Nuts can take your salads, desserts, or baked goods to a whole new level, adding a delicious texture and flavor to your foods, and are packed full of nutrients, such as antioxidants, protein, fiber, and tons of other vitamins and minerals.
All nuts can cause weight gain for those with a propensity to gain weight, but for those who need help gaining weight, nuts can be a healthy choice.
Which nuts will help you gain weight?
Walnuts, macadamias, and almonds will help you gain weight.
These have the most calories per serving, and since most nuts are considered calorie-dense, you should be able to eat almost any nut you want if your goal is to gain weight.
But be sure to keep portions in line with your macros.
If you have questions about these extraordinarily healthy and versatile foods, you came to the right place.
In this article, you will learn which nuts will help you gain weight, which are best for the Keto diet, and how to gain weight with nuts.
Can Nuts Help with Weight Gain?
Nuts can help with weight gain due to their high caloric content.
To gain weight, you should be consuming more calories than you burn.
With that in mind, try to consume the nuts with the most calories per serving, including macadamias, walnuts, and cashews.
Macadamias are the highest calorie nut per serving at over 200 calories per one ounce (28 gram) serving, and a small handful of nuts can significantly increase your calorie intake.
Besides their calorie count, they are low in carbohydrates and sugars, while being high in essential nutrients like iron, magnesium, and healthy fats.
Eat these plain or add them to salads or soups for a nice crunch and added flavor.
Walnut, the nut that is generating the most buzz among researchers, has its own annual conference, and researchers just can’t get enough of this ultra nutritious nut.
They have several benefits, including reduced inflammation, improved gut health, aids in brain function, and so much more.
It is the second most caloric nut, with 185 calories per one-ounce serving (28 grams).
They are also relatively low in carbohydrates at 3.9 carbs per serving.
Cashews, native to Brazil, are a delicious nut that comes from the cashew tree.
They are a delicious snack by themselves (raw or roasted) or added to salad, stir fry, or soup.
As one of the most caloric nuts, cashews have about 160 calories per serving (1 ounce of 28 grams), but they have a moderate carbohydrate count compared to other nuts.
How Do Nuts Have So Many Calories?
Nuts have so many calories because they are packed with healthy, unsaturated fats.
Fats offer the most amount of calories per gram (nine calories per gram of fat) so even though they come from healthy fats and are better for you than chips or chocolate, there are a lot of calories.
Macadamia nuts have 23 grams of fats per serving.
If you multiply the grams of fat times nine (the number of calories per gram), you get 207, which is roughly the number of calories in a serving of macadamia nuts.
A serving of nuts is usually only a small handful due to the high amount of calories.
The nuts with the most calories are macadamia nuts, walnuts, and cashews.
What Nuts Can I Eat on Keto?
You can eat pecans, walnuts, hazelnuts, and Brazil nuts, which have the lowest carb to fat ratio, on Keto.
Nuts are perfect for people on the Keto diet because they are high in healthy fats and low in sugars and carbohydrates.
You can also have peanuts and pine nuts in moderation.
The Keto diet requires that your body reaches a state of ketosis, and supporters of this diet plan claim that it can help you lose weight and prevent diseases like Alzheimer’s, cancer, and diabetes.
The goal is to restrict the number of carbohydrates you consume, replace them with healthy fats, and get to a metabolic state called ketosis. (Not to be confused with ketoacidosis, which is a dangerous condition that diabetics experience.)
When your body reaches this state, it becomes very efficient in fat burning, which is why people lose weight and experience lower blood sugar and insulin levels on the Keto diet.
Though nuts provide a great source of healthy fats, there are also a few nuts you should avoid while you are on the keto diet, including cashews, pistachios, and almonds.
Of course, anything in moderation is okay, but these nuts have a much higher carbohydrate to fat ratio compared to the list above.
Nuts With No Carbs
Nuts have a reputation as high fat and low carb food, which is a reasonably accurate representation of the food.
However, while there are no nuts with zero grams of carbs, there are plenty of options that should fit into your low-carb diet.
The nuts with the lowest carbohydrate per serving are Brazil nuts, macadamia nuts, and pecans.
Brazil nuts have a smooth and buttery flavor that makes them a delicious snack and are known for being an excellent source of the antioxidant selenium.
They have very few carbohydrates per serving, and with only eight percent of their calories coming from carbs, one serving (1 ounce or 28 grams) has only three grams of carbs.
Originating out of Australia, macadamias have a rich and buttery flavor similar to Brazil nuts and are commonly found in the delicious and popular white chocolate macadamia nut cookies.
They are a great source of iron, vitamin B, and magnesium, and have only four grams of carbohydrates in a single serving of macadamia nuts (1 ounce or 28 grams).
They can also improve heart health and reduce inflammation.
Pecans, a tree nut predominantly grown in the southeast region of the U.S., are an excellent addition to pancakes, brownies, salads, or just as a snack by themselves.
This slightly sweet and earthy nut contains tons of great nutritional value while maintaining a relatively low carbohydrate ratio.
One serving of pecans (about 1 ounce, 28 grams, or 19 pecan halves) contains only four grams of carbohydrates, with only eight percent of the calories coming from carbs.
How To Gain Weight With Nuts?
Gaining weight ultimately comes down to the number of calories you consume compared to the number of calories you burn, with a simple equation of in versus out.
If you are trying to gain weight, the number of calories you are consuming should be higher than the calories you are burning each day, which includes the calories burned according to your basal metabolic rate (or BMR), or the rate you burn calories (or energy) by just existing.
As a food with a high-calorie density (more calories in a smaller quantity of food), nuts are the perfect food for weight gain.
They are packed with calories and can be added to or baked into all types of foods or simply eaten as a snack.
Here are a few ways you can increase weight gain by incorporating nuts into your diet:
- Add nuts to as many meals as possible. You can eat nuts in your granola or on your toast in the morning, and they make an excellent mid-day snack. You can also make delicious meals such as this Thai Peanut Noodles recipe by Crunchy Salty Sweet or Dinner at the Zoo’s recipe for Almond-Crusted Salmon with Honey Garlic Sauce.
- Try consuming nuts from nut butter. Peanut butter, almond butter, and cashew butter make excellent additions to smoothies, toast, or yogurt.
- Bake them into your nightly snacks. You can incorporate nuts into brownies, caramel pecan turtles, cookies, and so much more.
- Keep a container of raw or roasted nuts on the counter for an easy portable snack. Grab them as you are walking out the door or pack them for lunch.
- Buy protein bars with nuts such as Kind’s Dark Chocolate Mocha Almond bar, or you can make your own, like these Peanut Butter Protein Bars from Well Plated.
- Roast them with different seasonings. For a sweet snack, you can toss them in egg whites, cinnamon, and a dash of sugar. For a more savory snack, try tossing them in coconut oil and chili powder.
These are just a few ideas, but you can be as creative as you want when incorporating nuts into your diet.
Keep in mind, some of these suggestions may not align with your specific diet plan, and are simply suggestions on ways to consume more nuts.
Nuts are the most nutritious and versatile foods available.
Add them to soups, salads, pasta dishes, or grab a handful of roasted nuts to go.
No matter how you eat them, nuts will provide you with excellent sources of essential vitamins, minerals, nutrients, and antioxidants.
As a high fat and calorie-dense food, nuts are the perfect snack to help you gain weight.
The highest calorie nuts are walnuts, macadamia nuts, and cashews if you are looking to gain weight, or consider trying pecans, Brazil nuts, or macadamia nuts if you are on a low carb or keto diet.
I’m Chris Watson & the Founder of EatForLonger.com. I’m a food and wellbeing enthusiast researching and sharing foodstuffs and simple food-based concepts, such as fasting and clean eating.
I hope it inspires you to make tiny changes to what you eat and when you eat while optimizing your healthspan and all-around well-being.
Read more About Me here.