What is the Best Energy Bar? An Energy Bar Taste Test

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Last week, the staff from OutdoorPros.com set out to define the impossible by answering the question “What is the best energy bar on the market.” In an unscientific test we went to the local grocery store and selected 11 different kind of energy bars, you can see the list below.

  • Marathon Energy Bar Crunchy Multi-Grain
  • Zone Perfect Classic Fudge Graham
  • Kashi Go Lean Crunchy Chocolate Almond
  • PowerBar Triple Threat Caramel Peanut Fusion
  • PowerBar Harvest Toffee Chocolate Chip
  • Clif Bar Chocolate Chip
  • Luna Caramel Nut Brownie
  • Clif Bar Chocolate Brownie
  • PowerBar Performance Energy Cookies & Cream
  • Odwalla Original Choco-walla
  • Balance Bar Double Chocolate Brownie

IMG 9408 What is the Best Energy Bar? An Energy Bar Taste Test

From there we cut the bars up into pieces and placed them on randomly numbered plates, then asked the staff to try each one and select which were their top five were, as well as which one was the worst. What followed was a series of sampling, a lot of energy (hopefully) and a collection of statistics and comments on what was the best energy bar on the market (according to the staff at OutdoorPros.com).

IMG 9469 What is the Best Energy Bar? An Energy Bar Taste Test

IMG 9453 What is the Best Energy Bar? An Energy Bar Taste Test

Here are the bars we used and the results:

The Top Five Energy Bars

IMG 9478 What is the Best Energy Bar? An Energy Bar Taste Test

1) Marathon Energy Bar Crunchy Multi-Grain

  • Ounces 1.23
  • Grams   34.9
  • Serving Size 1 Bar
  • Calories Per Serving  140
  • Protien 5g
  • Notes    Powered by Snickers, Snack Size
  • Award – #1 Bar

Comments:

  • It had a nice beginning taste and not too hard to chew, as well as a pleasant after taste.
  • This one had the best flavor.
  • Perfect & Delicious!  Nice texture as well as a great blend of peanut butter while not making it too chalky or dry.
  • Great taste, caramel and nuts, good consistency, smaller size
  • Candy bar taste which makes it a great choice
  • Perfect sticky peanut butter texture with a crunchy base. Way too good to be healthy for you. This was bumped to number two because I feel that the peanut butter could get melty and pretty messy.
  • Tastes like I’m eating candy
  • Tastes like a payday! Nothing wrong with that!!!
  • This has a similar appearance as the candy bar Pay Day, with the only difference being the color. When you look at it you think candy bar, not healthy energy bar. The taste of this bar also reminded me of a candy bar.
  • Peanut butter and chocolate make a gummy but solid combo
  • Good flavor
  • Not bad tasting and looked good
  • Nice taste, good texture, was surprised to like the peanut butter flavor

2) Zone Perfect Classic Fudge Graham

  • Ounces 1.76
  • Grams   50
  • Serving Size  1 Bar
  • Calories Per Serving  210
  • Protien 14g
  • Notes    All-Natural Nutrition Bars
  • Award -  The Goods – Everything you could want in an energy bar

Comments:

  • Good Stuff. Something I could eat normally
  • It felt like a regular granola bar has a great taste and looked great!
  • Loved the rice crispiness
  • The bar was really light and crispy. When eating this one, I did not have the feeling of eating an energy or protein bar. The flavor was one of the best I have ever had in an energy bar.
  • This one tasted like chocolate
  • Nice crunch, good chocolate taste
  • The cinnamon was good in it
  • Reminds me of fall! Very easy to eat!
  • Has great crispy rice texture and solid form, I can see this one being great for on the go because it would not get smashed as easily in my pack. Great balanced chocolaty flavor.
  • Rice crispies texture tastes like breakfast cereal wrapped in chocolate

3) Kashi Go Lean Crunchy Chocolate Almond

  • Ounces 1.59
  • Grams   45
  • Serving Size  1 Bar
  • Calories Per Serving  170
  • Protien 8g
  • Notes    Stay Fuller Longer
  • Award – Most Crispy

Comments:

  • Good taste & texture, best all around bar.
  • I am a big fan of the crispy rice base with the dipped chocolate. I thought it had a simple but great taste.
  • Tastes like all natural ingredients were used. I really like the lightness and earthy taste.
  • A good normal taste
  • This one was chewy
  • Decent.  Good taste and texture.
  • This bar was dry but it tasted nice. It had a pleasant texture as well.
  • Nice chocolate taste, liked the addition of almonds
  • It was good, that is all I remember of it.
  • Nuts and chocolate aftertaste was a bit off but tasty overall

4) PowerBar Triple Threat Caramel Peanut Fusion

  • Ounces 1.94
  • Grams   55
  • Serving Size  1 Bar
  • Calories Per Serving  230
  • Protien 10g
  • Notes    Long Lasting Energy – Tastes like a candy bar
  • Award – Most Likely to be a Candy Bar

Comments:

  • It is very smooth and left a good aftertaste taste, like a Reeses
  • Tasted bomb to me!
  • It was really good. The texture was really smooth. My only downfall with this bar is its potential to melt on warm or hot hikes.
  • Good taste, nice texture, most like a candy bar.
  • Another candy bar clone
  • Taste like a year old candy bar.
  • Was the least acceptable
  • Tasted like a 99cent peanut butter candy bar…. which i liked surprisingly, I think based on the taste it probably has some unnecessary calories
  • Tasted like a snickers

5) PowerBar Harvest Toffee Chocolate Chip

  • Ounces 2.29
  • Grams   65
  • Serving Size  1 Bar
  • Calories Per Serving 250
  • Protien 10g
  • Notes    Whole Grain Long Lasting Energy
  • Award – Old Skool -Like a Star Crunch mixed with a Kudos

Comments:

  • Nice rice crispyness
  • Basically a kudos bar for the active adult, took me back to my childhood.
  • Good taste & texture, was most like a granola bar.
  • Soft bar that is almost moist but has a great flavor
  • Decent.  Good taste and texture.
  • looks like it would be healthy
  • Very crispy and light with a hint of chocolate. Very pleasant

The Bottom Three Energy Bars

IMG 9479 What is the Best Energy Bar? An Energy Bar Taste Test

1) Balance Bar Double Chocolate Brownie

  • Ounces 1.76
  • Grams   50
  • Serving Size  1 Bar
  • Calories Per Serving 200
  • Protien 14g
  • Notes    Nutrition Bar for Lasting Energy – All Natural
  • Award – BTMH – Bad Things May Happen with this bar

Comments:

  • Taste like dirt but looked good!
  • Bad.
  • Tasted like rubber!
  • Lacking taste, OK texture, was generally bland and left an aftertaste.
  • Eating chalk might have been better
  • Looks smooth and creamy but the chocolate tastes stale and it’s powdery
  • Chalky, barely noticeable chocolate taste…

2) Odwalla Original Choco-walla

  • Ounces 2
  • Grams   56
  • Serving Size  1 Bar
  • Calories Per Serving  210
  • Protien 4g
  • Notes    Good source of six essential Vitamins & Minerals, 30% Organic
  • Award – The Desert Bar- Were’s the water?

Comments:

  • Nasty!  It looked & tasted horrible, too dry, very chalky
  • This bar was really dry. I felt like when I bit down on it the bar fell apart in my mouth and turned into powder. The powder did not taste well at all.
  • Started off well… ended like I was chewing on a piece of chalk. Terrible taste.

3) PowerBar Performance Energy Cookies & Cream

  • Ounces 2.29
  • Grams   65
  • Serving Size   1 Bar
  • Calories Per Serving  240
  • Protien 8g
  • Notes    For maximum Energy Delivery & Cramp-Crushing Electrolytes
  • Award – Most Likely to Withstand Nuclear War

Comments:

  • It was good, a little hard to chew but good.
  • Not great tasting but started off pretty good
  • Taste like something that gets stuck to your shoe
  • It was way to sticky, hard to chew and had a thick taste that was unappetizing. After having one sample bite, I am surprised people can eat a whole bar.

So there you have it, our selection for the best and worst energy bars on the market. We plan to update this post and do another round as there are a whole lot of energy bars we were not able to try. Let us know in the comments if you have one you would recommend so we can check it out.

 What is the Best Energy Bar? An Energy Bar Taste Test

About Josh


My name is Josh and I am a fan of the outdoors. On the weekends you will find me hiking or trying to complete any of the numerous adventures I have on my list. I live in Southern California and love the deversity that allows me to have in my daily life. I am part of the OutdoorPros Adventure Team. I also love photography and you can find me blogging on my California Travel Blog or Our Unique World Photo Blog.

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  • http://www.katesrealfood.com William

    It seems that you all are missing out on some of the coolest and tastiest energy bars on the planet. You have got to try the Kate’s Real Food bar. The website I included. They are out of this world, super quality ingredients, and just like eating real food. They are getting big out west, especially it seems in the mountain towns. I think they come from Jackson Hole, Wy a super rad place to ski.

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