Quest Bar vs. RXBAR: Which protein bar is better?
The best protein bars taste great and have a short list of ingredients, like Quest Bar and RXBAR. But which one is better?
Protein bars can be the perfect healthy travel snack option for travelers who care about their health and fitness. Choosing the right protein bars can be tricky if you're not paying enough attention to the ingredients. Many protein bars available are nothing more than candy bars in disguise.
So what should you be looking for in a protein bar? The most important factor is checking the ingredients. "Many protein bars have a lot of junk added to them," says Mitzi Dulan, RD, CSSC, team nutritionist for the Kansas City Royals and CLIF Nutrition Partner.
The bottom line is the less ingredients, the better. Many protein bars contain around 20 ingredients in them; far too many. Stick to the ones with 3-10 ingredients and contain nothing that you don't recognize.
Two bars have emerged as favorites among health and fitness-minded travelers: RXBAR and Quest Bar. But which one is the best? Here's a head-to-head review of the two with a winner picked at the end.
RXBAR has exploded in popularity in recent years, thanks to some genius marketing and adoption by many crossfitters has a go-to snack. They're made from only real food, they taste great and they contain no unnatural processed garbage. You won't find ingredients here that you can't pronounce and have no idea what they are. Best of all, these protein bars will make you feel great and keep you healthy on the go.
Quest Bars have a number of good things going for them. The list of ingredients is short, there's no added sugar, they're gluten free, and they taste good. There's also a wide variety of flavors (over twenty that we know of), so if you don't like one there are plenty of others you might like or even fall in love with. Like RXBAR, Quest Bar has exploded in popularity in recent years thanks to clever marketing and heavy use of Instagram.
Both of these protein bars use minimal ingredients, which is part of what makes them great options as healthy snacks. Quest Bars have more chemicals in them, with ingredients like erythritol (sugar alcohol), sucralose (artificial sweetener), and xanthan gum - a thickening agent that can cause some bloating and flatulence. Erythritol has been found to be safe for human consumption, while sucralose has been linked to some cancers.
RXBAR has none of these in them. Instead, their ingredients are limited to things like egg whites, dates, nuts, cocoa, cacao, fruits, spice, and other natural flavors. There's nothing artificial to be found in an RXBAR.
Let's start with RXBAR. There are currently fourteen different flavors, including the newest ones (Chocolate Hazelnut, Peanut Butter and Berries, and Mango Pineapple). While there are a few duds in their lineup (looking at you Mixed Berry), most RXBARs taste great. Perhaps the greatest thing about their taste is how natural it is - a reflection of the natural ingredients that are used.
Quest Bar, on the other hand, does have some of an artificial/chemical taste. This is a common complaint from many people trying Quest Bar for the first time. Still, most Quest Bars taste amazing. As we mentioned before, you'll get more variety with Quest - over twenty different flavors are currently available.
If you're purchasing directly from their respective websites, RXBAR will cost $25.99 for a pack of 12. Quest Bars are $24.99 for a 12 pack. Prices range wildly when you're buying them individually in the store, but expect to pay between $2 and $3 for both.
Winner: Quest Bar
If you're someone who cares about your macros (like me), then this is an important category. RXBAR is a bit disappointing here for two reasons: they contain only 12 grams of protein and between 15 and 20 grams of sugar (depending on flavor).
Quest Bar on the other hand has nailed the macros that most avid gym-goers desire. Most Quest Bars have around 21 grams of protein and as little as 1 gram of sugar. That's almost unbeatable.
Winner: Quest Bar
Our pick is RXBAR. It has a list of natural ingredients, taste great, and feels like the healthier option. It was incredibly difficult to pick a winner. Both of these protein bars are great in many ways and have a place in my diet. It often comes down to which one is more readily available.