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Product Spotlight: Protein and Meal Bars

Back to Product Review Main 

12.31.04 :: Product Recommendation & Review:

Sometimes we tend to forget the reasons that low carb diets work so well... because we are able to avoid sharp peaks in blood sugar, we avoid the flood of insulin that causes fat storage. When we can stabilize blood glucose levels, we feel better, lose weight (or maintain a healthy weight), and control diabetes (or insulin resistance.) But how to best do that? Eating foods that don't cause a spike needs to be the basis of your diet. But more than that, finding foods that allow the carbohydrates they contain to be slowly and gradually released over time is the key to appetite control as well.

It's been a long time since we reviewed a "bar" here at Low Carb Luxury. It had gotten to the point where there were far too many, and they were playing fast and loose with the ingredients and health claims. And then we heard about the new
Extend Bars... bars with a different makeup... a different philosophy.

They come in 3 low carb varieties:
Apple Cinnamon Delight (with 3 net carbs per bar), Chocolate Delight (with 2 net carbs per bar), and Peanut Delight (with 2 net carbs per bar).

Extend Bars are snack bars that were originally developed for people with diabetes, so they stabilize blood sugar for up to nine hours... yeah... really. And that means a better night's sleep (free from blood glucose dips), and no nagging hunger pangs. It's even clinically proven to reduce the calories eaten at your next meal an average of 21%!

Dr. Francine Kaufman, Head of the Center for Diabetes, Endocrinology and Metabolism at Childrens Hospital in Los Angeles (and a recent past president of the American Diabetes Association) led the 5-year effort to develop these bars, making them a product like no other on the market.

The secret to their long lasting control might surprise you... it's uncooked cornstarch. You see, when cooked, cornstarch turns rapidly to glucose. But uncooked, cornstarch has a very slow release profile that allows ExtendBars to maintain a steady blood glucose for many hours.

It's also important to note that they chose to use true clinical studies to arrive at a "net" carb number, rather than using the subtraction method of calculation. Testing for the Low Carb line of ExtendBars were done at the University of Sydney, Australia — a leading laboratory for Glycemic Index research and certification. The numbers break down like this:

  • Peanut Delight has a glycemic index of 32 with a glycemic load of only 4.
  • Apple Cinnamon has a glycemic index 33 with a glycemic load of only 4.
  • Chocolate Delight has a glycemic index of 41 with a glycemic load of only 5.

Do they taste good? That's always a question with low carb products that often taste little better than the box they come in. Not the case with Extend Bars. Our review team found them very tasty and had no problem wolfing them down. :) The Peanut Delight was a favorite with the majority, but all three flavors were received well.

They contain no trans fats, are low in fat and calories, are high in fiber and protein, and of course contain no added sugar. And the Chocolate and Apple Cinnamon flavors are gluten free as well. Low Carb Luxury strongly recommends Extend Bars as a great snack bar for low carb dieters, diabetics, and those with insulin resistance. For purchase information, visit their website.

02-08-04 - Product Recommendation & Review: Keto Mini Bars

Late last Summer, we reviewed the first round of the new
Keto Mini-Bars. We're so pleased that they've released a new flavor in their Mini line-up.

They now offer
Mini Chocolate Coconut Creme. The creamy coconut filling is delectable! A perfect marriage with the chocolate coating and these really hit the spot when you just want a small treat that will keep hunger at bay. Like the others, these mini-bars are half the size of regular bars, so there's not more than you really want...

If you're a coconut fan, these creamy bars are right up your alley!
They're available from KETO Low Carb Food & Snacks.

08-19-03 - Product Recommendation & Review: Keto Mini Bars
If you love the new super chocolatey Keto Bars, but always felt they were a little too large for you, then the new
Keto Mini Bars are just what you're looking for. I'm one of those people that could never eat a whole bar. I always seemed to have one in my desk with half the wrapper folded back over itself across the half of the bar I couldn't finish. And I know I'm not the only one... More than half of our reviewers said they do the same thing.

Keto is making the Mini versions of their bars in their most popular flavors:
Chocolate Fudge, Lemon Chiffon, and Chocolate Peanut Butter. They offer up a mere 1 or 2 grams of effective carbs, and don't contain maltitol or other polyols that can cause gastric distress.

They're available from KETO Low Carb Food & Snacks.

10-08-02 - Product Recommendation & Review: Keto Blueberry Cheesecake Bars
We've been buying Keto bars for what seems like forever now, and have surely had our favorites. Up until now, I think our group-favorite was Caramel Nut Crunch. But by a majority, we've now voted the newest of their flavors, Blueberry Cheesecake to be tops on our list.

To be honest, I don't think we'd have named it that, since more of us felt like we were tasting fresh, tart blueberries topped with a rich French-vanilla ice cream. Either way, this bar is refreshingly good, just sweet enough, and brings out a very strong, genuine blueberry flavor. (Yes, they do contain real blueberries.)

They're even better cold! They're 2 grams of effective carbs per bar (excluding 2 grams of maltitol, 4 grams of fiber, plus glycerine.) Very, very yummy!

They're available from KETO Low Carb Food & Snacks, or from The Low Carb Connoisseur.

09-10-02 - Product Recommendation & Review: Strive Bars
Looking for something extremely different in a low carb bar? The new Strive Bars from Biochem are a deliciously new concept that are more like a crunchy sweet Rice Krispie bar than the usual soft bars.

They currently come in three great flavors:
Dark Chocolate Raspberry Crunch, Mixed Berry Crunch, and Crunchy Chocolate S'Mores. We had a hard time deciding on a favorite, but I think the Mixed Berry edged the others out by a tiny margin. Sweetened with maltitol and sucralose, we detect no "aftertaste" to any of the three flavors.

These bars contain a listed 25 grams of carbohydrate per bar, but all but 3 of those carbs are from maltitol, so if you are able to deduct sugar alcohols from your carb count, these will be an excellent choice. If you're like me and need to count some of the maltitol carbs, the bars will end up more like 7-10 grams per bar. With all sugar alcohol containing products, your mileage may vary. I can tell you that eating them did not disturb any of us from ketosis.

The Mixed Berry Crunch has a Strawberry coating, and the other two have a thin chocolate coating. They're delish, and they're different!

They're available from netrition or from Greenbeanz.

08-11-02 - Product Recommendation & Review: Keto Cookies and Creme Bars

This past weekend, our little group had the pleasure of trying a new variety of bar from the good folks at Keto! They've introduced a very (very) rich flavor called Cookies and Crème! And boy are these good. They really remind me of that super-dark cocoa taste in OreosTM
... Yet, the taste of the "creme" is distinctly there as well. I kept wanting to "dunk" these in milk.

They're definitely at their best refrigerated, but here's the kicker -- freeze 'em and chop them up. Then add them to your favorite low carb vanilla ice cream (or recipe.) It's so classic "Cookies 'n Creme Ice Cream"! (I know, I know, we're always finding new things to do with ice cream... do you sense a pattern here?) Cookies and Creme Ice Cream

The bars come in at 4 grams each, and no that's not with sugar alcohols subtracted. Know why? These don't contain any. So for those of us who can't tolerate large anounts of maltitol or other sugar alcohols, these bars are all the more ideal.

They're available from KETO Low Carb Food & Snacks, or from The Low Carb Connoisseur.

04-09-02 - Product Recommendation & Review:
Think Thin Bars! Yes, it's another entry into the world of low-carb bars. In fact, we've tried several new brands in the last few weeks. Most haven't made the "cut", but the new Think Thin! bars are quite good. Creamy and moist, and quick to satisfy hunger, these fit the bill nicely. In fact, not a single member of our group didn't like them.

They come in three varieties: Chocolate Fudge, Peanut Butter, and Lemon Meringue. By a large margin, everyone really liked the Lemon Meringue the best. I agree... it's one of the best lemon bars I've had (and is flavored with real lemon juice), but all three flavors are winners, and we bet most of you will agree.

Think Thin Bars! The addition of Cerephine with Gikgo Biloba is heralded to improve your mental performance. Whether this is important to you or not, the good taste and low carbs should still satisfy.

Each bar contains about 8 grams of glycerin and about 11 grams of sugar alcohol (in the form of HSH and Maltitol), but we did not notice any negative effects from these. They list the effective carb count as 3 grams for these bars, but as you know, we figure in a minor amount for the small effects of the polyols, so we count these bars at 6 carbs each in our daily counts.

These simply delicious bars are available to order online from The Low Carb Zone or from The Low Carb Connoisseur.

03-12-02 - Product Recommendation & Review:
Keto Fudge Bars If you love really, really deep chocolate, and hate the effects of sugar alcohols, the newest addition to the Keto Bar line might be just what you're looking for. Even though they have a very smooth chocolate coating, they've managed to avoid the use of maltitol, lactitol, or any other polyol and the unpleasant "laxative-effects" they bring (as well as being a source of often under-reported carbs.)

Keto Fudge Bars In fact, the new
Keto Double Fudge Bars bear a striking resemblence to actual fudge. One of our members put it well when she said, "if you mixed a brownie with a good fudge and dipped it all in chocolate, you'd have these bars."

They come in at 3 effective carb grams after discounting fiber and glycerine, and are sweetened with a mix of acesulfame-k and sucralose (Splenda.) If the folks at Keto are listening, a common comment at our group meeting was a wish to have a version of these with nuts (walnuts or pecans) -- the way we love our real brownies and fudge.

Keto Double Fudge Bars (and all other varieties of Keto bars) are available from The Low Carb Connoisseur, The Low Carb Dieter's Page, and from KETO Low Carb Food & Snacks.

11-30-01 - Product Recommendation & Review:
Atkins Advantage Bars - New flavors! Yes, it's true -- Atkins has two new flavors. And they're already a favorite over here. Both covered in an exceptionally creamy yogurt coating, you'll want to try the new Frosted Cinnamon Swirl, and Pralines 'n Creme bars.

The Cinnamon Swirl bars are very similar to the breakfast bars of the same variety -- just bigger bars with a more candy-like coating. So if you like the Cinnamon Breakfast bars, you'll love these. The Praline variety is good, sweet and crunchy, but not particularly praline-like. I'm not actually sure why they named them as such, but they are good. A member of our group mentioned they were very much like "blonde" brownies with a yogurt topping. I think that's a more appropriate description.

The bars list 3 grams each, but like all bars with some sugar alcohols or glycerin (in this case the later), I believe the real carb count impact for most people would be about 6 grams per bar. Still a good deal for a creamy, filling bar. Many protein bars benefit from being chilled. That's not the case with these... they are equally good at any temperature.

So, during those really hectic holiday times when it's hard to find time to prepare every meal or snack, these might prove a great on-the-go option for you. And heck, this time of year, they're not gonna melt in the glove box, right? (Well, at least not for those of us in the frigid midwest.) Atkins Bars are available at The Low Carb Connoisseur, and The Low Carb Dieter's Page.

09-10-01 - Product Recommendation & Review:
Atkins Breakfast Bars - Cinnamon Bun Last November, Atkins introduced their new line of Breakfast Bars, which we reviewed and enjoyed. But now that Atkins has debuted their newest variety -- Cinnamon Bun Breakfast Bars, we have to say this new flavor blows the others outta the water! Let's get right to the point -- these are terrific. To put it another way, I have had a bar EVERY single day since the first time I tried them. We had to make an extra trip to our health food store to stock up on more of them because after our meeting, all our reviewers wanted more.

Coated with a creamy vanilla coating that is reminiscent of pastry frosting, the centers are buttery, sweet, and very cinnamon-y (is that a word?) Coming in at 2 effective carbs per bar, they contain the usual polydextrose (litesse) and glycerin in the frosting, but do not contain traditional sugar alcohols like maltitol and should not cause any sort of gastric distress.

They're quick, they're delicious, they're low-carb. Atkins Cinnamon Bun Breakfast Bars are available from The Low Carb Connoisseur, and The Low Carb Dieter's Page.

07-27-01 - Product Recommendation & Review:

Keto Bars Okay, no beating around the bush here... this review -- for the newest line of bars from Keto wants to simply state that they are just "out of this world". We can barely say enough good things about these bars and this is a group consensus here.

Before we get started - a note: These are not the same bars they distributed last year, and indeed have tweaked the formula for even these new ones until they were (in the words of Goldilocks) "just right".

Joining the ranks of the newly re-worked
Peanut Butter Cup, are Strawberry Shortcake, Oatmeal Raisin, and Caramel Nut Crunch. Now containing no maltitol or other sugar alcohols and just a tiny bit of glycerine for texture, they are unique in the low-carb bar world. And they're made directly at the Keto plant, so you know that what it says on the label is something you can take to the bank.

Our highest accolades go to the Caramel Nut Crunch -- if you're a fan of PayDay® Bars, and love a rich buttery taste, this is the one for you. You'll notice it takes on a different flavor warmed vs cool/chilled. Both are good, but quite different. Cool it is sweeter and more like candy. Warm it is more like a snack cake bar, crumbly and rich.

Our next favorite is the Oatmeal Raisin and here's why: How many of us (let's say "as kids"), snuck a few bites of raw oatmeal raisin cookie dough from the bowl before they were baked? Remember how gooey and super-cinnamon-y they were? The memories come back when you taste this exceptional bar.

But we'd be remiss if we didn't also let you know how highly the Strawberry Shortcake rated with our group. Bits of real strawberry and a creamy (almost cheesecake-like) consistency made us wonder if Strawberries and Cream wouldn't have been a more apt flavor title. These are extra good cold.

Only the Peanut Butter Cup variety is chocolate coated and we're glad. Some flavors just shouldn't have chocolate layered on. It makes these easier to take along on Summer car or bike trips too -- no chocolate to melt. They're sweetened with a sucralose (Splenda)/Ace-K mix and come in at 3 carbs each for the Strawberry and Oatmeal varieties, 4 grams for the Peanut Butter Cup, and only 2 grams for the Caramel Nut Crunch.

Those darned elves at Keto Foods have gone and done it again -- made a can't-be-without-it treat!   Keto Bars are available from KETO Low Carb Food & Snacks or from The Low Carb Connoisseur, and The Low Carb Dieter's Page.

04-06-01 - Product Recommendation & Review:
Atkins Berry Cheesecake Bar Two new flavors of the always classic Atkins Bars this week. And the new flavors are a departure from Atkins. They're not chocolate coated and they're not uncoated. The good Dr A has followed the trend and released two flavors that offer a creamy white yogurt-like coating. Packed with nutrition, very low in carbs (2.5 each) and containing no transfats or sugar alcohols, these bars are good for most low-carb regimes.

First up, there's the
Atkins Creamy Berry Cheesecake Bar that boasts a mix of raspberries, strawberries and blueberries (yes, the real thing) in a crumbly-soft base, and then covered in the topping. This one was our favorite of the two. It's especially good cold -- even icy -- and it improves the texture which crumbles a bit too much.

Atkins Lemon Chiffon Bar The next is the
Atkins Creamy Lemon Chiffon Bar. It's a more subtle lemon flavor than the EAS or LoCarb 2 Bars (see earlier reviews) and is less sweet as well. So if you found those bars either too lemony, too sweet, or both, these are probably just what you're looking for. (We suspect their more subtle lemon is why they're called Lemon Chiffon.)

Again, it's more crumbly than we'd like, but a pretty good on the go bar. It also benefits from being chilled, but not iced like the Berry bar. Atkins bars usually leave a slightly greasy feeling in your mouth as they're higher in fat (albeit good fats) than most other bars. But these are the first where this is not the case. We didn't detect any oily taste with these two. To sum it up, they are definitely a departure for Atkins, but most of us liked them well enough to have on a regular basis -- especially the Berry Cheesecake (we noted no cheesecake flavor at all, but the berries more than make up for it.)

Both varieties are available from The Low Carb Connoisseur, and The Low Carb Dieter's Page.

03-26-01 - Product Recommendation & Review:
Designer Protein Bars One thing low-carbers never really lack is a never-ending supply of "bars". Call them "Protein Bars", "Nutrition Bars", or "Meal Replacement Bars", they're a way to grab a low-carb mini-meal on the go. As you know, we've evaluated a lot of them -- and more than half of those that are truly low-carb have been good enough to rate a spot here in our reviews.

Yet another joins that group this week, as we had a chance to try the super-large bars from
Designer Protein. Yep, they're big. None of us could realy eat an entire bar in one sitting. We recommend you cut these in half (or thirds) and wrap the rest for later. They come in Peanut Better Body! (chocolate covered peanut butter) and Double Chocolats! (double chocolate.) They offer 6 grams of carbs (5 after fiber reduction), and 30 grams of protein, but as we said, you won't be able to eat those gigantic bars, so adjust the carbs accordingly.

Taste and texture are the key here, though. The taste is pretty true with very little of that "soy" taste because there's only a tiny trace of soy IN them (they contan a little soya lecithin.) The bars are primarily whey protein and taste better for it. They also contain no significant amount of sugar alcohols (they have a small amount of glycerin) and are sweetened with sucralose (Splenda.) They have a heavier, chewier texture than most bars. The double chocolate is more like eating actual fudge. The chocolate is VERY chocolate, though, so if too much is too much for you, you might like the peanut butter better (I do.)

Both are good and both get our recommendation. They're available online at netrition.

03-12-01 - Product Recommendation & Review:
Doctor's Diet LowCarb Bars There are two brand new low carb bars on the market this week. If you are a fan of the Doctor's Diet LowCarb Diet Bars you'll be pleased to know you can now enjoy them in Raspberry Truffle and in Chocolate Covered Banana Nut (with Soy Nuts.) Each are rich in their flavors and are very sweet. There are those of us that liked the extra sweetness and those that like a less-sweet bar. No doubt about it, that's the biggest delineator here. It's also important to note that these bars are sweetened with some Stevia, so decide accordingly. However, for those of the group that liked "sweet" and that liked the other Doctor's Diet bars, all liked these new flavors very much. That said, it's only fair to point out that I personally don't love the Stevia-sweetened bars, so I found these to be only "okay". But since so many of our group did like 'em (some of them LOVED them), we felt they deserved a nod here.

Also of note -- the Raspberry Truffle flavor has "Carb Block" built right into the bar (a mixture of phaseolus vulgaris and gymnema sylvestre.) Each come in at approximately 2 carbs per bar not counting sugar alcohols (remember to allow an extra 3-4 carbs for those if you are sensitive to them!) All flavors of Doctor's Diet Bars are available from The Low Carb Connoisseur.

03-06-01 - Product Recommendation & Review:
EAS Advant-Edge Carb Control Bars
A lot of new low-carb bars are now making their debut in both regular retail outlets and online merchants and health food stores. The times when only Slim Fast bars dominated your local grocery or pharmacy have passed and most now boast an array of everything from low-fat sugar-filled Jenny Craig bars through high-protein, high-carb bars to those that fit OUR regime -- the low-carb bars! Some brands even have a retail "version" and a health food store/online "version" (Did you know the Carb Solution bars in the stores ARE the Protein Revolution Bars online [we reviewed them 4/26/2000]?)

EAS Advant-Edge Carb Control Bars Only about half the bars make it here to our product spotlight, but this week, we simply have to share with you our discovery of the new
EAS Advant-Edge Carb Control Nutrition Bars ! At 2.5 grams per bar, they surely qualify as low-carb, but the selling point here is definitely taste and texture. They are available in Lemon Cheesecake, Apple Cinnamon, and Blueberry. And you won't find a drop of chocolate here -- all three flavors are covered in a slightly sweet, faintly vanilla creamy coating that reminds me of the icing on a sweetroll.

They're sweetened with sucralose (Splenda) and just enough maltitol to allow the topping to "blanket" the bar. The Lemon Cheesecake is lightly lemon -- enough to be distinct, but not enough to overpower the hint of cheesecake flavor. The Apple Cinnamon is the strongest of the flavors with that Mom's Apple Pie taste. In fact, the cinnamon and other spices will hit you when you tear open the wrapper. Lastly, the Blueberry has a more "cookie" flavor with bits of real blueberry distributed throughout the bar.

An excellent, filling, on-the-go low-carb snack, we love the departure from chocolate. And we love being able to pick them up whenever we're at the store. We found ours at Wal*Mart and at CVS, but I expect to see these in wide distribution soon.

12-04-00 - Product Recommendation & Review:
Ultimate LoCarb 2 bars
In September of this year, we reviewed the then-newly-released
Ultimate LoCarb 2 bars from Biochem of New York. At that time, they'd introduced 4 flavors (all very good), but all chocolate covered, and we'd wished there was an option for some of the lighter flavors -- without a chocolate coating. Well, ask and ye shall receive!

This week we had the delight to try their two new flavors:
Lemon Meringue, and French Vanilla Bean -- both with a lightly sweet, smooth white yogurt coating.

We liked the fact that the Lemon Meringue is lightly lemon, not overpowering, so you can taste the coating as well and it does truly allude to a meringue taste! These are especially good cold.

The favorite here, however, proved to be the French Vanilla Bean with its heady vanilla flavor that offers a sweet bakery-like taste. It's the most like a confection of any of the bars. It proved to be good both chilled and at room temperature, and was also delicious frozen and chopped into morsel-size treats. These two bars rate as "must haves" -- I bet you'll agree!

Ultimate LoCarb 2 Lemon Meringue and French Vanilla Bean bars come in at 3 carbs per bar and are available from The Low Carb Connoisseur.

11-13-00 - Product Recommendation & Review:
Atkins Breakfast Bars
One of the reasons why I've often hesitated to grab a traditional protein bar on a hurried morning is that it just didn't appeal to me to have chocolate coated anything at 7:30 AM. And we all know that sometimes there's just not time to stop and make bacon and eggs, or a stack of low-carb pancakes. Here's a great solution. Now, Atkins Nutritionals have introduced their new Breakfast Bars ! Chewy, lightly sweet, and reminiscent of a "blonde brownie", these bars are available in Cherry Danish, Lemon Poppy Seed, and Blueberry Pancake.

Atkins Breakfast Bars I'll wager that your next question will be, "which is best?" Well, we're not going to be a lot of help here. It's clearly a personal taste thing. We can give you our "voting results" (no relation to the current state of affairs in our National elections.) [grin] Out of 17 people in attendance when we did our taste tests, there were 9 people that preferred the Lemon Poppy Seed (it was my personal favorite), 5 preferred the Blueberry Pancake (including my husband, Richard) and 3 preferred the Cherry Danish.

They're easy to eat and don't over-crumble, so you should be able to eat them on the run pretty easily. And carb count? The Blueberry Pancake variety contain 2.7 grams per bar, the Cherry Danish are 2.5 grams, and the Lemon Poppy Seed are only 2 grams per bar.

Atkins Breakfast Bars are available from The Low Carb Connoisseur, and The Low Carb Dieter's Page.

10-19-00 - Product Recommendation & Review:
Doctor's Diet S'Mores Bars A little over a month ago, we had a chance to review the new Ultimate LoCarb 2 "S'Mores" bar. We gave it a favorable review as everyone in our group liked it. But this month, (not to be outdone), Doctor's Diet debuted their version of the S'mores Bar . We're giving this one a thumbs up, too. This one actually uses Graham Cracker Flavor so the taste is very authentic. And you can make them taste different depending on temperature.

You can have these at room temperature and they are moist (more moist than most bars), and moderately sweet. You can have them refrigerated and they are less sweet, but more of the graham flavor comes out. Frozen and cut into squares, they make great little "nibble-treats", but lose the S'mores flavor and taste more like a buttery chocolate bar. And heated a bit in the microwave and you swear you can taste the marshmallow. You'll probably have a favorite (each of us did), but we found it kinda cool that these could be so flexible and changing.

To our delight and relief, unlike the previous incarnations of Doctor's Diet bars, these are (finally) made without trans-fats ("partially hydrogenated palm oil"). So you can feel better about eating them. They come in with a count of 2.5 grams of carbohydrate per bar (as usual, discounting the glycerine and maltitol in the bar.)

All varieties of Doctor's Diet Bars are available from The Low Carb Connoisseur.

09-30-00 - Product Recommendation & Review:
Doctor's Diet Mint Bars
When people first started writing me recommending we try the new
Doctor's Diet
Chocolate Mint Cookie bars, I'd heard they were like the original Girl Scout "Thin Mints". I have to say, I did kind of doubt this would be the case. But we got some in for the group to give 'em a whirl, and okay, we admit it -- they did remind everyone of the "Thin Mints". I can't figure out exactly how they do that without the cookie part, but they do. They are even more minty and refreshing out of the freezer, so try them that way!

Want to try a real treat with these bars? Slice each bar in half lengthwise (down the middle of the cookie making a top and a bottom half.) Wrap and freeze. Spread each "bottom" with soft serve vanilla or mint low-carb Keto or homemade ice cream. Then place top part of bar over ice cream to make a "sandwich". Re-wrap and freeze for at least one hour. You can make batches of these and have super ice cream sandwiches at your fingertips whenever you want. They are really great. The only drawback to the Doctor's Diet Bars is their use of partially hydrogenated oils - lending trans-fats to the bars. We wish they could avoid this as many other bars do, but for taste and low-carbs, they're hard to beat.

All varieties of Doctor's Diet Bars are available from The Low Carb Connoisseur.

09-09-00 - Product Recommendation & Review:
Ultimate LoCarb 2 bars If you're one of those people that avoided or didn't care for the original Ultimate LoCarb bars because you don't like the taste of Stevia, you'll be pleased to know the latest incarnation - Ultimate LoCarb 2 bars are now sweetened with Splenda. We got the chance to try all four of their new flavors:
  • Black Forest Raspberry Swirl
  • Chocolate Smores Supreme
  • Coconut Almond Delight and
  • Chocolate Peanut Butter & Jelly.
From the names of the bars' varieties, I personally thought I'd be a bigger fan of the Black Forest Raspberry ones (since raspberry is a passion of mine), but while many in the group did like that one, I felt the raspberry was a little overly subtle.

Overall, all four flavors fared well, but two of them stood out as clear winners. The Coconut Almond Delight was reminiscent of the Mounds candy bars. Why do I say Mounds instead of Almond Joy? Because while the coconut is pronounced and delicious, the almond flavoring is nearly lost. That's why it came in second, but is still a very good bar. And what was Number One? Without a doubt - the
Chocolate Smores !  How they get that amazingly authentic graham flavor in there without using any graham flour, I don't know. But they did. And you can almost smell the toasting of the marshmallows! This was a favorite for everyone.

Ultimate LoCarb 2 bars But you know us - we aren't content to simply have the bars plain. Oh, no, we have to "create" with them. First, we found all the bars were good both cold/frozen and at room temperature, but again, the Smores came out more versatile. It also proved to be the best to cook with. We made "Smores Chip Cookies"! (We used the Chocolate Chip Cookies recipe at the site and instead of Darrell Lea chocolate chips, we froze and chopped a couple of Smores bars into chips. They were both melty and chewy, so we called this one a success!

All varieties are 2 carbs per bar excluding glycerine/polydextrose as usual. They are available from The Low Carb Connoisseur.

08-22-00 - Product Recommendation & Review:
Atkins Advantage Bar - Banana It's time for new flavors of Atkins Bars again, and this time we're pretty pleased with the choices. First, if you are already a fan of at least some of the Atkins Bars, you'll probably like these. If you've been luke-warm on the others, you should try one or both of these new flavors - they might make a believer out of you.

So what has the Atkins kitchen cooked up this time? The new flavors are
Banana Colada and Chocolate Atkins Advantage Bar - Mocha Mocha Crunch. First, the Banana Colada -- This was our favorite of the two bars since many of us have been disappointed that all the other "banana" flavored bars out there feel the need to cover them with chocolate. This bar is very very moist and offers up a tropical banana coconut mix with a buttery twist. This bar freezes well also and lends itself to breaking into pieces for bite-size snacks or adding to recipes.

The Chocolate Mocha Crunch is just what you'd expect - a rich dark chocolate center with espresso overtones and bits of the same little soy-nuts used in the Praline Crunch bars giving a crispy crunch. The entire bar is then coated in a smooth dark chocolate. The coffee lovers in our group froze and cut the bars up to serve over the Keto Coffee Ice Cream.

The only drawback is that the bars - like all in this genre - contain a good amount of glycerine which can cause stalls in some people. If they don't usually have this effect on you, you'll be fine. We think both flavors are winners and will likely be good sellers for the Atkins line.

Both are less than 2 carbs per bar excluding glycerine/polydextrose as usual. They are available from The Low Carb Connoisseur, and The Low Carb Dieter's Page.

04-26-00 - Product Recommendation & Review:
Protein Bars
Nutrition Bars, Protein Bars, Low Carb Bars, Meal Replacement Bars, Snack Bars... whatever you call them, the choices are getting more plentiful! I get asked my opinions about the various bars now more than anything else, but quite frankly, it took a bit of time to gather all the possibilities together for taste testing. Well, we've done it. (If, by the way, you are wondering who "we" are -- we have a local group of low carbers now that get together for product taste and cooking tests so you guys can get a balanced opinion shared by more than just "me".)

We've already reviewed both Atkins Bars and Keto-Bars (see further down this page), but there have been a lot of new entries lately.
Premier Nutrition makes a line of very low-carb bars called Elite, as well as their Premier eight bars. There's a line of bars from Biochem called Ultimate Lo Carb Bars (in Cappuccino, Brownie and Peanut Butter), and Low Glycemic Technologies now makes a line of Protein Revolution Bars . There's Optimum Nutrition's Complete Protein Diet Bars and Universal Nutrition now makes a series of Doctor's Diet LowCarb Bars.

So... what did we really love?
Hands down the best bars for both low-carb value and great taste were:

Protein Revolution Bars in Peanut Butter & Jelly and in Apple Cinnamon Spice Cake. (These two flavors tied, but their Hazelnut Toffee Crunch was also a winner.) Also at the top of our list: Premier's Elite Bars in Chocolate Banana and Raspberry. Both the Protein Revolution Bars and the Elite Bars are approximately 2 carbs per bar, but if you can afford the extra carbs, the Premier eight Frosted Lemon was really tasty (it does contain a small amount of sugar and packs 8 carbs per bar.)

Many of these bars are showing up locally now - in health food stores, and in specialty grocery areas. If you can't find them, here are some great online sources for them: The Low Carb Connoisseur, and Netrition!

One tip: Most bars are more enjoyable chilled in the fridge a bit, but it's a personal taste thing...

01-27-00 - Product Recommendation & Review:
Keto Bars For some time now I have been having Atkins Bars as occasional treats when I want something portable and sweet. There are many "bars" on the market, but most are either too high in carbs (many so-called low-carb bars have as much as 15-22 grams of carbs per bar!) or taste just awful, so I thought for truly low-carb, Atkins were my best bet. Then, this week, I tried the new Keto Bars from Keto Brand. Wow! These bars are unbelievably good. Were you a fan of Reese'sTM Peanut Butter Cups before you went to a low-carb/no sugar lifestyle? If so, you're likely to enjoy these bars. The outside coating is a TRUE chocolate and the inside is a soft, creamy well-textured peanut butter filling very reminiscient of the old-style peanut butter cups. They are 4 carbs per bar and a great low carb bargain. Refrigerated, they are at their best (of course I always liked my peanut butter cups cold too!) They're available from The Low Carb Connoisseur, and KETO Low Carb Food & Snacks.

8-25-99 - Product Recommendation & Review:
Atkins Advantage Bars are now offered in Three New Flavors! The bars -- now so much tastier sweetened with Splenda -- are available Atkins Bars - New Flavors! in some interesting new varieties!

        Chocolate Peanut Butter
        Chocolate Raspberry
        Praline Crunch
Go get yourself some of these great new flavors! If you've been a fan of the original Atkins Advantage Bars, you'll really like these! They're available from The Low Carb Connoisseur, Netrition, and The Low Carb Dieter's Page.

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