Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Gluten-Free Bar Review including Luna, Kind and Lara bars!!!

Since going gluten-free I've been looking for a snack. Snack may not be the correct term, I'd like something I can carry with me that doesn't take up much room but does provide some nutrition and keeps hunger at bay. Before going gluten-free there were Luna Bars, both my daughter and I ate them and we are excited that there are now a line of gluten-free Luna Bars, protein bars to boot.  I've had hunger issues since going gluten-free and I do mean issues, pretty much when I'm hungry I feel like I'm starving and I need food NOW. My family can attest to this, get out of my way while I get food! I’ve kept bars of some kind or another in my purse for years, one always needs a snack. I look for the bars to take the edge off my hunger, killing the hunger would be even better and not be sickly sweet, oh let’s not forget flavor – please please please taste good. Oh and anything healthy would be nice!!! Oh and a big DUH, they must be gluten-free. 

Something else to think about is nutrition and fiber! What are the ingredients, are they something you want in your diet? What about fiber, is there any? The gluten-free diet can use all the help it can get, we gluten-free women can have mal-absorption issues so it's important to consider what is in our food.  Check out the bars you snack on and see what's in them.
I could do all the work for you but you have to know me better than that! I've always said do your research people, look at those labels. 

On to the review:

Luna Protein Bars are delicious, soft and chewy at the same time.  I carry one in my purse at all times and pick up extras every time I am at the store. I was sick with a cold for most of the month of July which means I had no sense of taste or smell, I tried the Luna Protein bars during this time so my sense of taste was minimal – What I could taste was chocolate so that’s not a bad thing.  When you are sick you don’t really cook much and that is what happened at my house most of last month, very little cooking. I was waking up in the morning with that starving feeling; Luna Protein Bars were sitting on the table so I ate one for breakfast….
Success! They take my mean hunger away and keep it at bay for at least an hour if not longer. For me this is a huge deal, taste good and has a decent amount of protein. Chocolate Peanut butter; 12 grams protein, 190 calories and 12 sugars.

These next 2 bars are not protein bars but I have always carried them with me to stave off hunger which is why I am reviewing them together.  Both of these next 2 are fruit and nut bars and I always assume fruit and nuts are healthy additions to my diet, that said they still don’t do much for my hunger. Read on-

Kind Bars while delicious don’t contain much in the way of protein but are high in sugar compared to the protein; Walnut & Date bar contain 3 grams protein and 16 grams sugar and 170 calories. While I love the taste I don't appreciate what feels like a high sugar content (they are sweet) and they only take the edge off of my hunger.  I will continue to eat them but they are more of an enjoyable snack not a method to keep hunger down.

Lara Bars are the first bar I found after going gluten-free. While I find most flavors too sweet I do enjoy the peanut, cashew and the chocolate varieties.   I do appreciate the wide variety of flavors available but the bars always leave me hungrier (did I mention how sweet they are?). - Here is the rundown on the peanut bar; 220 calories, 18 sugar grams and 7 protein grams. For me these are a snack, not a hunger killer.

With the low protein and high sugar content of the bars I like I don't even want to mention the ones I didn't like. Actually I can't mention them because once I tried and never ate again I never remember what they were.  My 19 year old daughter does remember and here's what she had to say:

Gluten Free Luna Protien bars are my favorite of all the gluten free bars I've tried (Kind, thinkthin*, promax, etc). The texture isn't weird at all; it's a bit like raw cookie dough (not just the Cookie Dough bar, all of them!). The bars are filling, and are not dry at all like some protein bars (Talking to you, Zone** bars). The flavorings do not taste fake, they taste exactly the way they should! Even better is that some of the bars have like... little rice crisps in them, though I'm not positive that's what they are. Hoping the grocery store I shop at starts carrying more than just Peanut Butter and Cookie Dough! 

*I do enjoy thinkThin Crunch bars quite a lot.
** Zone bars are not gluten free but were eaten before going gluten-free

As you can I actually like the Luna Protein bars!
 Now if only my stores would carry all the flavors!!!


NuGo Gluten Free said...

NuGO FREE bars are certified gluten-free high protein bars. Soy-free, dairy-free, vegan, Kosher Parve, 100% natural, low fat, and high fiber. Made with real dark chocolate! Use our store locator to find a store near you. We have an exciting new line of certified gluten-free bars launching in September.

Healthy Regards,

NuGo Gluten Free
Website: http://www.nugonutrition.com/
Blog: http://www.nugonutrition.com/category/gluten-free/
Twitter: http://twitter.com/nugonutrition

bakingbarb said...

My daughter and I tried the only NuGo Gluten-free bar we could find: dark chocolate trail mix.
170 calories, protein 9g, sugars 13g.
The trail mix aspect of the bar had dried fruit and cranberries which we couldn’t taste; all we could taste was the crisped rice and the chocolate. The bars leave a chalky finish in our mouths which we didn’t really enjoy.
I hope your new line tastes better - The protein wasn’t as high as we would have liked either.

NuGo Gluten Free said...

Thanks for sharing your feedback. Here is a link to all of gluten-free bars. NuGO FREE received good reviews from bloggers. NuGo 10 is similar to Larabars. Stay tuned for more info about our new bars in Sept.


bakingbarb said...

We will look for the other varieties, will have to find a different store.

Sam @ My Carolina Kitchen said...

I smiled at you comment about starving and needing food now. I find myself in that same predicament sometimes. I don't have gluten issues, but when I'm hungry, I'm hungry. The Luna bar sounds like something I would like. Thanks for the reviews. I wasn't familiar with either three bars.

bakingbarb said...

Good to know I am not alone there!
The luna protein bars replace breakfast for me often, breakfast isn't something I eat like I should. Works for me.

Muddy Boot Dreams said...

Barb, thanks for the review. I am going to stop by again and check out some more posts. I am always on the lookout for more gluten free products.

Jen @ Muddy Boot Dreams

bakingbarb said...

Jen thank you for stopping by. Gluten free it's what we do! Although in the summer I am mostly in the garden so this blog suffers a bit - I am certain our weather will change too soon and then I will be back to the kitchen.