You don’t need to have the disposable income of a Russian oligarch to afford a nutritious and delicious muscle building diet. This seven day diet plan will deliver all the protein you need to build muscle, carbohydrates you need to fuel tough training and fats and vegetables you need for optimum health on a lean budget. Instead of slabs of pricey rib-eye and punchy chicken breasts, this plan subs in value options such as pork steaks, chicken thighs and turkey burgers that deliver all the nutrients you need at a cheaper price. Here are three extra tips you should use to keep the bills down and make your meals go further.
1. Buy in Bulk
Food delivery companies like Muscle Food offer big discounts for big orders. Instead of just grabbing your ingredients on the way home every night, get your chicken thighs, tinned tuna and nut butters in multiples to half your costs. Aim to get it delivered on the weekend so you can rustle up a feast straight away and not run out of space in your fridge.
2. Batch Cook Sundays
Once the ingredients are delivered, it’s time to go to work. Set aside one day each week to batch-cook meals that will last you the week. Stews, casseroles and burgers divide well into meal-sized portions and defrost easily, saving you labouring of the hob after a long day at work. Just try to resist eating it all at once.
3. Go Frozen Over Fresh
You should also stock your freezer full of frozen fruit and vegetables. The freezing process preserves nutritional value and flavour, and frozen produce is usually cheaper than fresh – plus it obviously lasts much longer. Frozen berries are especially good for adding to porridge and smoothies. Either take them out the night before if you’re having them for breakfast, microwave them on a low setting to melt or stew them in a saucepan with some fresh lime and teaspoon of honey to make a tasty compote to serve with your oats.
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7-Day Muscle Building Diet
Breakfast Poached eggs on a bed of spinach
Lunch Wholemeal pittas with tuna, red onion and tomato
Snack Greek yoghurt with frozen berries
RECOMMENDED: Low-calorie snacks
Dinner Steamed salmon, broccoli and sweet potato
Breakfast Porridge oats with milk and chopped banana
Lunch Prawn Thai curry using coconut milk, frozen peas and sweetcorn, brown rice
Snack Liver and onions
Dinner Pork steaks grilled with chopped tomato sauce, spinach and green beans
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Breakfast Smoothie with milk, frozen berries, Greek yoghurt, honey, peanut butter and whey protein
Lunch Mackerel with a tomato, onion, courgette and carrot salad
Dinner Chilli with kidney beans, brown rice, green beans
Snack Chocolate milk
Breakfast Grilled sausages and three scrambled eggs
Snack Peanut butter with pitta, apple
Lunch Leftover chilli with sweet potato wedges
Dinner Chicken thighs roasted with garlic purée, lentils and courgette ratatouille
Breakfast Three-egg mushroom omelette, leftover chicken
Lunch Pittas with salmon and cottage cheese
Snack Carrot sticks (hummus optional)
Dinner Braised steak and mushroom casserole, broccoli and cauliflower
Breakfast Porridge with blended banana, apple, honey and berries, topped with ground almonds
Lunch Gammon, brown rice, peas and sweetcorn
Snack Cottage cheese and pitta
Dinner Mussel and prawn fish pie with sweet potato and cauliflower mash and green beans
Breakfast Sausage, broccoli and egg frittata
Snack Monkey nuts, apple
Lunch Turkey burgers (turkey mince and chopped onion)
Dinner Slow-cooked lamb neck, roasted sweet potato, carrots and peas