10 Quick Protein-Packed Meals For Your Weightlifitng Workouts

October 9, 2009 by  
Filed under The Fitness Bug


It is Friday again Stay-Fit Buggers and can’t believe how quickly this week has gone. That maybe good or bad thing for you, never the less, it is the weekend and for most of you that will put a smile on your face.

Most of this week I have talked about various topics regarding foods for fitness and today I will end it in style by giving you 10 great recipes for a protein packed dinner.

I know… I know! It is Friday and some of you will want to take it easy, break the rules and go for a take away. But on your average day, these are the recipes you can cook up to refill those protein nutrients that your body will need when you are in a weightlifting workout. The best part about these meals is that they only take approximately 20 minutes to prepare.


Preparing a large dinner should never be looked at as a chore. It is the perfect opportunity to feed your soul, relax, ponder, recuperate and awaken your senses.

Grilled Chicken with Wasabi Sauce

This was introduced to me when I was out for dinner one night, and it was recommended to me, as I am a fan of Wasabi. Yum Yum!

Taste: Spicy
Difficulty to cook: Intermediate

  • Combine minced garlic
  • 1/2 cup of rice vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons of mirin (Find in the international food aisle)
  • 2 tablespoons of soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon of minced fresh ginger
  • 1 teaspoon of wasabi powder, and salt and pepper.

Brush chicken with oil and grill. Warm the wasabi mixture and pour it on the chicken; Top it off with chopped scallions and cilantro.

At the start of the week I talked about fish being the main source of brain food because of the fish oil and omega 3 contained within it. You can take your pick with the next few recipes for when you want to have a fishy fueled evening.

Grilled Cod with Basil Dipping Sauce

Difficulty to cook: Intermediate

To make the sauce combine

  • 2 tablespoons of water
  • 1 teaspoon of minced garlic
  • 2 tablespoons of soy sauce
  • 2 table-spoons of rice vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon of sugar
  • 1 Thai chili (seeded and thinly sliced)
  • 1/2 cup of sliced fresh basil.
  • Season 1 pound of cod with salt and pepper.

Cook, turning once. The fish will be done in 8 to 12 minutes, depending on thickness. Serve with the sauce.

Grilled Swordfish with Fruit Salsa

Taste: Spicy
Difficulty to cook: Beginner

For the salsa

  • Mix 1/2″ chunks of papaya, mango, pineapple, and/or watermelon
  • 1/2 cup each diced pepper (any color) and red onion
  • 2 tablespoons of minced chilies
  • 1/4 cup of chopped cilantro
  • 1 tablespoon of olive oil
  • 3 tablespoons of lime juice, and some salt

Sprinkle swordfish with salt and pepper. Grill for 5 minutes, turn, and cook until done. Serve with salsa and lime wedges.

Grilled Tuna Steak with Corn and Tomato Relish

Difficulty to cook: Intermediate

To make the relish, heat,

  • 1 teaspoon of olive oil in a skillet
  • Cook kernels from 4 ears of corn until lightly browned for about 2 minutes.
  • Add 2 chopped tomatoes with some salt and pepper
  • 1 teaspoon of ground cumin
  • 1/4 teaspoon of cayenne

Cook for 30 seconds and remove from the cooker. Sprinkle the tuna with salt and pepper. Grill, turning once, to desired finish. Serve with the relish.

Grilled Beef Salad with Mint

I’ve included mint, as it has become a personal favorite addition to some of my meals, ever since I first tasted it on lamb at a Christmas dinner many years back. But it also goes together well will grilled beef in this spicy recipe.

Taste: Spicy
Difficulty to cook: Intermediate

  • Cook 1 pound of beef tenderloin to medium rare for about 10 minutes.
  • Toss 4 cups of lettuce with 1 cup of torn mint leaves,
  • 1/4 cup of minced red onion, and 1 diced cucumber.
  • Whisk together the juice of 2 limes
  • 1 tablespoon of soy sauce
  • 1/8 teaspoon of cayenne, and 1 tablespoon water

Slice beef thinly and add juices to the dressing. Serve sliced beef over salad and sprinkle with dressing.

Thai-Style Stir-Fried Pork

I will forever be a fan of Thailand and Thai-food, so I couldn’t leave this one out. This is one of the easiest of the bunch to prepare, so for all of you rubbish cooks reading… this is for you.

Difficulty to cook: Easy

  • Cut 1 pound of pork shoulder into bite-sized pieces
  • Cook in 1 tablespoon of peanut oil until no longer pink for about 3 minutes
  • Remove
  • Cook 11/2 tablespoons of minced garlic for 10 seconds
  • Add 1 pound of chopped spinach
  • Cook until just wilted
  • Add the pork
  • 2 tablespoons of Thai fish sauce
  • The juice of 1/2 a lime.

Stir and serve.

Lamb Medallions with Shallots, Tarragon, and Red Wine


I’ve talked about alcohol before in previous articles, but this is a recipe where the alcohol will benefit you. It has been stated before that red wine can give you health benefits and this is a recipe where you can take advantage of that.

Difficulty to Cook: Beginner

  • Cut 1 pound of lamb loin into 3/4″-thick rounds and sprinkle with salt and pepper
  • Heat 1 tablespoon of butter in a pan and cook lamb until both sides are browned for 4 to 5 minutes
  • Remove lamb
  • Add 1 tablespoon of minced shallots and cook for 2 minutes
  • Add 1 teaspoon of minced tarragon and 1/2 cup red wine; reduce liquid by half

Stir in 1 tablespoon of butter and any lamb juices from under the resting meat. Serve lamb with the sauce.

Pasta Carbonara

This too was introduced to me, and again, is another easy recipe for you ‘not so good’ cooks reading this. Pasta, in general, can also be great for repairing your muscles after a workout.

Difficulty to cook: Beginner

  • Fry 4 ounces of bacon (about 8 strips), then drain and chop
  • Beat together 2 eggs and 1 cup of grated Parmesan
  • Cook 1 pound of spaghetti in salted boiling water until tender but firm
  • Drain pasta and toss with the egg mixture. (Don’t worry; residual heat from the pasta will cook the eggs)

Add bacon and lots of fresh cracked pepper.

Black-Bean and Beer Soup


I know some of you are a fan of 6 pac(k)s, and not the kind that we usually talk about here on stayfitbug.com. Because of this recipe you now get to down a pint without the beer mug. Black beans are also some of the best beans you can get. Have a read of killer foods for fitness to see how to choose the best beans for this cheap and cheerful meal.

Difficulty to cook: Beginner

  • In 2 tablespoons of hot oil, cook a chopped onion until softened for about 5 minutes
  • Add 1 tablespoon of minced garlic and 2 teaspoons of ground cumin and cook for another minute
  • Add 3 cups of canned black beans (drained)
  • 1 can of beer, and salt and pepper

Bring to a boil, reduce the heat, and cook for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. Pour half of the soup and add it back to the pot. Add fresh lime juice and serve.

Baked Eggs with Spinach

Spinach is a great food for repairing muscles after a workout. Mix that with the nutrients that eggs give you and you’ve got yourself a protein packed dinner on the cheap.

Difficulty to cook: Beginner

Preheat the oven to 350°F

  • In boiling, salted water, cook 2 pounds of spinach for 1 minute
  • Drain, cool, squeeze, and chop
  • Heat 3 tablespoons of butter in a baking dish, add spinach, and toss to coat
  • Spread spinach out, making 8 nests
  • Crack 1 egg into each
  • Top with salt, pepper, Parmesan, and breadcrumbs
  • Bake for 15 to 20 minutes or until yolks are just set and whites solidified.

All of these meals are great, as they will take only 30 minutes max to prepare. Although I have previously talked about how you can manage your time better before and after your weightlifting workouts, it is some times a lot easier said than done and that is where these quick meals will come in handy. Having a good diet is vital when working on building muscle fast and that is why these recipes will be good for you in your present and future weightlifting workout routines.

What meals do you usually have for dinner?

See you in the comments.

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