Author: Bailey Arnold
GVSU Dietetic Intern
In today’s busy world it can be hard sometimes to sit down and have a “real meal”, whatever that may look like for us. One way that we can try to meet our nutritional needs on the go is by grabbing a protein bar! There are many kinds of protein bars that suit many different tastes and lifestyles. However, not all protein bars are created equally. It is important for us, as consumers, to know what we are getting out of each type of protein bar so that we can figure out which one is the best choice for us. I have created, below, an easy chart that reviews the macronutrient content along with a few other things in various common granola bars and protein bars. When looking for a protein bar I would suggest looking at three main things when deciding: amount of protein, amount of fiber, and how it tastes to you. This chart can be used to help you figure out which one is the best choice for you.
*The price displayed in this chart is from Meijer grocery store. It may vary. Some bars were not sold individually so the price per box of # of bars was given, such as $Price/# of bars in box.
*This is just my personal opinion! We all have different preferences, let us know what you think of some of these bars in the comments!
Clif Bar: I think that this bar tastes pretty good. More like a granola bar, however the nutritional facts aren’t as impressive to me. I would enjoy this as a snack.
Quest Bar: First impression, kind of tough and rubbery. I honestly wasn’t a fan. Maybe it was just the flavor. Cookies and Cream
Lara Bar: I thought that this bar didn’t taste as much like a protein bar, so I really liked it. That being said, the protein content of these bars is low. I would eat this again. The peanut butter cookie flavor was really tasty.
Lara Bar Protein: I did not like this one at all. It was chewy and the flavor tasted almost like a cleaning spray. I would not choose this again.
KIND Bar: This bar isn’t designated as a protein bar, but many people eat it as one. It is more like a granola bar with nuts on the top and a layer of chocolate on the bottom. It tasted good but it was kind of hard, I was expecting it to be chewier.
Rx Bar: I enjoyed this. I picked the banana chocolate walnut flavor. The banana was very evident. Kind of bland but definitely not bad. I would eat this one again.
ONE Bar: For how much protein was in this bar I was expecting not to like it, but it was surprisingly good. It had a sort of white chocolate like covering with a filling in the middle. It tasted almost like cake batter. However, this bar still had an odd “protein bar” taste to it.
After giving each of the granola/protein bars a fair chance, it is easy to say that each one may fit a different individual’s needs. There is one for everyone’s preference, nutrition needs, and price range! It is hard to pick which one is the best based on looking at the nutrition label. Sure, it is easy to say that the Quest bar has the most protein and very little sugar in it, but if you don’t like the taste of it then why would you eat it? Based on my taste testing results I think that my favorite based on taste and overall nutritional value would be the Rx Bar. I think that this bar fits best in my lifestyle. However, in the end, you need to pick what is best for you, this includes taste and nutritional considerations.