Diet Options for Vegan Bodybuilding

Vegetarian bodybuilding is not a myth, but a reality available to anyone who is willing to put in the effort. A properly formulated diet is the basis for success in this matter.

It should provide the body with all the necessary macro- and micronutrients, as well as sufficient energy for training.



Main principles

Diet options



A vegan bodybuilding diet presents a unique and complex challenge that requires careful planning and attention to nutrient balance. Of course, it is suitable not only for bodybuilders; it can be used by powerlifters, weightlifters, and armlifters if desired.

What are the goals of this diet?

  • Muscle gain
  • Fat Burning
  • Maintaining Optimal Energy Levels
  • Providing the body with vitamins and minerals
  • Improved overall health

Basic principles of a vegetarian diet for bodybuilding and other strength training:

  • High protein intake: 1.6-2.2 grams per kilogram of body weight per day.
  • A variety of protein sources: legumes, tofu, tempeh, seitan, nuts, seeds, quinoa, buckwheat.
  • Adequate carbohydrate intake: 4-5 grams per kilogram of body weight per day.
  • Select complex carbohydrates: whole grains, oatmeal, brown rice, sweet potatoes.
  • Moderate fat intake: 20-30% of daily calories.
  • Selecting “healthy” fats: olive oil, avocados, nuts, seeds.
  • Attention to vitamins and minerals
  • Drinking regimen: 2-3 liters of water per day.
  • Dairy products (for lacto-vegetarians)

Sample meal plan:

Breakfast: oatmeal with nuts and berries, smoothie made from banana, spinach and plant milk.

Snack: hummus with vegetables, tofu with nuts.

Lunch: lentil salad, quinoa with vegetables, tofu steak.

Snack: apple with nut butter, protein shake (soy).

Dinner: vegetarian pilaf, vegetable stew with tempeh.

Before bed: casein protein.

Diet Options for Vegan Bodybuilding:

1. High Protein Diet:

Goal: Muscle gain.

Protein intake: 2-2.5 grams per kilogram of body weight per day.

Protein sources: tofu, tempeh, seitan, legumes, quinoa, buckwheat, nuts, seeds.

Meal Plan:

Breakfast: oatmeal with protein, tofu scramble.

Snack: hummus with vegetables, protein shake.

Lunch: lentil soup, chickpea salad.

Snack: apple with nut butter.

Dinner: vegetarian burger with tempeh, quinoa with vegetables.

2. Low Fat Diet:

Goal: Fat loss.

Fat intake: 15-20% of daily calorie intake.

Fat sources: olive oil, avocado, nuts, seeds.

Meal Plan:

Breakfast: oatmeal with berries, banana spinach almond milk smoothie.

Snack: vegetable sticks with hummus.

Lunch: quinoa salad with vegetables, vegetarian borscht.

Snack: grapefruit.

Dinner: vegetable ragout with tofu, buckwheat with mushrooms.

3. Carb Cycling:

Goal: Muscle gain and fat loss.

Approach: Alternating days of high and low carb intake.

Sample Meal Plan:

High Carb Day: 5-6 grams of carbs per kilogram of body weight.

Low Carb Day: 2-3 grams of carbs per kilogram of body weight.

Vitamins and Minerals:

Vegans should pay special attention to levels of vitamins B12, D, iron, zinc, and calcium. Using vitamin supplements can help avoid deficiencies.

Protein and Energy Drinks:

Using plant-based proteins, such as soy, and drinks should be consistent. Effective recovery after workouts requires the right balance of proteins and carbohydrates.

Additional Tips:

Experiment with different spices to make dishes more varied in taste.

Cook your meals to precisely control the quality and quantity of ingredients.

Keep a food diary to make it easier to track calorie and nutrient intake.

Remember: vegan bodybuilding diet is not a temporary diet but a lifestyle. With a sensible approach, it can be the key to your athletic success and well-being.


A vegan diet for strength training, muscle gain, and strength requires careful and knowledgeable approach. By following the principles mentioned above, you will pave your way to success and achieve your goals, providing your body with everything it needs for health and effective workouts.

It's worth noting that vegetarians vary, and this article provides advice for everyone in general.

However, for those committed to strict diets, such as raw vegans, achieving high results in strength training may be somewhat more challenging. Therefore, it's best not to go to extremes.


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author - Denis Strongshop 

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