Updated: Jan 22, 2020
I have a love-hate relationship with Protein Bars. We all have those times when we can't cook EVERY meal. We are super busy and need a quick quality protein bar meeting our requirements.
I am that person who buys 1 of 5 different bars at once to try first before buying the box. I have sampled several different brands and the below bars are on the top of my list for flavor, ingredients, and availability. For variety, I am listing protein bars, a meat bar and cookie.
I hope that if you are reading this, I can help narrow down some choices for you as it can be daunting to read all the ingredients in the store and comb through about 100 protein bars available. These bars are a meal for bariatric patients so if wondering about the cost per bar, think about it replacing an entire meal and it makes sense.
When reading the ingredient label pay special attention to the total carbs. To calculate the net carbs, subtract the dietary fiber and sugar alcohols from Total Carbs. Please see this sample image from a bulletproof bar: Please note: each flavor for a brand may have different carbs
✔️: Taste good, easy to find, gluten-free, protein source is whey, and microwavable.
⁉️: The waffle flavor is way to addicting!
Sample Nutrition Facts Per bar: 180 cals, 6g fat, 24g carbs, <1g sugar, 14g fiber, 20g protein, Net carbs (4)
✔️: no artificial sweeteners, dairy, or soy, grass-fed collagen protein.
⁉️: salted caramel taste helps cut through the sweetness of the stevia.
Sample Nutrition Facts Per bar: 220 cal, 17g fat, 12g carbs, 1g sugar, 9g fiber, 11g protein, net carbs (3)
✔️: Yummy crunchy flavor, almost feel guilty eating it, full for hours.
⁉️: Watch the sugar alcohols. Can cause digestive issues for some people.
Sample Nutrition Facts bar: 160 cal, 4g fat, 19g carbs, 0g sugar, 12g sugar alcohol, 5g fiber, 20g protein, net carbs (5)
✔: vegan, non-dairy, gluten-free, lactose-free, soy-free, no artificial preservatives
⁉️: Price fluctuates quite a bit
Sample Nutrition Facts bar: 140 cal, 6g fat, 17g carbs, 3g sugar, 3g Erythritol, 6 g fiber, 10 g protein, Net carbs (8)
✔️: patented whey protein blend, crunch and flaky texture taste just like dessert!
⁉️: Walmart has them but always sells out fast!
Sample Nutrition Facts bar: 220 cal, 14g fat, 11g carbs, 5g sugar, 1g fiber, 13 g protein, net carb (10)
✔️:Melt in your mouth, curbs cravings, mimics fudge
⁉️: made with collagen protein, which isn't a complete protein.
Sample Nutrition Facts bar: 220 cal, 14g fat, 14g carbs, 2g sugar, 5g fiber, 12g protein, net carbs (9)
✔️: Epic bars are jerky, so they're different than your traditional protein bar.
⁉️: Not your typical bar, but if you like meat and jerky - it hits the mark!
Sample Nutrition Facts Meat bar: 140 cal, 7g fat, 9g carbs, 2g sugar, 2g fiber, 10g protein,
Net Carbs (7)
✔️: Better than your go-to bakery, eat a cookie and not feel guilty
⁉️: No dairy at all of any kind
Sample Nutrition Facts Cookie: 240 cals, 17g fat, 17 g carbs, 6 g fiber, 1 g sugar, 7 g sugar alcohol, 13 g protein, Net carbs (4)
✔️: Luscious peanut butter and gooey fudge
⁉️: In a rush and need to grab something quick? These are readily available everywhere
Sample Nutrition Facts: Cals 150 calories, 7g fat, 14 g carbs, 8g fiber, 1g sugar, 5g sugar alcohols, 10g protein, net carbs (1.7g)