Greenbelly Meal Bar Review
Eating a balanced diet while backpacking can be a challenging endeavor to say the least. Most common backpacking foods provide a wealth of calories, but it’s up to the individual to make sure they’re getting a balanced set of nutrients. And anyone who’s filled up a shopping cart in preparation for a wilderness outing knows that achieving balanced trail nutrition is a tough task. What, a steady diet of pop tarts, snickers bars, and ramen noodles isn’t what my body needs?
Well, Greenbelly is a new company with a mission to make balanced trail nutrition a whole lot easier. Greenbelly founder Chris Cage has created a meal bar that contains 1/3 of your daily recommended calories, carbohydrates, proteins, fats, sodium, and fiber. Greenbelly bars are all natural, partially organic, contain no artificial preservatives, and it doesn't hurt they're delicious either.
Chris is a thru-hiker, marathon runner, Eagle Scout and world traveler, so he know how tough it can be to get good nutrition on the go. In addition to helping outdoor enthusiasts improve their nutrition, Chris has also pledged to help to fight world hunger. For every meal bar that you buy, Greenbelly will give a meal to someone in need. And that’s a mission I can fully support.
Greenbelly has launched with three flavors of meal bars and a crowd funding campaign (they reached their initial goal within 36 hours) to help them ramp up production. Their first three flavors are dark chocolate banana, cranberry almond, and peanut apricot. I have tested all three flavors and I found them to be a welcome change from the average bar. They are a dense mix of sweet and salty flavors that are filling and tasty. I don't see myself attempting to go the 3 Greenbelly meals per day route, but I definitely plan to make Greenbelly bars a part of my balanced backpacking food plans in the future.
- Weight – Just over 5oz per package.
- Calories – About 640 per meal (about 128 cal/oz - very solid)
- Nutrition - 1/3 of recommended Calories, Carbohydrates, Protein, Fats, Sodium, Fiber.
- Charity - You buy a meal, they give a meal.
Greenbelly Meal Bar Pros
- Taste – Sweet and salty goodness. A well-balanced flavor combined with well-balanced nutrition.
- Nutrition - It’s very tough to find trail foods with this kind of nutritional balance. They also use all natural, partially organic ingredients with no artificial preservatives. Not too shabby.
- Charity – I can definitely get behind a company helping to fight world hunger.
- Cost - A fair price per bar, especially when you consider the charity aspect of Greenbelly.
Greenbelly Meal Bar Cons
- Calories - 640 Calories is two to three times more calories than the average bar, which is solid. But three Greenbelly meal bars won't really cut it when you're burning a bunch of calories on long hiking days. Still, it's a great start to a balanced trail diet.
- Taste? - Taste is obviously a highly personal factor. With any food there are bound to be some that love it and some that don’t. Greenbelly meal bars weren't designed like a typical bar, so don’t expect it to taste like one. This is a dense nutritional bar with a more complex flavor structure, which might not be appealing to some. I found them to be a refreshing change from the norm and I really loved the taste, but they might not be a good fit for some.
I'm a big fan of the Greenbelly meal bars and their mission to help fight hunger. Overall I found the bars to be quite tasty and I love the nutritional balance they provide. I think these bars are a great product for the nutrition conscious traveler. If you're an outdoor enthusiast looking for balanced meals, all natural ingredients, and no artificial preservatives, I highly recommend that you check out Greenbelly meal bars.