When you’re cutting, eating clean is extremely important. It’s perhaps the most important thing that you should follow. Cutting is all about the amount of calories you eat and what exactly you eat. But we all know very well that this can be extremely hard. Very often, a lot of unhealthy foods can be tempting enough to “cheat” when you’re cutting. While you can “cheat” during a bulking cycle, it may not be such a huge problem as when you’re cheating on a cutting cycle.
Whatever the case, we totally get it. That’s definitely hard work. Whether it is resisting donuts at work, pizza on Fridays with the guys, or going out and having some McDonalds. Especially because your favorite snacks and foods seem to be everywhere! It is perfectly normal to start craving the foods that you previously indulged in. It’s natural to get tired of chicken and broccoli.
So, here I am going to share with you some perfect cheat meals while you’re cutting. Those are some healthy cheat meals. Keep in mind that they are still “cheat” meals, but at least, they are healthier and better substitutions.
Staying true to your cutting cycle is important. But we all hit the point where the same old meals are getting boring. That’s why making a cheat meal can be so much more tempting. So, instead of going for “whatever” it is still better to go for “healthy bodybuilding cheat meals”. I understand you may wonder – “Do healthy cheat meals really exist?”
Of course, they do. Again, while they still remain “cheat meals” they are still better than others. These are some of the best cheat meals around that will still keep you on track with your cut.
Cheat Meals While Cutting
Be sure that the healthy cheat meals I’m going to share here will not completely sabotage your efforts during a cut. Unlike other foods that you may crave. We know that cutting is a fickle beast. There are days when chowing down on chicken and veggies is not enough to make us feel comfortable. There are just some days when just taking a glance at pizza is enough to ruin our mood.
It may be hard to believe, but good cheat meals do exist. They can support your cutting more than you think. That’s because you may know that cutting is also a mental thing. How you feel psychologically is just as important. That’s why, when you are stuck to a diet plan and eat well and clean for a long time, a cheat meal (a healthy one) can act as a reward. It can help you motivate you even further.
Just think about it for a minute. During any type of weight loss diet (calorie restriction), most people focus on things that we cannot have, rather than those that we can. That’s why it’s so easy to fall off your goals and get a whole pizza ruining your goals. The healthy cheat meals during your cut is going to keep you motivated. Additionally, eating smart, clean, and healthy cheat meals is not going to kill your efforts. At least, not so far as others might.
Moreover, when you eat in a calorie deficit, your results may come to a halt. That’s because your body has already made a lot of effort and has stripped out as much fat as it can. Plus, it has a huge impact on your Central Nervous System. So, to kick start your metabolism and your Central Nervous System, a healthy cheat meal can help.
You need to be smart about your food choices. Make sure to go for the right type of cheat meal. Especially because the aim of a cutting phase is to lose fat AND get lean, maintaining muscle mass. This is the reason why we thought that putting together some of the best cheat meals around would greatly help you.
It will help so you can treat yourself, support your goals, and still go through your cutting cycle successfully.
What Are The Best Cheat Meals Foods?
So, a cheat meal is basically cheating, but as said, it still needs to be healthy. Otherwise, it is going to cause havoc on all your efforts and goals. So, we have some examples to get you started. This way, you can reward yourself and still stay on track.
Carbs and Protein…
It is not uncommon for people to avoid carbs as much as possible when they are attempting to lose weight. And to their biggest surprise – they either can’t lose weight at all, or they can’t progress soon enough. That’s because they remove carbs completely. Not only does it affect your metabolism and central nervous system, but it also greatly affects your leptin levels. That’s the hormone that burns fat. That’s why, a high carb healthy cheat meal is going to help you feel full (which is very important for a cutting cycle), and it’s also going to support your fitness goals. You will help it all – your CNS, metabolic rate, and leptin hormone levels.
As in terms of protein – I guess there’s no need to explain it. Proteins form the building blocks of lean muscle tissues and also help burn fat. Protein has an essential role in a healthy living and fitness goals. Getting regular protein is crucial because of numerous factors. It also helps you keep your appetite steady by keeping hunger spikes at bay as you feel fuller for longer. And that’s just the least benefit you get from protein.
But when we talk about cheat meals, we do not recommend you a high fat meal, or meals that offer too much carbs. As you should already know it – it’s definitely against your cutting goals. After all, you should pay attention to the daily calorie intake. Especially during a cutting cycle.
What we try to say is that instead of a greasy pizza and those deep-fried onion rings (yeah, they are tasty but unhealthy), you would need to focus on high protein and high carbs.
Check below some of the best cheat meals to treat yourself and still achieve your cutting goals.
Some Cheat Meals Examples
Cauliflower crust pizza
If you’ve ever been in a cutting cycle you already know that pizza is a common craving. After all, pizza is the number one most popular food type in the world. No wonder – it’s super tasty. The problem is that it’s not very healthy. That’s why a lot of guys in bodybuilding circles can’t even say the last time they had a slice of pizza. However, what if I told you that it doesn’t mean that you need to miss out on pizza while you try to cut completely? Sounds awesome, uh?
Of course, regular pizza might be tastier, but it’s better than nothing. That’s why you could treat yourself with some cauliflower crust pizza. This is one of the best bodybuilding cheat meals you may get. That’s because the cauliflower version cuts out the excess of carbs associated with pizza.
Therefore, the cauliflower crust pizza offers you just the right amount of carbs, as well as fiber and a lot of veggies on top of it. All you need for a clean and smart diet. It’s still a cheat meal, but it will make you motivated for the cutting diet ahead of you.
- TIPS: If you crave meat, go for chicken instead of pepperoni. There are good reasons why bodybuilders eat chicken – it is a leaner meat. Pepperoni is heavily processed. Additionally, you could use a paper towel to get rid of the excess fatty oils in your pizza. Many do it, I do it – why shouldn’t you do it?
Sushi is generally not a very healthy meal and that’s why it’s not very often seen among bodybuilders. But when it comes to sushi as a bodybuilding cheat meal, things tend to be a bit trickier. I would recommend avoiding anything tempura, with any wacky sauces or mayo that you can usually find in rolls.
If you opt for healthy cheat meals such as sushi, I recommend that you opt for nigiri and sashimi. These are the cleanest options out there. Sashimi is just raw fish, but nigiri is raw fish on white rice – similar taste to actual rolls.
It’s obvious that fish is very important in any diet. But if you go for sushi as your fish option, avoid anything deep fried or smothered in sauces and/or mayo. They are the fattiest. Go for the “cleanest” options instead.
Steak and Potatoes
A cheat meal is called that way because it’s “cheat”. It doesn’t need to be boring. That’s why, when you are searching for healthy cheat meals, the good ol’ steak with potatoes is an awesome option for bodybuilding during their cutting cycles.
Indeed, steak is typically higher in fat than other sources of protein, nonetheless, this cheat meal is still not going to completely derail your progress. After all, steak is full of protein and other important elements. Moreover, the way you choose to cook your steak is also going to have an impact on the fat content.
Grilled steak is your best option. That’s because fat is easily drained away during cooking. If you pair it with medium potato and plenty of vegetables – it will make sure to keep you full. At the same time, your body gets the crucial proteins, carbs, and other vital nutrients.
After all, we all know that steaks are for real men. That’s why they are among the best cheat meals. You can treat yourself to dinner at a steakhouse and it is sure to offer a great boost of motivation for your hard work!
Spaghetti and meatballs
Pasta is not really a part of a cutting diet because a huge bowl of pasta can wreak havoc on your cutting diet. Nonetheless, some specific spaghetti types and meatballs can still be a good cheat meal depending on how you cook it. It is dense in carbs and proteins. Still, you should pay attention to your portion and go for those healthier spaghetti types. Moreover, it is minimal in fat and can be a great bodybuilding cheat meal option.
I would recommend the whole-wheat or whole-grain pasta and switch out beef meatballs for leaner alternatives. Good examples would be turkey or chicken. Of course, limit the sauce or mayo that is usually full of fats, sometimes sugar and salt, and other unhealthy elements.
When you get the proper spaghetti type, proper meatball type, and proper sauce type, combined with portion control, spaghetti with meatballs (and some veggies) can be a great option!
Top Tips For Healthy Cheat Meals
We understand that “cheating” is there because it is the easiest part of the cutting. But remember that how you cheat is extremely important! Cheating, as explained, has its benefits. But it can easily do more harm than benefit, as you may know. That’s why I recommend opting for leaner meats, careful with the cooking process, avoiding high fats, processed and other unhealthy elements as well that can make a huge influence on your cutting diet. Be sure to opt for the healthiest options whenever possible.
Some tips would include:
- Get organized with your cheat meals. Knowing when and what you are going to eat is very important when you attempt to cheat.
- Smash the gym first. You know you earn your cheat meal after dripping in sweat in the gym. Plus, your body takes what it needs to recover.
- Pay attention to portions. OK, you’re cheating. But it doesn’t mean that you should binge-fest. Bodybuilding cheat meals do not mean you can go for 10x portions.
- Avoid high-fat foods. Despite many people’s belief – high fat is worse than high carb! Avoid greasy junk food and avoid liquid carbs, calories and sugars.
- Remember your goals. Cheating can easily take over your entire cutting phase. Limit your cheating meals whenever possible. Remember your goals and stick to a strict regimen of calories.
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