Atkins Meal and Snack Bars Product Review

The Taste, Texture and Types of Atkins Bars for Meals and Snacks

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Atkins bars are available in meal, snack and the recently added Harvest Trail bars. These three types of bars come in different flavors. I have only tried one kind of Morning bar ("Cinnamon Bun") and found it to be almost unbearably sweet. This is my main objection with all the Atkins bars, although the ones that are more like candy bars don't bother me quite as much. But things may have changed as this flavor is no longer available. I'm guessing that the people who are in the biggest danger of finding the sweetness level objectionable are those who have been off sugar for awhile. 

The Atkins Bars Taste Test

  • Flavor: I found all the bars I tried to be quite good in flavor. My favorites are the Chocolate Chip Granola and Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Bar.
  • Sweeteners: Glycerine, polydextrose, sucralose, acesulfame potassium, and inulin are the main sweet ingredients used. (For more information about them, see this article about "Net Carbs".) Unlike other manufacturers of low carb products, the Atkins company does test its products for blood glucose rise in actual people. However, those people are not diabetic and the company has been quoted as saying, "Results are likely to vary in a diabetic population where blood sugar control is abnormal."
  • Other Ingredients: The "crunch" in the granola bars comes from soy nuggets. In fact, all the bars have soy as their main protein sources, along with hydrolyzed collagen, whey protein, and sodium caseinate. They also have quite a few other polysyllabic ingredients, although most of these appear to be vitamins.

Net Carbs: Bars generally contain 2 or 3 "Atkins Net Count" carbs per bar. A few of the bars have more.

Pros of the Atkins Meal and Snacks Bars

  • Taste good
  • Truly low glycemic for most people
  • No sugar alcohols in many of the bars (check labels)
  • Locally available in many places
  • Come in many flavors and types

Cons of the Atkins Meal and Snacks Bars

  • Very sweet
  • Very much a "processed food" with many ingredients and preservatives

Nutritional Information and Ingredient Description for Atkins Bars

  • Bars have 1-5 grams net carbs, depending upon the bar.
  • Bars have 70-230 calories, depending upon the bar.
  • All bars have both soy and milk protein.
  • Atkins Snack bars come in 15 flavors: Classic Trail Mix, Sweet & Salty Trail Mix, Caramel Chocolate Nut Roll, Caramel Chocolate Peanut Nougat Bar, Dark Chocolate Almond Coconut Crunch, Caramel Double Chocolate Crunch, Cashew Trail Mix, Coconut Almond Delight, Dark Chocolate Decadence, Triple Chocolate, Chocolate Chip Crisp, Chocolate Hazelnut, Cranberry Almond, Chocolate Oatmeal Fiber and Peanut Butter Fudge Crisp.
  • Atkins Meal bars come in 11 flavors: Blueberry Greek Yogurt, Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough, Chocolate Chip Granola, Chocolate Peanut Butter, Chocolate Peanut Butter Pretzel, Cinnamon Bun, Cookies n' Creme, Mudslide, Peanut Butter Granola, Peanut Fudge Granola and Strawberry Almond. 
  • Atkins Harvest Trail bars come in four flavors: Dark Chocolate Sea Salt Caramel, Dark Chocolate Cherry and Nuts, Dark Chocolate Peanut Butter and Vanilla Fruit and Nut. 

    The Bottom Line

    Twelve years ago, when I went on my first reduced-carb diet, I tried out different protein bars. At that time, Atkins bars tasted awful. However, I'm happy to report that they have improved a lot. This is especially great because so many of the low carb bars on the market contain maltitol (Note: since I wrote this review, maltitol has been to some of the bars, so read carefully!) It's also nice when I can find them in my local stores. Atkins bars meet both of these criteria. My only real objection is the sweetness level.

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    Article Sources
    • Mendosa, David. "Net Carbs." 13 May 2005. Mendosa,com. 22 Jul 2007.