Buyer’s Guide to the Best Protein Bars in Australia 2020

Introduction

Protein bars are packed with nutritional value and energy. Its compact size, lightweight, and delicious taste make it the perfect on-the-go snack or meal replacement.

Finding the perfect protein bar can be quite tricky. There are hundreds of choices available online and in the grocery store. Does it contain too much sugar, is the protein content enough, will it cause weight gain, and what will it taste like? Are only a few of the questions we are bombarded with when looking for options.

If you are considering adding a protein bar into your daily diet or as a regular snack, then you need to know what exactly it contains and what you should consider. We’ve reviewed and tested the best protein bars in Australia to help you pick the right one.

Top 10 Protein Bars in Australia 2020

ImageBrandWeight (Per Bar)Energy (Per Bar)Sugar (Per Bar)Protein (Per Bar)Check Prices
PhD Smart64 g238 cal0.6 g20 gCheck price on Amazon AU
BodyMe60 g256 cal15.7 g16.1 gCheck price on Amazon AU
Quest60 g180 cal1 g20 gCheck price on Amazon AU
Optimum Nutrition57 g221 cal2 g20 gCheck price on Amazon AU
RXBAR52 g220 cal13 g12 gCheck price on Amazon AU
Pure Protein50 g190 cal4 g20 gCheck price on Amazon AU
ONE60 g220 cal1 g20 gCheck price on Amazon AU
Lenny & Larry’s113 g440 cal14 g8 gCheck price on Amazon AU
Robert Irvine88 g380 cal6 g30 gCheck price on Amazon AU
MusclePharm63 g210 cal5 g20 gCheck price on Amazon AU

Nutritional Value of a Protein Bar

Depending on the brand, the bar will have different nutritional values. It’s extremely important that you read the label and the ingredients.

A huge variety of ingredients are used, you can look out for key ingredients like:

  • dried fruit
  • seeds and nuts
  • oats
  • quinoa
  • dates
  • coconuts
  • cocoa
  • honey
  • milk or soy or yogurt powder
  • peanut butter
  • etc.

Experts say that the fewer ingredients a protein bar have, the better. Be wary of protein bars that use proprietary blends without identifying exactly what the ingredients are.

Recommended nutritional value of an average protein bar is:

Fiber= 5-10 grams
Carbs= 25-35 grams
Fat= 5-10 grams
Protein = 10-20 grams
Calories = 150-400

The great thing about most protein bars is that they contain loads of micronutrients like vitamin B, iron, potassium, and calcium. If you don’t like processed ingredients, check the label for any sugar alcohols like xylitol, erythritol, mannitol, and sorbitol.

Benefits of Protein Bars

Many individuals grab protein bars as a quick snack or energy boost, without knowing the particular benefits. If you weren’t aware, let me fill you in on some great benefits:

Source of Vitamins and Nutrients

A great nutritious snack for when you are on-the-go. Consuming a high-quality protein bar with the correct ingredients and proteins can be an excellent meal replacement choice. Giving you all your daily vitamins and minerals. Which includes calcium, vitamin E and B, micro-nutrients, potassium, and iron.

Weight Gain or Weight Loss

Research has proven that high protein diets can stimulate weight loss. Having a healthy protein bar as a meal replacement will be able to curb your appetite, preventing overindulgence in other unhealthier snack options.

For those who need to gain weight (lucky son of a gun), consuming more calories in a day is needed. Some protein bars are dense in calories, even more than 350 calories, making it easy to gain weight. However, it is important to consider a high-calorie bar that isn’t jam-packed with additives and sugar but rather wholesome and healthy ingredients.

This includes gaining muscle too. Especially for athletes who do a lot of weight and endurance training. High-protein intakes are necessary to build muscle and strength.

Check out more of our fitness and health categories.

Types of Protein Bars

With everyone having a different dietary requirement, all snack recipes have to adapt to fit everyone’s personal needs. Manufacturers are going out of their way to create a variety of protein bar options in order for all consumers to get their hands on a tasty protein snack.

Depending on your own dietary requirements and allergens, you might consider getting any one of the following type protein bars:

Gluten-Free

A gluten-free diet has become a bit of a fad. But for individuals who are gluten intolerant or suffer from celiac disease will need to find a protein bar that is completely gluten-free.

Low Carb

For those who are trying to lose weight and still want their on-the-go protein bar, a low carb type is for you. Great for increasing lean muscle mass while keeping your blood sugar steady.

Snack

If you feel a bit nibbly throughout the day, and don’t want to devour a bar of chocolate (well, who doesn’t want to?) a healthier option is snacking on a delicious protein bar intended for snacking with a higher carbohydrate content.

Nutrition

Instead of drinking an A-Z vitamin tablet every day, you can consider a protein bar that’s filled with all your much-needed vitamins and minerals. Nutritional protein bars contain minerals, fiber, vitamins, and high-quality proteins.

Without sacrificing the nutritional value of a meal, you can grab a nutrition protein bar to replace meals.

Energy

Athletes, hikers, and other fitness fanatics need bursts of energy throughout their rigorous exercising routines. High-quality protein bars can give athletes a burst of energy to fuel their activities as well as build and repair muscles.

Vegan/Vegetarian

A diet without any animal meats will leave vegetarians and vegans searching for other protein solutions. Vegan protein bars use plant-based proteins that is rich in fiber and nutrients. The perfect solution to this specific diet without health risks.

Alternative Choices

The debate about whether a protein bar a day is actually good for you or not is an ongoing one. There are loads of contradictory statements and studies done.

When you do have more time on your hands, you can alternate between a few different alternative choices. Some alternative choices also contain the same amount of protein and other nutrients that can be found in high-protein bars. The following options are great alternatives, every now and again while maintaining the same amount of calories:

  • 1 cup of Edamame (200 cal)
  • 1 cup of non-fat, plain yogurt (100 cal)
  • 5 boiled eggs – no yellows, only whites (85 cal)
  • 85 grams of grilled chicken and 2 tbsp hummus (150)
  • 50 grams of dried beef/jerky (140 cal)
  • Lean meats and fish
  • tofu and tempeh

You can always consider cooking up your own protein bars by following some protein bar recipes.

Factors To Consider When Purchasing a Protein Bar

I can’t stress this enough – check the label! You have to know exactly what the protein bar contains in order for you to get the most out of the snack.

Here are a few key factors you have to look out for:

Sugar Quantity

Preferably, an average protein bar shouldn’t contain more than 15 grams of sugar. If the sugar quantity is higher than 15 grams, it isn’t a protein bar. It’s a candy bar dressed up as a nutritional snack.

Gatorade’s Whey Protein Bar contains 29 grams of sugar – hmmm…

Sugar isn’t necessarily a bad thing. But the wrong kind of sugar definitely is. If the bar has a higher quantity of sugar it should be resourced from natural sugars and fruit like lactose and fructose.

Eating a snack with natural sugars come with other added nutrients like Vitamin C and D, calcium, and potassium.

Refined, alcohol sugars and added sugars are a big NO-NO!

Protein Quantity

Especially if you’re eating a bar as a protein replacement then it should have at least 10 grams of protein. Anything more than that is a bonus.

Athletes can consume bars that contain between 15-30 grams of protein for their post-workout snack.

Calorie Count

The main function of a protein bar is to act as a multivitamin and supply protein and nutrients. If a tiny protein bar has more calories than a Big Mac Meal, then why not get the burger?

Do keep in mind the number of calories compared to the number of proteins and other nutrients. A bar of 200 calories shouldn’t only provide a minimum of 6 grams – you can opt for a boiled egg that gives 7 grams of protein.

Fat

Make sure that the calorie count of the protein bar is coming from more proteins and not fat. Ingredients like peanut butter, nuts, and seeds can really push up the calorie amount because of the fat.

You can consider low-fat alternatives – check the label of the bar for these options. For those on a keto diet, can consider bars with high-fat and low-carb contents.

Other Ingredients

As stated above, the fewer ingredients a protein bar contain, the better.

Type

Depending on what you are trying to achieve you should consider buying any of the above-mentioned types of bars: Gluten-free, Low-Carb, Snack, Meal replacement, Vegan/Vegetarian, or energy.

Net Weight

On average a protein bar weighs about 50 grams. Smaller snack sizes can have a net weight of 25 grams and larger meal replacement protein bars can have a net weight of more than 65 grams.

Do keep the ratio in mind when reading the grams content on the ingredient label compared to the net weight.

Flavour

Oh, the tasty part. Protein bars come in all tastes and flavours with most typical flavours being chocolate, vanilla, berries, and peanut butter.

It all depends on your own personal taste. Do keep in mind that a chocolate protein bar, won’t necessarily taste like your favourite milky chocolate. It will be wise to taste test a few options before sticking to your ultimate choice of flavour.

Review of the Best Protein Bars in Australia

Our team of Protein bar fanatics has eaten their way through Amazon.AU to find the best protein bars in Australia. Find below a list of our favorite finds and reviews.

PhD Smart Bar

Overview: This high protein, low sugar bar contains a deliciously gooey caramel center with crunchy nibbles. With less than 2.1 grams of sugar, this tasty protein bar replicates a true candy bar without the added sugars.

The bar is 64 grams and contains 31% dark chocolate. Some of its key benefits are that it contains no palm oils or FOS with a great 20 grams worth of protein.

Cost: $48 pack of 12
Flavour: Dark Choc Raspberry and Chocolate Brownie
Best For: People looking for a high protein, low sugar snack while on the go.

Ingredients (Per 64-gram protein bar)

Energy – 238 calories
Fat – 11 grams
Sugar – 0.6 grams
Carbohydrates – 23 grams
Protein – 20 grams
Fibers – 2 grams

CHECK LATEST PRICES ON AMAZON AU

BodyMe Organic Vegan Protein Bar

Overview: The BodyMe vegan protein bar is proudly made in Great Britain. You can go to bed with a rested heart when you support this brand, since their goal is to create ethical food that’s organic and vegan friendly.

With a list of prizes including the Highly Commended Q Awards, BodyMe bars are excellent protein replacement bars. 10% of all net profit goes to charities and the brand is SALSA (Safe and Local Supplier Approval) approved.

The 60 grams bar comes in a variety of delicious flavours and contains 16.1 grams of plant-based protein. With a few other ingredients including cacao, a blend of pea, hemp, and brown rice, orange oil, sea salt, and coconut oil that are all organic.

Other benefits of introducing the BodyMe protein bar into your diet is that it’s gluten free, cold pressed, and bake free with no added ‘nonsense’.

Cost: $44 pack of 12
Flavour: Chia vanilla, Beetroot berry, Turmeric Lemon, Cacao Mint, Cacao Orange, and Maca Cinnamon
Best For: People looking for a vegan and organic option

Ingredients (Per 60 grams bar)

Energy – 256 calories
Fat – 11.1 grams
Sugar – 15.7 grams (carbohydrate sugars)
Carbohydrates – 6 grams
Protein – 16.1 grams
Fibers – 3.2 grams

CHECK LATEST PRICES ON AMAZON AU

Quest Nutrition Protein Bar

Overview: Quest is a nutritional brand that specializes in sports nutrition. For that reason, Quest protein bars are perfect for those looking to gain some muscle mass.

With a variety of great flavours, the Quest protein bar doesn’t compromise nutrition for taste. All ingredients input into the bar are metabolically sound that includes a protein source that’s a blend between whey protein isolates and milk.

It’s extremely high in protein with a 20-gram count and comes highly recommended for anyone on a Keto diet, low-carb diet, or gluten-free diet. Because of the milk content, the Quest bar is unfortunately not suitable for anyone with a dairy intolerance.

Cost: $24 pack of 12
Flavour: Cookies and Cream, Chocolate brownie, Mint Chocolate Chunk, Birthday Cake, Chocolate Sprinkled Doughnut, Blueberry Muffin, S’mores, and Chocolate Hazelnut
Best For: Pre and post-workout recovery needs, people on the Keto diet

Ingredients

Energy – 180 calories
Sugar – 1 gram
Carbohydrates – 4-5 grams
Protein – 20 grams
Fibers – 13 grams

CHECK LATEST PRICES ON AMAZON AU

Optimum Nutrition Protein Bar

Overview: With only 2 grams of sugar and 20 grams of protein the Optimum Nutrition Protein Crunch bar is perfect for when you are craving a snack.

The delicious bar comes in three different flavors and contains protein from milk, soybean, egg and almonds.

Cost: $41 pack of 12
Flavour: Peanut Butter, Milk Chocolate, Toffee Pretzel
Best For: Snacking, weightloss

Ingredients (per 57 grams bar)

Energy – 221 calories
Fat – 7 grams
Sugar – 2 grams
Carbohydrates – 10 grams
Protein – 20 grams
Fibers – 5 grams

CHECK LATEST PRICES ON AMAZON AU

RXBAR

Overview: The funky and modern-designed RXBAR prides itself in using premium, organic, and very tasty ingredients. They even put their standards on the packaging – NO B.S. 

Proudly made in the U.S. You could say that the RXBAR is for the foodies out there, with loads of different flavours available.  It’s a tasty 52 grams snack that can be enjoyed as an addition to your breakfast or lunch. The tasty bar proves to be gluten-free as well as guilt-free.

The RXBAR is packed with 12 grams of high-quality protein with no added sugars. You can either use it as a pre-workout snack, or just a snack while you are on-the-go and feel nibbly.

Cost: $37 pack of 12
Flavour: Peanut Butter, Blueberry, Chocolate Variety, Gingerbread, lemon, Maple Sea Salt, Mango Pineapple, Mixed Berry
Best For: A healthy snack

Ingredients (per 52 gram bar)

Energy – 220 calories
Fat – 10 grams
Sugar -0 gram added sugars, 13 grams natural sugars
Carbohydrates – 22 grams
Protein – 12 grams
Fibers –  3 grams

CHECK LATEST PRICES ON AMAZON AU

Pure Protein

Overview: It seems like the Pure Protein bar has everything you would want in a snack. It’s high in protein with a low-calorie count of only 190. As well as being gluten-free, the pure protein bar is deliciously chewy too.

It features a Greek Yogurt style coating with fresh dried fruits in the center. And is one of the most affordable quality protein bars on Amazon AU.

Cost: $23 pack of 12
Flavour:  Chocolate variety, Peanut Butter, Strawberry, etc.
Best For: Snacking, pre and post-workout

Ingredients (per 50 grams bar)

Energy – 190 calories
Fat – 4.5 grams
Sugar – 4 grams
Carbohydrates – 17 grams
Protein – 20 grams
Fibers – 2 grams

CHECK LATEST PRICES ON AMAZON AU

ONE Protein Bars

Overview: An absolute guilt-free snack is the ONE protein bar. It comes in an array of delicious flavours, with the main aim of increasing the consumers’ energy levels.

The nutritional value of the ONE protein bar has passed other major energy improving snacks brands including Gatorade. It comes highly recommended by pro athletes who are in need of a quick energy boost.

With a moist texture, the ONE bar guarantees to be deliciously succulent while having a super low sugar count. It’s gluten-free and is the perfect cravings quencher.

Cost: $121 pack of 12
Flavour: Maple Syrup, Carrot Cake
Best For: Snacking, Energy

Ingredients (per 60 grams bar)

Energy – 220 calories
Fat -8 grams
Sugar -1 gram
Carbohydrates – 23 grams
Protein – 20 grams
Fibers – 10 grams

CHECK LATEST PRICES ON AMAZON AU

Lenny & Larry’s Protein Bar

Overview: The huge 113 grams Lenny&Larry’s Protein Bar cookie is lovingly made with plant-based proteins. Making it a large vegan option to quench any craving.

All cookies are baked, NON-GMO verified, and filled with plant fibers and plant-based proteins. It is advised that you eat only a half of the cookie, since devouring the full 113 grams will cost you 440 calories.  Even though it is high in calories, this makes it a perfect meal replacement.

Cost: $45 pack of 12
Flavour: Choc-o-mint, Birthday Cake, Salted Caramel, White Chocolate Macadamia, Peanut Butter, Apple Pie, Double Chocolate
Best For: Meal replacement, Vegan protein replacement

Ingredients (Per 57 gram serving – 1/2 cookie)

Energy – 440 calories
Fat – 7 grams
Sugar – 14 grams
Carbohydrates – 28 grams
Protein – 8 grams
Fibers -5 grams

CHECK LATEST PRICES ON AMAZON AU

Robert Irvine Protein Bar

Overview: It must be a good protein bar when a Chef puts his face on the packaging. Chef Robert Irvine created the perfect whey protein baked bar that is filled with chewy goodness. Six layers of goodness to be exact.

The bar is a great combination of peanut butter, nuts, and chocolate. Whey protein isolate is blended into the ingredients for a whopping 30 grams protein count.

When you start eating Chef Robert Irvine’s Fit Crunch, you’ll be eating the 2016 and 2017’s Best Protein Bar Nominee.

The 88-gram protein snack is divided into two separate 44 grams bars. Perfect for gym fanatics who need an energy boost as well as a whey protein diet for muscle gain.

Cost:  $60 pack of 12
Flavour: Birthday Cake, Cookies and Cream, Caramel Peanut, Peanut Butter, and Choc Chip Cookie Dough
Best For: Muscle gain

Ingredients (per 44 grams bar)

Energy – 190 calories
Fat – 8 grams
Sugar – 3 grams
Carbohydrates – 14 grams
Protein – 16 grams
Fibers – 1 gram

CHECK LATEST PRICES ON AMAZON AU

MusclePharm Protein Bar

Overview: MusclePharm’s Gluten-free crunch Combat bar comes with a 100% satisfaction guarantee. If you’re not satisfied you get a 30-day money-back guarantee. This, in itself, proves that the protein bar has high expectations of itself.

The bar uses an innovative cooking style which makes it taste like a soft cookie. With multi-layers of chocolate and nutritional goodness, the Muscle Pharm bar is recommended by pro athletes from all around the world.

The 63 grams bar contains 20 grams of high-quality protein while providing a delicious taste. It is suitable for people on a gluten-free diet. With 12 grams of dietary fibres, the combat crunch is perfect for weight loss purposes.

Cost: $101 pack of 12
Flavour: Chocolate Cake
Best For: Weight loss, meal replacement, pre workout

Ingredients (per 63 grams bar)

Energy – 210 calories
Fat – 7 grams
Sugar – 5 grams
Carbohydrates – 25 grams
Protein – 20 grams
Fibers – 12 grams

CHECK LATEST PRICES ON AMAZON AU

Conclusion

It’s extremely important that you always check the label. Read the ingredients and make sure what you will be adding to your diet. Make sure that the protein bar serves the purpose you intend it to – whether it’s as a meal replacement, a kick start to your day, or a pre-workout energy boost.

Follow all the above-mentioned tips and considerations in order for you to find a protein bar that best suits your needs and taste buds. One thing is for sure, there are loads of options available. No harm in trying out a few options before sticking with your daily preference. Happy tastings!

We will be happy to hear your thoughts

Leave a reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.