Food In Canada

Taste Testings: Consumer Product Reviews

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LÄRABAR is a 100-per-cent whole food snack bar available in 14 flavours, including dessert-inspired treats such as Key Lime Pie, Cashew Cookie and Ginger Snap. Made with a combination of simple ingredients, fruit, nuts and spices, these bars are marketed as natural and healthy on-the-go snacks. Low-fat LÄRABARs are gluten and dairy-free, are vegan and kosher, and contain a variety of nutrients and vitamins. The bars are available at grocery and health food stores across Canada, and sell for a suggested retail price of between $1.99 and $2.29.

Female, 30-something
“The Banana Bread bar was delicious! I was expecting something super sweet and/or crunchy dry but it was neither of those things. On the packaging I searched everywhere for chemical ingredients I can never pronounce and was pleased to see just three main things I am more than familiar with; almonds, dates, unsweetened bananas. I will definitely be hunting these bars down on my next trip to the grocery/health food store.”

Male, 40-something
“I have to admit that I was all ready to hate this bar [the Cashew Cookie], what with me being more carnivore than omnivore or vegetarian. I took a small nibble: yummmm! Gone in 60 seconds! I don’t recall how I imbibed it, but it was gone. And I was looking for more. While there is a line on the simple foil packaging noting how it is “The Original Fruit and Nut Food Bar,” and I wonder about the validity of that statement, the bars two ingredients – dates and cashews – are certainly a testament to it being one of the tastiest fruit and nut food bars. The actual food bar is a mash of pitted dates and small nuggets of cashews that is squeezed into an elongated bar shape. The dates are sweet and the cashews, while a great ingredient, will have you flicking your tongue around your mouth looking for the bits for minutes after you finish eating. Maybe that’s not a bad thing – the “gone in 60-seconds food bar that last another five minutes.” At 210 calories per 48-g bar you can enjoy it, savour it and not feel like a pig afterwards. Besides, if you must, just burn off the calories by walking down to the store to buy another Larabar. A most excellent, dare I call it a candy bar, that will have you hooked with the first bite. I still don’t care for eggplant, though.”


Female, 30-something
“Being a huge fan of chocolate I was pleasantly surprised after I opened the Cocoa Coconut Chew package. It looked like a brownie. It smelled like one too, very rich and chocolaty. And you could see the mixed nuts. I couldn’t really smell the coconut. Biting into it I was expecting something really dense. But this had a nice soft consistency, just a little chewy and the nuts added some crunch. It’s filling and yummy and healthy. And yet it feels like I’m just having something really decadent. I was hoping to taste more of the coconut, but that’s really a minor complaint. I was also a little wary of the calorie and fat content, but it is full of walnuts and almonds and it does have omega-3 and omega-6. And it doesn’t have any added sugar. I would totally take one of these on a long bike ride. But I don’t know if I’d eat the whole thing for a mid-afternoon snack at my desk.”

Female, 40-something
“Right away I loved the packaging, the muted colours, the retro type style – very simple and attractive. I even liked the ‘personal’ note from Lara, presumably the creator of the Larabar, on the back. The first bar I tried was the Peanut Butter Cookie. I was expecting the usual nut bar coated in sugary peanut butter, but was pleasantly surprised by the naturally sweet and chewy dates and only slightly nutty flavour of the bar. Overall it was delicious, and I’d definitely choose this as a healthier snack. Unfortunately I can’t say the same for the Coconut Cream Pie flavour. Although it also features dates, and smells yummy, it really wasn’t. It’s almost as if it’s too sweet and sour at the same time, with an awful aftertaste. I could only finish half the bar.”

Male, 20-something
“Normally I would go for a protein bar as a snack, something filling with nuts and more bulk. But this bar was a real surprise. The Pecan Pie bar, with dates, pecans and almonds, was tasty without being too sweet. It was also packed with healthy fats and iron. It kept me full for a long time too. Probably a good choice for after workouts.”

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