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Precision Fuel & Hydration energy gel review: PF 30 is a 50 g energy gel that packs 120 calories and 30 g of carbohydrates, both on the high end compared with other options in the market. It has a non-distinctive fruity flavor that is pleasant but with a mild aftertaste.

 

Energy gels from Precision Fuel & Hydration (PFH) epitomize sticking to the basics and eliminating bells and whistles. PF 90 “Jumbo Gel” has become a Runivore favorite since we tested it several months ago. Today we will provide a review of its smaller cousin, PF 30 Gel – decent flavor and energy-packed at one-third the volume.

In addition to this product review, we have recently used PF 30 Gel and other PFH products in a 50 km trail ultramarathon. Find out how the brand’s sports nutrition portfolio performed.

 

Marketing claims – what is PF 30 Gel?

Here are a few of PF30 Gel’s marketing highlights:

  • The brand is called “Precision” because it wants athletes to be specific with fueling. Both its energy gels and chews are designed to provide carbohydrates and carbohydrates only. PF 30 contains 30 g of carbohydrates and very little else.
  • The product website describes its flavor as mild with a neutral taste, but I don’t think the sweetness is mild. It’s pretty sweet, but the flavor is decent.
  • 2:1 glucose-to-fructose ratio. This is the standard ratio; however, some brands swear by 1:0.8 glucose-to-fructose as the optimal ratio.

What are the ingredients and nutritional facts of PF 30?

PF 30 is a 50 g energy gel that packs 120 calories and 30 g of carbohydrates, both on the high end. The typical energy gel is around 100 calories and 20-25 g of carbohydrates. However, in the last few years, sports nutrition makers have kicked off an arms race to pack in as much energy as possible.

 

 

PF 30’s purpose is to deliver as much carbohydrates, via maltodextrin and fructose, as possible and little else. As the intro mentions, it provides the essentials and none of the bells and whistles.

Since it doesn’t provide electrolytes, we recommend using PF 30 in tandem with hydration products.

  • Maltodextrin
  • Water
  • Fructose
  • Pectin
  • Acidity Regulator (citric acid)
  • Preservatives (potassium sorbate, calcium lactate)

What are the taste and consistency of PF 30?

PF 30 and PF 90 have the same taste and consistency. The flavor can be best described as a subtle fruity taste, with the brand calling it as “neutral.” Regarding texture, it’s thinner than some of the popular options but still on the syrupy side of the spectrum.

The Jumbo PF 90 comes in a resealable pouch, which allows you to take smaller sips and then twist the cap back on for later. Personally, smaller sips make everything more palatable as you don’t have to slurp down an entire pack of sugary, gooey concoction all at once.

As for the more compact PF 30, unless you don’t mind holding it while running, you’ll probably consume the whole gel immediately or within a minute of tearing it open. So the aftertaste and syrupy consistency become more pronounced in the smaller format. It still tastes fine, but I definitely prefer PF 90’s package design.

 

How’s the packaging of PF 30?

The packaging of PF 30 is standard at about 12.5 cm long. It’s compact enough to fit in any fuel-carrying gear. The “link” design eliminates little pieces of litter that can easily fall out of your pocket.

The opening is small. You have to put in some effort to suck and squeeze out the content, which is not ideal when running at moderate to high intensities.

 

How did the energy gel perform?

We have used PF 30 in several runs of various distances on trails and the road. Here are four takeaways:

1. It’s definitely energy packed. Two compact sachets deliver 60 g of carbohydrates. Excellent carbohydrate-to-size ratio.

2, After you rip open the sachet, the opening is small. It takes two hands to get the last bit of energy gel out. Not a big deal when you’re taking it easy. But this is slightly annoying if you are trying to run fast or already fatigued at the end of tough ultra.

3. It’s strange to say this, but the packaging “affected the flavor.” I know that PF 90 and PF 30 are the same, just different sizes, but the fact that it’s harder to control how much energy gel comes out makes the PF 30 less palatable for me.

4. PF 30 contains no electrolytes. So for more extended efforts of more than an hour and in high temperatures, be sure to make plans to hydrate and replenish lost electrolytes.

 

Conclusion

PFH PF 30 is a 50 g energy gel that packs 120 calories and 30 g of carbohydrates, both on the high end compared with other options in the market. It has a great carbohydrate-to-size ratio. The flavor is a non-distinctive fruity taste that is pleasant but with a mild aftertaste.

While the packaging prevents the creation of little pieces of litter, the opening is quite small. Consuming the energy gel requires a bit more effort. The energy gel aims to deliver carbohydrates without all the bells and whistles, so remember to have other sports nutrition ready for hydration.