Since learning about processed foods, I've basically given up on protein bars, candy bars, and energy bars. Basically any quick convenience food. For some reason it hasn't stopped me from looking. Maybe I want to see all the junk that is included in most bars or possibly I was really hoping to find something REAL. Anyway, I was at the checkout in our local Sunflower Market. I recently found something exciting-the LÄRABAR! They were on sale 10 for $10 which caught my eye. I immediately turned them around expecting added sugar, a list of ingredients, additives, colorings, preservatives. What I saw shocked me.
I am naturally drawn to ANYTHING peanut butter, so I flipped over the Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip and saw only 4 ingredients (7 if you count the additional ingredients IN the chocolate chips). They were Dates, Peanuts, Chocolate Chips(unsweetened chocolate, sugar, cocoa butter, vanilla), and Sea Salt. Now I wanted to avoid the sugar, and since it had peanuts it had 11g of fat. So I turned a few more over, and it just got better. The non chocolate chip bars had no added sugar, less fat, natural REAL food. Fruits, Nuts, & Spices were the main ingredients. I could pronounce every ingredient. The bars have from 2 to 9 ingredients. I threw a few on the counter-super excited.
I could tell the sweetener in these bars are the dates. My friend Kristal over at Fit Finney uses dates as well for a sweetener. I'm new to that, but it wasn't so bad. The first one I cracked open was the Peanut Butter Cookie (no chocolate). It was yummy. I finished it quickly. I brought a coconut one home to my hubby-he wasn't so fond of it-the dates especially, but hopefully after we've been on real food for a while we get more used to them. I think I'll keep a few on hand for a sweet tooth or an emergency bite of REAL food.
I checked out the website wanting to know more and what I found impressed me. Each bar has between 1/4-1/2 cup of fruit. They're not baked or cooked. Just mixed together, so they're as close to the natural state as possible. I'm keeping in mind that these won't be a daily treat. I want to eat WHOLE REAL foods, but this is a great 2nd option!
Photo Credit: http://www.larabar.com