If you love training and you are serious about your exercise, then you know how hard it is to have a proper, balanced diet. The many benefits of protein are also something we bet you are familiar with.
Protein and fiber are the most important parts of many bodybuilders’ pre-competition diet, but they are also essential for people who just want to achieve a toned look and feel great!
We, mere mortals, know how difficult it is to keep in shape, especially in the busy years we live in, where the time we are able to spend thinking about our figure is everything but sufficient. That’s where the great invention called the “protein bar” comes in!
What Exactly is a Protein Bar
The prime protein bars offer enough protein to feed your muscles and keep your blood sugar balanced during busy days. They surely seem like a miracle snack that is both delicious and healthy.
The truth, however, is a bit different since most protein bars on the market, are just disguised candy bars, loaded with empty calories and sugar. They are still tasty, but will not help you maintain low-sugar or muscle mass between workouts.
Finding a bar that is actually a good source of protein and stands out from the gut-busting crowd turns out to be harder than expected. Moreover, everyone looks for something delicious, and the chances of finding a tasty chocolate bar that is not full of sugar are very low…
Still, “low chances” does not equal “no chances” and in today’s article, we are about to introduce you to the top 13 protein bars. These bars contain many grams of fiber and protein, have no hidden calories and sugars, taste great, and are the perfect dietary decision.
Best Protein Bars
Keep on reading, and choose the snack that will help you achieve your goals!
Nature Valley just knows how to keep its customers satisfied! This box of delicious dark chocolate bars looks and tastes so yummy that it is pretty hard to believe it is healthy! With its 10 grams of protein, this bar is the ideal after lunch snack at home, at the office, or at school.
This Nature Valley protein bar will help you get the carbs under control, giving you enough protein to stay satisfied, while still enjoying your food. It has 190 calories per bar and 6 grams of sugar, so it is suitable for all those who try to stay in shape.
What we really liked with these bars is that they are naturally flavored and taste really good. Moreover, the box contains 30 individually wrapped chewy bars and comes at a very affordable price. If you love peanut butter and want to get some on-demand energy quickly, don’t hesitate to give them a try! The bars are also suitable for people with gluten intolerance since they are gluten-free.
We know how hard it can be to deal with the chocolate cravings, especially when you have said to yourself, “You’re not eating carbs any time soon!” We always want what we cannot have, but this Power Crunch triple chocolate protein bar is a real game-changer.
It has a great crunch, tastes terrific, and is a perfect make-do meal in a punch. The greatest part is that it is produced with the highest quality whey hydrolysates.
Some people say that this bar does not give you as much protein as some other traditional protein bars, even though its taste surely makes up for it. However, after we talked with some experts, we can say that 13 grams of protein is more than enough for all those who want to lead a healthy lifestyle.
This protein bar, advertised as a protein wafer cookie, offers a great ratio of fat, carbohydrates, and protein. Each cookie is 40g and has 220 calories.
For such a delicious nutritious cookie, 220 calories sound great, don’t you think? And Trans fat is not something you should be worried about with this protein cookie, and since it also has a very low glycemic response, it is a diabetic-friendly bar.
We agree that “The Best Protein Bar Ever” is a strange name to choose from, but when it summarizes the whole idea behind the product, then why not? Ginspire Nutrition is a company with an interesting philosophy. They do not sell in stores and don’t spend money on advertisements.
They sell directly to the consumer, and their goal number one is to invest all their money in high-quality ingredients so that they can create the top protein bars on the market.
If cookies and cream sound like a combination that just cannot be healthy, this is the perfect proof you are wrong. The bar gives you 20 grams of protein per serving, which guarantees you will feel full longer and boost your metabolism.
Moreover, it is clinically proven that this delicious treasure promotes weight loss activity and helps support normal blood sugar levels.
As we already mentioned, this protein bar snack is not only delicious but good for your health as it is packed with ingredients that are critical to your well-being.
It has algae protein, whey protein crisps, lepticore, egg whites, kale, chia and flaxseed, and fiber. And, come on, 20 grams of protein is definitely impressive!
Well, what can we say… GoMacro is a company that has thought about all of its clients.
Not only is this protein bar vegan and gluten-free, but it also comes 12 different tastes. Yes, you heard us right, twelve! Banana and almond butter, maple sea salt, mocha chocolate chip, blueberry, and cashew butter, and dark chocolate and almonds are just some of the options you have.
These Macrobars are a balanced, plant-based alternative of candy bars that will have various positive effects on your body. They are produced with 100% renewable solar and wind energy and include ingredients taken from growers who follow sustainable farming practices and are organic and non-GMO certified.
The bars have 10 grams of protein or more, depending on the flavor, and are the perfect keto snack that gives you a healthy energy boost. If you’re also trying to reduce your impact on the environment, keep in mind that the company uses labels manufactured with 100% post-consumer waste and compostable trays to package their bars.
Amazing taste and good health are definitely not mutually exclusive, and if you don’t believe us, just try these ONE protein bars. This is one of our favorite suggestions since it is a variety pack that includes four different tastes- almond bliss, birthday cake, peanut butter pie, and maple glazed doughnut. You get 12 protein bars, that not only have tasty-sounding names but are actually delicious!
The excellent taste, though, does not mean they are just another candy bar. No, they are much more than that! Can you imagine a protein bar with 20 grams of protein and 1 gram of sugar? Well, it exists, and you are reading about it right now!
This protein bar is the perfect anytime guilt-free indulgence. It’s low in sugar, gluten-free, and has 4g of fiber. You can eat it at any time of the day wherever you are, and you don’t have to worry about your muscle recovery since 20 grams of protein are more than enough!
This is another twelve-pack that we really loved. We’ve tried the chocolate chip cookie dough taste, so that’s what we are going to discuss. We really enjoyed the fact that this protein bar has 12 grams of protein, which is not that high nor that low, but it actually kept our food cravings at bay.
The protein bar provides essential amino acids and tastes better than most protein bars on the market.
Those of you who want to lose some weight will love how few calories this chocolate chip cookie has- 180. Having in mind that a bar is 45g, this is really impressive. The bar is also gluten-free and low glycemic.
When searching for the finest chocolate protein bar, it is important to find a completely non-GMO product. The problem is that all manufacturers advertise their products as such, and it is pretty much impossible for consumers to find a high-quality product.
After we consulted professionals, we can guarantee, this chocolate chip cookie dough bar is the real deal!
Aloha is a company built on the tenet that you should not sacrifice taste for nutrition. That’s why they’ve created this next suggestion on our list with real, organic ingredients that are naturally packed with everything your body needs: protein, fiber, iron, and healthy fats.
This peanut butter chocolate chip protein bar has 14 grams of protein and only 4 grams of sugar, which makes it the perfect, healthy snack to tide you over.
The protein you get is plant-based, taken from a balanced mix of organic brown rice and organic pumpkin seed to deliver enough energy that will carry you through the whole day without the dreaded sugar crash.
If you love eating healthy, then you are probably familiar with the taste of stevia. Even though it could be very helpful when it comes to cooking, not all people like its taste. These ALOHA organic plant-based protein bars are not only stevia-free, but also gluten-free, soy-free, lactose-free, vegan, and non-GMO.
They are also USDA certified, and Kosher certified.
The simple design of the package must not confuse you. These protein bars are everything but “simple.” They are a great snack for breakfast, lunch, or before or after going to the gym, and do not contain added sugars.
The box contains 12 RXBARs, and even though it may seem a bit expensive, it is more than worth it, trust us! This is an ideal protein bar for any healthy lifestyle.
The bar has 12 grams of protein coming from egg whites, cashew, almonds, and dates, 4-5 grams of fiber, and is 100% gluten-free. The ingredients are clear, clean, and straightforward, and the bars are chewy.
When it comes to sugars, we feel like 13-15 grams of sugar is a bit too much if you are trying to lose weight, but if that’s not your goal, these protein bars might be just what you’re looking for. They come in a huge number of tastes, such as chocolate mint, coffee chocolate, mixed berry, lemon, and vanilla almond, and all of them have a great ingredient list.
This Kind protein bar checks all the boxes, so you can enjoy a yummy, nutritious snack without hesitation. The pack comes with 4 protein bars, and we agree it is a bit more expensive than other packs, but it is still worth it.
Just imagine the taste of smooth peanut butter with crunchy peanuts and honey…yes, heaven, right? Well, this Kind protein bar offers even more- a mix of peanuts, almonds, chicory root fiber, and soy protein isolate. That way, you get to enjoy 12 grams of protein per bar.
This bar is ideal for any time of the day and is a great post-workout treat that is low in sugar and high in protein. We also loved the fact that it does not contain any artificial flavors, sweeteners, or preservatives.
Now, isn’t that a lovely name- ThinkThin? Let’s “think thin” for a second, and take a look at that flavorful suggestion. Packed with protein and all kinds of deliciousness, this protein bar will help you achieve your goals, giving you more than enough energy and nourishment.
Protein is essential for your muscles, nails, skin, and more. It helps you repair the muscle that has been broken down during exercise, and build new muscle, powering you from the inside. This coconut, almond, and chia bar contains 10 grams of protein and 10 grams of fiber. It is good on the stomach, helps support digestion, and has no added sugar.
The bar contains Omega 3 ALA, which is a fatty acid in plant sources that support overall wellness. Antioxidant Vitamin A is also a great plus. As if that were not enough, the bar is gluten and GMO-free, with ingredients produced without genetic engineering.
Pumpkin seeds contain all 9 amino acids you need to feel great and energetic. They are a complete protein, and your body will surely perform at its best if you eat enough of them. Don’t worry, we are not suggesting you eat pumpkin seeds for breakfast! No, we are talking about Health Warrior pumpkin seed protein bar.
This bar is packed with 8grams of protein that is clean and plant-based, with mineral-rich pumpkin seeds as the 1st ingredient. When searching for the greatest protein bars, you need to look for simple, organic ingredients. These bars are full of nutrient-rich superfoods and are 100% gluten-free.
If you love running or you are a fan of heavy lifting, these plant-based Health Warrior protein bars will fuel you with energy. They have 11 grams of carbs, though, so they may not be the perfect addition to your keto or low-carb diet.
Cashew is another food that is high in protein, perfect for protein bars. This Rise lemon cashew bar has 4 ingredients only, which makes it easy to digest. The lack of unnecessary ingredients means the bar is perfect for all athletes or people who just look for a real nutritious surprise.
This Rise bar is 100% vegan and has 15 grams of protein per bar. Pea protein isolate is Paleo friendly and easy to digest and contributes towards a high protein diet. The bar consists of 13 grams of sugar, which is a bit high compared to some other protein bars, but if weight loss is not your goal, don’t hesitate to give it a try.
One bar is 60g and has 280 calories, coming from natural fats, clean carbs, and protein. These Rise bars do not include any cheap fillers and are the ideal replacement for granola and cereal. Just throw it in your bag and go to work, knowing you have the perfect healthy snack.
Crickets may not be the first thing that pops up in your mind when you think about protein bars, but the truth is they are high in complete protein, dietary fiber, unsaturated fat, and essential minerals. Cricket protein is undoubtedly healthy; the question is, can it be delicious? The answer is YES, and these bars by EXO prove it!
These are one of the tastiest and most nutritious protein bars we have ever tried, and the fact that they are last in our list of reviews must not confuse you- they are just as great as the other ones we mentioned. Each bar packs 10g of pure cricket protein and 6 grams of fiber. We didn’t like the fact that there is added sugar, but we guess all the Vitamin D, Potassium, Calcium, and Vitamin B, make up for it.
Crickets have more iron than spinach and more protein than beef, which makes them the ideal ingredient for a protein bar. This EXO bar is gluten-free, soy-free, grain-free, and dairy-free. The bar contains all the essential amino acids your body needs and is a great alternative to your typical unhealthy snack.
How to Decide if a Protein Bar is Healthy?
All protein bars are advertised as healthy and beneficial to your weight loss diet plan. Unfortunately, most bars on the market are full of saturated fat and sugars and actually lack fibers, vitamins, and protein.
The key to selecting a high-quality bar that is not just delicious but also clean and healthy is to search for a nice balance between protein, healthy fat, and fiber. The calories of a healthy protein bar should not be more than 400, and we also don’t recommend more than 20 grams of protein per serving. Try to find a bar with no added sugar.
Ingredients are also very important. Foods like whole grains, nuts, and fruits are a must! In terms of protein sources, whey protein isolate, brown rice protein, and pea protein are the things you should be looking for.
What is The Nutritional and Ingredient Criteria You Need to Follow
There are a few basic things you need to be careful about when choosing the perfect protein bar. Nutrition is one of them. Here are our recommendations:
- Minimum 3 grams of fiber
Bars with more than 10 grams of fiber are usually loaded with isolated fibers that could cause stomach discomfort.
- Minimum 8 grams of protein
Well, since the name of this product is “protein bar,” it just seems strange if it has less than 8g. In order to gain muscle, you must look for a bar with around 20 grams of protein. If your goal is to find a delicious and healthy snack, 7-12 grams of protein is more than enough. Look for bars with brown rice protein, pea protein, or whey protein.
- Maximum 12 grams of sugar
Protein bars are not candy bars. Therefore, the good-quality protein bars consist of no more than 12 grams of sugar. Also, look for a bar that has zero sugar alcohols. Be careful since most bars that have amazing vanilla or chocolate taste, tend to contain more sugar.
When it comes to ingredients, here is what you should look for:
- High-quality protein sources, such as nuts, egg whites, seeds, and grass-fed whey protein.
- Whole-food ingredient list
- Natural sweeteners- always look for natural sources of sugar, such as whole fruit and cane sugar.
- Healthy fats- What your body needs to feel good are healthy fats from seeds and nuts, and not those fillers and binders.
- NO sugar alcohols- Due to the fact that they do not contain many calories, sugar alcohols have risen in popularity these days. However, large quantities of this ingredient can cause gastrointestinal distress; that’s why we recommend searching for a bar that does not contain it.
Protein Bars FAQs
Q. What is the purpose of protein bars?
A. Protein bars are nutrition bars with a high level of protein. They give you energy, just like energy bars, but have less carb content and fewer dietary minerals. They are mostly used by athletes or people that go to the gym regularly since they offer an ideal post-workout meal, help with muscle repair and growth, and have excellent vanilla, chocolate, or other taste.
Q. Can such a bar be used as a meal replacement?
A. Most protein bars produced nowadays are fortified with a large selection of whole food ingredients. Still, they are classified as a “dietary supplement”, so their primary purpose is not to replace meals. If you are in a hurry and you want a quick bite, it is undoubtedly better to have a bar than skipping your meal entirely. Still, just like protein shakes, *meal replacement shakes*, and other products of this type, they are designed as an addition to your diet and not a replacement for one of your tree a day meals.
Q. When should you eat protein bars?
A. Protein bars are suitable for both pre and post workouts since they contain high-quality protein and provide you with enough energy to power your performance and refuel your body after an exhausting workout session.
Q. Can you gain weight while eating protein bars?
A. Elevated protein percentages in the food you eat can aid with your weight loss program. However, the additional calorific intake of most protein bars is too high because of the fats, carbs, and sugars. Therefore, when you eat lots of protein bars, you may actually gain weight.
Our advice is to always read the label since it may state “protein,” but that does not mean that is the only ingredient present.
Q. Is there a limit on how many protein bars a person should eat per day or per week?
A. We wouldn’t recommend that you eat a bar every single day. Yes, it is healthy and tasty, but your body needs a long list of nutrients, and that means different food every day. Besides, there are different alternatives for a healthy snack, such as a handful of walnuts or almonds, or an apple.
Who says healthy food cannot taste good? Protein bars are a healthy addition to your diet, which is super delicious and, at the same time, good for your body. Some protein bars, though, are just candy bars, wrapped in a fancy, “healthy-looking” package, and often they do not give us the results we expect.
For that reason, we have created reviews of the healthiest protein bars on the market that are 100% organic and have the finest ingredients possible.
It doesn’t matter if you look for protein bars for weight loss, protein bars for ketosis, or protein bars for muscle gain, we’ve prepared something for everybody! You no longer have to worry about which protein sources to look for and which protein bars are the best, we have given you all the answers!
If you like this article and find it useful, make sure you check all of our other articles connected to a healthy lifestyle.