The Best Clean + Healthy Protein Bars
We’ve rounded up the best healthy protein bars you can buy to ensure top quality clean ingredients, mega nutrition and easy convenience during busy times!
This post is sponsored by Health Warrior and RXBAR. All thoughts and opinions are my own.Thank you for supporting the brands that make it possible for Root + Revel to provide free content and healthy living inspiration.
It’s back-to-school season again and our schedules are quickly filling up with extra meetings, driving the kids to school, sports practices – and don’t even get me started on all the holiday talk already happening!
During busy times it’s more important than ever to know what to grab when you’re on-the-go and need a convenient, healthy and filling snack, so you don’t reach for something that you’ll later regret. #noexcuses
That’s where healthy protein bars come in! Though there are hundreds of brands of protein bars out there, it’s surprisingly hard to find some that have clean, real food ingredients.
You’d be shocked to know how most protein bars (even those labeled ‘natural’) actually aren’t healthy at all. Many labels and packages LOOK healthy, but when you take the time to read the ingredients you’ll discover that they’re actually loaded with sugars, preservatives, toxic additives, harmful fillers and things you can’t pronounce.
That’s why today I’m sharing with you my top favorite picks for the best clean, real-food-based healthy protein bars!
THE BEST HEALTHY PROTEIN BARS: HEALTHY WARRIOR
One of my newest favorite healthy snack bars that are also kid-friendly are Health Warrior’s Chia Bars made from 100% real food. All of Health Warrior’s products have superfoods (like chia seeds) as the first and main ingredient, and they’re also completely plant-based and free of gluten, dairy, GMOs and soy.
While their bars only have about three grams of protein each, where Health Warrior really shines is in their low sugar content. It’s hard to believe that these bars also have only three grams of sugar–that’s super low compared to most of their competition, and makes it an awesome choice for adults and kids alike.
How do they do it? A little brown rice syrup and either chicory root fiber and/or monk fruit (which is a natural sweetener that doesn’t spike blood sugar).
While I’m not a calorie counter, for those of you who do track calories, these bars are only 100 calories each.
Plus, they come in a ton of delicious flavors. My top picks are the Chocolate Peanut Butter, Vanilla Almond and Acai Berry, but they also come in Banana Nut, Apple Cinnamon, Coconut, Caramel Sea Salt, Dark Chocolate, Dragon Fruit, and Dark Chocolate Cherry.
You can buy Health Warrior’s Chia Bars direct through their website where they not only have a ‘best price guarantee’, but you can also get 20% off your order with the code rootandrevel20! The bars are also available on Amazon or at Thrive Market.
The Best Healthy Protein Bars: RXBAR
I absolutely love RXBARs. They have some of the cleanest bars around made with whole foods and simple ingredients like egg whites, fruits, and nuts. Every bar is dairy-free, soy-free, gluten-free, and contains no added sugars. Score!
I really appreciate this brand because they print their core ingredients on the front of the package so we consumers know exactly what we’re eating (though admittedly they do list “natural flavors” on the back label and I do wish the bars were organic). But there’s no artificial colors, flavors, preservatives or fillers – just like real food should be.
Some of the most popular flavors include Chocolate Sea Salt, Peanut Butter Chocolate, Blueberry, Coconut Chocolate, Mixed Berry and Peanut Butter.
These healthy protein bars are perfect for breakfast on-the-go (easy to grab for those mornings when you’re running late!), for a midday snack or for pre/post workout fuel.
RXBAR has also recently introduced a healthy protein bar line specifically for kids that have the same whole food qualities of being gluten free, soy free and dairy free with no fillers or preservatives. They’re easy to keep in your purse so when your kids start tugging on your arm looking for a tasty snack, you’ll be prepared and can feel good about giving them something nutritious and filling.
Whether it’s for breakfast to-go, part of a lunchbox or for an after school snack, your kids will enjoy these yummy, healthy bars. Bonus for you – they create zero mess, so no crumbs or sticky fingers!
The RXBAR Kids come in three kid-friendly flavors: Apple Cinnamon Raisin, Berry Blast, and Chocolate Chip.
The Best Healthy Protein Bars: EPIC Bars
If savory protein is more your style, I highly recommend EPIC Bars, which are all about going back to our roots and eating off of the land, just like our ancestors. EPIC Bars combine meat, fruit, and nuts to create a savory, healthy protein bar that is high in nutrients and low in sugar. All of their bars are gluten free, grain free, dairy free and soy free.
Their unique bars use beef, venison, wild boar, lamb, and bison raised on open pastures, and their beef and bison are both 100% grass-fed and organic. My favorite flavor is Chicken Sriracha, but they’ve got tons of interesting flavor combos like Bison Bacon Cranberry, Beef Habanero Cherry, Venison Sea Salt Pepper, Lamb Currant Mint, Smoked Salmon Maple and Chicken Sesame BBQ.
The Best Healthy Protein Bars: Thrive GoMacro
Thrive GoMacro Bars are cold-pressed, chewy, nut-butter based nutrition bars that are made from simple, clean, macrobiotic ingredients that are sustainably sourced. All their bars are certified vegan, gluten-free, organic, R.A.W., C.L.E.A.N., kosher and non-GMO project verified. Whew!
These healthy protein bars come in three different lines – original MacroBar (in 11 different flavors including Sunflower Butter + Chocolate, Cashew Caramel and Cherries + Berries), MacroBar Minis (for fewer calories) and a new ancient-seed superfood line called THRIVE that are lower glycemic and come in 6 different flavors. Caramel Coconut and Chocolate Peanut Butter Cup will ROCK. YOUR. WORLD.
GoMacro is a lot more like your traditional granola bar, rather than the protein bars that are made with dates and have that chewy, candy-like texture.
The Best Healthy Protein Bars: Primal Kitchen Collagen Bars
Primal Kitchen Collagen Protein Bars are low carb, nutrient dense bars that are gluten-free, dairy-free, soy-free, non-GMO and refined sugar free. I’m a huge fan of supporting your diet with collagen for its digestion, skin and joint benefits, so these bars really deliver with 7,500-8,300 milligrams of collagen in each (that’s more collagen than a cup of bone broth, and even more collagen than some of the leading collagen supplements on the market!).
Primal Kitchen Collagen Bars come in four flavors: Dark Chocolate Almond, Coconut Cashew (my personal fave), Chocolate Hazelnut and Macadamia Sea Salt. These bars tend to be a bit stickier than others, but the flavors and health benefits are amazing!
The Best Healthy Protein Bars: Simple Squares
Simple Squares are another top pick for healthy protein bars that are paleo, organic, Non-GMO, refined sugar-free and gluten-free, with no preservatives, fillers or syrups. They also stay true to their name with just five simple ingredients: nuts, honey, vanilla, sea salt and spices.
These nutritious bars are infused with herbs, including invigorating flavors like Sage, Rosemary, Ginger Spice and Chili Pepper, along with classics like Chocolate Chip, Coffee Bean and Coconut. I’m obsessed with Cinna-Clove this time of year–it’s also a bit more granola-bar-esque in texture, which I like more for meal replacements as they can feel a bit more substantial.
The Best Healthy Protein Bars: Bearded Brothers
With an average of just seven ingredients per bar, Bearded Brothers bars are organic, non-GMO, vegan, gluten-free, soy-free, low glycemic, and a great source of fiber and protein. All five of their bars are also raw, making them jam packed with nutrients from superfoods like kale, blueberries, hemp seeds, shredded coconut, and chia seeds. I love that they’ve incorporated adaptogens into their bars, like maca, too!
Buy a variety pack on Amazon for $2.50 per bar.
What are your favorite healthy protein bars? I’d love for you to share about any brands you love that aren’t included in this roundup in the comments below!
Disclaimer: This post includes affiliate links, and I will earn a commission if you purchase through these links. Please note that I’ve linked to these products purely because I recommend them and they are from companies I trust.
Photo Credit: Heidi Geldhauser
Disclaimer: This post includes affiliate links, and I will earn a commission if you purchase through these links. Please note that I've linked to these products purely because I recommend them and they are from companies I trust. There is no additional cost to you.