It’s important to eat a replenishing meal 30 minutes after a workout. This helps to replenish the body’s energy stores as well as repair any muscle tissue. Both carbohydrates, protein, and electrolytes should be in this meal, but many people are missing out on their post-workout meals. Here are some of the top post-workout meals that we love and you will too!

1. Eggs and orange juice

Eggs are one of the best protein sources out there today. Both the yolk and the white of an egg contain protein for a power-packed easy meal. Orange juice works to provide the carbohydrates and vitamins needed. For an early morning workout, take a boiled egg and a glass of OJ to the gym. This is an easy post-workout meal that’s great if you’re also on the go.

2. Bananas and Greek yogurt

Bananas are the perfect post-workout food. They contain protein, fiber, carbohydrates, and potassium. Pair a fresh banana with a Greek yogurt or cottage cheese for a perfect match. This combination is also a good idea for an early morning workout, but you can have it at any time of day.

3. Tuna and whole wheat crackers

One can of tuna provides a whopping 42 grams of protein with extremely few calories. It also provides essential vitamins that your body needs after a workout. Crackers are a good source of carbs, but look for the whole wheat or whole grain ones to get the most out of your post-workout meal. You can even buy these tuna meal packs already packaged or make your own easily. Avoid putting mayo in the tuna and instead add some lemon juice for taste.

4. Turkey wrap

If you’re heading home and need a post-workout meal, you can probably find this option at one of the places along your ride home. A turkey wrap in a whole grain wrap topped with fresh vegetables is a great choice. You should skip the fat-laden condiments and instead choose hummus for your dressing. Turkey is a lean protein source and the vegetables in the wrap will give you a boost of nutrients. You may want to choose this if you have a lunch workout as it’s a good mid-day meal as well.

5. Salmon and sweet potato

If you’re working out right before dinner, then you may want something a little more prepared. Protein-rich salmon is low in fat and also full of omega-3s which will help keep you satisfied after a workout. You can pair this meal with green beans to give yourself a good boost of vitamins as well as a baked sweet potato for slow-burning carbohydrates which are going to help with muscle recovery and building.

6. Muesli, milk, and yogurt

If you’re really pressed for time and just want something to grab as you’re heading out the door, then a whole grain cereal like muesli is a good choice. It’s loaded with protein and carbs as well as vitamins and minerals. The milk you add is a good source of protein and a tablespoon of yogurt adds some micronutrients that will help you prevent muscle soreness and get started with the rest of your day. You can also use a different cereal if you have a favorite that contains a good source of protein and whole grain carbohydrates.

7. Smoothies

A yogurt-based smoothie provides essential amino acids that you need for muscle recovery. For the best smoothie combination, try mixing yogurt, a banana, some milk, a tablespoon of peanut butter for protein, and a teaspoon of ground flax for some heart-healthy omega-3s. It’s a tasty and convenient way to end your workout and if you’re on the go, you can make this ahead and store it in an insulated container. Many gyms also have stores attached where you can easily purchase a similar recovery smoothie.

These are some of the best choices available today for recovery meals. If you’re tired of not knowing what to eat after a long workout, then use one of these choices. No matter whether you workout in the morning, lunchtime, or in the evening, you have a variety of choices to suit any palate. Remember to plan your post-workout meal ahead of time to avoid skipping this essential boost of nutrients, protein, and carbohydrates.

Photos by Daniel Wehner , mary_thompson