The Macro Diet for Beginners: How to Count Macros for Weight Loss

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How to Count Macros for Beginners | The right balance of macronutrients – carbs, fat, protein – is key to losing weight, building muscle, and helping you get the most out of your workout sessions. Of course, knowing how to create a balanced and healthy nutrition plan to support your weight loss goals and help you get more out of your exercise plan takes practice, and this 30-day macro diet plan is a great starting place, with 120 mix and match recipes! #countingmacros #macronutrients #macros

Thinking of counting macros for weight loss? Losing weight is a huge feat, and counting macros is one of the best ways to reach your weight loss goals. Your body needs a certain amount of energy to maintain itself, and all energy is derived from the macros you eat! If you eat less than your body requires, that’s when weight loss occurs, and counting macros helps you do this in a way that doesn’t leave you starving for food. Intrigued? Check out how to count macros for weight loss!

Understanding Macros: The Basics

Macronutrients are a type of calorie that provide energy, and make up three major components of food: Carbs (to fuel energy), fat (to keep you full) and protein (to build and repair muscle). The right balance of macronutrients ensures quality results, whether you’re trying to lose or maintain weight, or build muscle.

This is the breakdown of where the calories come from:

1 gram of carbs = 4 calories
1 gram of fat = 9 calories
1 gram of protein = 4 calories

Think of it this way: It’s not about the amount of calories in your food, but what type of calories are in your food. Even if you’re under a specific calorie limit, you may not being getting the nutrients you need. The right macro balance is key to a healthy lifestyle and sustainable weight loss.

How to Count Macros

The amount of macros you should be eating varies from person to person. Your ideal amount is called your “macronutrient ratio” and takes into account your height and weight, activity level, age, and weight loss goals. You can use a macro diet calculator or meal planning app to help you find your macro ratio (we list some great ones below!), or meet with a registered dietician to help you determine the best breakdown.

If you’re counting macros for weight loss, try the following ratio: 10-30% carbs, 40-50% protein, 30-40% fat. Keep in mind, you’ll need to tweak your macros depending on the results you’re looking for and personal your activity level.

2 Macro Diet Meal Planning Tips

1. Be Open to Change
Make sure the macro diet you decide on works for you. If you’re hungry, add more protein to your diet; if you’re tired, add more fibrous veggies to up your energy from carbs; if you’re not losing weight, lower your carbohydrate intake, especially at dinner.

2. Invest in a Food Scale
If you want to track your calories and macros precisely, using a food scale is key. Weighing your food before you eat it helps you recognize the correct serving size and what your exact calorie intake is. You’ll soon know how much specific amounts of fruits, veggies and meat looks like without even weighing it.

5 Macro Diet Resources and Cookbooks We Recommend

1. The Everything Guide to Macronutrients by Matt Dustin
2. Meal Planning for Beginners: 70 Easy Macros Based Recipes by Christine Hronec
3. Smart Macros Low Carb Cookbook by Smart Macros
4. MyFitnessPal App
5. My Macros+ App

30 Day Macro Diet Plan for Beginners

30 Macro Diet Recipes for Breakfast

1. Protein Cookies | Well Plated
2. Breakfast Wonton Cups | Stay Fit Mom
3. Macro Friendly Pumpkin Spice Muffins | Patience and Consistency
4. Cauliflower Hash Brown Egg Cups | Cafe Delites
5. Tofu Scramble | PopSugar
6. Keto Macro Pancakes | Keto Connect
7. Millet Rice Pudding | Pickles and Honey
8. Chickpea Chard Carrot Breakfast Bake | Vegan Richa
9. Antioxidant Pumpkin Smoothie | Gourmandelle
10. Overnight Oats | PopSugar
11. Healthy Cinnamon Rolls | If It Fits Your Macros
12. 5 Minute Vegan Breakfast | Marlene Watson-Tara
13. Salsa Breakfast Bake | Carrots N’ Cake
14. Protein French Toast | The Macro Experiment
15. Banana Almond Cream Shake | Body Building
16. Paleo Breakfast Bowl | PopSugar
17. Chocolate Chip Protein Muffins | Stay Fit Mom
18. Pumpkin Spice Protein Pancakes | If It Fits Your Macros
19. Macro-Friendly Monkey Bread | The Macro Experiment
20. Breakfast Casserole | Spark Recipes
21. Freezer Breakfast Sandwiches | Malzisfit
22. Macro Breakfast Bowl | Laura Schoenfeld
23. Savory Breakfast Waffle | Make It Macro
24. Brownie Protein Overnight Oats | Make It Macro
25. Red Velvet Protein Waffles | The Macro Experiment
26. Skinny Bagels | Make It Macro
27. Egg White Bites | Make It Macro
28. Sweet Potato Pancakes | The Macro Experiment
29. No Bake Veggie Frittata | PopSugar
30. Chocolate and Banana Waffles | If It Fits Your Macros

30 Macro Diet Recipes for Lunch

1. Lentil Meatballs | Well Plated
2. Lemon Chicken Salad Sandwich | Sass en Masse
3. Chicken and Avocado Burritos | Closet Cooking
4. Macro Bowl with Carrot Ginger Almond Sauce | Coconut and Berries
5. Thai Stuffed Sweet Potatoes | If It Fits Your Macros
6. Zucchini Pad Thai | The Macro Experiment
7. Bacon and Egg Macro Bowl | Oh So Savvy Mom
8. Chicken Mushroom Shish Kabobs | Fit Women Eat
9. Tomato Pesto Panini | Malzisfit
10. Skinny Southwestern Salad | The Pinning Mama
11. Pineapple Chipotle Salmon Tostadas | Joyful Healthy Eats
12. Chicken Quinoa Salad | Fit Women Eat
13. Skinny Fried Rice | Malzisfit
14. Macro Bowl with Turmeric Tahini Sauce | Keepin’ It Kind
15. Smoked Salmon Sushi | If It Fits Your Macros
16. Zucchini Pasta | Pop Sugar
17. Cuban Sandwiches | The Macro Experiment
18. Creamy Taco Soup | Mason Fit
19. Pizza Stuffed Chicken Breast | Body Building
20. Get Healthy Macro Bowl | A House in the Hills
21. Macro Friendly Cobb Salad | Patience and Consistency
22. Tuna Casserole | Stay Fit Mom
23. Southwestern Veggie Bowl | One Sweet Mess
24. Turkey Lettuce Wraps | Eat Yourself Skinny
25. Soba Noodles with Roasted Tomatoes, Mushrooms and Eggs | Cook Nourish Bliss
26. Tofu Banh Mi | Gourmandelle
27. Mexican Tempeh Quinoa Salad | Pop Sugar
28. Healthy Chicken Nuggets | The Macro Experiment
29. Roasted Squash and Farro Salad | PureWow
30. Sweet Potato Hemp Seed Quinoa Bowls | Making Thyme for Health

30 Macro Diet Recipes for Dinner

1. Baked Chicken Parmesan | Well Plated
2. Coconut Papaya Rice with Turkey Patties and Baby Spinach | Fit Women Eat
3. Root Vegetable and Sage Pesto Salmon | Lexi’s Clean Kitchen
4. Turkey Taco Spaghetti Squash Boats | Skinny Taste
5. Quinoa Enchiladas | Delish Knowledge
6. Macro-Friendly Pizza | Medium
7. Turkey Chili | Malzisfit
8. Brown Rice Miso Macro Bowl | Nutrition Stripped
9. Salmon Quinoa Burgers | Eat Live Run
10. Poached Fish in Tomato Basil Sauce | The Healthy Foodie
11. Lemon Sriracha Chicken Stir Fry | If It Fits Your Macros
12. Sausage Biscuit Gravy Casserole | Malzisfit
13. Korean Ground Beef | Mason Fit
14. Blackened Chicken with Pineapple Salsa | Ledbetter
15. Macro Friendly Beef Stroganoff | Working Against Gravity
16. Curried Red Lentil and Quinoa Bowls with Cilantro Mint Chutney | Oh My Veggies
17. Coconut Red Curry with Chickpeas | Minimalist Baker
18. Baked Sesame Ginger Salmon | PureWow
19. Cauliflower Rice Stir Fry | Minimalist Baker
20. Sesame Orange Chicken | Stay Fit Mom
21. Instant Pot Sloppy Joes | Mason Fit
22. Light Mac and Cheese | Malzisfit
23. Healthy Bacon Cheeseburger Soup | Malzisfit
24. French Dip Sandwiches | Stay Fit Mom
25. Chili Mac and Cheese | Stay Fit Mom
26. Chicken and White Bean Soup | Carrots ‘N’ Cake
27. Honey Sriracha Lime Salmon | Creme de la Crumb
28. Cauliflower Rice Bowl | Carrots ‘N’ Cake
29. Sweet Ground Beef and Broccoli | Mason Fit
30. Tuna Casserole | Stay Fit Mom

30 Macro Friendly Snack Recipes

1. Zucchini Fritters | Just a Taste
2. Oven Roasted Root Vegetables | Bren Did
3. Sweet Potato Fries | Stay Fit Mom
4. White Bean Hummus | Gourmandelle
5. Rhubarb Crumb Bars | Squatting for Snacks
6. Yogurt Filled Melon | Pop Sugar
7. High Protein Cheese Sauce | Mason Fit
8. Core Camper Protein Balls | Body Building
9. Taco Bites | Malzisfit
10. Frozen Yogurt Granola Bites | Stay Fit Mom
11. Spicy Sweet Potato Wedges | Easy Peasy Creative
12. Peanut Buttery Apples with Grapes | Pop Sugar
13. Brussels Sprout Chips | Delish
14. Fresh Tomato Basil Bruschetta | Stay Fit Mom
15. Avocado with Cottage Cheese | Pop Sugar
16. Angel Food Protein Cake | The Macro Experiment
17. Tomato Basil Bruschetta | Stay Fit Mom
18. Frozen Yogurt Cupcakes | Pop Sugar
19. Almond Joy Protein Bars | Malzisfit
20. Hot Salsa Verde | Serious Eats
21. Low Calorie Ice Cream Sandwiches | Stay Fit Mom
22. Peanut Butter Protein Balls | Pop Sugar
23. Pumpkin Hummus | Body Building
24. Low Carb Cheez-It Crackers | Mason Fit
25. Protein Chocolate Chip Cookies | From the Heart
26. White Chocolate Cranberry Protein Balls | Malzisfit
27. Butter Cookie Energy Bites | Low Carb with Jennifer
28. Protein Pudding | Stay Fit Mom
29. Protein Pumpkin Bread | The Macro Experiment
30. Cheeseburger Bites | Mason Fit

There are so many macros diet recipes for you to enjoy! If you’re on a weight loss journey, start counting macros and see awesome results!

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How to Count Macros for Beginners | The right balance of macronutrients – carbs, fat, protein – is key to losing weight, building muscle, and helping you get the most out of your workout sessions. Of course, knowing how to create a balanced and healthy nutrition plan to support your weight loss goals and help you get more out of your exercise plan takes practice, and this 30-day macro diet plan is a great starting place, with 120 mix and match recipes! #countingmacros #macronutrients #macros

And if you want more weight loss tips, make sure to follow our Health Board on Pinterest!



Kate
Kate
Kate is a freelance writer with a background in fashion, beauty and wellness. When she’s not trying out new recipes, taking a hot yoga class, or curled up with a good book, you can find her blogging about lifestyle tips and entrepreneurialism at Layered Indulgence.