What a $2.75 candy bar tastes like

Yesterday I went grocery shopping and walked through a natural-food section that sells candy bars. Er, not candy bars, but what I assume to be the Tim Cook style energy bars.

Ask any of the few people that know me about how I live my life and they’ll almost probably tell you I’m a big food risk taker. When it comes to food I’ll live on the wild side. Sky diving? Gator wrestling? Russian roulette? I do all these things, but the food equivalents. So I pulled the trigger and bought an expensive protein bar.


I always wondered why people eat these things and how they’re really different from a Snickers.1 Snacks may be the most difficult thing about active/high-protein lifestyles. Some books will say to just hard boil a bunch of eggs and have those on hand for snacks, or get some beef jerky. The problem with eggs for snacks is that after doing that once or twice you begin to feel like a seagull walking around on the beach looking for unguarded nests. Jerky is okay, but you either need to make your own or find a place that sells natural-style beef jerky—which is a tall order in stores that service vegetarians.

So that’s why these energy bars exist. Some are these big peanut bars and others are some kind of fruit cocktail reduced to energy bar form (think fruit rollup but in bar form and with oatmeal).

I assume that they’re expensive because they’re marketed to people like Tim Cook, and people like Tim Cook have millions of dollars. People like Tim Cook probably have a personal assistant buy them in bulk. People like Tim Cook probably have a room in their home dedicated to storing energy bars. People like Tim Cook have friends come over with energy bars and he asks them, sarcastically, “Did you see the SIGN outside my house that said ENERGY BAR STORAGE!” And their friends say yes, and people like Tim Cook respond “Oh, that’s right, I forgot that I eat a lot of energy bars and asked the design staff at Apple to make me a sign that said ‘Energy Bar Storage’ on the offhand chance that a truck shipping energy bars gets lost outside my home and I can trick the driver into storing them here, BUT I WILL EAT THEM ALL AFTER HE LEAVES! Anyway, come on in!”

But enough about Tim Cook and energy bar storage. So what do these hippy/meathead/Rob-Lowe-From-Parks-And-Recreation style energy bars taste like?

Whey protein.

The one I had was some kind of Baby Ruth on steroids. Ingredients listed were things like vanilla yogurt, peanuts, chocolate, peanut butter, and nougat. But clearly these are all ingredients meant to mask the whey protein that dominates the aftertaste and leaves your mouth feeling like you just ate a handful of finely ground sand. The whole bar is a trojan horse for whey protein powder.

If you like that kind of thing then these are for you. If not, until they come up with a sausage mcmuffin energy bar (without the bun) then looks like you’re eating more eggs.

  1. Sugar, mostly. A Snickers overwhelms your senses with sugar. I used to love Snickers, but now when I eat them I risk having tooth and stomach aches.