One size doesn’t fit all when it comes to healthy snacking; we all have our own needs and different lifestyles, so we asked our Nutritionist Melissa Fine to share six of her go-to snack bars on the market to fit any dietary requirement – there’s something for everyone here.
1. Paleo/Grain Free/Gluten Free: Blue Dinosaur Banana Bread Paleo Bar
Not just another fruit and nut bar, Blue Dinosaur Bars are different in that they don’t use dates as the first, i.e., the main ingredient; not that we’re against dates (they’re a wholefood full of fibre and other nutrients, not just sugar!), it’s just that some bars contain the equivalent of five or more dates, which we wouldn’t eat straight-up in one sitting (read: sugar high!).
Sulphur free organic coconut is the first ingredient in this bar, followed by dates (only 3.5 of them!), organic banana and coconut oil, plus a pinch of cinnamon for some spice…nothing else! You won’t be tempted by the banana bread at your local coffee spot when you have one of these on you.
2. Fructose Free: Food for Health Fruit Free Bars with Almonds & Chia
Despite the countless number of bars on the market, it’s hard to find one that’s fructose free, as most contain honey, agave syrup or dried fruit – all of which have fructose. While we don’t have a problem with a little honey now and then or the fructose in fruit (this comes bound with a whole heap of other nutrients), for those of us who are fructose intolerant or on a low FODMAP diet, this bar is for you.
I like that this is packed with a nice chewy mix of fibre rich seeds like chia, and gluten free whole grains like millet, and that the ingredients are bound with better-for-you fructose free rice bran syrup, which isn’t overpoweringly sweet.
3. Snack-Size: Naturally Nood Cheeky Cocoa Bar
It’s hard to choose which flavour to go with in this range, but if you need a choccie fix and don’t want to go overboard, this one’s for you. Made with nothing but cold-pressed dates, cashews, raisins and cocoa, this 35g snack bar is also the perfect size for when you need a little something, but don’t want it to be the size/energy equivalent of a main meal. If they can have nuts, kids will love this one too.
4. Whey Protein Bar: Aussie Bodies Naked Peanut & Cacao 100% Natural Protein Bar
While most commercial whey protein bars have a looong list of ingredients that sound like they’ve come from a lab, Aussie Bodies Naked Protein Bars are an exception. We’re so glad this brand has listened to what its health conscious consumers want, creating a cleaner protein bar. Along with Whey Protein Concentrate and Whey Protein Isolate (the latter being the purest form of whey protein), this has a nice short ingredients list with wholesome ingredients you’ll recognise, like peanuts (extra protein!), ground LSA, cacao and sesame seeds.
It’s pretty chewy but if you’re a protein bar person you’ll like the consistency. Despite it being a snack-size bar, it gives you over 9g of protein, plus healthy fats, so it’s extra sustaining.
5. Vegan Protein Bar: The Health Food Guys Raw Protein Vanilla Blueberry Bar
Apart from being Australian made and owned by The (very lovely!) Health Food Guys, these are naturally free from gluten, dairy and preservatives. I like that the main ingredient is organic wholegrain rice protein, rather than syrup – which is the main ingredient in many other protein bars out there. The Vanilla Blueberry variety has ingredients you don’t come across often in a protein bar, like creamy, calcium rich tahini, which tastes awesome with the dried bluebs. More than a protein bar, this is a wholefood bar!
6. Nut Free: Blue Dinosaur Lamington Paleo Bar
You read that right. This baby tastes even better than it sounds, with Blue Dinosaur working their magic and combining just five wholefood ingredients, which together taste like cake. Thanks to coconut and coconut oil, this bar doesn’t taste dry like some of its competitors. Nut free and wholesome, you can feel good about popping one of these in your little ones lunch box…but not just for the kids, obvs!
What's your favourite healthy snack bar?