High Calorie / High Protein Diet


Please use this diet if your physician has recommended it for you. A high calorie and high protein diet is made up of foods that are high in both calories and protein. You may need this diet if you are not getting enough nutrition, or if you have certain health conditions. These conditions increase your body's need for both protein and calories. Conditions that increase that need include, wounds, major surgery, weight loss and malnutrition. Many patients need to follow this diet to gain weight and get stronger after a surgery or illness

  • Some high protein and high calorie foods contain a large amount of fat. If you have been told by your caregiver to limit fat in your diet, ask your caregiver before following this diet plan.

How to add high protein and high calorie foods to your diet

  • Eat the foods that you enjoy the most from the foods in this diet to make eating pleasant.
  • Keep snack foods around so you can eat when you feel hungry.
  • Eating six to eight small meals throughout the day may be easier than having three larger meals and snacks.

Foods that are high in protein or calories:

Breads and cereals:

  • Hot cereals (such as oatmeal or cream of wheat) prepared with milk, added fat (such as butter or margarine), and sugar.
  • Potatoes prepared with added fat such as butter, margarine and whole milk.
  • Granola and other cereals with dried fruit.
  • Croissants, buttermilk biscuits, muffins, or quick breads (banana bread or zucchini bread).


  • Vegetables prepared with added fat (margarine, butter, cream cheese, and cheese).
  • Fried vegetables.


  • Canned fruit in heavy syrup, and dried fruit

Meat and high-protein foods:

  • Fried meats.
  • Meats covered in cream sauses or gravy.
  • Milk with dry milk powder added.
  • Soups.
  • Sauces.
  • Casseroles.

Milk and milk products:

  • Whole milk and milk products (yogurt, ice cream, cheese).
  • Whipping cream or heavy cream.
  • Half-and-half.


  • Creamed and meat soups.


  • Whole milk with added breakfast drink mix or other nutritional supplements.
  • Fruit nectars and oral nutrition supplements.
  • Eggnog and milkshakes.


  • All oils, butter, margarine, mayonnaise, and salad dressings.
  • Bacon.
  • Avocado.
  • Cream cheese and sour cream.

Adding the following will increase the amount of protein in your diet:

  • Powdered milk.
  • Cheese.
  • Eggs.
  • Ice cream.
  • Nutrition supplements and breakfast drink mixes.
  • Nuts, seeds, and peanut butter.
  • Meats (beef, chicken, and pork).
  • Fish.
  • Yogurt made from whole milk.
  • Beans, peas, and lentils.
  • Tofu.

Adding the following will increase the calories in your diet:

  • One tablespoon of butter or margarine (adds 100 calories).
  • One tablespoon of mayonnaise (adds 100 calories).
  • One tablespoon of heavy cream or whipping cream (adds 55 calories).
  • One tablespoon of cream cheese (adds 50 calories).
  • One tablespoon of brown sugar, maple syrup, or honey (adds 45 calories).
  • One tablespoon of sour cream (adds 30 calories)
  • One tablespoon of half-and-half cream (10 to 18 percent fat) or evaporated milk (adds 20 calories).

Always consider adding dietary supplements such as Carnation Instant Breakfast, Ensure, Boost, etc.

Recipes for high calorie, high protein meals can be found at this link

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Laparoscopic Surgery NW
1802 S. Yakima Avenue, Suite 202
Tacoma, WA 98405
Phone: 253-234-1283
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