NEW ORLEANS (WGNO) — Protein bars are convenient and portable, an easy option for a snack or even a meal in a pinch. There’s been an explosion of new varieties on shelves, but not all are as nutritious as they appear.

Here’s the rundown of Molly’s top five picks – all are good sources of protein with zero or low added sugar and no artificial sweeteners or colors.

The 411 on PROTEIN BAR LABELS:

  • Protein: 20 grams protein is equivalent to 3 ounces lean meat; 7 grams is approximately one egg worth of protein
  • Sugar: Look for bars as close to zero added sugar as possible, and with more protein than sugar. 
  • Artificial sweeteners: Avoid artificial sweeteners like sucralose and acesulfame potassium
  • Fiber: Usually less important, as many are “isolated” fibers without the full benefits of real, whole-food fiber

CanDo Keto Krisp bar |GF; Dairy Free options available

  • 190 calories, 16 grams carbohydrate (4 grams net carbs), 9 grams fiber, 2 grams sugar (0 added sugar), 11 grams protein
  • Made with almonds, chicory root fiber, soy protein, almond protein, sweetened with erythritol and/or stevia

Love Good Fats bar | GF, Soy Free, no sugar alcohols

  • 190 calories, 14 grams carbohydrate (5 grams net carbs), 9 grams fiber, 2 grams sugar (2 grams added sugar), 7 grams protein
  • Made with Fats blend (almond butter, palm and coconut oil), whole grain brown rice protein, semi-sweet chocolate chips, soluble corn fiber, chicory root fiber.

NuGo Slim bar | GF; Vegan options available

  • 180 calories, 17 grams carbohydrate (9 grams net carbs), 6 grams fiber, 3 gram sugar (3 grams added sugar), 16 grams protein
  • Made with protein blend (soy and rice protein), dark chocolate, inulin (vegetable fiber), sweetened with small amount of cane sugar

Bulletproof Collagen Protein bar | GF, Dairy Free

  • 190 calories, 12 grams carbohydrate (4 grams net carbs), 8 grams fiber, 2 grams sugar (0 added sugar), 11 grams protein
  • Made with cashew butter, hydrolyzed collagen, inulin, MCT oil powder, sweetened with stevia

No Cow bar [dipped or regular] | GF, Dairy Free, Soy Free, Vegan

  • 200 calories, 25 grams carbohydrate (4 grams net carbs), 15 grams fiber, 1 gram sugar (0 added sugar), 21 grams protein
  • Made with vegan protein blend (brown rice, pea protein), soluble corn fiber, sweetened with erythritol, stevia, monk fruit.

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FUELED Wellness + Nutrition is powered by Smoothie King. Learn about Eat Fit at Smoothie King; click here for the full list of Eat Fit options available at Smoothie King, proud sponsor of FUELED Wellness + Nutrition with Molly on WGNO. 

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Molly Kimball, RD, CSSD is a registered dietitian + nutrition journalist in New Orleans, and founder of Ochsner Eat Fit nonprofit restaurant initiative. Tune in to her podcast, FUELED | Wellness + Nutrition and follow her on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter at @MollyKimballRD. See more of Molly’s articles + TV segments at www.mollykimball.com, and sign up for Eat Fit Wellness Bites weekly newsletter, here.

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