Raising the Bar: A Story of Snack Love

In the beginning, there was a very VERY hungry girl…

My Favorite Snack & Protein Bars

But not anymore!

My friends can laugh and tease all they want, but no matter where I go, I will never be separated from my Triple ‘B’ (Bottomless Bag o’ Bars). Whether it’s in the car, at work, or traveling out of town, my little packaged pretties are on the ready to fend off any case of blindsighted hanger I may encounter.

Over the years, I’ve tried just about every bar out there…the good, the bad, and the DOWNRIGHT UGLY…so yes, I do consider myself a bit of an expert. In the last year, I can see that my unyielding experimentation has not been in vain. I have found the ELITE of the bar world, those that offer the best in taste and texture, that I know will satisfy my hunger, and that have me downright drooling come snack time.

So without further ado, I give you Heather’s Hanger Hunters:

Favorite Quest Bars

Quest Nutrition Protein Bars

I think it’s safe to say that after appearing in THIRTY ONE posts, Quest Bars are at the top of my list. With sixteen different flavors, it’s easy to find a favorite flavor…picking just ONE is the hard part. The cookie dough and the cookies and cream are the ones I go through the most (but then again, I am a self-proclaimed cookie monster), but I’m also growing more and more fond of the white chocolate raspberry and the double chocolate chunk, especially when broiled…crunchy on the outside but soft and chewy on the inside!

Purchased from: GNC, Publix, and online

Go to iherb.com and use coupon code QQQ940 for a discount on your first order!

Power Crunch Bars

Power Crunch Bars

I first stumbled upon these bars MANY years ago and I swear it was love at first bite. The texture is reminiscent of the Keebler sugar wafers from my childhood days…only without the sugar rush and crash! Out of all the flavors, my favorites are the cookies and creme, the chocolate mint (aka, Thin Mint) , and the chocolate peanut butter fudge (helloooooo, Reese’s!). Oh and just FYI, they’re fabulous dipped in coffee! 😉

Purchased from: Wal-Mart, Kroger, Publix, and Trader Joes

NV Protein Bars

Nature Valley Protein Bars

So I know I’ve already told you guys about my love for these two, but they deserve mention again. Seriously, the strawberry Greek yogurt bar is like a crunchy PB&J that I never want to end and the coconut almond is like…well, it’s like heaven, folks. I’m sorry, there is no other explanation this coconut lover can give you.

Purchased from: Nearly ANY grocery store

Nature Valley Soft Baked Bar

Nature Valley Soft-Baked Oatmeal Squares

When I want something a little lighter, I grab one of these cinnamon brown sugar squares. Out of the three flavors (other two being blueberry and peanut butter), I think these are the best with just the right amount of sweetness. And after being nuked in the microwave for a few seconds, they remind me of a fresh out of the toaster brown sugar pop-tart…or at least how I remember them in my head. We ALL know I’m never going back there!

Purchased from: Nearly ANY grocery store

Soy Joy Bar

SoyJoy Bars

Another bar that has been with me for years, yet for some reason has recently become harder to find in stores. The texture is unique in that it’s somewhere between a biscuit and biscotti, but what I really like is that it’s not a large bar (physically or calorically) so it’s perfect for me to grab pre-workout since I’m not usually one to eat before heading to the gym. Just heed my warning and steer clear of the banana butt flavor! 😉

Purchased from: Wal-Mart, Kroger, Publix, and Big Lots

Kidz Zone Caramel Crunch Bar

Kidz Zone Perfect Bars

Another lighter fare fave is this bar from Zone. I know they’re marketed toward a much younger crowd, but well, we’re all kids at heart, aren’t we? And besides, this bar got THREE thumbs up from my friends at Loufest this summer for having the perfect combination of sweet and salty. Also, I’m a sucker for a bar with some chew to it!

Purchased from: Big Lots

Detour Smart Bar

Detour Smart Bars

Out of all the flavors I tried of the Detour Smart bars, this was the only flavor that I felt was spot on (honestly, the cranberry flavor goes in the UGLY category). They’re chewy and light and have a good balance of protein and fiber to keep me satisfied. Also another one that’s even better after a spin in the microwave.

Purchased from: GNC

Health Warrior Chia Bars

Health Warrior Chia Bars

I have to say out of all the bars I’ve ever tried, these little guys surprised me the most! Even though I’m not a huge fan of chia seeds (why must I still be picking them out of my teeth two hours later?!), I can’t help but love these. These flavors are amazing (haven’t tried the others) and I usually down enough water to get about 95% of the seeds washed down and the chia does wonders for its satiation power. Also another great pre-workout nibble!

Purchased from: TJ Maxx and Kroger

Hope this post helps all you Snacky Cathy’s out there. Now if you’ll excuse me, I’ve got a broiled Quest bar in the kitchen waiting to be slathered in peanut butter! 😉

Disclaimer: While some companies mentioned above have sent me product in the past, I have purchased all of the bars in this post multiple times. I was not in any way compensated for this post. All opinions are my own. I just wanted to share!

What are some of your favorite snack bars? 

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