A cup of chocolate milk next to some bars.

Our Favorite Protein Bars

Healthy Nest Nutrition’s Latest Recommendations

Periodically, I spend some time in the protein bar aisle at the grocery store. As always, it is big and colorful and there are SO many options. I’ve heard of or at least seen ads for most of the options.

To compare protein bars, I look first at the macro split then the ingredient list. 

Check out the Macros
I try to pick bars that have a relatively high amount of protein (because it’s a protein bar, not a candy bar). I shoot for more than 10g of protein so I know it will hold off my hunger for a good amount of time. Next, it should NOT have a HUGE amount of carbs, no more than 30g. It should have a good amount of fat, but no trans fat. Lastly, it should have 3+ grams of fiber – the more fiber, the better.

There were many delicious sounding oat-based bars that had lots of fiber, but hardly any protein. They also contained very high amounts of carbs compared to the proteins.

Look at the Ingredient List
There are many bars that I disqualified based on the long and chemically non-food ingredient list. If I can not pronounce it, that’s not good. I look for real food on the list with maybe some added vitamins.

My Bar Picks
I chose the following three to recommend today: The Peanut Butter RX bar, the Peanut Butter Perfect Bar and the Crunchy Peanut Butter Protein KIND bar. All three had short ingredient lists and decent macro splits. 

protein bars

Bar Details: Each is 1 bar per serving. All ingredient lists were short and recognizable. I used the peanut butter version of these choices so that I would have relatively similar products (apples and apples, per se).

Peanut Butter RX bar: cal 200, carb 25g, fat 7g, protein 12g, fiber 5g
Peanut Butter Perfect Bar: cal 340, carb 27g, fat 19g, protein 17g, fiber 3g
Crunchy Peanut Butter Protein KIND bar: cal 250, carb 17g, fat 18g, protein 12g, fiber 6g

I’ve had all three of these bars and they taste good enough (for a bar).

Last Resort Snacks
In my opinion, bars should be used not as a planned meal replacement, but as an in the moment nourishment fulfillment, this is the best I can do situation. Enjoy, in a pinch and keep in your bag for those ‘oh shit’ hungry situations. Hopefully, they don’t come around that often, but as they do, you’ll be confidently prepared.

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