Nature Valley’s Chewy Protein Bar – The Pros and Cons

Nature Valley Protein Chewy Bar

Everyone and their sister is getting on the protein bandwagon these days. Snack bars are leading the crusade to bulk up our protein intake. Nature Valley, a General Mills subsidiary, is no exception. Today we’ll analyze the company’s Protein Chewy Bar, Peanut Butter Dark Chocolate.

The bar has 190 calories and boasts an impressive 10 grams of protein for a serving of 1-1/3 ounces. On the carbohydrate end of things, the bar has 5 grams of fiber with just 6 grams of sugar.

Here is the ingredient list:

Roasted Peanuts, Soy Protein Isolate, Chicory Root Extract, Sugar, Vegetable Oils (palm kernel, palm, canola, peanut), Whey Protein Concentrate, High Maltose Corn Syrup, Cocoa, Fructose, Peanut Butter (peanuts, salt), Vegetable Glycerin, Rice Starch, Honey, Rice Maltodextrin, Salt, Soy Lecithin, Natural Flavor.

The first ingredient is peanut. That’s great. Peanuts are a wonderful source of healthy fats and protein as well.

The second ingredient is less impressive: Soy protein isolate is a highly processed byproduct of soybeans. Soybeans are treated with alcohols and other solvents to remove fats and carbs. The process also removes most of their nutrients. If it were up to us, we would add more peanuts. Note that most soybeans in the US are also genetically modified.

The third ingredient is chicory root extract, a fiber booster that we are not fond of. You can read more about it here. It is also known as inulin, and without it, there would be substantially less fiber in this bar.

Sugar appears only as the fourth ingredient, which is actually quite impressive. The total sugars count for this bar is just 1.5 teaspoons, much lower than the industry average.

The rest of the ingredient list is neither benign nor evil, but not the types of foodstuff one would find at home. There are worse bars out there, but you could do better. To find out what bars are rated the highest on Fooducate, use the BROWSE function in your Fooducate app (free for iPhone and Android).

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  • NP

    Not a fan of Nature Valley stuff, most of their products are so sickeningly sweet it is unreal.

  • AE

    I had Gestational Diabetes while pregnant and these were one of the few sweeter foods that didn’t spike my blood glucose. They were also a quick snack while I was working full time. I ate them nearly every day.
    Now…..my LO is dairy/soy protein intolerant so I’m no longer eating them.

  • oldlady

    As the OP stated, everyone is getting on the protein bandwagon…my goodness are we missing that much protein in our diet???!! And sendentary folks need all this protein with added sugar & fat?? That worries me. I caution people who want to increase protein, just watch all the extra sugar (milk, yogurt, protein bars, cereal, etc.).

  • monikarobinski

    I don’t have an i phone or android, so how can I find out which bar is the best option? My stepson keeps on bringing up wanting nutri bars (since obviously we won’t get any regular bars) and I tell him to eat a fruit, but a couple of times a week it wouldn’t hurt, if I knew what to get.

  • NatureRack

    For a while I followed a diet that included this snack, plus Light and Fit and other snacks that claim to be healthy. Guess what? This diet put me in the hospital and I almost died. To this day, I have no idea what caused the issue, but I do know that I am no longer sick since I removed all of the packaged foods from my diet.

  • H2O

    Thanks just added it to my list of foods to do without no need to eat this stuff. I can’t believe they just keep pushing this on us .it would be nice if they would create an item wih no Gmos, soy,evil oils, HFS but they don’t care about us we are just profits..

  • Hyun Kwak

    Hi, I broke my tooth while eating this particular product. The bar contained a piece of plastic piece in it. :( http://nature-valley-protein-bar.blogspot.com/