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The Best of the Bars

Looking for a quick bite? Here's how the snack bars stack up.

Kashi Go Lean

These bars, which contain whole grains, bran, and soy protein concentrate, score high in fiber and protein. But the sugar and saturated fat are high -- around 47% calories from sugar and 3 grams of saturated fat per bar.

One of the best-tasting flavors is Oatmeal Raisin Cookie: One bar (78 grams weight) contains 280 calories, 13 grams protein, 6 grams fiber, 5 grams of fat (3 grams saturated fat) and 47% calories from sugar. (Journal as a meal-replacement protein bar.)

Luna Bars (made with soy protein)

Luna bars score great for protein and sugar, but their fiber doesn't get to the 3-grams-or-more level. Most of the flavors have 2 grams of fiber, 10 grams of protein, around 27% calories from sugar, and 4.5 grams of fat (3.5 grams of saturated fat) per bar.

One of the best tasting Luna flavors (even my pre-teen girls love it) is Nutz Over Chocolate: One bar (48 grams weight) contains 180 calories, 10 grams of protein, 2 grams of fiber, 4.5 grams fat (2.5 grams of saturated fat) and 27% calories from sugar. (Journal as 1 cup low-fat yogurt, sweetened.)

Nature Valley Crunchy Granola Bars

Quaker Oatmeal Breakfast Squares

These come packaged as two bars per serving. They have 4-5 grams of protein, and are among the bars with the least amount of sugar (around 24% calories from sugar), but they have only 2 grams of fiber per serving.

One of the highest protein flavors is Peanut Butter: Two bars (42 grams weight) contain 180 calories, 5 grams of protein, 2 grams fiber, 7 grams of fat (1 gram saturated fat) and 24% calories from sugar. (Journal 2 bars as 1 cup low-fat yogurt, sweetened.)

Quaker Oatmeal Breakfast Squares

These bars all contain 4 grams of protein, are low in saturated fat (1 gram), and have at least 2 grams of fiber. But the percentage of calories from sugar ranges from 34 to 38%, depending on the flavor.

The flavor highest in fiber and lowest in sugar is Baked Apple: One square (60 grams weight) contains 220 calories, 4 grams of protein, 3 grams fiber, 4 grams of fat (1 gram of saturated fat) and 34% calories from sugar. (Journal as 1/2 cup granola.)

Quaker Chewy Trail Mix Granola Bars

These bars have 3 grams of protein apiece, are low in saturated fat (1 gram per bar), and 25 to 35% calories from sugar, but they don't offer more than 2 grams of fiber.

The flavor that is lowest in sugar and highest in fiber is Mixed Nuts: One bar (35 grams weight) contains 160 calories, 3 grams protein, 2 grams fiber, 6 grams fat (1 gram saturated fat) and 25% calories from sugar. (Journal as 1 cereal bar + 1 teaspoon peanut butter).

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Reviewed on July 26, 2005

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