What if I told you that there was a protein bar out there that tasted amazing and was made of high quality, healthy ingredients? You probably wouldn’t believe me. Healthy and tasting good rarely go together in most people’s minds.
Well, hold your disbelief for a few minutes because I have found the best tasting protein bar and you have probably never heard of it.
I have searched far and wide for the better part of 15 years to find a protein bar that tasted good and was good for you. I will admit that I stupidly did not care about the ingredients of the bars I was consuming in my younger years and was just concerned about the taste. Even all those chemical and preservative laden bars do not hold a candle to the taste and quality of the bar I’m talking about.
I have tried a sickening amount of protein bars over the years. I would bet that I have tried somewhere in the neighborhood of over 100 different protein bars in my life (sad I know). Not only bars but cookies, bites, puddings, gels, and wafers. You name it and I most likely tried it at some point.
From keto to vegan to paleo to organic and raw, I have tried bars from every possible category. Finding a protein bar made from ingredients I trust that tastes good has been a mild obsession for me. Ok, maybe it has been more than a mild obsession I will admit.
With all those bars, some were good, some were bad and some were just downright disgusting. I can only think of one bar that I would put in the amazing category however, it is full of toxic sludge and I would never recommend it to anyone.
Now that you understand why my opinion will matter on protein bars, I am proud to present you with the best tasting protein bar you’ve never heard of, which is the Atlas Bar (chocolate cacao).
Atlas bar is called the “cleanest protein bar on the planet” by its creators. While they may obviously be a little biased, I think that is an accurate description of the bar after looking at the ingredients.
Atlas bar is a protein bar company out of Duxbury Massachusetts. They are a new company that are just beginning to get their feet wet however, they are starting to get some major exposure. I have seen them pop up in the smaller niche fitness communities here and there but I think they will be a mainstream name soon.
According to the companies Facebook page, they began in 2017. This is the primary reason why I am going to make a guess that you haven’t heard of this bar or this company.
To be honest I just heard of these bars about six months ago when I found them in the store. By some random stroke of luck, my local grocery store started carrying them. I have not seen them in any other stores yet around me including Wholefoods.
The Atlas Bar company seems to be closely connected to the Crossfit community so if you are part of that community, you may have heard of them. A lot of companies start in small niches like that and work their way out. Not that Crossfit is a small niche, but it is a pretty tight community.
“Over the years, we’ve eaten more nutrition bars than we can count. Bars that taste like dirt, bars that taste like cheesecake and everything in between – you name the bar, and we’ve eaten it. But every bar we tried compromised somewhere. Some were loaded with sugar, others were loaded with artificial junk, and many just didn’t taste good. We set out to create an alternative: a bar that’s high in protein, low in sugar, minimally processed, and unquestionably delicious. We’re proud to say that Atlas Bars are crafted with the highest quality ingredients, absolutely nothing artificial, and have everything you need to keep going.”- Atlas Bar story on their website
I think that story sums up the company far better than I could’ve myself. Their findings with the protein bar industry are very similar to my own. I think this story paints a good idea of the companies overall mission.
At the time of this article, Atlas Bar currently makes three kinds of bars which are chocolate cacao, vanilla almond and peanut butter chip. They even have a combination box with all three in them if you just can’t decide.
While all the bars are very good, chocolate cacao is the first bar that I had of theirs and by far my favorite. The chocolate cacao Atlas Bar is by far the best tasting protein bar that I have ever had.
I bought this bar in the store one fine summer day not expecting it would much different from the other bars I’ve tried. The second I bit into it however, I realized that this bar is very different.
The first thing I immediately noticed is the amazing chocolate taste. I am not joking when I say that this tastes better than a candy bar. The bar is packed with cacao chocolate chips that literally melt in your mouth.
The cacao chips are what make this bar a total knockout in the taste category. For those who do not know what cacao is, it’s basically the purest form of chocolate you can eat. Cocoa and chocolate are made from the cacao beans. Cacao is as pure as it comes. Cacao is also loaded with antioxidants. Cacao has approximately 4 times the amount of antioxidants found in your average dark chocolate.
The fact that this company uses an ingredient like cacao says a lot about them. Cacao is not cheap. This company clearly cares about the quality of their product if they are using it. They also clearly care about their customers if they are willing to go for the better and healthier option when they could have easily used an inferior form of chocolate.
These are the following ingredients in the chocolate cacao Atlas Bar: almond butter, grass fed whey protein, non-gmo tapioca fiber, organic cocoa, organic vegetable glycerin, organic pumpkin seeds, 85 % cacao chocolate chips, erythritol, organic coconut oil, sunflower lecithin, natural flavors, Himalayan pink salt and stevia.
One look at those ingredients and you know that this company takes their mission to create the best protein bar serious. If you are not familiar with most of those ingredients, take my word that they are extremely high quality ingredients that you are unlikely to find in any other protein bar.
I have to admit that when I first looked at the ingredients in this bar, I did not think it was going to be anything to write home about. The combination of them all together made me a little apprehensive to try it.
Although it is extremely healthy, I typically despise almond butter and was worried that it would be overpowering as it is the first listed ingredient. I honestly cannot even taste it in this bar, which is a good thing for me.
I am a bit of a chocolate connoisseur and have eaten cacao for years. If you have not tried cacao before than you will notice a difference between it and commercial chocolate. Cacao in its raw form is usually bitter and not really comparable to real chocolate.
The cacao in this bar however, is not bitter at all and is very comparable to normal chocolate. I would say that the taste of the chocolate in this bar is somewhere between standard milk chocolate and dark chocolate. When I say dark chocolate I mean somewhere between 60-70 % cacao content. Not the darkest chocolate but not the lightest either.
One very pleasant surprise with this bar is the pumpkin seeds. Pumpkin seeds by themselves are often pretty bland. For some reason the pumpkin seeds in this bar seem to go perfectly with the chocolate taste and give it a great texture.
The Himalayan pink salt is also a very nice touch on this bar that I think improves the taste. It is not salty or overpowering at all but I can definitely notice it. I think that it mixes really well with the sweetness of the stevia. For those who are concerned about the stevia, it is not overpowering at all. I personally like the sweetness of stevia a lot but I know that some think it can be too sweet. I think this bar has the perfect amount of stevia in it.
Like most high quality supplements, you get what you pay for. I am able to buy these individually at my local grocery store and it’s just about $3.00 a bar. That is not a bad price at all for a protein bar. I have paid more for lower quality bars in the past that did not taste half as good as these bars taste.
While I will typically buy these bars at my local grocery store for convenience’s sake, I will also buy them by the box on Amazon (as of 04/15/2019 13:14 EST-Product prices and availability are accurate as of the date/time indicated and are subject to change. Any price and availability information displayed on [relevant Amazon Site(s), as applicable] at the time of purchase will apply to the purchase of this product).
They are currently going for $29.90 for a box of nine which makes that about $3.30 a bar. At the time that I’m writing this article however, there is a 5 % off coupon on Amazon right now when you order a box of Atlas Bars!
After looking at all the ingredients in these bars, I think that they are very fairly priced. I wouldn’t go and tell the company this but I would even pay more for these bars if need be. They are that good.
- Calories– The chocolate cacao bars have 230 calories in them. While some may think that is on the higher side, I think that it is the perfect amount. I will typically eat these bars between meals or even for breakfast and they easily hold me over until the next meal. That is saying a lot as I typically am always hungry.
- Fat- There are 12 grams (18 % DV) of total fat in this bar. 3 grams of which are from saturated fat. There are no trans fats in this bar. The vast majority of the fat in this bar comes from healthy sources (pumpkin seeds, cacao) and I am not concerned in the least about it. Healthy fat is necessary in our diets and the low fat craze has been totally misleading for many.
- Cholesterol– There are 30 milligrams (10 % DV) of cholesterol in the chocolate cacao bar. Like fat, many have been misled about cholesterol. Contrary to the popular myth, foods containing cholesterol do not raise blood cholesterol levels.
- Total carbohydrates- 22 grams (7 % DV) of total carbohydrates. That’s very low-carb compared to other bars, making this bar a great option even for those on low-carb or keto diets.
- Fiber– 11 grams (43 % DV!). This is an awesome amount of fiber in a bar. Very few of us get the recommended amount of fiber per day and this is an easy (and tasty) way to get it in.
- Sugars- 3 grams. That is an amazingly low amount of sugar for a bar that tastes this good. Another big reason that this bar is great for anyone on low-carb or keto diets. This is honestly one of the big reasons why I love this bar. I try to keep my sugar intake very low and which can be hard with most protein bars.
- Protein– The important category. After all, the reason you are buying these bars is mostly for the protein. This bar has 16 grams of protein in it. That is towards the higher end of average compared to other bars. It’s a great amount for a protein bar. I was surprised the bar contained this much protein as it is on the smaller side.
Who is this bar not for?
First and foremost, if you are not a chocolate lover than the chocolate cacao flavor will probably not be for you. If you are a chocolate lover however than you will be in heaven with these!
These bars are gluten-free and GMO free however, they obviously contain dairy with the whey protein. Since they contain dairy then they will not be suitable for vegans. Anyone with a whey allergy will want to avoid these if whey causes you issues.
These bars do contain tree nuts (almond and coconut) so anyone with an allergy to those will likely want to avoid this bar as well.
If you are really stuck on the commercial protein bars loaded with preservatives and unwilling to be open-minded for a bar that is actually good for you than these might not be for you. Fortunately, many customers within the health and supplement industry are opening their eyes and starting to care about the ingredients in the products they purchase so I do not think that will be may people.
Aside from those issues, these bars are for everybody. Whether you are a gym rat or just someone looking for a healthy snack, you’re going to love these bars.
The chocolate cacao Atlas Bar is the best tasting protein bar that I’ve ever tried hands down. I have been going through 6-12 bars a week since I first found these. No joke.
I wanted to produce my own protein bar for the last few years for the simple fact that I couldn’t find one that fit my standards of both taste and ingredients. I knew that if a bar could accomplish both of those tasks than it would be something special.
Since I have found this bar, I no longer have any desire to make my own. I have found that bar I was searching for and I really do not think that it can be outdone.
Give these bars a chance and I know that you will not regret it.
Have you heard of Atlas Bars before? I would love to hear your questions or opinions about them below.