Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Review: Kashi GoLean Crunchy! Chocolate Peanut

I already reviewed the Chocolate Caramel Crunchy! bar from Kashi, which is what I eat almost every day for breakfast at work. Today’s experiment is another one I picked up at Wegmans last weekend, and after trying it I think I may have to add it to my official list of granola bars that I need to keep in the cupboard.

This one was a winner right from the start. Anything that smells that peanut buttery has to be good! Literally, as soon as I unwrapped it I could smell it from a good distance away. It reminded me of a peanut butter-chocolate Rice Krispies Treat (sadly discontinued).

Look familiar? It’s a little bit thicker than the caramel bar (not sure if this one is an anomaly) and there are little pieces of chocolate actually spread out in the bar, but other than that they’re pretty much the same. The chocolate coating on the bottom is pretty darn perfect.

OK, there’s a peanut! There are enough of these little guys in there to contribute to the taste but not too many to overwhelm. In fact I would say I’m getting a peanut butter vibe, even though the packaging clearly says “Chocolate Peanut,” sans butter. And as you Reese’s lovers know, there’s no better combination than chocolate and peanut butter. The chocolate just makes this one superb!

I looked at the website and, contrary to the packaging, they describe it as:
A blissful combination of decadent chocolate and roasted peanut butter.
So there are some mixed messages coming across in the advertising here. I have to say, it's a combination of both descriptions. After I got about halfway through the bar, the peanut butter flavor settled down. I would say it’s a very mild undercurrent but it’s definitely there. I don’t really notice the chocolate flakes in comparison to the chocolate coating, but they’re certainly not hurting anything.

As for the texture, it’s sort of crunchy and chewy at the same time, if that makes any sense. The caramel bar had more of a crackly crunch to it and this one is a bit softer, gummier, and harder to chew. You can tell when you hit a peanut because it doesn’t crunch like the rest of the bar; it’s softer and it’s kind of a nice break. If you remember I complained about the popcorn in the caramel bar, but that’s not an issue here--as far as I could tell there wasn’t any. So the texture is a win for this one!

I was a little hesitant to break out of my morning “routine” to try this bar, but it was definitely worth it and I now have another flavor to add to my stockpile at home! The only downside is that this made me REALLY thirsty, but we’re supposed to drink at least 8 cups of water per day anyway...just make sure you have some handy when you eat this bar.

There are still three other flavors I haven’t tried yet. I’ve got a Chocolate Almond in the cupboard, but I’m still looking for the Chocolate Pretzel and Cinnamon Coffee Cake....

Taste: 10--subtle peanut butter + chocolate = win!
Texture: 9--More consistent than the caramel, but harder to chew.
Health: 7--As with the caramel flavor, the sugar and fat content may turn you off (GoodGuide once again gives it a 6). But it does have slightly more protein, plus the fiber and other nutrients. More fat than the caramel flavor.
Eat Again? Yep! Going to stock up on this one too for breakfast out the door!

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