A mass gainer is a dietary food that is packed with nutrients such as proteins, carbs, good fats to add muscles. Its calorie content is high to support healthy weight gain.
As a part of a bodybuilding regime, a mass gainer with high-quality protein will be beneficial as it supports the recovery of muscles after a rigorous workout. It helps in building lean muscle mass (1).
They also contain sufficient minerals and vitamins. Fibers and digestive enzymes may be included to prevent digestive problems (2).
Most mass gainers contain high-quality ingredients that have been tested for their integrity and potency. Good quality mass gainers do not include artificial substances and provide many health benefits.
In this article, we bring the top ten mass gainers enlisting its salient features that will guide you to make the best choice.
TABLE OF CONTENTS
Top 10 Best Mass Gainers of 2020
Transparent Labs Mass Gainer
This protein series mass gainer by Transparent Labs is an all-natural muscle-building and weight-gaining supplement. It offers you a combination of protein, carbohydrates, and dietary fiber in one scoop. This mass gainer has 100% grass-fed whey concentrate for protein.
The carbohydrates have been taken from natural starches like oats, sweet potatoes, and organic tapioca. The sweetness comes from stevia plant extract and monk fruit which are both natural sweeteners.
This dietary supplement also has coconut milk powder that helps in mixing all the contents well in the liquid medium as well as enhancing its taste. This mass gainer contains medium-chain triglycerides and creatine monohydrates as well.
This product comes in two flavors. One is chocolate and the other is cookies and cream. It serves 790 calories per serving which is two scoops. A container serves about 15 servings which is 30 scoops. Every serving contains 53 grams of protein, 12 grams of fat and 8 grams of dietary fiber. Its dietary fiber helps easier digestion and you are less likely to feel bloated afterward.
It contains no artificial flavors, coloring or preservatives. It is gluten-free and non-GMO in nature. This mass gainer is a good choice for those who are looking for a 100% natural muscle-building and weight-gaining supplement.
- All-natural ingredients
- No artificial sweeteners
- Gluten-free and Non-GMO
- Comes in two delicious flavors
Optimum Nutrition Serious Mass
Optimum Nutrition, commonly known as ON is an established brand in the field of mass gainers. This variant of ON is a powerhouse of energy as it claims to serve about 1250 calories per serving. The mass gainer protein powder is enriched with more than 25 vitamins and minerals.
It comes in various delicious flavors such as chocolate, banana, chocolate peanut butter, cookies & cream, strawberry, and vanilla.
This mass gainer contains 50 grams of protein and 254 grams of carbs per serving. It has a clever combination of vitamins and minerals which are Vitamin A, B, C, D along with biotin, folic acid, chromium, zinc, magnesium, copper, and calcium, etc.
It also contains creatine, L-glutamine, inositol and PABA which act as muscle builders and keep anxiety at bay. It claims to fuel intense workouts, helps in gaining weight and also replenishes the glycogen stores after the workout.
The serving size is 2 heaped scoops which make about 336 grams. You can blend in some nuts, bananas or peanut butter of your choice along with this protein powder to make it even higher in calories.
One thing you should keep in mind is that this powder contains milk, egg, and soy, so if you have allergies from any of these ingredients then you should probably switch to our next suggestion.
- Serves about 1250 calories per serving
- A high amount of protein
- Available in six flavors
- Tested for banned substances
Muscle Milk Gainer Powder is a good choice for beginners and for those who are looking for a weight gain without working out much. It contains 32 grams protein, 650 calories, 109-gram carbs, 5 grams of dietary fiber and 3 grams of leucine from milk proteins in one serving. The recommended serving is 4 scoops which are about 162 grams of protein powder.
Gainer powder is rich in vitamins such as vitamin A, B-complex, C, D and E. It also has many minerals such as calcium, iron, copper, sodium, potassium, magnesium, chromium and zinc, etc. It has milk-derived proteins containing 18 different amino acids to create a balance of slow and fast releasing proteins in the body.
This mass gainer can be taken either before or after a workout but it is recommended by the manufacturer that it is better to take it after the workout. As it helps in repairing the muscles and builds the lean mass when taken post-workout. If both timings don’t suit you then you can also take it during your bedtime.
The mass gainer supplement comes in three flavors: chocolate, cookie and cream and vanilla. Another good thing about this product is that it is gluten-free. So people having gluten allergy can take it safely, however it contains soy and milk derivatives. It has no banned substances in it which makes it safe for sportspersons to use.
- Three flavors
- Has both fast and slow-release proteins
- Suitable for most individuals sensitive to Lactose
MuscleTech Mass Tech
As the tagline of MuscleTech, Mass Tech Mass Gainer says, ‘for the hard gainers’ this high protein weight gainer is a good choice for those who want to gain weight quickly or doing the workout for quite some time. With 60 grams of protein, 132 grams of carbs and 820 calories, it gives a real boost to your body.
All these values increase further when the powder is mixed with 2 cups of skim milk, which makes it 80 grams of protein, 156 grams of carbs and 1010 calories.
There are two digestive enzymes, pepsin, and amylase that will help in digesting such a huge amount of protein and carbs without disturbing your digestion. The scientifically formulated mass gainer contains 8g of L-leucine and 17 grams of BCAA to replenish the glycogen stores and reduce the protein breakdown as well. It also has 10 grams of creatine per serving.
One recommended serving is 5 scoops that are 222 grams. It is advised by MuscleTech that you take it in about 2 cups of skim milk and two times a day. It comes in 4 delicious flavors: chocolates, cookies and cream, vanilla and strawberry. It does not include any banned substances.
You can have it pre or post your workout and even take it in between your meals. If one serving seems too much for you then you can consume half serving twice daily. The company has been in the production of dietary supplements for over 2 decades.
- Derived from multi-phase carbs
- High protein and calories
- Contains BCAA and creatine
- Free from banned substances
BSN-True Mass Weight Gainer is a rich protein powder that is suitable for beginners and intermediates alike. It contains 700 calories, 46 grams protein and 10 grams of branched-chain amino acids (BCAA) to help you achieve your mass gain goals.
It also contains 20 grams of essential amino acids to help in muscle recovery post-workout, they also help in building lean muscle mass.
Other than amino acids, this mass gainer supplement also contains minerals such as calcium, potassium, phosphorus, iron, and magnesium to ensure a good electrolyte balance in the body.
The proteins present in this weight gainer are derived from various ultra-premium protein resources such as whey protein concentrate, calcium caseinate, egg whites, milk and whey protein isolates, etc.
The serving size is 3 heaped scoops that are 165 grams of weight gainer powder. The product comes in four flavors: chocolate milkshake, cookies & cream, strawberry milkshake, and vanilla ice cream. You can take it as a recovery shake after a workout or fuel your energy before it.
One thing you should consider is that due to the variety of carbs and protein sources it has eggs, milk, soy and wheat in it. However, a good ratio of 2:1 has been maintained in this powder for carbs and proteins respectively, thus making it an easily digestible weight gainer.
- Naturally occurring BCAAs
- 2:1 ratio of carbs and protein
- Ultra-premium protein resources
- Easily digestible
Naked Mass weight gainer is famous for its clean proteins and high-calorie products. The sources of protein and carbs are claimed to be organic and the BCAA comes from natural resources too. This product is gluten-free as the carbs come from organic tapioca and not from any wheat-based resource.
It contains just three ingredients, organic maltodextrin, whey protein concentrate, and micellar casein in the unflavored version. In the case of the flavored ones, there are two added ingredients which are coconut sugar and the natural flavor.
It contains 50 grams of protein, 11.5 grams of BCAA, 252 grams of complex carbs and 1250 calories per serving. One suggested serving is 4 scoops which 321 grams and comes in three flavors: chocolate, unflavored and vanilla. It is rich in vitamin A and minerals like calcium, phosphorus, magnesium, and iron.
The product has a beautiful balance of essential amino acids and branched-chain amino acids to help in post-workout recovery and building lean mass at a faster pace.
Another good thing about this mass gainer is that it doesn’t have any artificial sweeteners; the sweetness in the flavored variants comes from organic coconut sugar. The flavor of chocolate and vanilla comes from organic cocoa and vanilla respectively.
The supplementary diet is free from any kind of artificial flavors. Also, you have a choice to get the unfavoured one and add your own flavor every day by adding fruits, peanut butter or flavors or your choice which is a plus.
- GMO, soy and gluten-free
- No growth hormones
- No artificial sweeteners
- Organic protein and carb source
Dymatize Super Mass Gainer
Dymatize Super Mass Gainer is another good option with 52 grams protein, 1310 calories and 252 grams of carbohydrates. This mass gainer is good for those who have a high body metabolic rate and are unable to have enough calories in a day from their regular diet. It provides a huge amount of calories in one serving.
You can even divide the serving into two or three at your convenience. It also contains about 10.7 grams of BCAA which includes 5.1 grams of leucine for better muscle building and recovery.
Rich in 17 vitamins and minerals such as Vitamin A, B-complex, C, D and calcium, iron, magnesium, sodium, potassium, iodine, and phosphorus, etc. The dietary product also contains 1 gram creatine monohydrate to help increase strength and weight effectively.
This product contains milk and soy derivatives in it. Taking it with milk enhances the taste as well as the calorie intake. The recommended serving size is 2 and a half cups or 341 grams. It comes in three flavors to choose from gourmet vanilla, cookies & cream and rich chocolate.
The powder is easily blendable so you can make smoothies and shakes of your choice easily. The supplementary mass gainer keeps you energized throughout the day due to a blend of slow, medium and fast-digesting proteins, so you are building muscles even when you are not working out.
- Tested for banned substances
- 17 vitamins and minerals
- 5.1 grams of leucine in every serving
- Blend of slow, medium and fast-digesting proteins
MusclePharm CombatXL Mass Gainer
MusclePharm CombatXL Mass Gainer is filled with 1270 dense calories in every serving, 50 grams of protein and 252 grams carbs per serving. It has medium-chain triglycerides (MCT) that are easily digested along with the goodness of flaxseeds, chia seeds, and other tree nuts. This mass gainer also contains sodium, calcium, iron and vitamin A to provide essential vitamins.
One thing that differentiates MusclePharm CombatXL Mass Gainer from others is that it contains the derivatives from chia seeds, sweet potato, flaxseeds, alfalfa sprout, quinoa, brown rice, ginger root, caraway fruit, and soy. This is why this powder contains essential fatty acids, protein from four different sources and a combination of complex carbohydrates to help you gain weight in a balanced manner while providing nourishment to the muscles.
This gluten-free mass gainer’s one serving consists of 4 scoops. There are three flavors: chocolate, chocolate peanut butter, and vanilla. One thing to consider is that it contains soy, coconut, and milk. Also, it is made in a factory that handles peanuts, fish, shellfish, soybean, and egg as per the package details.
If you don’t have any such food allergies then this supplementary mass gainer is a good choice. It is certified by informed choice and also tested for banned substances, and therefore considered safe for sportspersons’ use as well.
- Informed Choice certified
- Contains chia seeds and flaxseeds
- Protein obtained from four sources
Rivalus Clean Gainer
Rivalus Clean Gainer is a premium dairy protein with complex carbs and good quality lipids. The serving amount is just 2 scoops which is why the calorie count is a bit lower than the other mass gainers which you can increase by adding more scoops if required. One serving contains 560 calories, 30 grams of protein and 90 grams of carbohydrates.
It is rich in 7 vitamins and minerals, such as vitamin A, B6, C, D, calcium, zinc, and iron. Also, the product is informed-choice certified and contains no banned substances.
As the name suggests, the mass gainer has clean carbs from organic produce like monk fruit, quinoa, rice bran, blueberry, oats fiber, and ginger powder, etc. Clean protein blend comes from whey protein isolates and micellar casein etc. Sunflower powder, avocado powder along with medium-chain triglycerides provide a clean lipid source.
The supplementary diet is BCAA rich and includes L-leucine, L-valine and L-isoleucine. It has a mixture of cane sugar, sucralose, and stevia to provide the sweet taste, just 8 grams per serving.
You can take the dietary powder with either water or milk. The product recommends that the intake should be two times a day on your workout day which is before and after your training session. However, on your rest days, the recommended serving should be taken in between your meals.
The product also claims the clump-free mixability of the powder. It is available in six diverse flavors: chocolate fudge, cinnamon toast cereal, chocolate peanut butter, creamy vanilla, smores, and cookies & cream.
- Six diverse flavors
- 8 carbs sources
- Clump-free mixability
- Clean lipid blend
Dymatize Super Mass Gainer (Rich Chocolate Flavor)
This Mass Gainer is again from Dymatize but with a different set of calories and BCAAs. It serves 1280 calories, 52 grams of protein and 10.9 grams of BCAAs per serving. When combined with 32oz milk, it’s calorie count can rise up to 1900 calories per serving and about 82 grams of protein, which easily completes your daily calorie goals.
It has a good quantity of minerals and vitamins with 1 gram of creatine in every serving. The supplementary mass gainer has about 5.2 grams of leucine. The product is GMP certified and gluten-free. It is also tested for banned substances and is informed-choice approved. It can be used by sports persons as well.
The product is great for building lean mass and strong muscles. This supplementary diet is available in 6 amazing flavors, which are chocolate cake batter, cookie & cream, gourmet vanilla, strawberry, sugar cookie, and rich chocolate.
It contains milk and soy derivatives and it is not recommended for pregnant or lactating women. Overall a good choice for clean calories and protein intake that mixes easily and has a delicious taste. If you use a half serving or less, shake it at least for 30 to 45 seconds so that it mixes well.
- Six unique flavors
- Gives up to 1900 calories with milk
- A good amount of leucine (5.2 gram)
The Recommended Dosage of Mass Gainers
How much to take will depend on the product you buy. It’s best to just follow the instructions given on the product label. Given below is a general guideline for workout supplements that are aimed to boost energy, metabolism, workout endurance and performance. (3), (4)
You can take the first dosage in the morning. The next one can be taken at least 1 to 2 hours before the workout session. This will enhance your performance through your training routine.
The Risks and Side Effects of Mass Gainers
It’s advisable to consult your physician before using a mass gainer. This will help you avoid side effects and guide you in achieving your health goals. Just like all supplementary diets, there are side effects to a mass gainer as well, especially when it is not used appropriately.
- Most mass gainers contain creatine that may cause gastrointestinal problems. The intake of creatine requires sufficient amounts of water. If the water intake is inadequate, muscle cramping may occur. (8)
- Carbs along with whey supplementation have the potential to cause gastrointestinal distress. Have a quick check on the list of ingredients and be aware of the amounts of these compounds that are present in the mass gainer product.
- There could be a body fat increase. You should not be under the impression that a mass gainer will convert calories into muscles. It can increase the fat in the abdominal region (adipose tissue), especially if not accompanied by regular and intensive training. You would have to burn more calories than you consume. (9)
- Mass gainers may have a role in the development of type 2 diabetes. Most mass gainers contain a high content of glycemic index carbs. The consumption of these carbs over a long period of time contributes to the creation of insulin resistance.(10) This is a precursor to the chronic medical condition of type 2 diabetes.
- A mass gainer can cause constipation. These supplementary foods have high-calorie and low-fiber content. Research has long been advocating the intake of fiber for a good bowel movement. Low-fiber is a risk factor for chronic constipation.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) About Mass Gainers
How to Choose a Mass Gainer?
Check for the right ratio between carbs and proteins in the product. The formulation should have a ratio of 3:1 complex of carb to protein. The digestion of complex carbs takes more time and therefore will supply you with enough energy to complete your workout routine.
The number of calories will supply you with energy to push through your routine. The right proportions of good fat content and micronutrients will make the mass gainer a holistic dietary supplement.
Is Creatine Bad for Health?
No, Creatine is not bad for your health. Creatine serves many health benefits that have been scientifically verified (11). But overdosing on creatine will cause undesirable side effects. The best mass gainers do not contain high amounts of creatine in a serving.
Creatine taken in high doses may damage the liver, kidneys or heart. It can also cause muscle cramping. If you are stacking multiple supplements, ensure you are not overdosing on any particular ingredient. It’s best to consult a physician for guidance, especially if you are on any medication.
The Final Note
There are many types of bodybuilding supplements in the market. If your health goal is to gain a muscular body and gain weight through workouts and rigorous exercise then a mass gainer will be beneficial. If you desire to chisel out all the additional fat from your body and want to build muscles then you should choose a whey protein supplement rather than a mass gainer.
For people who struggle to gain weight and are unable to eat enough, a mass gainer will be helpful. Calorie intake can be substantially raised.
Mass gainers are rich in proteins, carbs and other nutrients like amino acids, vitamins, and minerals. They help to bulk up and build muscle mass in bodybuilders. So take a closer look at the above top 10 mass gainers and choose the one that suits your needs the best.