Powerbar 30% Protein Plus review summary: At 55 g, the protein bar provides 193 calories, 17 g of protein, 3.8 g of fat, and 7.7 g of dietary fiber. All 19 g of carbohydrates included are from sugars, making it one of the most sugar-packed bars we’ve reviewed. It has an overly sweet flavor and crumbles easily, so it’s best to use as a recovery option when you’re not on the move.
I haven’t had the original Powerbar energy bar or any bars from the “godfather” of sports nutrition bars in decades.
Since the brand burst onto the scene in the 80s and 90s, products that are superior in ingredients, flavor, texture, and packaging (in my opinion) have flooded the market segment. Hence, the creator of the first energy bar for endurance sports never made it on my fuel rotation.
To be honest, I haven’t paid attention to the company’s expanding portfolio either, so I was surprised when Runivore Tom bought a slew of Powerbar protein bars from Europe.
(We have, however, reviewed the brand’s energy gel.)
I guess it’s about time to give Powerbar a proper test drive. Below is my review of its 30% Protein Plus protein bar.
What is Powerbar 30% Protein Plus Bar? Ingredients and nutrition facts
At 55 g, Powerbar 30% Protein Plus is a protein bar with 193 calories, 17 g of protein, 3.8 g of fat, and 7.7 g of dietary fiber. All 19 g of carbohydrates are from sugars, making it one of the most sugar-packed bars we’ve reviewed.
Source: Powerbar website
Side note: Since dietary fiber is also a carbohydrate, I’m a bit confused by the nutrition information provided.
While whey is considered best for fast muscle recovery due to its higher content of branched chain amino acids (BCAAs), casein and soy proteins also have their benefits.
Whey, casein, and soy are complete proteins containing all the essential amino acids but in varied proportions, making 30% Protein Plus a balanced, diverse source of protein.
It is not vegan-friendly due to its use of dairy ingredients.
Source: Powerbar website
Powerbar also specifically points out that the bar is free of aspartame, an artificial sweetener, on the product website. Most of the products Runivore has tested are also aspartame-free, so it’s not a unique claim.
What are the taste and texture of Powerbar 30% Protein Plus?
This Powerbar 30% Protein Plus review is based on the Lemon-Cheesecake flavor.
One bite into the protein bar instantly brought back memories of the brand’s original energy bar of yesteryears.
It wasn’t as chewy and sticky, but it had a similar overly sweet flavor, and unfortunately, it didn’t taste like cheesecake at all. Personally, I’m not a fan.
The texture was soft but didn’t hold form and crumbled slightly when I opened the wrapper. The bar also stuck to the aluminum foil interior of the packaging, further complicating the consumption experience.
The bar comes in three other flavors: Chocolate, Vanilla-Coconut, and Vanilla-Caramel-Crisp.
Is Powerbar 30% Protein Plus healthy?
With 19 g of sugar, 30% Protein Plus is one of the sweetest protein bars we’ve reviewed. Furthermore, with most of the sugars likely coming from artificial syrups, we definitely wouldn’t categorize this protein bar as healthy.
We recommend reserving the bar for recovery after hard sessions that deplete your glycogen stores.
How’s the packaging of Powerbar 30% Protein Plus?
The protein bar comes in a 14.5 cm x 5 cm package. As mentioned, the bar stuck to the interior of the wrapper. I’m unsure where the fault lies: the bar’s texture or the packaging material.
The crumbling and stickiness will worsen if you had the bar in your hydration vest all day, squished between other trail necessities while running.
Although the sugar-packed bar is compact enough to bring on runs and rides, the overall consumption experience wasn’t optimized for mid-exercise.
To be fair, it’s a protein bar, which is intended for post-exercise when you’re stationary.
When should you eat Powerbar 30% Protein Plus?
Due to the texture or wrapper shortcomings, Runivore recommends Powerbar 30% Protein Plus for post-exercise, not as a mid-run fuel.
With 17 g of protein and 19 g of carbohydrates, the bar supplies the two macro-nutrients most relevant to recovery.
If you’re not overly health conscious and enjoy snacking on candy bars, Powerbar 30% Protein Plus certainly has the sugar to satisfy your daily cravings.
However, I would counter with this: If ingredients and nutritional profile aren’t top priorities, you might as well go full junk food and choose tastier options.
Powerbar 30% Protein Plus has the nutritional punch but unfortunately, falls short regarding flavor and texture.