How to gain weight on a vegan diet- 5 steps that worked for me

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The vegan diet is well known for its health benefits like decreasing heart disease and diabetes but a vegan diet is also widely used to manage weight.

Many people use it to lose weight but learning how to gain weight on a vegan diet can be effective for people who are looking to gain a medium size weight or simply to maintaining their normal size.

The question that some people ask is; “is it even possible to gain weight on this plant based diet”

The answer is a simple and big YES.

You see I have been on both sides of the equation, where I lost weight as a vegan (without even trying) and also where I wanted to gain weight as a vegan.

In this article I will be giving you the steps that I followed to gain weight while I was on a vegan diet.

Dinner meal focus

How to lose weight on a vegan diet

The best way for learning how to gain weight on a vegan diet is to focus on increasing your dinner portions and to do this regularly.

This is very important because at nighttime your body is not burning any fats in your body since you tend to sleep after your meals.

of course by doing this you would want to focus on denser foods which are calorie-rich.

It is a fact that most people do not exercise before going to sleep so this comes as no brainier to do if you are looking to add on to your weight gains.

This step is what helped me the most since naturally I have a very fast metabolism.

Include some junk vegan food occasionally

how to lose weight on a vegan diet

Including some junk food is good.

Yes I said junk food.

I know some people will fringe at the idea but this step worked wonders for me especially since I had just started out as a vegan.

This step is crucial for weight gain for many reasons.

Firstly if you are a beginner vegan then having junk food occasionally will help you transition well into a vegan diet.


More than that having junk vegan food will help you stay committed to your goal of being a vegan or gaining weight as a vegan.

This is because when you start such a strict diet like this going all in and trying to be full vegan will make you end up regretting why you started the diet and more than that you will quit.

This is what happens to all new vegans (trust me I have seen many fail like this).

So it is best to start by not being fully committed in eating only  greens. Rather mix the foods up.

The best part about a vegan diet is that it has a lot of vegan foods. As I mentioned on my previous article (which talked about the benefits of a vegan diet) the junk vegan diet is a sub-group of a vegan diet which you can also follow.

So I would recommend focusing on this vegan subcategory group should you want to gain weight.

Focus on more liquids

how to gain weight on a vegan diet

In my previous article on vegan weight loss tips I mentioned the benefits of drinking water to lose weight.

Well it is the same for gaining weight,but with just a bit of a twist.

Instead of focusing on water, like the case of losing weight, for weight gain we focus rather on liquids which are high in protein and calories.

This is a game changer for your weight gain exercise.

The best thing about the vegan diet is that it is filled with ways you can make your smoothies since almost all foods can be used to make your personal smoothie.

This leaves you to have loads of ways to enhance your protein and calories with your favorite foods.

Focus more on strength building exercises

How to lose weight on a vegan diet


Focus more on strength building exercises will go a long way for your weight gain.

Unlike running, strength building exercises has the effect of using the protein intake in your body to build proper muscles.

Remember you will be focusing on calorie-dense foods which have fats and thus those will not be good for your health if you do not burn them in a constructive manner.

Of course you must not go crazy and do  intense strength building especially if you are just starting out because that may not help with the weight gain since you will likely not know what you are doing.

Think and eat more nutty foods

Remember our goal is to increase our calories and the best way to do is to focus on nuts.

Nuts are filled with many fats which come naturally but what is good is that they are healthy for giving your protein which I mentioned above that you need to gain weight.

So what a great way to add nuts in your smoothie to help with the weight gain you are looking for.

The key thing to remember here is that you must focus on nuts which have high fat content.

A word of caution: Peanuts are a great sources for weight gain but should not be eaten regularly since they are many with unhealthy oils which can endanger your health.

Take home message

When you are using a vegan diet it can be hard to try gain weight due to the types of foods that the diet has which are not favorable for weight gain.

However, many people still want to know how to gain weight despite this.

The most important thing is to focus on the right steps like focusing on nutty foods, upping your protein intake, occasionally eating junk food and timing your meals properly.

It is very important to known that when you are looking to gain weight that you must not go crazy on too much fatty foods or oils and junk, Just eat them in a regular manner which would not be deemed excessive.

If you follow at least 3 of these steps, like I did, you will have results in no time and most importantly you will feel very energized.

This will make you love the vegan diet like most of us who have over a decade of experience in the vegan diet.

I Hope this article was helpful in making you known the most important steps to take on how to gain weight on a vegan diet.

If you have any questions about this topic you are more then welcome to leave your comments below and I will engage with you.

Reader Comments

  1. Doc

    Nice article. Simple easy steps to follow. I’m personally on the other end of the spectrum with trying to lose my excess but I know people who do need to put some meat on their bones (no pun intended) hehe… I’ll send them your way.


  2. Tom


    Great post and thanks for sharing.

    I have a friend who’s wife is vegan and she has lost lot’s of weight and looks quite frail. I think this post will definitely help her to remain a vegan and put on weight so she looks better again.

    I am going to forward this post onto them and recommend that they look through your other posts to get more great advice.

    Thanks again for sharing and keep up the great work.


  3. Jay

    You know, a lot of us are always interested in loosing weight but there are times when we take it too far and loose more weight than we actually plan to.
    Learning how to gain some of these weights back is really important which is why I found this post to be really helpful.
    The advice listed would be of great help because I plan to gain back some of the weight I previously lost.

  4. Andy

    Hey I really enjoyed this article and your website. I was wondering what your thoughts on juicing are, I have heard that juicing fruits can heighten their sugar and cause insulin levels to spike when drinking them?

    • Thabo Khoza

      Hey Andy

      Juicing I would recommend highly but it is good to ensure you blend the proper fruits. People who normally complain about that are those who just blend any types of fruits.

      This can be dangerous since some fruits like banana and strawberries can surge your sugar levels should you blend them together.
      So it is all about being smart about the juicing process.

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