The 7 Best Vegan Protein Nutrition Bars That Taste Like Dessert
With the overwhelming number of nutrition bars on the market, how is one to choose the best, most nutritionally sound option? Not to mention navigate through all the labels: Keto, Gluten-Free, Vegan, Plant-Based, Non-GMO, Low in Sugar … and the list goes on.
While everyone’s dietary needs vary, there is a universal consensus that a great-tasting, nutritionally balanced bar is a must for modern living. While eating whole foods, fruits, and unprocessed snacks are typically best, sometimes if you are on the go or doing high-intensity workouts a protein bar is justifiable to refuel.
Nutrition Bar Breakdown
As a general tip, if you are going vegan or plant-based, make sure to avoid whey; it’s a milk derivative commonly found in nutrition bars. Bar makers add whey to pack in protein, often in unnecessary quantities. The same is true of casein, which is also a dairy compound. When reading labels, remember, we only need 0.36 grams of protein per pound of body weight. So, for someone 140 pounds, that’s about 50 grams of protein a day. So unless you're training for an Ironman or some other feat that requires hours in the gym, you don't need a bar with 20 or 30 grams of protein!
The 7 Best Vegan Protein Bars
Most of these bars are high in carbs, but the key to look on the label for is the carb to fiber ratio. If it's four and under that is considered a good deal for your daily intake. To do this quick calculation, consider a bar with 20 grams of carbs that has 8 grams of fiber is 2.5 to 1, which keeps it in the "healthy" zone.
Bottom Line: When seeking a bar as a snack, look for one that’s under 200 calories, low in sugar and high in fiber and is created on a base of plant protein (such as pea) to help keep you feeling full. The below bars are some of the best vegan-friendly options around. They all contain a solid nutritional profile with a delectable dessert-inspired taste.
1. ONE PLANT Chocolate Peanut Butter
ONE Brands makes these incredible plant-based protein bars called ONE PLANT packing 12 grams of protein their signature “ONE” gram of sugar. Coming in Chocolate Peanut Butter and Banana Nut Bread, this sweet-treat bar is a perfect snack on the go, in the office, or pre and post-workout. The protein blend is made up of pea, rice, and almond, and they are also gluten-free. You can find PLANT bars on ONE’s website and Amazon, as well as select GNC, Vitamin Shoppe and Walmart stores.
2. R.E.D.D Peanut Butter Plant-Based Protein Bar
These chewy and filling energy bars contain 10 grams of vegan protein, specifically pea, hemp and pumpkin, and each bar delivers 8 grams of fiber. They taste like a fudgy cookie, and as delicious as they are, you would be surprised to discover that they are also full of prebiotics. In fact, each bar has 1 billion CFU probiotics, healthy compounds normally found in fermented foods. If you have a sweet tooth, try the peanut butter flavor, which has small bits of crunchy oats and hints of chocolate. If chocolate is your thing, try the chocolate bar which will satisfy your sweet tooth but be healthier than your average afternoon cookie indulgence. These are the perfect snack or treat for your kids since they get all nutritional value and still enjoy the cookie taste without all the sugar.
3. NUGO Slim Toasted Coconut
This chocolatey piece of heaven packs great flavor and a nutritional punch with 7 grams of fiber and 16 grams of protein (derived from soy and rice). This bar also provides 15 percent of your daily iron needs. There are a number of great flavors to choose from in the NUGO Slim line up, but our favorite is the Toasted Coconut. The companies products are all vegan as a bonus—20 different bar flavors in all—and can typically be found at grocery stores nationwide.
4. Luna Bar White Chocolate Macadamia Nut
Who needs dessert when you can have a Luna Bar? Luna makes a number of sweet-treat-inspired flavors from Chocolate Cupcake to S’mores and Lemon Zest. Most of the bars come in at about 200 calories and tend to be a little higher in carbs. (So if you are a keto person, this might be not the one for you). Their bars tend to be quite sweet, so if you are not in the mood for that, opt for something else. But if you do have a sweet tooth, it will thank you.
5. Good! Snacks Choc. Mint Protein Bar
These chocolate mint bars have it all: Great taste, protein to spare and a cookie-like flavor that makes chocolate mint chip lovers never miss their usual treats like those iconic mint chocolate Girl Scout Cookies. These bars taste like candy, as promised, but are also relatively nutritious. For those avoiding soy and gluten, this is the bar for you. The Vegan protein is the perfect snack for when you're craving something sweet but don't want to pile on the pounds!
6. IQ Bar Almond Butter Chip
The IQ Bar leads with its six “brain nutrients” infused in the bar including Lion's Mane, MCTs, omega-3s, flavonoids, vitamin E (45 percent of your daily recommended intake in this bar) and choline. Also, with 0 grams of sugar (sweetened with stevia), and 10-11 grams of plant protein per bar, you can enjoy great taste with great nutrients. The taste is smooth and creamy, a little doughy. They are also keto-friendly (if you are into that).
7. Raw Rev Glo Peanut Butter Dark Chocolate & Sea Salt
Raw Rev Glo’s bars are reminiscent of raw cookie dough. They are filling and low in sugar (most bars have 2-5 grams) and high in protein and fiber. With a number of flavors to choose from, you can’t go wrong.