Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Review: Larabar Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Bar

Sometimes I think the only reason I keep reviewing Larabar flavors is because I might hate myself.  I've only found one flavor that I actually like, while the rest of been just boring globs of nothingness, some of which border on being terrible.  Still, the optimist in me says that I will somehow open Pandora's box and find a flavor out of their myriad of flavors that actually is one of the best things I've ever eaten.  It's that optimism that leads me to this Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip bar that I picked up on sale at Kroger for $0.99.  Peanut butter and chocolate chips are a wonderful combination, so I could only hope that this carried on to this bar. For semantic purposes, this one comes it at 1.6 ounces and has 230 calories and four grams of protein.

One of the first things that I do when I grab these Larabar products is look at the package and see how few ingredients each bar has.  It's always comical to me that they make these bars with usually less than three ingredients, so I was quite surprised when I saw a laundry list of ingredients in this bar.  Well, it was a laundry list for Larabar.  Ingredients in this one included the normal date puree, peanuts and unsweetened chocolate chips.  I know that is only three "ingredients" there, but the chocolate chips used all fair trade ingredients, including cocoa and vanilla, among one or two others.  One other alarming, although somewhat funny thing that was on the packaging for this bar was this statement:  "May contain occasional nut shells or pit pieces."  What the heck?!  Pit pieces?!  LOL.  Anyway, the rest of the bar was light brown and dry/flaky, which is different than the typical dark brown and sticky, so that was new.  There were small nut pieces, this time peanuts, as per usual, but one characteristic about the bar that I found pleasing was that there were a plethora of small chocolate chip pieces.  I expected there to be some of them in the bar, but there were actually quite a few.  Due to the chocolate chips and the fact that this wasn't dark brown and sticky, I was quite intrigued as I bit into the bar.

After the first bite though, my intrigue turned into utter disgust.  This bar was just plain awful.  The bar itself was dry and flaky and had no flavor whatsoever.  The nuts added some crunch, I guess, but that was minimal due to the fact that the peanuts were just small pieces, as they usually are.  The biggest disappointment and slap in the face about this entire bar though were the chocolate chips.  They were unsweetened, so I wasn't expecting any sweetness, but I don't think it was out of line to expect flavor.  In the case of these chips, there was no flavor whatsoever.  They were crunchy and added some different texture to the bar, but outside of that, they brought absolutely nothing to the table.  Honestly, they were just plain awful.  Also, where was the peanut butter?  I guess the peanut pieces qualify for the peanut butter flavoring, because outside of the lighter color of the exterior, there was no peanut/peanut butter flavoring in here whatsoever.

Buy It or Fly By It?  This bar is an insult to peanut butter and chocolate chips, so FLY BY IT so fast that you leave smoke trails in your wake.  Just an awful product and maybe the worst of all the Larabar flavors that I've tried out so far.  Maybe this would have worked a little better with sweetened chocolate chips, although I'm not even sure the presence of sweetness could have saved anything with this due to its dry and flaky qualities.  You can probably tell by the length of this post that I'm still incredibly angry about this one because Larabar took two potentially awesome ingredients and made them just terrible.  Ugh.



  1. pit pieces? I don't really know why that is so alarming since dates have pits, and when they are mechanically pitted the machines can mess up sometimes. You'll find the same warnings on canned cherry pie filling and probably any other processed food with fruit that had to be pitted.

    As for the larabar itself, I tried a couple a while back and won't try them again. I forgot to read the ingredients and didn't realize the main ingredient was date puree. I really haven't been able to stand the taste of dates much at all since a week of summer camp when I was a kid where the cook served dried dates with every single meal. It is disappointing though that the chocolate didn't add anything in the way of flavor

  2. You are so so wrong about this bar. It is delicious and flavorful, perhaps you don't notice what a great combination of flavors it is because you eat mainly processed and low cal/low fat foods which are full of "flavor" through chemicals. I understand because I used to be the same way but this larabar rocks!

  3. appreciate the honest reviews!! :)

  4. Haha pit pieces!! I'd heard so many good things about larabars and clif bars that when i went to the u.s. i was dying to try them all..i have yet to find any of either variety i like ughh!

  5. I like this bar. Maybe it's because you don't like the taste of dates?

  6. I actually really like this bar, and it's the only Larabar variety I like. The other ingredients do a good job covering up the date flavor.

    But, a couple things:

    It DOES contained sweetened chocolate chips. Did you just read the ingredients list too quickly? It contains "chocolate chips," and the ingredients of said chips are, "unsweetened chocolate, SUGAR, cocoa butter, and vanilla."

    Also, semantics doesn't mean what you seem to think it means. People will say, "eh, semantics," when arguing a point, but doesn't mean, "details...."

  7. For several months, every box of this flavor we tried contained dry bars with pits. Until then, they were wonderful, which is why we kept trying until finally giving up for a while.

    The current boxes are soft, the way they should be, although some have a much more prominent date taste than others.

  8. I have to disagree. It reminds me of a little debbie brownie. I like it a lot.


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