Saturday, December 26, 2015

Skip the Yucky Healthy Chocolate

Your Chocolate Priestess has access to products not just directly from companies and brands but also through blog groups, shopping clubs, or survey sites.  Today I'm pulled together "healthy" bars ranging from post-workout treats to meal replacements that I've gotten from my loyalty card at Krogers and through the SavingsStar.com program. Of course the goal of these freebies is to get you to buy the product again but if you haven't tried them, please keep reading to help figure out if you should even bother finding them in your local grocery store.

Chef Robert Irvine's FortifX Fit Crunch bars come in three varieties but I was sent the Peanut Butter one not their Cookies and Cream which would have made more sense for The Chocolate Cult but we don't control what we are sent and sometimes companies don't make the best choices. I got this as a Vine Reviewer on Amazon a while back and pre-wrote this review hoping I could pair it up with others at some point.  This fitness energy bar has soy, milk, and wheat in terms of allergens but only cocoa processed with alkali in terms of chocolate but then I wasn't expecting much given the variety I was sent.  It has 16g of protein, 3g sugars, 1g fiber, and 8g total fat; in terms of vitamins and minerals though this is very poor.  Let's be fair and give it a try. The bar is very dry inside not creamy as on the wrapper.  Breaking it apart was easy though it squished a bit when I did so. The chocolatey coating is very thin so I imagine I'm not going to get any cocoa flavor but I'm willing to try that first bite.  The first bite makes a drawn out crunch because it is both chewy and crunchy.  There is a burst of peanut butter that fades into sweet then returns to peanut butter; no chocolate at all.  There is nothing unpleasant about the bar but it is definitely for peanut butter lovers not chocolate lovers.

Shaklee 180 Toffee & Chocolate Crunch Snack Bar was sent to me through Pinchme.com.  The Shaklee 180 is more than a bar, it is a program for weight-loss yet they send only one bar meaning that I can only comment on this one bar; any health claims are untestable with just one bar. As you can see in our photo the only chocolate is in these tiny chips but they are made from chocolate liquor and cocoa butter; the bar has a lot of other ingredients but all are food items that I recognize; nothing artificial.  It has a toffee scent to and it both crunchy and sticky though the stickiness is really on the outside, it doesn't stick to my teeth. It has a strong toffee and grain flavor but even when I hit a chocolate chip I can't really taste it.  Disappointing; only for grainy toffee lovers.

The Premier Protein bar in Double Chocolate Crunch variety was a Friday Freebie through Kroger.  I use this electronic freebie coupon program most weekends when I go shopping.  Sometimes the products are good and we'll buy them again but most of the time they aren't particularly impressive and you know that making them a freebie is an attempt to generate any interest at all. Normally the freebie around $1 in value but I've use this on items that cost up to $5 in the past -- higher priced samples tend to entire boxes of items or several bottles of a drink so you can really try it.  In this case it was just a single bar.   Unlike the previous bar has chemicals in the ingredients list along with cocoa processed with alkali and cocoa powder.  It smells very soy and sweet; it does make some crunch with this little pieces you can see but really the taste is just blah not even slightly cocoa or even sweet just blah... I couldn't eat more than one bite.

K-Nourish is from Kellogg's.  I was sent a five-bar box through the Vine Program to try out and reveal to you all.  These bars come in three varieties but we got the "Dark Chocolate Nut Delight" so let's see if they live up to the name and the claims on the box. It is true that 14 vitamins and minerals are listed with 10% or higher presentation in each bar.  The fiber content isn't any higher than the daily bars I eat though and these have twice as many calories made up of more fiber and more fats.  As you can see the bar has several ingredients but for those of you with allergies you may want to note these: wheat, oats, barley, quinoa, milk, soy, peanuts, almonds, cashews.  This does have chocolate -- chocolate, cocoa butter, cocoa processed with alkali, and something called "chocolate sea salt." The bar smells of cocoa, almonds, and grains. Oddly taking a bite barely makes a sound and the bar is more chewy than crunchy. The initial flavor is sweet with a very, very light cocoa -- unless you were working to sense that  you wouldn't get any chocolate at all. A generic nut and grain flavor is the final one I taste at the end of each bite. Too little chocolate flavor given the varieties of cacao in this bar and that is deeply disappointing.

To be blunt, Sisters and Brothers, I wouldn't buy or eat any of these in the future. Would you? Have you? Leave a comment and let me know your opinions.

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