Are you in the market for a good, healthy snack food you can count on in a pinch? But what if you’re on the go? How about if you’re a Vegan and product ingredients are extra important? Then read on fellow consumer, I think this Larabar Cookie Dough bar is probably for you!
Hello ladies and gentleman to the first part of our Larabar review series where I go through the various energy bars they have to offer. I judge them based on flavour, texture, nutrition, and quality overall. The market may be full of endless choices for health products and it can quite intimidating, but fret not dear reader. I’ll spend the money and sample the goods first so you can make informed purchases in the future. The following review will also include some amazon links if you want to learn more about the product or see even more reviews.
No more wasted time, let’s go!
First and foremost as I am a big fan of pointing this out, is that the Larabar products have a very clean approach on the nutrition side of things. You’ll see it right on the wrappers and boxes, a personal bit from Lara herself making a statement about committing to quality. Don’t believe it? Check the website – it’s full of great information and pictures. Still a little unsteady after all that? Go right to the black and white and hit up those nutrition labels!
One thing you might notice right away with the Larabar products is that the amount of ingredients is proudly printed right on the packaging. In the case of the Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough flavour, it is only 4 ingredients. Cashews, dates, chocolate chips, and sea salt. And also noting the order of the ingredients, colour me impressed. This way it doesn’t leave much (or any) room for your health to be compromised. I’m no expert but here let’s take a deeper dive:
210 calories per bar? Solid portion of energy to get you a little boost.
11g of fat? Not as bad as you might think, if you are even worried. Thanks to a good clean list of ingredients, most of your fat and calories are coming from a good source. Hence, things like 0 trans fats. Sweet!
28g of carbs? You need that energy to get through your day!
16g of sugar? Some from the chocolate, some from the fruit as well. Different sugars mean different things and the bottom line is that this is not bad as far as sugar goes. Phew!
Some other big points: Vegan, no dairy, no gluten, and non-GMO. That all means different things to different people, but it’s all good stuff you can benefit from – at least just knowing Larabar isn’t trying to feed you junk in the least. So if you have a gluten allergy, you’re a vegan/vegetarian, or intolerant of lactose, then you’re in luck. Thumbs up from me!
Chocolate Chip is generally a pretty safe choice as far as flavours go, and that’s why I grabbed it for the review – because I know others would be thinking that too. Often the simpler the flavour profile, the more people it will attract. Think of things like Vanilla, Chocolate, Plain.. They tend to sell easier than say chocolate caramel brownie with strawberries and sprinkles. That’s right, far too specific to outsell good ol’ chocolate, but I digress.
How does it taste? In a word, fruity. I’m not against the ol’ fruit and nut blends, not even when there’s chocolate involved. But honestly.. I didn’t expect so much of it! For some reason my brain instantly went to cookies, not fruity chocolate chip banana bread or whatever it is. I kept trying it over and over but the one point I continually returned to was: needs more chocolate!
That all being said. It still tastes pretty good, especially knowing how few ingredients were involved. And the aftertaste (which is often the sneaky killer in food reviews) is as mellow and friendly as you can imagine. Also a win if you ask me.
One of the thing I have come to appreciate about the Larabar nutrition bars is that they are just so easy to consume, and that is not only thanks to decent flavours but the texture too. The chocolate chip Larabar that I had was soft and chewy, but not in an awful way (looking at you, toffee!). It is a simple thing to take for granted, that is until you crunch down onto something like a Nature Valley bar and it explodes into a nutty, flaky mess all over your floor.
Soft and chewy > hard and crunchy, any day of the week.
But it’s not all just boring and chewy, for all you hardened crunch lovers! There are nuts, cashews to be specific. It’s not enough to totally throw off the flavour but it does add nicely to the texture. Just gives it a little extra to work with. I guess if I was to compare it to anything, it would be the gosh dang delicious Eat-More candy bars. Similar texture is many ways, but feels (and tastes too) a significantly lot less artificial. Thank goodness for that.
The pricing on these bars is actually not bad at all. Many items in the same categories (nutrition and energy bars) fall in the $1-3 range and I grabbed a few the other day at $1.50 each. Even better than that though is getting them in bulk. I just took a glance at Amazon.com and boxes of various sizes (5, 10, 16) will further the value, putting the bars at about a buck each. Nice!
Got a few links here if you’d like to check them out yourself:
I gotta say, though I have had a few kinds of nutrition bars that I enjoy a bit more than the Chocolate Chip Larabar, the clean and simple approach really rubs me the right way. Too many nutrition products on the market are pumped full of garbage ingredients and chemical names that are impossible to pronounce. That being said, the Larabar company prides themselves in taking a very health conscious approach to their goods.
For better or for worse, I think we could all take a few notes from them and just watch what we consume sometimes. Anyways..
How we gonna score this thing anyway?
So all in all, we have ourselves a dandy little snack that not only has your personal health in mind, but is very convenient and tastes good too. In the end I’d say I’m not only happy with the product, but it gave me a good reason to learn more about the Larabar company and their mission. Knowledge is power!