REVIEW: Gatorade’s Candy Bar-Like Protein Bars

Flavors Tried: Cookies & Cream, S’mores, Chocolate Caramel

Price: $21.99 for box of 12 ($1.83 per bar)

Nutrition: 330 Calories, 10g Fat, 43g Carbs (0g Fiber & 28g Sugar), 20g Protein

Gatorade protein bars

When it comes to protein bars, Gatorade isn’t the first brand that comes to mind. However, they’ve been in the game for a while with their own line of protein bars.

I’ve always been hesitant to try them because they seemed gimmicky, with over 300 calories and nearly 30 grams of sugar per bar.

Sure, 20 grams of protein is nice, but that sugar content is higher than most other bars out there. But that’s not unlike Gatorade’s sports drinks – they contain sugar to provide energy for performance purposes, and that’s how these bars are marketed as well.

I decided it was finally time to give these bars a try, so I snagged the three flavors that my local grocery store had in stock. Let’s get into it.

Flavor Review: Chocolate Caramel

Holding gatorade protein bar

The first thing you notice about these bars is that they are very large. Considering they are over 300 calories, you’d hope that would be the case, but it’s nice to see.

And with a generous chocolate coating, I can see the appeal of these bars right off the bat.

Chocolate caramel gatorade bar

The Chocolate Caramel flavor has a nice thick caramel layer, which is great to see, but is insanely sweet throughout.

I like the contrast of the crunchy, fall-apart bar texture of the bar, combined with the thick caramel layer. As far as the texture is concerned, it’s very appealing.

However, the flavor is only okay. It reminds me a lot of Quest Hero bars but a step down in flavor quality. You taste caramel and chocolate, but it’s a very sweet and protein-forward version.

Flavor Review: S’mores

S'mores gatorade protein bar

The S’mores flavor has a great texture made up of crisps that fall apart when you bite into them.

It smells strongly of marshmallow flavoring, with little bits of marshmallow-flavored pieces throughout. If you’ve had anything s’mores-flavored before, you’ll recognize the artificial marshmallow aroma.

This bar captures the flavor combo of s’mores with a chocolate coating and marshmallow flavoring, but it tastes quite artificial and extremely sweet. It’s not unlike most s’mores-flavored products out there, so if you enjoy the classic s’mores flavoring, you may be into this one.

The crumbly texture makes this enjoyable to eat, but the flavor isn’t anything to write home about.

Flavor Review: Cookies and Cream

cookies & cream gatorade protein bar

The Cookies and Cream flavor stands out as the clear winner of the three.

While still very sweet like the others, this one manages to capture the true essence of cookies and cream. The cream layer on top is rich and decadent, providing a really nice contrast to the crunchy crisps inside.

As you bite in, you get distinct notes of chocolate cookie complemented by smooth, creamy flavors. While still a bit sweet for my liking, it successfully replicates the classic cookies & cream taste you’d expect.

Overall Thoughts and Recommendation

Gatorade Protein Bars

Overall, these are decent protein bars, but very sweet, and the protein flavor certainly comes through.

With 350 calories and 30g of sugar for 20g of protein, these are definitely more of a “sports” bar than a traditional protein bar. To their credit, the bars are quite large, so the 300+ calories makes sense.

I can see kids enjoying these the most, partly because of the name recognition, but also because these eat more like candy bars than traditional protein bars. With generous chocolate coatings and a crumbly interior, they’re different than many chewy protein bars out there.

They remind me of Quest Hero bars (especially the Caramel one), so if you want a very similar protein bar but with much better macros, I’d go that route instead.

Gatorade Protein Bars
REVIEW: Gatorade’s Candy Bar-Like Protein Bars
Gatorade protein bars definitely have appeal as a change of pace from the typical chewy protein bars, but with over 300 calories and around 30 grams of sugar per bar, there are far better options out there.
Flavor Accuracy
Overall Taste
The Good
Pleasant texture
No artificial sweeteners
Large size
The Bad
Very high in sugar
No fiber
Overly sweet
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