Best Protein Bars: We receive free products and receive commissions through our links. See disclosures page.

If you’re an avid weightlifter, you’ve probably got some protein bars stashed in your gym bag, car, or desk drawer. It’s no secret that protein bars offer a super efficient way to up your protein intake to maximize muscle gains. With so many on the market claiming to be top-notch, it’s difficult to know which are the best protein bars, so our team took it upon ourselves to help you narrow it down.

As a registered dietitian and nutrition writer, I’ve researched and reviewed dozens of the best protein powder and protein bar supplements. Combining my nutrition expertise and the feedback from our trusted Breaking Muscle product testers, many of whom are certified personal trainers, competitive Olympic weightlifters, and other highly credentialed individuals, we’ve created the ultimate guide to help you choose from the 13 best protein bars.

Medical disclaimer: This article is intended for educational and informational purposes only. It is not intended as a substitute for medical advice. For health advice, contact a licensed healthcare provider.

How We Chose the Best Protein Bars

It’s fair to say that we know a thing or two about protein bars. In fact, our team has tested over 40 protein bars, and we’ve done more than just determine if they taste good. We’ve analyzed them and scored them on a scale of one to five (one being the worst, five being the best) based on their nutrient content, texture, price, and other customer reviews to ensure that the protein bars we share are of value to your physical health.

Everyone has unique goals, so we chose several protein bars catering to a variety of dietary preferences and goals. Whether you want to gain muscle mass, lose weight, reduce your sugar intake, or avoid gluten, we hope to help you find the best protein bar for you.

Our Top Picks for the Best Protein Bars

Best Protein Bars Overall: RXBAR


RXBAR

4.7
  • Number of bars per box: 12
  • Cost per bar: $2.41
  • Calories per bar: 180 to 210 calories (varies depending on flavor)
  • Protein per bar: 12 grams
  • Flavors: Banana Chocolate Walnut, Blueberry, Chocolate Chip, Chocolate Hazelnut, Chocolate Sea Salt, Honey Cinnamon Peanut Butter, Mint Chocolate, Mixed Berry, Peanut Butter Chocolate, Strawberry, Vanilla Almond


Check Price

Pros

  • Made with minimal, 100 percent natural ingredients
  • Free of added sugar or artificial sweeteners
  • Low in saturated fat
  • 12 appetizing flavors plus occasional seasonal flavors

Cons

  • Less protein than other bars containing 20 grams or more
  • More expensive than other options that cost less than $2.00 per serving

With RXBARS you know exactly what you’re getting, which is why we consider them the best protein bars overall. The brand’s “No B.S.” promise is apparent in their use of natural, simple ingredients that everyone is familiar with. Think egg whites, cashews, peanuts, and dates — real foods you can find in your own kitchen or pantry. They are minimally processed and never contain artificial colors, flavors, or sweeteners.

RXBARS offer 12 grams of protein, primarily from egg whites and nuts. This is low compared to other protein bars that offer 20 grams or more, but the protein sources are high-quality. Egg whites, in particular, contain a complete amino acid profile, meaning they contain all nine essential amino acids the body doesn’t produce on its own. This is beneficial for optimal muscle building and repair. It can be challenging to eat enough protein, especially if you’re trying to pack on muscle, but RXBARS can still help you reach your protein needs.

This healthy snack is low in saturated fat, which is exceptionally hard to find in a protein bar. Of the seven grams of fat, only one gram is saturated fat. This means the rest is from heart-healthy unsaturated fat. For comparison, other options like the Naked Chocolate Chip Protein Cookies can have up to seven grams of saturated fat, nearly 35 percent of the recommended daily value.

What’s more, RXBARS come in tons of different flavors. There are currently 14 flavors on the company website, two of which are seasonal. RXBARS are sweet, but not too sweet, and don’t leave an artificial aftertaste that other bars with artificial sweeteners sometimes have. One of our product testers, who rated taste 4 out of 5 stars, likes all the flavors but enjoyed the Chocolate Sea Salt and Mint Chocolate bars the best. Breaking Muscle Reviews Editor Amanda Dvorak also enjoys the Blueberry flavor, which she likes breaking into small pieces and mixing into Greek yogurt.

However, we rate the texture of RXBARS at a 4 out of 5 because they are VERY chewy — like stuck in your teeth chewy — which we liked, but realize that won’t be everyone’s preference. They also have chunks of certain ingredients, like cashews and dates, in them, which is great if you like chunky bars but not so much if you favor a smooth-textured protein bar.

Although customers who leave reviews on the RXBAR website rarely express dissatisfaction regarding the company’s customer service, we gave this area 3 out of 5 stars because they don’t accept returns. The company does, however, encourage customers to reach out if they are unhappy with their order so they can “make it right.”

Best Tasting Protein Bars: Naked Nutrition Protein Cookies

Pros

  • Made with 10 grams of fast-absorbing whey protein
  • No artificial sweeteners or flavors
  • Only one gram of sugar per serving
  • Customer-approved taste and texture

Cons

  • Less protein than other bars containing 20 grams or more
  • More expensive than other options that cost less than $2.00 per serving
  • Sweetened with erythritol, a sugar alcohol that may be linked to blood clotting

Naked Nutrition Protein Cookies are a protein-packed treat without the extra sugar, carbs, and fat that still taste great. Whether you’re an athlete or simply trying to improve your health, they are a convenient protein snack option. They’re gluten-free, soy-free, and made with natural ingredients to help boost your nutritional intake.

Naked Cookies contain 10 grams of high-quality whey protein from grass-fed cows. Whey protein has a higher concentration of leucine, a branched-chain amino acid (BCAA) that plays a vital role in activating muscle protein synthesis, making this a great post-workout snack. (1)

They contain an impressive six grams of fiber, 21 percent of the daily value for a 2000-calorie diet. Fiber helps to keep you regular, reduce cholesterol levels, and regulate blood sugar. Fiber also makes you feel fuller for longer, which may aid in weight loss by reducing mindless munching throughout the day. The fiber content in Naked Cookies is on par with RXBARS, which have around five grams of fiber (depending on the flavor), but higher than Orgain Organic Protein Bars, which only have two grams of fiber.

Naked Cookies are sweetened with stevia and erythritol. Erythritol is a sugar alcohol that’s gotten a lot of heat recently for new studies suggesting it’s correlated with blood clotting. However, this needs to be further studied. (2)

Customers who leave reviews on the Naked Nutrition website rave about the taste and texture of these protein cookies. One customer says, “I expected a dry and crumbly texture but to my surprise, they are on the soft side and chewy. I would definitely buy them again!” Another writes, “Love this cookie. It’s like you’re eating a home-baked cookie.”

Best Protein Bars for Weight Loss: Legion Protein Bar


Legion Protein Bars

4.0
  • Number of bars per box: 12
  • Cost per bar: $3.33
  • Calories per bar: 250 calories
  • Protein per bar: 20 grams
  • Flavors: Blueberry Muffin, Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough, Chocolate Peanut Butter


Check Price

Pros

  • Made with 20 grams of high-quality protein
  • No artificial sweeteners, flavors, or colors
  • High fiber content with eight grams per serving
  • Labdoor tested for purity

Cons

  • More expensive than other options that cost less than $2.00 per serving
  • Includes added sugar
  • Sweetened with erythritol, a sugar alcohol that may be linked to blood clotting

Legion Protein Bars are a high-protein, low-sugar snack that can support muscle building and weight loss. They’re GMO, gluten, and soy-free, and always made with 100% natural ingredients.

We love the macro breakdown of these bars. They’re high in protein compared to other protein bars with less than 15 grams per serving. The 20 grams of protein comes from a blend of whey concentrate, milk protein isolate, and whey isolate. For athletes, it’s ideal to consume between 20 to 40 grams of protein every 3-4 hours to build muscle mass and reduce body fat. (3)

High protein snacks, like Legion Protein Bars, support weight loss goals for several reasons. Protein has a higher thermic effect of food (TEF) than carbs and fat, meaning your body burns more calories digesting it. Protein promotes muscle growth, which boosts metabolism, so you burn more calories throughout the day. Lastly, protein and fiber (eight grams in Legion Protein Bars) are satiating, and you might eat less overall.

Our expert product testers approved of most of the flavors they tried, rating taste 4 out of 5 stars. One tester thought the chocolate flavor in the chocolate chip cookie dough bar was lacking and enjoyed the stronger flavors of the chocolate peanut butter bar more.

Regarding texture, our team wasn’t as impressed. One tester said it looked like it would be a moist, chewy bar but was a little drier than I expected and it got stuck in her teeth. Bottom line, it was denser than expected, which means lots of chewing.

Legion gets extra recognition for their superb return policy. Not satisfied with your protein bars? No worries, they will give you a full refund, AND they don’t even ask you to send it back.

RELATED: Best Creatine Supplements For Building Muscle, Cutting, and More

Best Protein Bars for Muscle Gain: Jacked Factory Authentic Bar


Jacked Factory Authentic Bars

4.2
  • Number of bars per box: 12
  • Cost per bar: $2.75
  • Calories per bar: 280 calories
  • Protein per bar: 15 to 16 grams
  • Flavors: Birthday Cake, Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough, Cookie Crumble, Kitchen Sink, Peanut Butter Candy


Check Price

Pros

  • Made with 15 to 16 grams of whey protein isolate
  • No artificial sweeteners
  • Great taste and texture

Cons

  • Contains a high added sugar content
  • More expensive than other options that cost less than $2.00 per serving

Jacked Factory Authentic Bars are made with natural ingredients and contain no artificial sweeteners or sugar alcohols. They’re packed with whey protein isolate, intended to help you meet increased protein needs for the muscle gains you’re after.

Each Authentic Bar offers 15 to 16 grams of whey protein isolate. Whey isolate has been heavily filtered to remove lactose and fat, resulting in a higher protein product containing at least 90 percent protein. (4) It’s a quality protein source, ideal for those wanting to increase their muscle mass. It’s also noteworthy because other protein bars, such as the Pure Protein bars, use a blend of whey concentrate and whey isolate in their formulas.

Even with the high protein content of this bar, our team rated the nutrition content 2 out of 5 stars due to all the added sugar. Needless to say, 17 grams of added sugar is a lot. For reference, The Dietary Guidelines for Americans recommends limiting added sugar to no more than 10 percent of your total daily calorie intake. For someone consuming 2,000 calories, that’s 50 grams per day. Too much added sugar can increase blood glucose and promote weight gain.

Our team loved the taste and texture of Authentic Bars, rating these a 5 out of 5. One of our testers who tried the Peanut Butter Candy flavor says that if you’re a peanut butter lover, you’ll die for this flavor. She was also able to taste the honey, which is used as a sweetener, but couldn’t detect any artificial tastes.

A lot of protein bars tend to have a chalky, tough texture, but not these. Authentic bars are soft, moist, and just a little crumbly. They’re a high-protein sweet treat for those who value great taste and protein quality.

RELATED: Best Mass Gainers

Best Vegan Protein Bars: Orgain Protein Bar


Orgain Organic Protein Bar

4.6
  • Number of bars per box: 12
  • Cost per bar: $1.67
  • Calories per bar: 150 calories
  • Protein per bar: 10 grams
  • Flavors: Chocolate Brownie, Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough, Chocolate Coconut, Peanut Butter, Peanut Butter Chocolate Chunk, S’Mores


Check Price

Pros

  • USDA Organic
  • Only 150 calories
  • More affordable than many other bars that cost more than $2.00 per serving

Cons

  • Contains added sugar
  • Sweetened with erythritol, a sugar alcohol that may be linked to blood clotting
  • Less protein than other bars containing 20 grams or more

Orgain protein bars are made with organic, vegan ingredients and only contain 150 calories per serving. These gluten, soy, and dairy-free bars are convenient to take with you on the go, after a workout, or just as a mid-afternoon snack.

Orgain’s snack-sized plant-based protein bars offer 10 grams of plant protein from a blend of brown rice, peas, and chia seeds. Individually, these sources lack one or more essential amino acids, but when combined, they provide the complete amino acid profile, which is optimal for muscle growth and repair.

We rated nutrition content at a 3.5 out of 5. The protein content could be slightly higher, and we’d like it to have less added sugar — though at six grams, it’s still less than the 17 grams of added sugar you’ll find in bars like the Jacked Factory Authentic Bars. However, we appreciate that these are lower in saturated fat than several other bars we tested (1.5 grams versus 3.5 to seven, respectively).

One of our team members tried the Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough and really liked the flavor and texture, rating these at a 5 out of 5. While the ultra-condensed texture suited the cookie dough flavor, it might not pair as well with the other options.

If you’re unhappy with your order, returns and exchanges are free. Orgain covers the return cost and provides a prepaid return shipping label. No extra fees are involved, so we gave customer service a 5 out of 5.

RELATED: Best Pea Protein Powder

Best Low-Carb Protein Bars: BHU Keto Protein Bars

Pros

  • USDA Organic
  • Eight flavor options
  • Only one gram of net carbs
  • No added sugar

Cons

  • More expensive than other bars that cost less than $2.00 per serving
  • Less protein than other bars containing 20 grams or more

The BHU Keto Protein Bar is a USDA organic, vegan snack made without artificial sweeteners or flavors. Made to fit into the keto diet, they’re super low in net carbs, with moderate amounts of fat and protein. These bars need to be refrigerated to maintain their texture and freshness.

Although this protein bar contains 17 grams of total carbs, 16 are from fiber, resulting in only one gram of net carbs. Net carbs exclude fiber since fiber is indigestible and passes through the body mostly intact. Fiber helps to promote regular bowel movements, reduce cholesterol, and maintain healthy blood sugar levels.

Furthermore, BHU Keto Protein Bars aren’t made with any added sugar. Instead, they’re sweetened with monk fruit extract.

Our Breaking Muscle team was impressed with the overall carb content of this bar but rated the nutrient content at a 3.5 out of 5. The protein content is lower than many other bars we tested — some flavors only have six grams of protein, while most of the other options on our list have at least 12 grams of protein. Also, because they’re keto, they’re higher in saturated fat (eight to nine grams), which could deter individuals monitoring their fat intake.

Taste was highly rated by our expert tester, who gave it a 5 out of 5 and said the bars were super easy to eat and tasted like dessert without being too sweet. The texture, which we also rated at a 5 out of 5, is soft and doughy — almost buttery to bite into!

Best Protein Bars for Diabetics: Perfect Keto Bar  


Perfect Keto Bars

4.1
  • Number of bars per box: 12
  • Cost per bar: $3.33
  • Calories per bar: 210 to 240 calories
  • Protein per bar: 10 to 13 grams
  • Flavors: Almond Butter Brownie, Banana Bread, Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough, Cinnamon Roll, Lemon Poppyseed, Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip, Salted Caramel


Check Price

Pros

  • Only two to three grams of net carbs
  • No added sugar
  • High fiber content

Cons

  • More expensive than other bars that cost less than $2.00 per serving
  • Less protein than other bars containing 20 grams or more

Perfect Keto Bars are made with a simple list of high-quality real food ingredients. They’re low in net carbs and a good source of protein and fiber, which could help regulate blood sugar in those with type 2 diabetes.

Protein and fiber slow digestion and the absorption of nutrients, preventing spikes in blood sugar. Several Perfect Keto Bar flavors contain up to nine grams of fiber, providing 32 percent of the daily value for a 2,000-calorie diet. Each bar contains 10-13 grams of protein from almond butter, high-quality collagen, and cashews.

Since these are keto bars, they contain higher amounts of fat, with 17 to 18 grams per serving. For comparison, most protein bars on this list have around 10 grams of fat. Some, like the Orgain Protein Bars, only have five grams of fat. Research shows that low-carb diets and very low-carb diets (keto) are effective for improving blood sugar control and reducing body weight in individuals with type 2 diabetes. (4)

RELATED: The Top 10 Benefits of Ketogenic Diets

It’s important to note that a keto diet may not be appropriate for everyone. Diabetes is linked with a higher risk of heart disease, and some may need to avoid the increased fat content of the keto diet. Keto diets are also difficult to sustain. Talk with your healthcare provider or registered dietitian nutritionist for personalized nutrition advice.

Our staff tried the Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip flavor and rated the taste at a 4.5 out of 5. The peanut butter flavor is strong, with bits of chocolate chips and peanuts throughout. If you like peanut butter, this flavor was made for you. The team rated texture at a 5 out of 5 and liked how these bars almost melt in your mouth.

The company offers a 30-day return policy, even for opened items. The Perfect Keto website includes an expansive FAQ section as well as a contact form, earning customer service a rating of 4 out of 5.

Best Protein Bars for Women: MyProtein Layered Bar


MyProtein Layered Protein Bar

3.8
  • Number of bars per box: 12
  • Cost per bar: $3.33
  • Calories per bar: 220 calories
  • Protein per bar: 20 grams
  • Flavors: Birthday Cake, Chocolate Coconut, Cookie and Cream


Check Price

Pros

  • Made with 20 grams of high-quality protein
  • Customer-approved taste and texture
  • Available to buy in single servings if you want a sample

Cons

  • More expensive than other bars that cost less than $2.00 per serving
  • Contains added sugar
  • Contains a high saturated fat content

MyProtein Layered Bars are unique for their five appetizing layers that add to the product’s taste and texture. They’re protein-rich to help women hit their macros, increase their metabolism, and gain lean muscle.

With 20 grams of protein, these bars have a higher protein content than several other bars on our list, like RXBARS, which only have 12 grams of protein. The combined whey, soy, and milk protein may help you feel fuller for longer and reduce unnecessary snacking.

Additionally, they contain moderate amounts of carbs (17 grams) and are high in saturated fat (seven grams). These contribute to seven and 35 percent of the daily value, respectively.

They’re sweetened primarily with sugar alcohols but also contain three grams of added sugar. Customer reviews regarding taste on the MyProtein website are positive. One person says, “Really like these protein bars! I got the cookies and cream and birthday cake, both had great flavor. They don’t have that weird taste or texture that a lot of protein bars have, however, there is that slight taste that you know the protein is there but not overpowering.”

At $3.33 per bar, these are considerably pricier than other bars that cost less than $2.00. However, if you’re looking for a high-protein bar that doesn’t require refrigeration, they could be worth it.

Best Low-Sugar Protein Bars: Bulletproof Protein Crisp Bar


Bulletproof Protein Crisp Bar

4.0
  • Number of bars per box: 12
  • Cost per bar: $3.00
  • Calories per bar: 170 calories
  • Protein per bar: 11 grams
  • Flavors: Chocolate Mint Chip, Coconut Chocolate Chip, Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip, Salted Caramel


Check Price

Pros

  • No added sugar
  • Only 170 calories per bar
  • Only three to four grams of net carbs
  • High fiber content

Cons

  • More expensive than other bars that cost less than $2.00 per serving
  • Sweetened with erythritol, a sugar alcohol that may be linked to blood clotting

The Bulletproof Protein Crisp Bars pack a crunch with protein crisps and nut pieces folded into them. These gluten-free, dairy-free, and keto-friendly bars provide a boost of protein on the go.

Most impressively, they’re made with only one gram of sugar, one gram of sugar alcohols, and no added sugar. Added sugar is commonly found in protein bars and supplements. It can contribute to excess calories, weight gain, and increased blood sugar. Bars free of added sugar, like the Bulletproof Protein Crisp Bars, use natural sweeteners like stevia and monk fruit to enhance the flavor instead.

Each bar provides 11 grams of protein, primarily from pea protein, one of the few plant-based proteins that boast all nine essential amino acids important for muscle repair and growth. They include 14 to 15 grams of carbs, most of which come from fiber, resulting in only three to four grams of net carbs.

Our Breaking Muscle product tester rated the taste of the peanut butter chocolate chip bar at a solid 4 out of 5 and said there was definitely peanut butter with just a hint of the chocolate chip. She said it tasted like a “healthy” peanut butter bar but wasn’t quite as flavorful as what you’d get in something loaded with fat and sugar.

Don’t let the name fool you — these bars are not crunchy. They have a chewy texture with crispy bits throughout. Overall, our team enjoyed the taste and texture of these bars but would like the amount of protein to be higher.

RELATED: Best BCAA Supplements

Best Keto Protein Bars: Perfect Keto Bar  


Perfect Keto Bars

4.1
  • Number of bars per box: 12
  • Cost per bar: $3.33
  • Calories per bar: 210 to 240 calories
  • Protein per bar: 10 to 13 grams
  • Flavors: Almond Butter Brownie, Banana Bread, Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough, Cinnamon Roll, Lemon Poppyseed, Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip, Salted Caramel


Check Price

Pros

  • Only two to three grams of net carbs
  • No added sugar
  • Contain a high fiber content

Cons

  • More expensive than other bars that cost less than $2.00 per serving
  • Less protein than other bars containing 20 grams or more

Perfect Keto Bars provide a high-fat, low-net-carb snack that will help you maintain a state of ketosis. They’re full of quality ingredients that provide long-term energy to fuel your next workout. Perfect Keto Bars are free of added sugar, dairy, and soy, making them appropriate for a variety of dietary needs.

Since these are keto bars, they’re high-fat, with 17 to 18 grams per serving. The fat content comes from peanut butter, peanuts, and MCT oil. MCT oil offers a source of fat that’s easily digested, absorbed, and transported throughout the body for a quick energy source.

Several of the Perfect Keto Bar flavors are high in fiber, containing up to nine grams per serving and 32 percent of the daily value. The high-fiber content makes these bars super low in net carbs, with only two to three grams in each bar. Net carbs are the carbs available for the body to convert to energy. Net carbs need to remain low to maintain ketosis, so the body uses fat for energy instead of carbs.

Each bar contains 10 to 13 grams of protein from collagen, almond butter, and cashews. Collagen, which makes up 30 percent of the body’s protein, may help improve skin elasticity and bone health.

One of our team members tested the peanut butter chocolate chip flavor and rated the taste at a 4.5 out of 5. They found them to have a potent peanut butter taste, with bits of chocolate chips and peanuts throughout. The team rated the texture at a 5 out of 5 and appreciated their soft, buttery texture.

Best High-Protein Bars: MET-Rx Big 100 Bar


MET-Rx Big 100 Bar

3.7
  • Number of bars per box: Nine
  • Cost per bar: $3.02
  • Calories per bar: 380 calories
  • Protein per bar: 30 to 32 grams
  • Flavors: Birthday Cake, Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough, Crispy Apple Pie, Fruity Cereal Crunch, Jelly Donut Crunch Bar, Peanut Butter, Peanut Butter Pretzel


Check Price

Pros

  • A remarkable 30 to 32 grams of protein
  • Contains 18 to 19 vitamins and minerals
  • Seven flavor options to choose from

Cons

  • More expensive than other bars that cost less than $2.00 per serving
  • High in added sugar

MET-Rx Big 100 Bars are marketed as high-protein, fuel-providing, meal replacement bars. They’re higher in both calories and protein than the other bars on our list and are formulated to offer complete hunger satisfaction.

The proprietary blend, METAMYOSYN, contains soy protein, milk protein, whey protein, and egg whites. Whey protein rapidly increases blood amino acid levels for up to three hours. Casein (milk protein) is more slowly absorbed and increases blood amino acid levels for up to seven hours. (6) This means your muscles get a quick supply of amino acids and continue to absorb amino acids for hours after.

Each bar contains 380 calories, with 172 of those coming from the 43 grams of carbs. They’re high in sugar (22 grams), most of which is added sugar (21 grams). The empty calories in added sugar contribute to weight gain, and while the sugar will give you a quick energy burst, you’ll likely crash later on.

Unlike most other protein bars, MET-Rx bars are packed with 18 to 19 different vitamins and minerals. They contain 40 percent of the daily value of vitamins A and C, which support immune health and vision. They’re also a good source of B vitamins (thiamine, niacin, riboflavin), important for energy metabolism.

Amazon customers rate MET-Rx Big 100 Bars at a 4.2 out of 5. Regarding taste, reviews are mixed. One customer says, “I prefer the Cookie Crunch, PB Pretzel, and Vanilla Caramel Churro. In that order. The Fruity Cereal flavor reminds me of Fruity Pebbles except it has a strange after-taste. It’s like an overpowering vitamin C kind of taste, I’m not sure how to describe it. They’re okay if you don’t have any other flavor options. The worst is the green Apple Cinnamon bar.” Reviews vary significantly based on flavor.

Best Low-Calorie Protein Bars: Onnit Protein Bites


Onnit Protein Bites

4.4
  • Number of bars per box: 24
  • Cost per bar: $1.67
  • Calories per bar: 120 to 150 calories
  • Protein per bar: Seven to nine grams
  • Flavors: Chocolate Coconut Cashew, Chocolate Cookie Dough, Chocolate Peanut Butter, Cookies and Cream, S’mores


Check Price

Pros

  • Only 120 to 150 calories per bar, depending on the flavor
  • Good source of fiber
  • Made with more than 60 plant foods
  • More affordable than other bars that cost more than $2.00

Cons

  • Less protein than other bars containing 20 grams or more
  • Includes added sugar

Onnit Protein Bites provide a quick protein boost when you’re on the go or just craving a sweet bite. Each snack-sized bar only contains 120 to 150 calories, compared with bars like MET-Rx or RXBARS, which have anywhere from 180 to 380 calories each. The lower calorie content in Onnit Protein Bites can make it easier to stick to your daily calorie goals.

Onnit Protein Bites are unique because they’re packed with over 60 superfoods, including avocado, sweet potato, seaweed, and passion fruit, that contribute to their fiber and mineral content.

With six grams of fiber, meeting 21 percent of the daily value, these are high-fiber bars. They’ll improve satiety and may aid in weight loss.

Each bite contains seven to nine grams of protein from grass-fed milk and whey protein. While the protein content could be higher, these are more of a light snack than a full-sized protein bar or meal replacement bar.

Our team rated the taste of these at a 5 out of 5. One product tester says they are delicious and taste like candy bars. At least half a dozen people tried them, and all rated these 10/10. We especially liked the Cookies and Cream flavor. We also highly approve of the texture, which is super chewy.

Best Gluten-Free Protein Bars: Pure Protein Gluten-Free Bar


Pure Protein Bars

4.3
  • Number of bars per box: 12
  • Cost per bar: $1.34
  • Calories per bar: 190 calories
  • Protein per bar: 20 to 21 grams
  • Flavors: Birthday Cake, Chewy Chocolate Chip, Chocolate Mint Cookie, Chocolate Peanut Caramel, Chocolate Peanut Butter, Cookies and Cream, Lemon Cake


Check Price

Pros

  • Contains 20 grams of high-quality protein
  • Only two grams of sugar
  • More affordable than other bars that cost more than $2.00

Cons

  • Low fiber content
  • Includes artificial sweeteners

Pure Protein Bars are high-protein, low-sugar snacks made with gluten-free ingredients. They’re suitable for those with celiac disease or gluten sensitivity who need to avoid products made with wheat, rye, and barley.

The 20 to 21 grams of protein comes from a blend of whey, milk, and soy protein, as well as collagen. The whey, milk, and soy protein provide the muscle with the amino acids needed to repair, maintain, and build muscle mass. The collagen supports skin, hair, and bone health. Each bar only contains 190 calories, but with all the protein you’ll likely still feel full and satisfied.

These low-sugar bars only include two grams of sugar and less than one gram of added sugar. We consider this a plus, as other protein bars we’ve tried have over 20 grams of sugar. Sugar alcohols, which are natural sweeteners, give these bars flavor without contributing to their calorie content. Sucralose, an artificial sweetener, is also included in Pure Protein bars and is approved by the FDA and regarded as safe for consumption in food. (7)

One of our staff members who tested Pure Protein Bars says they are probably the most candy-bar-like bars she’s ever had and compared the texture to that of a Snickers or Milky Way bar. She noted that they were a little chalky but not as bad as other protein bars.

At only $1.34 per bar, these are far more affordable than other options that cost more than $2.00 per serving. They’re gluten-free, protein-rich, and budget-friendly.

Benefits of Protein Bars

You’re not always in the right place to make your favorite protein shake, but protein bars are a convenient and portable source of nutrition. They offer several benefits when incorporated into a balanced diet:

  • Convenient protein source: Simply keep a stash in your bag or office for a quick source of protein and energy.
  • Post-workout snack: Easy way to fuel your muscles with amino acids post-workout for improved muscle gains and recovery.
  • Appetite control: High-protein snacks help improve satiety, so you’re less likely to consume excess calories throughout the day.
  • Weight loss: Protein bars can be used as a tool to lose weight when combined with resistance training and a healthy diet. Increased protein intake can bolster muscle growth and improve metabolism, so you burn more calories.
  • Balanced macros: May help you increase your protein intake and hit your macros for better athletic performance and results.

What To Look For in a Protein Bar

When choosing a protein bar, consider the following factors to ensure it aligns with your nutritional needs and health goals.

Nutritional Information

Look for protein bars with 10 to 30 grams of protein, depending on your personal needs. If your goal is to gain muscle mass, look for bars with 20 to 30 grams of protein per serving. If you want a boost of protein and energy for an in-between meal snack, 10 to 20 grams is likely appropriate.

Regarding carbohydrates, aim for fiber-rich protein bars with more than five percent of the daily value for a 2,000-calorie diet. Choose bars with less than five grams of sugar and ideally no added sugar. Natural sugar comes from ingredients that provide other nutrients like fiber, whereas added sugar adds empty calories.

Most protein bars contain moderate to high amounts of saturated fat. Try to choose bars with five percent or less of the daily value. The RXBAR is a good example, with only one gram of saturated fat. Consuming too much saturated fat can contribute to rising cholesterol levels over time.

Ingredients

Look for bars made with minimal, whole-food ingredients like nuts, seeds, egg whites, and fruit. Also, scan the ingredients list for high-quality protein sources like whey, casein, soy, or pea protein. Lastly, opt for protein bars with natural sweeteners like stevia or monk fruit. Sugar alcohols are natural sweeteners, but consuming too much can cause uncomfortable bloating, gas, or even diarrhea.

Flavors

Look for protein bars that offer the flavors and texture you enjoy. Some protein bars taste chalky, dry, and have a bad aftertaste, so be sure to read customer reviews before purchasing. Look for protein bars available in multiple flavors to avoid getting burned out on the same one.

Final Thoughts

Protein bars offer a convenient source of protein and energy to fuel your workout or curb your hunger. When looking for the best protein bars, consider the protein content, ingredients, taste, texture, and sugar content. Choose bars based on your personal dietary needs and goals. Whether you want to get ripped or snack healthier, there’s a protein bar out there for you.

Best Protein Bars: Side-by-Side Comparison

Best Protein Bars Overall

Description:

  • Number of bars per box: 12
  • Cost per bar: $2.41
  • Calories per bar: 180 to 210 calories (varies depending on flavor)
  • Protein per bar: 12 grams
  • Flavors: Banana Chocolate Walnut, Blueberry, Chocolate Chip, Chocolate Hazelnut, Chocolate Sea Salt, Honey Cinnamon Peanut Butter, Mint Chocolate, Mixed Berry, Peanut Butter Chocolate, Strawberry, Vanilla Almond

Best Tasting Protein Bars

Description:

  • Number of bars per box: 12
  • Cost per bar: $2.50
  • Calories per bar: 190 calories
  • Protein per bar: 10 grams
  • Flavors: Chocolate Chip, Oatmeal Raisin, Sugar Cookies

Best Protein Bars for Weight Loss

Description:

  • Number of bars per box: 12
  • Cost per bar: $3.33
  • Calories per bar: 250 calories
  • Protein per bar: 20 grams
  • Flavors: Blueberry Muffin, Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough, Chocolate Peanut Butter

Best Protein Bars for Muscle Gain

Description:

  • Number of bars per box: 12
  • Cost per bar: $2.75
  • Calories per bar: 280 calories
  • Protein per bar: 15 to 16 grams
  • Flavors: Birthday Cake, Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough, Cookie Crumble, Kitchen Sink, Peanut Butter Candy

Best Vegan
Protein Bars

Description:

  • Number of bars per box: 12
  • Cost per bar: $1.67
  • Calories per bar: 150 calories
  • Protein per bar: 10 grams
  • Flavors: Chocolate Brownie, Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough, Chocolate Coconut, Peanut Butter, Peanut Butter Chocolate Chunk, S’Mores

Best Low-Carb Protein Bars

Description:

  • Number of bars per box: 12
  • Cost per bar: $2.67
  • Calories per bar: 250 calories
  • Protein per bar: Six to 13 grams
  • Flavors: Caramel Peanut, Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough, Chocolate Coconut, Chocolate Mint, Double Dark Chocolate, Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip, Snickerdoodle, White Chocolate Macadamia

Best Protein Bars for Diabetics

Description:

  • Number of bars per box: 12
  • Cost per bar: $3.33
  • Calories per bar: 210 to 240 calories
  • Protein per bar: 10 to 13 grams
  • Flavors: Almond Butter Brownie, Banana Bread, Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough, Cinnamon Roll, Lemon Poppyseed, Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip, Salted Caramel

Best Protein Bars for Women

Description:

  • Number of bars per box: 12
  • Cost per bar: $3.33
  • Calories per bar: 220 calories
  • Protein per bar: 20 grams
  • Flavors: Birthday Cake, Chocolate Coconut, Cookie and Cream

Best Low-Sugar Protein Bars

Description:

  • Number of bars per box: 12
  • Cost per bar: $3.00
  • Calories per bar: 170 calories
  • Protein per bar: 11 grams
  • Flavors: Chocolate Mint Chip, Coconut Chocolate Chip, Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip, Salted Caramel

Best High-Protein
Bars

Description:

  • Number of bars per box: Nine
  • Cost per bar: $3.02
  • Calories per bar: 380 calories
  • Protein per bar: 30 to 32 grams
  • Flavors: Birthday Cake, Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough, Crispy Apple Pie, Fruity Cereal Crunch, Jelly Donut Crunch Bar, Peanut Butter, Peanut Butter Pretzel

Best Low-Calorie Protein Bars

Description:

  • Number of bars per box: 24
  • Cost per bar: $1.67
  • Calories per bar: 120 to 150 calories
  • Protein per bar: Seven to nine grams
  • Flavors: Chocolate Coconut Cashew, Chocolate Cookie Dough, Chocolate Peanut Butter, Cookies and Cream, S’mores

Best Gluten-Free Protein Bars

Description:

  • Number of bars per box: 12
  • Cost per bar: $1.34
  • Calories per bar: 190 calories
  • Protein per bar: 20 to 21 grams
  • Flavors: Birthday Cake, Chewy Chocolate Chip, Chocolate Mint Cookie, Chocolate Peanut Caramel, Chocolate Peanut Butter, Cookies and Cream, Lemon Cake

FAQs

Which brand has the best protein bars?

Consider Naked Nutrition when shopping for a protein bar. Naked Nutrition Protein Cookies are gluten-free, soy-free, and made with natural ingredients to help boost your nutritional intake. Each serving offers six grams of fiber, 10 grams of protein, and only one gram of sugar.

What is the healthiest protein bar to eat?

We recommend RXBARS because they’re minimally processed and never contain artificial colors, flavors, or sweeteners. Additionally, they’re low in saturated fat and provide 12 grams of protein.

Is it OK to eat a protein bar every day?

Many protein bars are suitable to eat daily, but it depends on your health needs and the protein bar’s nutritional content. For example, eating a bar with high amounts of saturated fat or added sugar may not be appropriate for those with certain medical conditions.

How do I choose the best protein bars?

Aim to choose protein bars that have 10 to 30 grams of protein, are high in fiber, and are low in saturated fat and added sugar.

Research

  1. Tang JE, Moore DR, Kujbida GW, Tarnopolsky MA, Phillips SM. Ingestion of whey hydrolysate, casein, or soy protein isolate: effects on mixed muscle protein synthesis at rest and following resistance exercise in young men. J Appl Physiol (1985). 2009;107(3):987-992. doi:10.1152/japplphysiol.00076.2009
  2. Witkowski M, Nemet I, Alamri H, et al. The artificial sweetener erythritol and cardiovascular event risk. Nat Med. 2023;29(3):710-718. doi:10.1038/s41591-023-02223-9
  3. Jäger R, Kerksick CM, Campbell BI, et al. International Society of Sports Nutrition Position Stand: protein and exercise. J Int Soc Sports Nutr. 2017;14:20. Published 2017 Jun 20. doi:10.1186/s12970-017-0177-8
  4. Madureira AR, Pereira CI, Gomes AMP, Pintado ME, Xavier Malcata F. Bovine whey proteins – Overview on their main biological properties. Food Res Int. 2007;40(10):1197-1211. doi:10.1016/j.foodres.2007.07.005
  5. Bolla AM, Caretto A, Laurenzi A, Scavini M, Piemonti L. Low-Carb and Ketogenic Diets in Type 1 and Type 2 Diabetes. Nutrients. 2019;11(5):962. Published 2019 Apr 26. doi:10.3390/nu11050962
  6. Antonio J, Ellerbroek A, Peacock C, Silver T. Casein Protein Supplementation in Trained Men and Women: Morning versus Evening. Int J Exerc Sci. 2017;10(3):479-486. Published 2017 May 1.
  7. Aspartame and other Sweeteners in Food. U.S. Food and Drug Administration. Updated July 14, 2023. Accessed September 15, 2023.

Source link

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here