like to immerse yourself into the world of weight gainers gently, definitely go with this one.

Given the very low sugar content, this weight gainer is the best for mixing with other ingredients, like peanut butter or milk, although we don't recommend using more than 500 ml of it. The Myprotein website suggests adding "3 1/3 large scoops (100g) [of MyProtein Weight Gainer Blend] to 500-1000 ml of water or milk", but for us, one litre of milk sounds a bit excessive, so either take it with 500 ml of milk (maximum) or a litre of water, if you want a very thin shake.

How to choose the best mass gainer for you

Here are a few things to check before you buy your first (next?) weight gainer tub. If you are lactose intolerant, you might want to go for the vegan varieties; they are least likely to contain lactose, although always read the label before you buy. It is also beneficial to check what other supplements have been included in the mix apart from oats and protein.

For example, if the weight gainer contains creatine, you don't have to take creatine monohydrate supplements separately. The same goes for BCAAs: if there is any leucine or glutamine included in the mix, there is no need for you to buy additional BCAA tablets as long as you take the weight gainer, of course.


Which mass gainer is best for weight gain?

The mass gainer that is best for weight gain right now is Optimum Nutrition's Serious Mass (retailer link). Each mega serving contains huge amounts of calories and carbs, making it at least a little bit easier to put on weight for people who can't stomach another portion of chicken and rice. Adding just one serving of ON Serious Mass can add as much as 1,253 calories to your diet per day. Now that's adding mass like a pro.

Do mass gainers work?

“Weight gainer products can help people put on muscle mass by putting them in a calorie surplus,” says Dr Mark Evans, a Nutrition Consultant at Optimum Nutrition. “This can be achieved through eating calorie-dense whole foods, however, during intense periods of training, or for those with very high-calorie requirements, such as bodybuilders or athletes, this can be quite challenging and they may require a mass gainer product. “

Do mass gainers make you fat?

Because of the high-calorie content that mass gainers have, this is a natural concern for many. However, when consumed properly, i.e. putting you in an appropriate calorie surplus, and when taken around your workouts, Dr Evans says there is no reason why a mass gainer will make you put on excess body fat. “If this is a concern, I would recommend starting off with half a serving for 1-2 weeks to assess your progress,” he suggests. 

Are mass gainers healthy and safe?

When used in the right context, mass gainers can be consumed as part of a healthy diet. For example, if you are underweight and struggling to gain weight, then a mass gainer can have healthy benefits. But, if you’re already eating in a calorie surplus and decide to consume mass gainer on top of this, it could potentially make your health worse, as you’ll likely induce more fat storage.

As long as you use a mass gainer to put you in an appropriate calorie surplus, and don’t use them as your primary source of calories (whole foods are always best here), they are safe and can be consumed as part of a healthy, balanced diet. 

It is important to note, however, that some people do experience gastrointestinal issues, such as stomach aches, cramps etc, when consuming mass gainers. This is more so to do with the large amount of calories you're consuming at once. To try and avoid this, drink your shake slowly and make sure it doesn't contain any ingredients that could potentially upset your stomach.

How to choose the best mass gainer

Dr Evans suggests first looking at the mass gainer's nutritional profile, as the calorie content per serving can significantly influence your choice. “Mass gainers can range from 500 to over 1000 calories per serving,” he says, “so selecting a product based on your daily caloric surplus needs—considering your activity level—is essential to ensure effective weight”. 

The second step is to look at the amount of protein and carbohydrates per serving. “A typical mass gainer might have a carbohydrate to protein ratio of anywhere from 3:1 to 5:1 and the choice of ratio should align with your personal needs,” explains Dr Evans. For example, if you engage in a lot of intense training, then you might need a mass gainer with a higher carbohydrate content.

“Lastly is the quality of ingredients, particularly protein, to support your muscle-building effort,” says Dr Evans. “Ideally, mass gainers should contain a high-quality protein source e.g. whey protein.”

How do I use weight gainers?

We recommend evaluating your current diet first. The easiest way to go about it is to use a food logging app such as MyFitnessPal to analyse the macronutrient composition of your diet. This will save you from having to log food and calculate macros manually.

These apps have plenty of food items already added to their huge library; all you have to do is scan the barcodes with your phone's camera and tell the app how much you ate. The app will then calculate the macronutrient (carb, fat and protein) percentages and other useful stats, like how much sugar, salt and fibre you have consumed.

Once you get into the habit of logging, you can set goals for your daily intake: let's say you want to cover your daily energy needs with 65% carbs, 25% protein and 20% fats. The app will tell you how many grams of carbs, protein and fat this translates to.

This is where weight gainers come into play: when you see you're under your protein and carb goal, you can consider adding a serving of weight gainers to your daily intake to help you boost your daily macro numbers.

It might sound confusing, but it isn't all that difficult in real life. You need to be more mindful of your diet, but you should be anyway if you aim to gain lean muscle mass effectively.

As for weight gainers, use the recommended serving size for the best results if you want clean gains. We highly recommend mixing weight gainers with good old tap water. You could use milk/milk substitutes if you want to, but 500 ml of milk will add an extra 200 calories and 25 grams of sugar to your diet. It's just unnecessary.

How can I gain weight fast?

Quick weight gain is possible; however, sustainable weight gain is only possible over a longer period of time. When people think about gaining mass, they usually refer to 'good mass', a.k.a. lean muscle; not many people are after extra visceral or subcutaneous fat. To gain lean muscle mass fast, you need to work out often (preferably full-body workouts), introduce extra clean calories in your diet, drink plenty of liquids and rest, so your body can convert those calories into muscle mass.

Matt Kollat
Section Editor | Active

Matt Kollat is a journalist and content creator who works for and its magazine counterpart as an Active Editor. His areas of expertise include wearables, drones, fitness equipment, nutrition and outdoor gear. He joined T3 in 2019. His byline appears in several publications, including Techradar and Fit&Well, and more. Matt also collaborated with other content creators (e.g. Garage Gym Reviews) and judged many awards, such as the European Specialist Sports Nutrition Alliance's ESSNawards. When he isn't working out, running or cycling, you'll find him roaming the countryside and trying out new podcasting and content creation equipment.

With contributions from