Foods All Soccer Players Should Be Eating

Improve your performance on the pitch this year by learning the best foods for soccer players to eat from STACK expert Conor Doherty.

For soccer players, a major game-time goal is always to control the ball. To win those one-on-one battles for the ball, you need strength and endurance. And the best way to ensure quality development in these areas is by eating muscle-building foods.

Two nutrients must be included in each meal: protein and carbohydrates. Protein is responsible for muscle growth, and carbohydrates are the main source of the energy players need to get through strenuous strength training workouts, grueling soccer practices and games.

Soccer requires stamina, endurance and strength. To play at the highest possible level, include muscle-building foods in your diet. Such foods, along with your  strength training program, will help you pack muscle on to your body.

Here is a list of foods that build muscle for soccer players:


Eggs are an excellent source of protein. Starting your morning with them will get you off on the right foot. Although egg whites are an option, don't fear the yolk. Egg yolks provide several valuable health benefits and additional protein.


One of the best sources of carbohydrates and another great breakfast option. Oatmeal give you the energy you need to get going in the morning. Eat a bowl of oatmeal along with your eggs for a well-rounded breakfast.

Learn more about the benefits of oatmeal for athletes.

Chicken or Turkey Breast

The best way to eat chicken or turkey is skinless, to remove unnecessary fat. Breast meat is the leanest part of the bird, and you'll get plenty of protein.

Lean Ground Beef

Another food that's packed with protein. Make sure to buy lean or extra lean to avoid adding fat.

Fruits and Vegetables

Fruits and vegetables not only provide carbohydrates for energy, they also have vitamins and minerals for muscle growth. Some great options are apples, bananas, fresh berries, tomatoes, asparagus, cucumbers and mixed frozen veggies.


Black beans are filled with protein and carbohydrates, which makes them a terrific option to go with lean meat in a meal.

Sweet Potatoes

Another great carbohydrate option to add to a lean protein like ground beef. Sweet potatoes give you a big insulin spike, helping to drive protein and other nutrients to your muscles. (Learn more about incorporating sweet potatoes into your diet.)

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