What are the Best Energy Bars? Power Bars. Energy Bars. Breakfast Bars. Cereal Bars. Snack Bars. Bars are everywhere. It’s no wonder they’re so popular with our hectic, on-the-go lifestyles. They sure are convenient. But, are they really ‘healthy’?
Nutrition bars can be part of a busy yet healthy lifestyle. However, it’s also clear why they’re not stocked next to the kale and blueberries at your grocery store!
Many are made with cheap, low-quality ingredients and are hiding tons of sugar and additives. I started a mission to find the best bars for us to have on hand for those busy, hectic, hungry times.
Here are four criteria for a better bar:
1. Does it have at least 3 grams of fiber? Fiber helps our bodies in many ways, but in a bar, it will slow digestion and make the energy from the bar last longer.
2. Does it have at least 5 grams of protein? This helps balance the carbohydrates, so the bar seems more satisfying and the energy lasts longer. Some bars have 1 or 2 grams of protein, while others have 10 or more grams.
3. Does it contain less than 35% calories from sugar? Not many bars meet this guideline. Try to calculate the percentage of calories from sugar because different brands of bars differ in size. If you calculate sugar by percentage, you can compare them fairly.
4. How much total fat and saturated fat does it contain? You definitely want some fat in the bar, so that it has a more satisfying taste, texture, and helps slow digestion a bit. But you don’t want too much fat, and you certainly don’t want any saturated fat if you can help it.
Best Energy Bars
Larabar Protein Apple Cobbler Bars – to purchase go here
Larabars are made with few ingredients and are gluten-free, kosher, soy-free, and dairy-free. This is in part thanks to plant-based protein from almonds and peas. Larabars are a good choice for a filling, low-calorie snack. They contain zero added sugar and get their sweetness from fruits like dates and apples.
Sweet Potato + Coconut Phyter Bars – you can purchase here
If you want more veggies in your diet, Phyter bars have got you covered. They’re made with nutritious ingredients. Some flavors, Butternut Squash + Peanut Butter bar and the Sweet Potato + Coconut bar, contain vegetables.
Lemon Poppy Seed Core Bars – Purchase here
Core bars are full of nutritious ingredients with no added sugars. They also contain added probiotics and prebiotics, both of which can benefit your digestive health. They’re USDA-certified organic, non-GMO, gluten-free, kosher, and vegan and come in a variety of interesting flavors.
Bulletproof Vanilla Shortbread Collagen Protein Bars – Purchase on Amazon here
These bars contain 11 to 13 grams of satiating protein from grass-fed sources of collagen meaning they’ll keep you fueled and satisfied between meals. They’re made with organic whole-food ingredients, including organic cashew butter and coconut oil. They’re perfect for those on low-carb diets.
Peanut Butter RxBars – purchase them here
RxBars contains just a few healthy ingredients like egg whites, dates, and nuts. As well, each bar is packed with 12 grams of highly absorbable protein, which makes these bars a super-satiating snack.
Thunderbird Bars –purchase here
These whole-food bars are packed with simple, nutrient-dense ingredients like nuts, seeds, and fruit. Furthermore, they contain zero added sugars. They’re sweetened with fruits like dates and cherries.
Honey Roasted Nuts and Sea Salt KIND Bars – Get them via Amazon
KIND bars are made with healthy ingredients like nuts and dried fruit. They’re good sources of protein, healthy fats, vitamins, and minerals. Opt for bars that contain just nuts and fruits and aren’t coated with choco.ate.
GoRaw Dark Chocolate Protein Bars – Purchase here
These bars are made with sprouted watermelon seeds and pack 12 grams of plant-based protein. The sprouting process may increase the bioavailability of some nutrients, like zinc and magnesium. They do contain a small amount of added sugar, but most of the flavor comes from nutritious ingredients like cinnamon, dates, and cacao.
Health Warrior Apple Cinnamon Chia Bars – purchase here
This 100-calorie bar packs a lot of punch in a small package. There are vegan-friendly and gluten-free. The base of these bars are chia seeds, which are packed with antioxidants, protein, fiber, and omega-3s.
Primal Kitchen – purchase here
If you follow a keto or Paleo diet, these protein bars are a winner. They’re flavored with natural ingredients like cinnamon, lime oil, and cocoa. As well, they are high in protein and healthy fats.
Sheffa Savory Bar Everything Seasonings – Purchase from Amazon
Sheffa bars are and makes snack bars that come in flavors like Everything, Sesame, Rosemary, and Spicy Chili. They are vegan-friendly and made with quinoa, sunflower seeds, and chickpeas.
Autumn’s Gold Cinnamon Almond Granola Bars – go here to purchase
Autumn’s Gold is another Paleo-friendly granola bar that uses nutritious protein-rich ingredients, almonds, pecans, and sunflower seeds. Also, they have coconut oil for a dose of healthy fat.
Purely Elizabeth Original Ancient Grains Granola Bars – purchase bars here or granola here
They’re made using simple ingredients and ancient grains, quinoa and amaranth. They’re also good for those following gluten-free diets. They are also a bit lower in calories and protein than other bars.
Kate’s Real Food Lemon Coconut Bivy Bars – purchase here
Kate’s Real Food Bars are made with “real” organic, non-GMO, and gluten-free ingredients. They come in a variety of flavors but, keep in mind that these bars contain two servings per package.
DIY granola bars
Another option for a Sunday afternoon when you’re feeling industrious: Make your own healthy snack bars and balls! Here are a few recipes. Click the photo for the recipe.
If you enjoyed this post, you may also like to read this on Low Cal Snacks!