You may think the alternative pasta aisle is getting crowded, but it’s nothing compared to the protein bar section of the grocery store. From keto-crafted bars to ones that taste like birthday cake, there are endless options of what to stash in your gym bag—which makes choosing one that’s truly good for you a huge challenge.
Fortunately registered dietitian Tracy Lockwood Beckerman, RD, reads food labels for fun the way other people read books. In this week’s episode of You Versus Food, she reveals the seven protein bars that get her healthy seal of approval, along with some general tips on what to look for when choosing a bar.
“Pay attention to how many servings are in each bar,” Beckerman says, adding that it’s usually one, but it pays to double-check. If your bar is serving as a snack, she says it should be about 30 grams of carbs, 7 grams of protein, and 5 grams of fiber. But if it’s a meal, the protein and fiber numbers need to be higher.
With these tips in mind, two of Beckerman’s favorite protein bars are Health Warrior Superfood Bars (made with plant-based protein sources pumpkin seeds or chia) and Perfect Bar (made with nut butter, organic egg powder, and rice powder). Both are made with easily-identifiable ingredients but have the nutrient balance that will lead to feeling satiated until your next actual meal. The Health Warrior bar packs in 10 grams of plant-based protein and five grams of fiber, while the Perfect Bar offers a whopping 17 grams of protein per serving. Not too shabby for either option!
Watch the video above for more of Beckerman’s favorite protein bar picks, and to see if your own favorite made the cut.