High Calorie Foods in Nigeria: Snack Ideas for Weight Gain

High Calorie Foods in Nigeria: Snack Ideas for Weight Gain

Nigeria has a rich culinary tradition with a variety of high-calorie foods. Keep in mind that while these foods are high in calories, they also offer nutritional benefits.

High calorie foods plant based
High calorie foods plant based

Table of Contents

Who might need to gain weight?

Gaining weight or developing muscle might be just as difficult for some people as losing weight.

However, merely including specific items in your diet can help you gain weight in a healthy and efficient manner.

Calories are the basic unit of energy used to measure the amount of energy in food, and we all require a specific number of calories to keep our bodies functioning properly.

Top Rated Articles on high calorie foods plant based

The amount of calories a person requires is determined by age, gender, and lean muscle mass.

Being underweight or losing too much weight might be hazardous to one’s health. People with specific medical disorders, such as hyperthyroidism, and those who are physically active may struggle to gain weight.

However, the focus of this article is on gaining weight (with High Calorie Foods) rather than reducing it.

Putting on weight might be difficult. It can be difficult for some people to consume enough calories without being overly satiated.

A person must consume more calories than they expend each day in order to acquire weight.

Consuming calorie- and nutrient-dense snacks in between meals is an effective approach to increasing energy consumption without becoming overly satiated.

When a person consumes too few calories over an extended length of time, they become underweight, which leads to muscle atrophy, decreased immunity, and finally organ failure. Consuming too many calories, on the other hand, causes a person to become overweight and ultimately obese, increasing their risk of heart disease, type 2 diabetes, and cancer.

Depending on how many strength-building exercises they do, people aiming to acquire weight in the form of lean muscle mass should aim to consume roughly 3000 calories per day.

High Calorie Foods – Snacks

Snacks with a lot of calories can help you gain weight. Drinking calories in the form of smoothies, topping foods with high-calorie toppings, and choosing full-fat dairy products can all add calories to one’s diet.

Here are some snack ideas that can contribute to healthy weight gain:

Trail Mix:

Create a mix of nuts, seeds, and dried fruits. Nuts and seeds are rich in healthy fats and protein, while dried fruits provide natural sugars for energy.

Nut Butter and Banana Sandwich:

Spread peanut butter, almond butter, or any nut butter of your choice on whole-grain bread and add banana slices. This combination offers a good balance of healthy fats, protein, and carbohydrates.

Greek Yogurt Parfait:

Layer Greek yogurt with granola, nuts, seeds, and fresh fruits. Greek yogurt is higher in protein compared to regular yogurt, and the added toppings provide extra calories.

Avocado Toast:

Top whole-grain toast with mashed avocado. You can enhance the flavor and nutritional content by adding a sprinkle of salt, pepper, and a drizzle of olive oil.

Cheese and Whole-Grain Crackers:

Pairing cheese with whole-grain crackers is a tasty and calorie-dense snack. Choose a variety of cheeses for different flavors and textures.


Make a calorie-dense smoothie by blending fruits, nut butter, Greek yogurt, milk, and a scoop of protein powder if desired. You can also add oats or chia seeds for extra calories.

Homemade Energy Bites:

Combine rolled oats, nut butter, honey, and add-ins like chocolate chips or dried fruits to create energy bites. Roll them into small balls for a convenient and calorie-rich snack.

Hummus and Veggie Sticks:

Dip carrot, cucumber, and bell pepper sticks into hummus. Hummus provides healthy fats and protein, while the veggies add vitamins and minerals.

Cottage Cheese with Pineapple:

Mix cottage cheese with fresh pineapple chunks. Cottage cheese is a good source of protein and pairs well with the sweetness of pineapple.

Dried Fruit and Nut Mix:

Create your own mix by combining dried fruits such as apricots, dates, and figs with nuts like almonds, walnuts, and cashews. This is a portable and calorie-dense snack.


Make a quesadilla with whole-grain tortillas, cheese, and your choice of protein such as chicken or beans. You can add avocado or sour cream for extra calories.

Chocolate Milk:

Enjoy a glass of chocolate milk as a tasty and calorie-rich beverage. It provides a good balance of carbohydrates, protein, and some healthy fats.

Remember that it’s essential to balance your snacks with meals that include a variety of nutrient-rich foods. Also, consider consulting with a healthcare professional or a registered dietitian to create a personalized plan that meets your weight gain goals and nutritional needs.

How to Gain Weight in Nigeria: A List of High-Calorie Nigerian Foods

Meals having a high-calorie content provide more energy and nutrition than foods with a low-calorie content. There are numerous reasons why someone would begin eating high-calorie foods.

High-calorie foods should be included in the daily meal plans of anyone with a medical condition or malnutrition.

Here are some high-calorie foods commonly found in Nigeria:

Jollof Rice:

A popular Nigerian dish made with rice, tomatoes, onions, and a variety of spices. It is often cooked with chicken, beef, or fish, providing a hearty and calorie-dense meal.


Fufu is a staple in Nigerian cuisine, made from starchy vegetables like cassava, yams, or plantains. It is often served with rich and flavorful soups or stews, contributing to its calorie content.

Efo Riro:

This is a spinach and tomato-based soup often cooked with assorted meats, fish, and palm oil. It’s a nutritious and high-calorie dish.

Pounded Yam and Egusi Soup:

Pounded yam is a starchy side dish that is often paired with egusi soup, a thick soup made with melon seeds, leafy vegetables, and meat or fish.


These are deep-fried bean cakes made from black-eyed peas. They are a popular street food and can be a calorie-dense snack.

Moi Moi:

This is a steamed bean pudding made from grounded peeled beans, onions, and spices. It is often cooked with additional ingredients like fish, eggs, or vegetables.


Suya is a popular street food made from grilled and spiced meat, usually served on skewers. While it might not be as calorie-dense as some other dishes, the added spices and condiments can contribute to its overall energy content.

Boli (Roasted Plantains):

Plantains are a staple in Nigerian cuisine. Boli is made by grilling or roasting plantains and is often served with groundnut (peanut) sauce, adding to its calorie content.

Ofada Rice and Ayamase Sauce:

Ofada rice is a local variety of rice in Nigeria, and Ayamase sauce is a spicy pepper sauce often served with assorted meats.

Chinchinga (Grilled Meat):

While not originally Nigerian, the popularity of grilled meats, often sold by street vendors, has made it a common and calorie-dense option.

It’s important to note that while these foods can be high in calories, a balanced diet is crucial for overall health. It’s advisable to consume them in moderation and consider the nutritional value of the foods you eat. Additionally, individual dietary needs may vary, so it’s always a good idea to consult with a healthcare professional or nutritionist for personalized advice.

If you’re looking to gain weight, it’s important to focus on nutrient-dense snacks that provide a combination of healthy fats, protein, and carbohydrates.

Questions people also ask about high calorie foods

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Which food gives the highest calories? What foods gain the most weight? How can I eat 3000 calories a day? Which fruits increase weight? How can I gain weight in 7 days?

Nigerian foods for weight gain, does akamu make you fat? In Nigeria, how to gain weight while breastfeeding

How to gain weight?! High calorie foods for weight gain and other benefits

There is a lot of information on how to lose weight but little on how to gain weight ‘healthily

First, you need to know if you truly need to gain that weight.

BMI = Weight in kg/Height sq m²

Underweight = <18.5

Normal = 18.5 – 24.9

Still on BMI Overweight = 25 – 29.9 (Lose weight)

Obese =30 & above (See a doctor fast, you are a ticking time bomb)

You should only CONSIDER GAINING WEIGHT if you are less than 18.5.

The strategy for gaining weight is to consume more than you burn. It is very easy but also complex.

How Much or How Many Calories Should An Individual Eat Daily?

You must maintain a calorie deficit in order to lose weight and live a healthier lifestyle. And to keep track of your weight and maintain it, you must balance your calorie intake to your calorie requirements.

To maintain weight, an adult male requires up to 2,000 calories per day and a female 1,800 calories per day, however, this is dependent on your body mass index (BMI calculation), which is determined by your height, weight, gender, and degree of activity.

For you to lose weight, you must establish a calorie deficit of 500 calories by exercising or carefully monitoring your food consumption.

For example, an adult male’s daily calorie intake of 2,000 calories minus a 500-calorie deficit gained by intense exercise or meal portion reduction equals 1,500 calories for that day. (Weight loss plan in progress)

First and foremost, the number of calories you burn each day may be determined using your gender, weight, height, and degree of exercise.

Calculate your daily calorie burn using the link below.

High Calorie Foods

To gain weight, simply increase your daily caloric intake by 500 calories. It’s as simple as ABC.


If your BMI indicates that you are underweight, you must consume at least 40 calories per kilogram of body weight on a daily basis to gain weight. You can even raise it to 50-60 calories per kilogram.

Let’s look at a basic example that will help you figure out how many calories you need to consume each day.

For example, if you weigh 50 kg, your total daily calorie intake should be 2000 (50 kg x 40 calories). Then 2000 calories per day are the minimal amount of calories you should consume to acquire weight.

Nigerian Foods That Can Make You Gain Weight & Their Calories
  • Akpu/Fufu (Fist size, 1 wrap): 330
  • Pounded yam: 400
  • Wheat: 455
  • Eba(1cup of garri): 400
  • Cow leg sauce: 300
  • Banana: 125
  • Fried plantain: 68 (1 slice)
  • Beans with oil: 520 (1 cup)
  • White rice: 693 (1 cup)
  • Jollof rice: 868 Bread: 70 (1 slice)
  • Tuwo masara (1 cup): 450
  • Corn: 77
  • White flour (1 cup): 455
  • Eko/akamu/ogi/pap: 91 (akamu with milk can make you fat)
  • Semovita (1 cup): 600
  • Amala (1 cup): 352
  • Calories in moi moi: 306
  • Calories in one wrap of okpa: 250
  • Calories in agidi: 211
  • calories in oha soup: 142
  • Calories in gala: 297
  • Calories of white rice and stew: 411
  • White rice and chicken breast: 780
  • Calories of roasted plantain (boli): 252
  • Indomie noodles (super pack): 640
  • Margarine (1 spoon): 102
  • Mayonnaise (1 spoon): 94
  • Soybeans (1 cup): 446

These will give you an estimate of your daily calorie intake! These foods aren’t listed in any order. They are, nevertheless, calorie-dense Nigerian cuisine.

The following medical disorders and other factors can make it difficult to acquire weight:

  • Cancers.
  • Eating disorders.
  • Type 1 diabetes.
  • Hyperthyroidism.
  • Anxiety, depression, or stress.
  • Infections such as HIV/AIDS, TB, parasites, and other parasitic infections.
  • Celiac illness (gluten intolerance).
  • The science of genetics (you were born with a high metabolism rate).
  • Nausea and vomiting-inducing medications, such as chemotherapy.
  • Diarrhea.
  • Active calorie burner (you burn a lot of calories at work, you’re very active, frequently workout)
  • You’ve lost weight after a protracted hospital stay.
  • You’re a bodybuilder who wants to add muscle mass and strength.

What does it mean to be underweight?

If your body mass index (BMI) is less than 18.5, you are considered underweight. (A link to an easy-to-use BMI calculator can be found in the reference section.)

Underweight people make up about 2% of the population.

Women are four times more likely than males to be overweight. Young people aged 18 to 24 and those over 65 are the age groups most affected.

What are the dangers of being underweight for your health?

While obesity is more commonly discussed in the media as a serious health issue, being underweight can also cause health issues.

Health hazards include:

  • Fertility issues (a woman’s ability to conceive may be hampered if she is underweight).
  • Osteoporosis is caused by a lack of calcium and vitamin D in your diet.
  • Anemia is caused by a lack of iron in your diet.
  • The immune system is weakened.
  • Hair thinning/loss, tooth and gum problems, dry skin
  • Tiredness due to a lack of energy.
  • Children’s growth and development are slowed.
  • Slow healing of wounds.
  • hypothermia
  • Hypoglycemia
  • Issues with heart rhythm.
  • Sleep deprivation.
What are some general concepts about how to gain weight?

The primary idea behind gaining weight is that you must consume more calories than your body burns.

If you want to gain weight steadily, aim for 300 to 500 extra calories per day. It is healthier for your body to gain weight steadily rather than quickly.

A weekly pound of body mass is gained when you consume 500 calories more per day than you burn.

Eat more frequently (five to six times a day), consume more fat, and eat more protein are some general guidelines.

Simple guidelines for gaining a healthy weight

  1. Eat more frequently
  2. Don’t drink water before eating because it will fill up your stomach and take up room that may be used for food.
  3. Use bigger plates to eat
  4. Get plenty of rest
  5. Consume a calorie-dense, healthful diet.
  6. Consume milk
  7. Nuts, peanut butter, cheese, dried fruits, and avocados are good snacks.
  8. Get some exercise. It will assist you in gaining muscular mass.
  9. Consume a well-balanced diet
  10. Consume food before and after your workout.

To summarize, consume more than your body requires each day to accomplish its functions, and the rest will be stored as fat or muscle (if you exercise).

What should I NOT do to gain weight?

Consume no junk food. Chips, sugary sodas, pastries, and candies will pack on the pounds, but they will not be a healthy way to gain weight.

This weight will primarily accumulate around your stomach, increasing your diabetes and heart disease risk. Instead, eat healthy muscle-building nutrients like protein-rich foods.

What are some of the most popular calorie-dense healthy food options?

High-Calorie Foods – calorie-rich foods include the following:

  • Proteins: red meats, pig, skin-on chicken (for health reasons, roast or broil rather than deep fried), salmon or other oily fish, beans, whole milk, eggs, cheese, and full-fat yogurt

Potatoes, brown rice, whole grain pasta, whole grains, and whole grain bread are all good sources of carbohydrates.

  • Nuts and nut butter, olives, avocado, butter, salad dressings, mayonnaise, and high-fat cheeses are all high in fat.
What are some helpful tips for gaining weight?
  • Eat small meals every three to five hours, as well as snacks throughout the day, to help you eat more without feeling bloated.
  • Drink no water or other fluids 30 minutes before meals to avoid feeling bloated. Reduce the number of liquids you drink with your meals as well.
  • Drink calorie-dense liquids such as whole milk or cream, juice, shakes, and smoothies instead of water, tea, black coffee, or calorie-free diet beverages.
  • When possible, add condiments or ‘extras.’ Dried fruit, chopped nuts or seeds, honey, bacon pieces, cheeses, mayonnaise, and salad dressings can be added to your food.

To boost calories, cook with extra virgin olive oil, coconut oil, or butter.

  • Add hummus or avocado to sandwiches, crackers, or vegetables. Use full milk, half-and-half, and powdered milk in your cereal.

If you are lactose intolerant, you can also use alternative milk (lactose intolerance).

Make scrambled eggs, soups, gravies, casseroles, and desserts the same way. Choose from a variety of breaded meats, chicken, and fish.

Choosy meats like chicken or turkey thighs and legs, pot roast, short ribs, salami, and sausage are heavy in fat.

  • To increase calories, use soy/almond/coconut or rice milk, nut or seed butter, tofu, olives, avocado, and vegetable oil if you are vegetarian, vegan, or lactose-intolerant.
  • Individual pudding, yogurt, or cottage cheese cups, string cheese, granola bars, vending packs of trail mix, beef sticks, nuts, sunflower seeds, juice boxes, and chocolate milk cartons are all good options if you don’t want to cook or want portable snacks.
  • There are also commercial supplements available, such as meal replacement bars.
Summary of the High-Calorie Foods for Weight Gain

Foods with a lot of calories to help you gain weight

Calorie-dense foods include the following: Red meats, pig, skin-on chicken (roast or broil instead of deep frying for health), salmon or other oily fish, beans, whole milk, eggs, cheese, and full-fat yogurt are all good sources of protein.

Potatoes, brown rice, whole grain pasta, whole grains, and whole grain pieces of bread are all good sources of carbohydrates.

High-calorie foods to avoid

Here are foods to avoid when you’re trying to lose weight.
  • French Fries and Potato Chips. Whole potatoes are healthy and filling, but French fries and potato chips are no
  • Sugary Drinks
  • White Bread
  • Candy Bars
  • Most Fruit Juices
  • Pastries, Cookies, and Cakes
  • Some Types of Alcohol (Especially Beer)
  • Ice Cream.
High-calorie fruits – the 7 fruits with the highest calorie counts
  • Calories: 322 per the whole avocado
  • Calories: 150 per five small figs
  • Calories: 429 per cup
  • Calories: 121 per large banana
  • Prunes
  • Calories: 1 158 calories per 100 grams of pitted Medjool dates
  • Shredded coconut. Calories: 466 per cup
What food has 0 calories? Calories food list

Water is the only genuinely zero-calorie food, however low-calorie meals are also included.

Still, we consider eating solely zero or negative calorie meals to be fad dieting folly, akin to drinking ice cold water rather than room temperature water (which burns around 5 extra calories per glass, by the way).

It’s just as tough to gain weight as it is to lose it. Adding a few high-calorie items, on the other hand, can help you gain weight by boosting muscle mass while reducing fat mass.

Incorporating these weight-gaining items into your diet will also help you gain stamina and vitality.

High protein high calorie foods
  • Cheese, cottage cheese.
  • Milk, soy milk, milk powder.
  • Tofu and other soy products.
  • Beans, peas, lentils
  • Peanut butter.
  • Eggs
  • Yogurt
  • Nuts, seeds.
What causes you to gain weight quickly? What makes you fat fast?

The solution appears to be obvious. According to the World Health Organization, “the fundamental cause of fat and overweight is an energy imbalance between calories taken and calories expended.”

Simply put, we either eat too much or spend too much time sitting or both.

Food to gain weight for females – Here are the best foods to help you gain weight or add muscle, a healthy way.
  • Homemade protein smoothies. Drinking homemade protein smoothies can be a highly nutritious and quick way to gain weight
  • Milk
  • Rice
  • Salmon and oily fish
  • Protein supplements
  • Nuts and nut butter
  • Red meats
  • Potatoes and starches
Low-calorie foods – Calorie Low Foods That Are Surprisingly Filling
  • Oats can be an excellent addition to your daily diet
  • Greek yogurt. Greek yogurt is a great source of protein that can be incorporated into a nutritious diet
  • Soup
  • Chia seeds
  • Fish
  • Berries
  • Eggs
  • Popcorn
What are some traditional Nigerian dishes that are high in calories?

Traditional Nigerian dishes that are high in calories include Jollof Rice, Fufu with rich soups, Pounded Yam and Egusi Soup, Akara, Moi Moi, and Boli (roasted plantains), among others.

How can I make my Nigerian meals more calorie-dense?

You can increase the calorie content of your Nigerian meals by using ingredients like palm oil, groundnuts, coconut milk, and adding protein sources like meats, fish, or eggs. Incorporating starchy vegetables such as yams and plantains can also boost calorie intake.

Are there healthy high-calorie options in Nigerian cuisine?

Yes, some healthy high-calorie options in Nigerian cuisine include dishes with lean proteins, plenty of vegetables, and good fats. For example, grilled fish or chicken with a side of vegetable-rich Jollof Rice can provide a balance of nutrients.

Can you recommend calorie-dense snacks from Nigeria?

Certainly! Snacks like Chinchinga (grilled meat), Suya, and Akara are calorie-dense options. However, it’s important to consume snacks in moderation and balance them with a variety of foods for a well-rounded diet.

What beverages in Nigeria are high in calories?

Some high-calorie beverages in Nigeria include traditional drinks like Zobo (hibiscus tea) sweetened with sugar, and certain fruit juices. Additionally, adding sweetened condensed milk or sugar to tea or coffee can increase their calorie content.

How can I make a high-calorie Nigerian breakfast?

A high-calorie Nigerian breakfast can include foods like fried or boiled yams with egg sauce, Moi Moi, Akara served with pap (ogi), or a hearty breakfast soup like Pepper Soup with assorted meats.

What are some healthy snack ideas for weight gain?

Healthy snack ideas for weight gain include trail mix with nuts and dried fruits, Greek yogurt parfaits with granola and fresh fruits, nut butter and banana sandwiches, avocado toast, and smoothies with a mix of fruits, nut butter, and protein powder.

How can I make my high-calorie energy bites for weight gain?

To make high-calorie energy bites, combine rolled oats, nut butter, honey, and your choice of add-ins like chocolate chips or dried fruits. Roll the mixture into small balls and refrigerate. These bites are convenient and packed with calories.

Are there savory options for weight gain snacks?

Yes, savory options include cheese and whole-grain crackers, hummus with veggie sticks, and quesadillas with whole-grain tortillas, cheese, and protein sources like chicken or beans.

Can I incorporate dairy into my snacks for weight gain?

Absolutely! Dairy products like Greek yogurt, cheese, and chocolate milk are excellent choices for weight gain snacks. They provide a good mix of protein, healthy fats, and carbohydrates.

What role do nuts and seeds play in weight gain snacks?

Nuts and seeds are calorie-dense and rich in healthy fats, making them great additions to weight gain snacks. Trail mix with a variety of nuts and seeds is a nutritious and energy-packed option.

Are smoothies effective for weight gain?

Yes, smoothies can be an effective way to increase calorie intake. Blend fruits, nut butter, Greek yogurt, milk, and add-ins like oats or protein powder for a calorie-dense and nutritious snack.

How can I make snacks more appealing for weight gain?

Adding variety in colors, textures, and flavors can make snacks more appealing. Experiment with different combinations of fruits, nuts, and other ingredients to keep your snacks interesting and enjoyable.

Can I have sweet and savory snacks for weight gain?

Absolutely! You can balance sweet and savory snacks for weight gain. For example, pair cheese and whole-grain crackers with a side of fresh fruit or enjoy a smoothie with both sweet fruits and a handful of nuts for a mix of flavors.

Should I consult with a healthcare professional before changing my diet for weight gain?

Yes, it’s advisable to consult with a healthcare professional or a registered dietitian before making significant changes to your diet. They can provide personalized advice based on your individual health needs and goals.

Remember that gaining weight in a healthy way involves a combination of increased calorie intake, regular exercise, and a balanced diet. Individual dietary needs may vary, so professional guidance can be beneficial.

Remember that while high-calorie foods can be enjoyable, maintaining a balanced and diverse diet is essential for overall health. If you have specific dietary concerns or health conditions, it’s advisable to consult with a healthcare professional or nutritionist for personalized advice.

Summary of the list of high calorie foods to gain weight

Proteins: red meats, pig, skin-on chicken (roast or broil instead of deep frying for health), salmon or other oily fish, beans, whole milk, eggs, cheese, and full-fat yogurt are all examples of calorie-dense foods.

Potatoes, brown rice, whole grain pasta, whole grains, and whole grain bread are all good sources of carbohydrates.


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