I have a friend that works for a food distributor and because of that, some of the companies that his company distributes products for send him random, unrequested samples. I often times find myself rummaging through his pantry at home to amuse myself and see what he's gotten since my last visit (there are often some VERY odd products in there) and recently I found a box of these SmartForLife Cranberry Granola Squares. Billed as a dietary supplement that supposedly helps you feel fuller longer, these bars are all natural and contain no high fructose corn syrup. They also carry an amusing tagline on the package stating "Eat Cookies. Lose Weight. It's that Simple." So, I guess one could infer that these granola squares are going more toward the cookie/dessert realm than they are the snack bar realm as the packaging also says to enjoy these with a low calorie dinner. If you were to enjoy one though, you'd find it coming in at 1.05 ounces with 80 calories and five grams of protein, so it is a moderate sized and very low calorie product.
When you take this out of the package, you'll see that it is a perfect square. I don't know about you, but most cookies I come into contact with are circles, but hey, I'm splitting hairs over something that doesn't really matter. Upon closer inspection, I could clearly see several dried cranberries spread throughout the square as well as a nice mix of granola. One thing about the granola though is that it seemed very oat based since there were many large chunks of dried oats spread throughout. Other than that, there's not a whole lot to say about this one as it's not an overly attractive visual product.
Biting into this, I was met with a nice crunch from the granola. The granola also had a very faint sweet overtone to it, so that was nice as well. The cranberries also brought some sweetness, although it was not overpowering as well. The one thing that was overpowering, although not necessarily a dealbreaker, was how dry this square was. While the granola provided crunch and some sweetness and the cranberries provided some sweetness as well, they were somewhat difficult to get through as the square was so much on the dry side that it tended to be difficult to get through.
Buy It or Fly By It? Despite its shortcomings from being too dry and my continued harping on them, I still liked this square enough that I'll give it a BUY IT rating. For a decent-sized, low calorie treat, this one definitely fits the bill. I love granola and when you can mix a sweet dried fruit with it, you've got me interested and this bar did do that, despite it's dryness. If you get your hands on one of these and can deal with the dry factor, I think you'll feel the same way as well, especially since you are eating a "cookie."