I used to really enjoy Nature Valley bars back in the day and bought them all the time. A nice, crunchy texture, pleasantly sweet and flavours I really like such as coconut, almond or maple syrup. However, with all the new bars and breakfast biscuits that came out, they fell off my radar completely and with over 10g sugar a bar, healthier alternatives also came out.
Since then they’ve launched new lighter popcorn bars and also protein bars, which I never tried. The protein bars seem to have undergone a rebranding with more protein per (10g) and are now gluten free and they have introduced a salted caramel version, which I decided to try.
Opening it up, it looked promising – it’s a big dense, heavy bar with a very high nut content (38% peanuts and 9% almonds) and an attractive yogurt type bottom layer. It tastes really good with a sweet, salty flavour although it doesn’t really taste of salted caramel per se and the caramel didn’t really come through for me. The texture was very firm and a bit of a jawbreaker, which wasn’t a deal breaker as it made the bar feel satisfying and substantial although it is quite a dry eat so a hot drink does help.
I have mixed feelings about its healthiness. Its gluten free, 10g protein and actually a really good fibre content too at over 5g a bar and actually it’s low in sugar too at just over5g bar so significantly less than other bars and with high protein, fibre, it feels like an all round better snack.
But then I look at the ingredients and it just uses too many things which seem a bit odd like fructose, palm fat, maltodextrin and put me off but then again they use a lot of nuts so I don’t understand why they would then compromise on quality here.
If I felt more reassured that these were healthier, I’d rate them a little higher. However, it is filling and tasty and certainly better than anything from the likes of Kelloggs or things like Alpen bars.
Bought at: Waitrose
Nutrition per bar: 200 calories, 12.3g fat, 3.1g sat fat, 5.4g sugars, 5.1g fibre, 10.3g protein, 0.43g salt