Anabolic Cooking – Reviewed
If you scour around the Internet looking for a good cook book aimed at bodybuilders, there’s a surprising lack of anything half decent.
Most are either not particularly aimed at the bodybuilder (or at least don’t understand a bodybuilders dietary requirements) or contain over complex recipes with exotic ingredients.
That’s partly why I decided to knock up this website but I have focused more on writing about how you going about choosing and preparing your recipes rather than actual meal recipes. I have included some of my favourite recipes but this site isn’t about accumulating a huge stock pile of recipes.
One cook book I found, aimed specifically at bodybuilders, that has caught my interest is an ebook called Anabolic Cooking. The author is a guy named Dave Ruel who refers to himself as the ‘Muscle Cook’. Slightly amusing self appointed title but nothing compared to the names some people give themselves in this game (I was going to name a few but bound to offend someone so I’ve refrained).
The Man, The Myth
Before I bought the book, I wanted to find out a bit more about Mr Ruel, see if he was the ‘read deal’. There’s too many writers out there telling bodybuilders what to eat and how to train but haven’t ‘walked the walk’, themselves.
I didn’t take long to discover the man checks out. He’s placed in the top 3 for several bodybuilding competitions between 2006-7 in the heavyweight and light heavyweight categories.
So Dave Ruel is actually a competitive bodybuilder with some success, good enough for me, onto my review.
Dave begins the book with a bit of preamble about the importance of proper nutrition for bodybuilding success and how following a good diet doesn’t have to boring. Couldn’t agree more so got my attention straight away.
Inside The Book
The recipes themselves are broken down into several sections as below:
- Chicken And Poultry
- Red Meat And Pork
- Fish And Seafood
- Salads, Soups And Sides
- Snacks And Bars
No complaints there. I have seen some books bunch the recipes according when they think they should be eaten, lunch, diner supper etc. No thanks, I’ll decide what meals I eat when. Breakfast aside, the recipes are bunched by type, not time they should be eaten.
Following this, is a list of each individual recipe and page number – I like this. Too many books index the recipes at the back and even with an ebook, I find that pain. I want the recipes near the front of the book so I can just open it and be where I need to be within a few clicks.
As you’d expect, each individual recipe is broken down into Ingredients, Directions and Nutritional Facts with the odd “Quick Tip” here and there. Most of the recipes are comprised of readily available ingredients and are relatively simple to follow.
The book includes many of the now traditional bodybuilding recipes like ‘High Protein Pancakes‘ and ‘Mexican Chicken‘. But even with those recipes that I’ve seen many times before, some of them have a little twist or extra ingredient that revitalizes the recipe. eg. the inclusion of crushed bran flakes in the ‘Southern Fried Chicken‘ recipe. Sounds odd I know, but honest, try it, you will be surprised.
- There’s a complete lack of photos for any of the recipes. Ok, for some of the more traditional recipes and maybe most of the breakfasts and soups, perhaps an image would be superfluous. However, I feel a big improvement on the book would be to include an image of each finished recipe. Maybe it’s just me, but I do like to see how a meal is going to (and supposed) to look before I decide to give it a try.
- The book could leave out the section about the author or at least move it to the back of the book. I’ve already done my research on the author, now I’ve bought the book, I’m not really interested in learning anymore about him, I just want the recipes.
Bar that, I can’t really fault the book. I had a search on-line to see what others were saying but I won’t bore you with stupidity of some of the comments (one reviewer complained that it wasn’t in print!!). Of all the negative comments I found, none of them bore any sense and some looked to be made by people who have either not read the book or never even lifted a dumbbell in their lives.
- Perhaps the best thing about this ebook is it’s sheer size – two hundred recipes! That’s an awful lot of recipes, enough for anyone. And the bonus is that the vast majority of these recipes are actually usable. Too many cookbooks come with some recipes that just require too much effort for my liking.
- The author has done a good job of laying out each recipe in a consistently clear, easy to follow manner.
- The book comes with several free bonuses. I’ll not list them here, you can read the bumph on the site but I actually found a couple of them surprisingly valuable in themselves.
- The book comes with a 60 day money back guarantee. That’s an awful lot of time to make you mind up.
Anabolic Cooking – My Verdict
For bodybuilders, this is a one stop cook book that covers all bases. Two hundred recipes is a massive library for any bodybuilder. There’s more than enough variety to satisfy the palette of even the fussiest of eaters.
This is comfortably the best bodybuilding recipe book that I’ve come across. The inclusion of photos would have really blown all competition out of the water (2nd revision?).