Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Review: CLIF Oatmeal Raisin Walnut Energy Bar

I've shared my odd love of oatmeal and raisins on this blog and also at Would I Buy It Again before, so it would seem that this CLIF Oatmeal Raisin Walnut Energy Bar would be right up my alley.  Plus, I just found out recently that January was National Oatmeal Month and I can't possibly let an entire month go by without reviewing an oatmeal focused product.  Had I had some foresight and some advance planning skills, I would have dedicated an entire week to oatmeal products, but sometimes things just sneak up on you (the cops, robbers, anniversaries, etc.) and National Oatmeal Month did that to me.  That said, I picked up this bar at Meijer for $1.09 and it is the usual CLIF 2.4 ounces.  It's also made up of 240 calories and ten grams of protein.

Being that oatmeal is a focal flavor of this bar, you'd expect a bit more oatmeal than the usual protein mix in this bar and that is definitely the case here.  The bar had plentiful and huge oat chunks spread out through the mix and it was definitely more than usual.  Raisins are also usually an ingredient in these protein mixes, but much like the oats, there were more plump raisins in this one than usual since they are also one of the star ingredients.  One star ingredient that was not well represented though was the walnuts.  I actually had to take an extremely close look in order to find any walnuts and what nuts I did find were very small and sparsely spread through the bar.  Kind of disappointing because with more walnuts, this could have been a crunchier version of the standard CLIF bar, which is usually quite soft.

Since there were no walnuts, this bar was quite soft and chewy.  That's not a bad thing in general, but when you tout walnuts as one of your main ingredients, you'd think there would be a nice crunch component to the bar.  That's not to say that there was no crunch, because when I did encounter a walnut or two, I could definitely faintly taste them and they did add a small crunch to the bar.  The raisins on the other hand, were virtually unnoticeable.  They just blended in with the typical CLIF bar softness and did not really bring any additional sweetness to the table.  Very disappointing.  As for the oatmeal, it definitely was the focal point of the bar and you could clearly taste it.  Being that oatmeal is usually a pretty bland flavored food item on its own, it needs supporting actors in order to bring it out.  Since the raisins and walnuts already failed, the ingredient list did say that there was cinnamon in this bar and as I was chewing through the bar, I could taste cinnamon in very small amounts and it didn't really help the flavor.  If they were to crank up the cinnamon, raisins or walnuts in this bar, they may have a winner, but unfortunately all they got hear was a bland blend of chewy oatmeal.

Buy It or Fly By It?  FLY BY IT.  That's pretty sad since I'm always willing to give anything with oatmeal the benefit of the doubt, but this was such a boring flavor that it wasn't worth it.  CLIF has so many other options out there that can be tried that this one is not a bar that anyone should waste their time on.



  1. National Oatmeal Month?! Who allows this to happen?

  2. I thought that this was an awesome flavor. Unlike some other Clif bar flavors (Carrot Cake, apricot), it didn't taste like a health bar and was delicious :0

  3. Strange. I like this bar. It tastes like a really yummy healthy oatmeal raisin cookie to me.


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