Bars bars bars. When you're in your 20's, they're all you can think about.
I'll be honest: I'm not much of a bar fly. Energy bars, I mean. Protein bars. Cereal bars. Honestly, I don't even like sports bars. Or hotel bars. But that's not what I'm reviewing today.
Back to food: I have a tendency to try a bar, like it, and then read about how terrible it is for you on the internet and then never put it in my mouth again. But if there's one thing we all know about the internet, its this: Everything on earth is bad for you, and there's an article on the internet that proves it.
It's nice to find food that comes in a package but isn't bad for you, because let's face it: We can't all wear an apron all day and bake delicious, healthy food with whole ingredients. SOMETIMES, we have to reach for a bar, a package of something or a bottle of mixed up stuff. What I discovered this winter was a new bar, none other than the TrueBar made by a little company called Bakery on Main.
When I first heard of TrueBar, I was with my fitness-savvy friend Lauren at the A1A Marathon Expo on Fort Lauderdale. I was running the marathon the next morning, and I was grabbing all the freebies I could get. This tiny baking company, Bakery on Main, which sounds adorably like something from the movie Up, was there with a booth. There were cute boys handing out free TrueBars, so naturally Lauren and I ventured over. I said “TrueBar, what's that?” at the same time that my friend Lauren said “TrueBar, oh I love those.” We scooped up a handful. "Take more," they said. It was likely the best bar experience I've had all year.
Little did I know that less than 24 hours later, after running a full marathon in the heat of Fort Lauderdale February, that the Coconut Truebar would be the most delicious thing that ever happened to me. It was a close second to the orange slice handed to me under a bridge during the Miami Marathon, at mile 14. (I'm ashamed to admit that even if the sign had read, “Fred Phelps is awesome,” I would have still taken the orange slice and popped it in my mouth.
After the marathon, TrueBar offered to send me more free bars to review on this here blog. So here's my review:
TrueBars are Gluten Free, Non-GMO, Kosher, Vegan, Dairy Free. But they are not Taste-free.
TrueBars come in a nice variety of flavors, none of them boring or ordinary. By far, Coconut Cashew, Apricot Almond Chai, and Walnut Cappuccino are my favorite flavors. I also tried Hazelnut Chocolate Cherry, Raspberry Chocolate Almond, and Fruit & Nut. I have to disclaim that ALL the flavors were good, tasted healthy without compromising flavor, and they ALL had a really nice soft texture that suggested freshness and real fruit. However, the bars with chocolate were my least favorite, as the sweetness of the cherry and raspberry somehow overpowered the chocolate. This is sort of a personal preference. I think I'm more of a chocolate fan when fruit doesn't get involved. Nonetheless, the flavors are exciting an creative.
Other cool things I noticed about TrueBar:
1. They're FLAT, and fit easily in the pouch of a race belt or a pocket. I took a few on my ski trip in March and ended up sneaking bites on the lift in between runs.
2. They have minimal ingredients. For example, here's a look at the label on the Walnut Cappuccino bar:
You gotta love how these bars personify themselves. "I'm a walnut cappucino bar with nothing to hide." The bars actually do talk, and when you pull them out of your purse or jacket or race belt, they sort of make this squealing sound that fills your heart with joy. (Yours don't squeal? Really? Maybe you got a FAULTY BOX.) (Legal disclaimer: Just kidding, these bars do not squeal. They do not speak.)
3. They're lighter than the average natural bar packed with healthy fats and protein. Compared to a Clif Bar which averages 240-270 calories per bar, these clock in at 160-190 per bar and still manage to pack in fiber, healthy fats, protein and slow carbs like rice bran and brown rice flour. They also are made with 5% chia seeds, which give you wings. They're sweetened with Agave Nectar, Brown Rice Syrup, and Evaporated Cane Juice, which equates to me not getting a sugar rush and subsequent crash, which sometimes happens when I eat processed food.
Straight from the maker's mouth: "These bars are made to give a boost of energy without a crash and are all under 200 calories."
As I said in the beginning, I'm not a huge fan of bars. If I can eat unpackaged, whole foods, I will choose those first. But for times when a bar is called for, TrueBar makes the top of the list, bar none. No crash, all burn, all happy Megatron with coconut and chia seeds.
In fact, they're so great I'm going to host a GIVE-A-WAY so you can try TrueBars too. Here's the deal: Register in the raffle below to win. If you win, you get a free box of whatever flavor you choose. GO FOR IT!!!
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