REVIEW: Dive Bar Nutrition Caffeinated Protein Bars

Flavors Tried: Trash Can Cookie, Silky Crunchy Turtle, Butteredfinger

Price: $33 for 12 bar starter pack ($2.75 per bag)

Nutrition per serving: 180 Calories, 5g Fat, 25g Carbs (7g Fiber), 16g Protein

Dive Bar Nutrition is serving up protein bars with caffeine, making them true “energy bars” unlike many others on the market.

Plus, they’re doing it with some really funky flavors.

If you’re into early morning workouts the same way I am, then a caffeinated protein bar first thing in the morning may be just what the doctor ordered.

However, if you want a post-workout snack, a caffeinated protein bar may not be the first thing you reach for. Luckily, Dive Bar Nutrition also carries decaffeinated protein bars for such an occasion.

The decaf bars have a very limited flavor selection, but I was able to try one of the decaf flavors. In terms of taste, you won’t notice a difference with or without caffeine, but it’s worth noting that there are differences.

Generally speaking, Dive Bar Nutrition offers many more appealing flavors with caffeine included, because that’s their specialty, but we’ll explore both options here.

Silky Crunch Turtle Dive Bar

This Silky Turtle protein bar is actually a collagen protein bar, and based on the look of it, you can absolutely tell.

I’m old enough to remember the original Power Bar from back in the day, and the chewy texture of this Dive Bar reminds me very much of that.

By nature, collagen is very sticky, so it’s no surprise that this particular bar is also quite sticky and chewy.

In terms of flavor, I was hoping for much more from this bar. Overall, it does taste like chocolate, but that’s about where the flavor profile ends. There are small pieces of almonds in this bar, which you can taste with certain bites, but I didn’t taste any caramel flavoring in this bar.

If I had tasted this flavor without looking at the wrapper first, I would assume this was just a chocolate protein bar.

This bar is one of a handful of flavors that do not include caffeine, so if you prefer a decaffeinated bar for post-workout or late night, this one may be appealing to you.

For me, I’ll pass on this one.

Butteredfinger Dive Bar

When I went to the Dive Bar Nutrition website to try to find a description of this protein bar, I couldn’t find this flavor listed. So, either it has been discontinued, or it’s a seasonal flavor that is not currently available.

Based on the photo above, you can clearly tell that this one is not a collagen bar, which is a great thing for me.

There is much more structure to this bar, but it is still quite chewy. In terms of texture, it very much reminds me of a standard Quest Bar. Over the years, Quest has improved their texture to be softer, but these bars remind me of the original chewy Quest Bars from years ago.

Protein bars are generally chewy, so I can look past that if they also come with great taste.

Unfortunately, this flavor also falls short for me.

When I see Butterfinger, I’m expecting peanut butter, chocolate, and preferably some kind of crunch.

This bar is definitely peanut butter flavored, although pretty subtle. There are tiny pieces of what seem to be peanut butter chips in this bar, but they do not provide any crispiness that you would expect to find in a Butterfinger.

I would have loved to see some chocolate chips in this bar as well because a true Butterfinger is complimented perfectly by the chocolate coating.

For some reason, my bar also contained some rainbow sprinkles, but I’m thinking they just snuck in there during manufacturing because that seems like an odd addition.

If this bar were softer and less chewy, I may like it more, but the chewiness combined with the lackluster flavor made for a disappointment.

Trash Can Cookie Dive Bar

I thoroughly enjoyed this bar. I wanted to say that right upfront before I get into what I don’t like about this bar, because this one is a huge improvement over the other flavors I tried.

I’m not sure why all of these bars are so different, but if this was the only flavor I tasted, I would love Dive Bars.

This bar tastes very much like an M&M cookie. The texture is a tad chewy, as all protein bars are, but it is significantly softer than the other flavors.

If I had to compare the texture to something, I’d say it reminds me of a blondie. It’s thick & dense, but still soft when you bite into it, and there’s plenty of chocolate in every bite.

OK, now it’s time for me to complain: I’m disappointed that this bar seems to only contain chocolate.

When I hear “trash can cookie,” I think of a cookie with lots of goodies mixed in. M&M’s are definitely on that list, but I also think of pretzels, nuts, and salt.

As I ate this bar, I kept hoping that I’d run into different flavors, but I only tastes M&M’s throughout the entire bar.

If the flavor was M&M cookie, they would have absolutely nailed it. But since it’s titled Trash Can Cookie, I was definitely hoping for more.

That being said, this is definitely an enjoyable bar, and one I’d happily eat if I needed a true energy bar.

Dive Bar Nutrition Overall Thoughts

It seems like your experience with Dive Bars is going to be largely dependent on the flavor you try.

Since there are tons of flavors available, my hope is that other flavors out there are more like Trash Can Cookie. That bar is the softest of the bunch, and it very much reminds me of actual cookies.

If you’re in search of a protein bar with caffeine, that’s the flavor I’d recommend.

The other flavors I tried were a miss for me, but if I try any other flavors in the future and they’re more like the Trash Can Cookie, I’ll be sure to update my review!

Dive Bar Protein Bars
REVIEW: Dive Bar Nutrition Caffeinated Protein Bars
Dive Bar Nutrition is a very fun company, and I appreciate the fact that they are a true energy bar with added caffeine, since that's rare to find. However, I found the bars to be very inconsistent, and the chewy nature is just not for me.
Flavor Accuracy
Overall Taste
The Good
A true "energy bar"
Lots of different flavor options
A very fun company
The Bad
Texture is very inconsistent between flavors
The caffeine may not be ideal for post-workout
Some flavors not very accurate to description
Give It a Try
Show Comments (2)
  1. I’ve been using Dive Bars since Dec 2022. I enjoy them. No funny after taste in the flavors I’ve ordered. There is an over abundance of “sweet” Dive bars. And not many savory choices. The Salted Caramel Pretzel is a nice savory option. Wish they would offer some nacho, ranch, cheese, sour cream and onion choices for those of us that are not into sweets. And their shipping leaves a lot to be desired. You receive your tracking number when they’re finally working on your order. And I’m convinced that means that they’re literally making your bars. Several days later, it will finally go into the mail. From the time you order, until you receive, easy 2 weeks. You have to plan your ordering so you don’t run out at home since they’re so slow to ship.

    1. From what I can tell they’re a pretty small company, so that wouldn’t surprise me that they have a small facility and are making bars to order. Or possibly just easily fall behind on orders because of it. But hey who knows, maybe it’s growing pains and they’ll become more efficient going forward if they stick around

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