Quantcast

Sierra Magazine: Explore, enjoy and protect the planet.
The Green Life: The Taste of Power: Top Ecofriendly Energy Bars

« Los Angeles Has a River? | Main | Daily Roundup: June 22, 2009 »

June 22, 2009

The Taste of Power: Top Ecofriendly Energy Bars

Energy bars have come a long way.  When introduced more than two decades ago, they sacrificed taste for function and were "enjoyed" almost solely by hard-core athletes and hikers. Today, thanks to a boom in competing brands, some are actually worth savoring--while others are still harder to swallow than compressed wood shavings.

To determine the best and worst, 15 Sierra Club staffers blind-tasted and scored bars from 25 companies that work to preserve the environment. Our eaters didn't sugarcoat their opinions: Some bars garnered comments like "looks and tastes like bear scat," "I'd rather have a root canal," "should not be sold to the public," "like sticking your tongue in a mousetrap," and "kitty litter." But other brands pack as much flavor as tSMJA09_EN_Luna hey do nutrients. Here are Sierra's top five in order of how they ranked.

1. LUNA
White Chocolate Macadamia

$1.39 | lunabar.com

Fans called it "simply delicious," "natural tasting," and "not too dense" and noted its "nice crunch" and "tempting" appearance. They detected vanilla, cinnamon, brown sugar, and a "sweet and salty combo," which inspired comparisons to Rice Krispies Treats and popcorn Jelly Bellies. But not everyone loved this bar. "Weird aftertaste," one complained. "A bit commercial," said another.
Luna bars, marketed to women by the makers of Clif Bars, are 70 percent organic. A portion of the company's proceeds goes toward eliminating environmental causes of breast cancer.SMJA09_EN_Olympic

2. OLYMPIC GRANOLA
Almond Chocolate Trail Bar

$2.99 | olympicgranola.com

Raves included "I'd get this for a hike, no doubt," "one of the best," and "I'd eat these every day." Our panel appreciated the "hearty, well-balanced mixture of nuts, oats, seeds, and chocolate"; the "chewy," "light and airy" texture; and that it "looks like food." One naysayer commented that there's "too much going on."
Olympic Granola's corn-syrup-free bars are made of non-genetically-modified ingredients that are grown without chemical sprays.SMJA09_EN_Duck

3. ONE LUCKY DUCK
Chewy Almond Crunch Bar

$6.50 | oneluckyduck.com

Despite being chided as an ugly duckling--one taster said it looked "terrible," and another found its green seeds "off-putting"--One Lucky Duck's taste soared. The "hearty" bar is "well executed" and has "a nice collection of nuts, seeds, honey, and oats accented with raisins," with "just the right amount of moisture, chewiness, and sweetness." "This could be served as a dessert at a nice restaurant," one taster opined.
Handmade in small batches, this pricey bar is from a company that sells only raw, vegan, organic products.SMJA09_EN_Clif

4. CLIF BAR
Cool Mint Chocolate

$1.39 | clifbar.com

"The icing pulls you in and the minty flavor finishes you off," summarized one taster. The bar was called "refreshing," "chewy but not too dense," and "like a Thin Mint." "Caffeine?" someone surmised. (Yes, actually--one of the ingredients is green tea.) Though a few found it "weird" and "too potent," most were "surprised to like this one so much."
Clif Bars are 70 percent organic, and the company engages in many sustainable actions, including diverting most of its waste and using biodiesel for its fleet.SMJA09_EN_Stinger

5. HONEY STINGER
Peanut Butter 'n Honey
$1.49 | honeystinger.com

This "crumbly," "simple-looking bar" was divisive. Those who gave it a thumbs-up said it "tastes almost like candy" with an "excellent flavor," "melt-in-your-mouth peanut butter," and a "nice crunch." But those who didn't like it commented on a "terrible chemical flavor." One taster wondered, "Will the chocolate base melt in the heat?"
Honey Stinger is 100 percent wind powered, and employees get time-off credit for carpooling, bicycling, or walking to work. The company recycles all paper, glass, and metal and maintains a community vegetable garden outside of its building.

Click through the jump to see how the rest placed.

6. BORA BORA BARS 
Cinnamon Oatmeal
wellements.com/boraborabars.asp

7. PRANA BARS
Apricot Pumpkin
pranabars.com

8. CAVEWOMAN BARS
PB&J
(818) 321-1703

9. CLIF BAR
Cranberry Orange Nut Bread
clifbar.com

10. BOBO'S OAT BARS
Strawberry
bobosoatbars.com

11. EDDIE'S ENERGY BARS
Almond Double Chocolate Chip
eddiesenergy.com

12. PALEY BAR
Fruity Nut Evolution
paleybar.com

13. EVERLAST
Dark Chocolate Nut
everlast.com

14. PURE
Apple Cinnamon
thepurebar.com

15. ELEMENT BARS
Oaty and M&Ms
elementbars.com

16. LUNA BAR
Lemon Zest
lunabar.com

17. SHAKTI BAR
Goldenberry Goji

No Web site

18. GO MACRO
Granola Delight

gomacro.com

19. NATURE'S PATH
Banana, Nut, Matcha & Flax

naturespath.com

20. NUGO
Double Dark Chocolate

nugonutrition.com

21. NRG
Chocolate Chip Coconut

nrg-bar.com

22. VEGA
Berry Flavor

sequelnaturals.com/vega

23. MACROLIFE
Macro Greens Apple Lemon Ginger

macrolifenaturals.com

24. 3 BAR
Tropical Tri

tri3bar.com

25. AMAZING GRASS
Chocolate Whole Food Energy

amazinggrass.com

26. YOU BAR
Customized Flavor

youbars.com

27. GOODONYA BAR
Peanut Butter Chocolate

thegoodonyabar.com

28. PRO BAR
Superfood Slam
theprobar.com

--Avital Binshtock & Michael Fox

TrackBack

TrackBack URL for this entry:
http://www.typepad.com/services/trackback/6a00d83451b96069e20115704cb38f970c

Listed below are links to weblogs that reference The Taste of Power: Top Ecofriendly Energy Bars:

User comments or postings reflect the opinions of the responsible contributor only, and do not reflect the viewpoint of the Sierra Club. The Sierra Club does not endorse or guarantee the accuracy of any posting. The Sierra Club accepts no obligation to review every posting, but reserves the right (but not the obligation) to delete postings that may be considered offensive, illegal or inappropriate.

Up to Top


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...