Light Dinners for After the Gym

Light Dinners for After the Gym

Last update: 09 July, 2018

Put in the effort at the gym and follow up with a healthy approach when you get home. After strenuous workouts, a light dinner followed by sleep will allow your muscles to recover properly.

One of the most common mistakes we make when we exercise is to eat more than is needed. We think that the work we have put in will make up for it. Opting against a light dinner may work if you want to maintain your current weight, but if you want to shed pounds, it does not make much sense. To ensure you do not fall into this trap, we have selected some great recipes for light dinners after the gym.

Recipes for light dinners after the gym

Quinoa salad

As you may know, nowadays, quinoa is popular. What’s more, it is the perfect ingredient for eating at night, it is both satisfying and low in carbohydrates. In fact, quinoa’s high protein content allows it to keep nourishing the muscle even after you have stopped working out.

Remember that you need to wash quinoa thoroughly before boiling it. Once it is boiled, you can add anything you want to make your ideal salad. Make sure you are careful with dried fruit and fats, even if they are healthy. Eaten at night, they can contribute to weight gain.

Yogurt with fruit

If you are like to eat a small dinner, but you still need something in your system before bed, yogurt with fruit and cereal can make a perfect evening meal. Do not mix the fruit: choose your favorite and focus on that and similar options.

Each fruit contains a different amount of sugar, meaning that it can bring a variety of things to our bodies. Mixing the fruit will do little more than make digestion more difficult, and can even make us gain weight.

For instance, you can mix apples with pineapples and pears, watermelons with melons, and peaches with nectarines or loquats. Try to use skim yogurt with zero per cent fat content to make a great light dinner for after the gym.

Lean meats or chicken

Lean meat

If you tend to finish a workout with a big appetite, do not worry. You can make yourself a dish with beef, chicken, or turkey, and accompany it with a salad, vegetables, or quinoa. You will not gain weight, but you will feel satisfied by this low-calorie option.


Fish is a source of proteins and fatty acids that our bodies need. It does not matter when you eat it: it will always be beneficial. If you love fish and come home hungry from the gym, choose your favorite variety and enjoy it grilled or “al toro.” You can choose a side of vegetables, mushrooms, salad, or quinoa.

This makes for a perfect post-workout meal, as it will make you feel like you have had enough to eat without overloading you with calories.


Eggs offer the body a range of benefits, such as proteins and anxiety relief. You can have them in a tortilla, hard-boiled in a salad, or make a scramble with mushrooms or asparagus (and add in other vegetables too).

What is certain, is that eggs are one of the most versatile foods in existence. All you need is a bit of imagination…and a good non-stick pan!


Light salad

Salads are the perfect complement to exercise. They are satisfying and low in calories. You can eat plenty (and plenty of kinds of) salad, although we do not recommend eating rice or pasta varieties at night. This is because at night, carbs at are hard to digest, and if you do not burn this, it will turn into fat.

Nevertheless, you can make salads using different varieties of lettuce, baby leaves, and quinoa, as well as just vegetables. You can add turkey ham or tuna for a protein boost. Your imagination is the limit. Try to avoid dressings. Instead, add a simple vinaigrette made from olive oil, salt, and pepper, or from vinegar and lemon.

As you can see, there are plenty of options for light dinners after the gym. We hope this has sparked your culinary creativity and you have already thought about what you will eat after tonight’s workout.

It might interest you...
Foods to Avoid Before Exercising: Tips for a Proper Pre-Workout Diet
Fit People
Read it in Fit People
Foods to Avoid Before Exercising: Tips for a Proper Pre-Workout Diet

In this article, we take a look at which foods you should avoid before exercising, as well as which foods are recommended.

All cited sources were thoroughly reviewed by our team to ensure their quality, reliability, currency, and validity. The bibliography of this article was considered reliable and of academic or scientific accuracy.

  • Fundación Española de Nutrición (FEN). (2017). Ensalada de quinoa y atún.
  • Kris-Etherton, P. M., Petersen, K. S., Hibbeln, J. R., Hurley, D., Kolick, V., Peoples, S., Rodriguez, N., & Woodward-Lopez, G. (2021). Nutrition and behavioral health disorders: depression and anxiety. Nutrition Reviews79(3), 247–260.
  • Serrano, F. (2017). Manual de Nutrición y dietética, con grupos alimenticios para deportistas de alto rendimiento. Quito: Universidad de los Hemisferios, 2017.

The contents of this publication are written for informational purposes. At no time do they facilitate or replace the diagnoses, treatments, or recommendations of a professional. Consult your trusted specialist if you have any doubts and seek their approval before beginning any procedure.