Continuing to take a closer look at pantry staples, I’m tackling a tough one here, snack bars.
Whether you’re packing them in the kids’ lunch boxes, using them as a meal replacement, or a convenient snack, it’s tough to find truly healthy options. In today’s fast fix food culture, we tend to think of granola bars as healthy – after all, they have GRANOLA in them. But many also contain lots of added sugar, are high in fat and calories and can be low on actual nutrition.
Again, I’ve used the app Fooducate and my family’s taste buds to help me sort the good from the not so good.
GOOD CHOICES (These bars earn a B+)
On average these bars contain whole grains, a good dose of fiber, and are lower in sugar than many of their competitors. Please note, bars by the same maker don’t always score as well as the specific flavor listed here.
- Kashi Pumpkin Spice Flax Crunchy Granola Bar
- Cascadian Farms Organic Crunchy Oats and Cocoa Granola Bars
- KIND Fruit + Nut Bar, Antioxidants, Cranberry and Almond [most KIND bars rate C/B]
- KIND Strong, Honey Mustard Almond Protein Bar [most KIND Strong earn a B+]
- The Simply Bar, Cinnamon Pecan Protein Bar [natural source of iron]
- Trader Joes’ Crunchy Peanut Granola Bars
- LaraBar Cashew Cookie Bar
- Clif Kid Z Bar, Variety Pack
NOT-SO-GOOD CHOICES (scoring Cs and Ds)
- Luna Bars in general get called out for being highly processed.
- PowerBar Protein Bars contain lots of sugar, fat, and the added protein is highly processed.
- Kellogg’s Fiber Plus Protein Bar score D+ due to trans fats, sugar and BHT preservative.
- Fiber One Protein Bar, Caramel Nut get a C- for sugar content, processed, and additives.
When time permits and your pantry is well stocked, making your own snack bars is a great option. Try my new favorite recipe, Feel Good Hearty Granola Bars, from the blog Oh She Glows.