You don’t have to stuff your face with chicken to get protein nowadays. You can opt for a protein shake, protein bars, or a protein bar. Whilst writing this article, we’ve been searching for the best protein bar on the market. These little treats are packed with protein but can also have hidden sugars and calories in, so you can snack on a whole pack of them. We’ve looked at the flavor, nutritional content, and branding, to decide which protein bar is the best for your pre and post-workout needs.
The Best Protein Bar
Quest Protein Bars are known to be one of the best protein bars ever created. They have a solid 21g of protein and 4g of carbs, which provides your body with plenty of fuel to build muscle after a workout. But, unlike a lot of their competitors, they haven’t stacked this bar with hidden sugars – it’s only got 1g of sugar. That means it’s suitable for the keto diet and other sugar-free diets.
One of the main reasons we chose this bar as the Best Choice is the taste. Protein bars are supposed to be a treat. Sure, they have the right nutritional content, but it’s important that you want to eat them after an intense exercise like HIIT workouts. The Quest Protein Bar is one of the best tasting bars available. We’ve selected the chocolate chip flavor but if that’s not your bag, there are 23 other flavors to try. This bar feeds your cravings and your muscles.
Available in 24 flavors
- BrandQuest Nutrition
- Weight1.59 pounds
One of the best tasting protein bars
Amazing choice of flavors
Plenty of protein and carbs
No added sugar
New recipe includes corn fiber
Bars can go moldy if left too long
Next up, we have a bar with an extremely simple list of ingredients. The RXBAR contains 3 egg whites, 6 almonds, 4 cashews, and 2 dates. Plus, whatever is flavoring the bar – in this case, it’s chocolate sea salt. That’s it. No added sugars, no untrustworthy ingredients. This makes it perfect for people that watch what they eat. Oh, and they’re gluten-free.
Of course, that minimalistic approach in ingredients comes with a price. First off, they don’t taste as good as a bar of chocolate. There’s an impressive range of flavors, but the tastes can take some getting used to. They’re also pretty crunchy, thanks to the almonds. So, if you’re not careful, you could end up chipping a tooth eating one of these. And, they have 16 grams of sugar. That’s nowhere near as much as a chocolate bar, but you still need to keep on top of it.
Available in 18 flavors
- Weight1.76 ounces
A very simple list of ingredients
Made from ‘real food’
Lots of flavor options
Lots of sugar
Taste can be quite strange
Not great quality control
One of the big surprises for people new to protein bars is the price. They look like a bar of chocolate, so why do they cost 3 times as much? Well, they don’t have to. Pure Protein Bars offer a cheaper alternative at just over $1 a bar. Even if you’re trying to get ripped on a budget, these will fuel your body before and after a workout. In terms of protein, they’ve got an impressive 20g per bar, most of which is from whey protein sources. In addition to that, each bar contains 17g of carbohydrates but only 2g of sugar. In short, the nutrition facts back up the claim that these bars will help you build and maintain muscle.
One of the things we like about this 18 pack is that you get 3 different flavors – chocolate peanut butter, chocolate deluxe, and chewy chocolate chip. So, you can find your favorite flavor before buying them in bulk.
3 different flavors in the pack
- BrandPure Protein
- Weight1.98 pounds
An impressive amount of protein
They go off quickly
KIND Bars are a fantastic and natural way to get protein into your diet. Like the RXBAR, they don’t contain any unnatural ingredients that you can’t pronounce. Nothing in them is genetically-modified and they’re suitable for people with a gluten-intolerance. In fact, the main ingredient is the humble peanut. Because of this natural approach, they can’t boast the same amount of protein as other bars. You get 8g of protein per bar. Plus, there’s 16g of carbohydrates, 9g of sugar, and a total of 200 calories per bar.
If you read the Amazon reviews for this product, you’ll find tons of customers praising the taste and freshness of these bars. Of course, there are a couple of complainers, but on the whole, the reviews are very positive. And, amazingly, they aren’t that expensive at just over $1 per bar. You can even subscribe to a monthly delivery and save up to 15%. If you’re looking for something natural and packed with protein, this is one of the best products out there.
- Weight1.15 pounds
Contains only natural ingredients
Some problems with delivery
You might have noticed a couple of Amazon’s own brands popping up on the online marketplace. In addition to Goodthreads and AmazonBasics, you’ve now got Wickedly Prime, the eCommerce giant’s first foray into food. The Wickedly Prime Nut Bar isn’t marketed as a protein bar. Instead, it’s just a relatively healthy snack that contains mainly natural ingredients. But, when you delve into the nutritional information, you can see that it would be a great post-workout snack.
It’s got 7g of protein, so it’s not the most loaded protein bar available. Plus, it has 14g of carbs and 6g of sugar. So, it can compete with a lot of natural bars like the KIND bar and the RXBAR. One of the best things about buying from Amazon’s own brand is the protection you get as a customer. For example, this bar comes with a satisfaction guarantee – if you aren’t satisfied within a year of purchasing the bar, you can get your money back. In any case, it’s perfect to always have in your gym bag before and after workout.
Available in 5 flavors
- BrandWickedly Prime
- Weight1.05 pounds
Uses mainly natural ingredients
Okay flavor options
Comes with a satisfaction guarantee
Contains some additives
The whole point of a protein bar is to let yourself have a treat, whilst still maintaining your healthy diet. The protein helps feed your muscles after a workout and stops you from having sugar cravings. The Grenade Carb Killa Protein Bar might just be the closest thing to a candy bar that we could find. When you bite into it, you’ll want to check the label to make sure that it has less than 2g of sugar per bar! It tastes like it’s all sugar.
In addition to the low sugar count, it’s got over 20g of protein, making it one of the most loaded bars on this list. These bars are also keto-friendly, gluten-free, and don’t contain any genetically modified ingredients. And, they come in a range of delicious flavors, so you can find the bar that most resembles your favorite treat.
210-220 calories per bar
Available in 8 flavors
- Weight0.48 ounces
Lots of flavor options
Lots of protein per bar
Can cause digestive problems
The second KIND bars on our list are the KIND Breakfast Probiotic Bars. They’re not technically protein bars, but they are pretty similar and have some other benefits on top. The reason they are marketed as breakfast bars is the addition of super grains – oats, millet, buckwheat, amaranth, and quinoa. Eat these in the morning and they’ll provide sustained energy throughout the day. Each of the 7 different flavors has a sweet taste, but it isn’t overbearing.
There’s only 5g of protein in each bar. So, they’re not the most loaded bars on this list. If you’re looking for something specifically for post-workout, these aren’t the best. However, if you want something healthy to snack on at any time of day, they’re perfect. There’s 27g of carbohydrates in and around 10g of sugar. Plus, each bar contains 500 million CFU probiotic cultures, which amounts to about half the amount you would find in a probiotic drink. If you are also looking for the right protein shaker, check out our selection of the best ones on the market.
Pack of 32
Available in 7 flavors
- Weight5.02 pounds
Great for eating in the morning
Contains super grains
Not a large amount of protein
If you pick a natural protein bar, you usually expect a lower amount of protein. That’s not the case with MariGolf GRASS-FED Whey Protein Bars. We’ve selected this sampler pack as our Premium Product because each bar costs over $4. That’s considerably more expensive than most protein bars, so we knew there had to be a reason. In each bar, there’s between 20g and 23g of protein, which means that it rivals even the most impressive protein bars. But the most impressive thing is that all of this protein is from grass-fed (non-GMO) whey isolate. It’s free from gluten, grains, hormones, lactose, casein, and soy.
In addition to the huge amount of protein in each bar, there’s only a tiny amount of carbohydrates and sugar. That makes these bars some of the purest protein you can get your hands on. Plus, as if that wasn’t enough, they taste fantastic.
12 sampler pack
173 – 293 calories
20g – 23g protein
6g – 11g carbs
1g – 4.5g sugar
Available in 12 flavors
- BrandMariGold Bars
- Weight2.4 ounces
All-natural, grass-fed ingredients
Amazing amount of protein
Low carbs and sugar
Next up, we’ve got a huge pack of Ohh Snap Nutrition Crispy Protein Bars. You get a total of 84 bars, which should keep you going for a few months at least. If you are planning on spending this much on protein bars, you should probably buy a smaller pack first and make sure you like the flavor. But, even if you take the plunge, we think you’ll love these bars. The nutritional information reads perfectly for a protein bar – each bar has 15g of protein, 17g of carbohydrates, and only 4g of sugar. They’re also under 200 calories a bar, which is great for people counting calories.
They only come in 4 flavors – Chocolate Peanut Butter, Caramel Pretzel, Vanilla Marshmallow or Double Chocolate Chunk – but the Amazon reviews are full of people raving about how great these bars taste. If you want to buy in bulk, this deal is one of the best.
Available in 4 flavors
- BrandOoh Snap! Crispy Protein Bar
Better value if you buy in bulk
Solid nutritional facts
The last product on our list is designed for bodybuilders. Bodybuilding Signature Protein Crunch Bar has a mixture of protein (20g), carbohydrates (20g), and fat (9g), similar to mass gainers. This is designed to feed your body after a workout and give it plenty of fuel to build muscle instead of gaining fat. There’s only 5g of sugar, which helps your body to consume the protein more effectively. As is the case with most protein bars, some people love the flavor and some people hate it. Most people will have to try a few until they settle on one that suits your nutrition and flavor needs.
Available in 4 flavors
Great for building muscle
An impressive amount of protein
Not too much sugar
Contains artificial sweeteners