Kirkland Protein Bars Review
Protein supplements have become exceedingly popular in the fitness world. They are generally split into two schools; protein powder, and protein bars. Many athletes use a combination of bars and powder to some extent, although an equal amount prefer one over the other.
Generally, the upside of a protein bar is that it makes you feel full faster, and additionally allows for that feeling to last longer. The upside of protein shakes involve the fact that liquid protein is delivered more quickly to your muscles.
The general consensus is that a subtle combination of the two provides the greatest benefits.
In terms of finding the right protein bars that adequately meet your needs, the process may not be easy. Many protein bars contain chemicals, processed ingredients, and artificial flavors, as well as high quantities of sugar or other sweeteners.
But, like with most things, the right product for you does exist, the problem is just finding it.
Kirkland Signature Protein Bars
From the signature CostCo brand Kirkland comes one of the best protein bars out there. This gluten free, non GMO, all natural protein bar comes loaded with 21 grams of both whey and casein protein in each serving.
The benefit of including both types of milk proteins is an overall more beneficial protein bar. Whey protein is known for being quickly digested, something that is generally seen as a benefit.
When you consume whey protein, you get a relatively immediate boost of energy. The muscle building process also begins quickly, two points that combine to make up the reasons for the popularity of whey protein.
Casein protein, which is not as well known as its milk-derived counterpart, is known as a slow-digestive protein. Biologically, casein protein sits in a clump in your stomach for long periods of time, allowing better protein synthesis over time.
Using both types of milk-derived protein allows you to reap the most benefits of protein supplementation. In this, Kirkland is definitely unique; most bars use solely Whey.
Another great thing about these protein bars is that the ingredients stick mainly to natural ingredients. Instead of sugar, they use stevia extract, which is derived from the stevia plant – it is a good natural sweetener.
Additionally, sunflower lecithin is included as an ingredient, which is a great addition. Lecithin is known to lower cholesterol, improve heart health, and moisturize your skin.
Otherwise, all the ingredients used are natural and pronounceable, which allows for a lot of confidence in the quality of the ingredients you’re consuming.
The bars contain 200 calories, which is a little high, and so might not be the best option for athletes whose goal is weight loss.
However, they do include 14 grams of fiber, which is incredibly high for a protein supplement. The good thing about this is that fiber acts as a protection for protein. More fiber means the protein will be in your system for longer periods of time, meaning your cells receive an influx of amino acids for a greater length of time.
The bars cost $28 for a box of 20, and so are also much better priced than the majority of protein bars. They are also made with real chocolate, and so are absolutely delicious, which really stands out, as many bars, like with many protein powders, don’t taste very good.
These bars are a great option, but, like with everything we consume, they are not for everyone. For that reason, here are three other protein bar options.
KIND Breakfast Protein Bars
KIND is probably one of the more widely known granola bar brands, and they are known for two things: taste and affordability. One 32 pack of KIND protein bars costs only $20, which is more than a bargain.
These gluten-free, non GMO bars include 8 grams of protein, which is largely derived from soy, per serving. They also come in a few flavors; Almond Butter, Dark Chocolate Cocoa, and Maple Cinnamon.
They contain 220 calories and 26 grams of carbs per serving, which is definitely a bit high, although that number falls when you consider that the serving size is two bars.
These bars also have 10 grams of total sugars, 8 grams of which are added, in the form of cane sugar. While cane sugar is a better option than certain artificial sweeteners, if you’re looking for more of a sugar-free option, this is not the bar for you.
KIND’s biggest strength is in affordability.
RXBar Protein Bar
This is one of the more expensive options, at $22 for a dozen bars. And while that number is high, you get what you pay for. These bars are some of the most natural bars you can find.
Their biggest claim to fame is that they put the ingredients on the outside of the packaging, to prove that they have nothing to hide. These bars include egg whites, almonds, cashews, and dates; and that’s it.
They are gluten-free and non GMO, in addition to being incredibly healthy, natural, and simple.
Plus, they somehow contain more protein than other options, at 12 grams per serving. They also come in a large variety of delicious flavors, making them even more widely accessible to a greater variety of taste buds.
Despite the cost, RXBar remains one of the more popular protein bar brands, with a 4.1 star rating on Amazon and nearly 5,000 customer reviews. Customers laud this product as a clean and delicious source of protein.
Health Warrior Chia Bars
These are also a decently affordable option, at only $16 for a box of 15 bars. These bars are also vegan, gluten free, soy and dairy free, and non GMO.
They include only 100 calories and 3 grams of sugar per serving, although are low on the protein side, at only 3 grams per bar. Because of that, these bars may work better as a snack than as an energy supplement, like some of the other options.
However, they are still affordable, delicious, and healthy, so shouldn’t be ruled out. In fact, by having a lower protein count than other options, they become healthier to use as a snack or meal replacement, especially if you don’t work out.
Protein bars are a great way to supplement nutrients and protein into your diet. And, of the bars out there, Kirkland is making one of the best options.
Their only downside is in price. Which is why it’s great that other options like KIND and RXBar, exist.
I’m a personal trainer based in Denver (Matrix Gym) and a true fitness nerd. If I’m not training clients or working out at my home gym, I’m probably skiing, cycling or hiking with my dog Rufus.
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