Keeping a few meal replacement bars handy in your desk, gym bag, or at home is a great way to help you to stay on track with your diet, and prevent you from binging on the wrong foods when hunger strikes.
Most meal replacement bars contain eggs, grass-fed collagen protein, or dairy, which may be OK ingredients for some people, but are simply not an option for everyone.
Thankfully, there are a few great vegan meal replacement bars available on the market currently and we have showcased our top 5 favorites below. Many of these bars taste like a dessert and eating them will feel like cheating, but at only 3-5 net carbs you can indulge without the guilt.
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How We Rated these Bars
Because taste is subjective, we had to look a little deeper in order to determine the best vegan meal replacement bar options. To create this top-5 list we assessed the ingredients, outlined the macros, calculated the price per bar, and per ounce, examined existing reviews, and of course tried them for ourselves.
When it comes to ingredients, we prefer to keep it simple, however more ingredients is not necessarily a bad thing as long as they are clean and healthy. Dietary fiber, both soluble and insoluble, can be beneficial for digestion and healthy gut bacteria, if it comes from quality sources.
Some people do however experience bloating or digestive upset from certain sources of fiber, and although it doesn’t technically contribute to net carbs, it has been known to interfere with ketosis in some instances.
Sugar alcohols are often demonized in general, but not all of them are bad. While sorbitol, mannitol, and maltitol should be avoided at all costs, erythritol has been widely accepted as a healthy sugar alternative within the low-carb and keto communities. It has almost no impact on insulin, and does not have the same digestive side effects as most other sugar alcohols because it doesn’t reach the small intestine in significant amounts.
Unhealthy and non-sustainably sourced oils (see our healthy oils chart here), and artificial colors and/or flavors should also be avoided whenever possible. With respect to macros, minimal carbs is key for keto, while the importance of fat and protein content may vary based on personal preference.
For instance, I prefer to consume a low-carb, low-fat, high protein shake or bar when breaking my fast. This encourages my body to continue burning stored fat a little longer rather than switching immediately to dietary fat. If I am not fasting, or have already broken my fast, I will often opt for a bar that contains more fat.
Price is also a key factor. Although we understand convenience often comes at a cost, there really is no reason to spend more than $3.00 for a meal replacement bar. Since keto bars come in a variety of sizes, and/or weights, we have evaluated their value by the ounce.
Top 5 Vegan Keto Bars
#1 IQ Bars
IQ bars are one of the highest bangs for the buck among meal replacement bars. At just $2.08 per 1.6oz bar or $1.25 per oz, these bars are super filling and won’t break the bank. They are extremely high in fat and protein, contain only 3 net carbs, and taste pretty darn good.
IQ bars come in the typical flavors that you would expect to find in a snack bar such as Almond Butter Chip, and Chocolate Sea Salt, and are also available in a few truly unique flavors including Lemon Blueberry, and Matcha Chai. Variety packs are also available if you want to experiment a little.
There seems to be a bit of a miscalculation on the packaging with respect to the calorie content per bar, at least for the flavor we evaluated. Based on the protein, fat, and carb content, each bar likely contains somewhere between 200 – 250 calories, rather than the 150 calories listed.
Ingredients: (Chocolate Sea Salt) – Almonds, Soluble Tapioca Fiber, Allulose, Pea Protein, Protein Crisps (Pea Protein, Tapioca Starch), Chocolate Chips (Chocolate, Allulose, Cocoa Butter, Stevia Extract), Water, Cacao Extract, Coconut Oil, Sea Salt, Sunflower Lecithin, Stevia Extract, Lion’s Mane Extract, Vitamin E.
Macros: 150 Calories, 12g Fat, 12g Protein, (15g Carbs – 6g Dietary Fiber – 6g Allulose) = 3g Net Carbs.
Flavors: Almond Butter Chip, Banana Nut, Chocolate Sea Salt, Lemon Blueberry, Matcha Chai, Peanut Butter Chip, Willd Blueberry.
Approximate price per bar: $2.08
Bar weight: 1.6oz (45g)
Description: Soft and chewy. Relatively large sized bar, super filling, and decently priced.
#2 Keto Bars
Of all the keto bars that I have tried, this is one of my absolute favorites. Perhaps because they remind me so much of the chocolate no-bake cookies my mom made when I was a kid. All of the flavors are great, but my personal favorite is Mint Chocolate.
These keto bars are relatively large, and cost around $2.50 per 1.65oz bar or $1.52 per oz. They are made using very simple ingredients, and sweetened with erythritol and stevia, which are two of the best sweetener options for keto.
Ingredients: (Mint Chocolate) – Chocolate, Almonds, Coconut, Non-GMO Erythritol, Cocoa Processed with Alkai, Water, Salt, Stevia, Pepermint Oil.
Macros: 220 Calories, 19g Fat, 6g Protein, (17g Carbs – 7g Dietary Fiber – 5g Sugar Alcohols) = 5g Net Carbs.
Flavors: Chocolate Peanut Butter, Chocolate Covered Strawberry, Dark Chocolate Coconut Almond, Mint Chocolate.
Approximate price per bar: $2.50 – $3.00
Bar weight: 1.65oz (47g)
Description: Taste like chocolate no-bake cookies. These bars have a firm brownie-like texture or consistency, are rich in flavor and are very filling.
#3 No Cow Protein Bars
No Cow Protein Bars are the largest vegan bar available on the market currently, and at $2.33 per 2.12oz bar or $1.09 per oz, these are a great value as well. They are packed with plant based protein, and available in several dessert style flavors. These are actually available is some standard grocery stores and health food markets, as well as online.
No Cow Protein Bars
Ingredients: (Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough) – Protein Blend (Brown Rice Protein, Pea Protein), Soluble Corn Fiber, Glycerin, Almonds, Chocolate Chips (Unsweetened Chocolate, Erythritol, Cocoa Butter, Stevia, Sunflower Lecithin,), Sweetener Blend (Erythritol, Stevia, Monk Fruit), Palm Oil (Sustainably Sourced), Natural Flavors, Cocoa Butter, Salt, Water.
Macros: 190 Calories, 4.5g Fat, 21g Protein, (26g Carbs – 16g Dietary Fiber – 7g Sugar Alcohols) = 3g Net Carbs.
Flavors: Birthday Cake, Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough, Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip, Chocolate Fudge, Sticky Cinnamon Roll, Chocolate Glazed Doughnut, Chunky Peanut Butter, Lemon Meringue.
Approximate price per bar: $2.33 – $2.50
Bar weight: 2.12oz (60g)
Description: High rated bar with solid ingredients. Larger than most keto bars. Soft and chewy texture with subtle flavors.
#3 Buff Bake Fuel Bars
Buff Bake Fuel Bars contain very simple ingredients and deliver a high fat, high protein healthy snack. They are quite filling and travel well without melting. They have subtle flavors, and taste similar to the No Cow bars listed above, but at $2.75 per 1.76oz bar or $1.56 per oz, they don’t offer quite as much value.
Buff Bake Fuel Bars
Ingredients: (Cinnamon Crunch) – Nuts (Almonds, Cashews), Prebiotic Fiber Syrup, Pea Protein, Pea Protein Crisps, Natural Flavors, Glycerin, MCT Powder, Cinnamon, Sea Salt, Monk Fruit.
Macros: 220 Calories, 14g Fat, 12g Protein, (17g Carbs – 13g Dietary Fiber) = 4g Net Carbs.
Flavors: Cinnamon Crunch, Peanut Butter Cacao, Vanilla Almond.
Approximate price per bar: $2.75
Bar weight: 1.76oz (50g)
Description: Moist and chewy with chunks of nuts. Simple ingredients. Flavor is subtle but very good. These bars are larger than most keto bars, and they are quite filling.
#5 BHU Keto Bars
BHU Keto bars are extremely rich and tasty, especially if you love chocolate, and are a convenient fat bomb or dessert replacement. At $3.00 per 1.6oz bar or $1.88 per oz, they are a little on the pricier side, but definitely worth it.
BHU Keto Bars
Ingredients: (Double Dark Chocolate Cookie Dough) – Organic Cashews, Organic Red Palm Oil (Certified Sustainable), Organic Prebiotic Fiber (From Tapioca), Organic Chocolate Chips [Organic Cocoa Beans, Organic Soluble Fiber (From Tapioca), Organic Cocoa Butter, Monk Fruit, Natural Flavors], Organic Pea Protein, Organic Cocoa Powder, Pure Water, Organic Baobab, Organic Sunflower Lecithin, Sea Salt, Organic Monk Fruit, Organic Vanilla Extract.
Macros: 220 Calories, 18g Fat, 8g Protein, (15g Carbs – 12g Dietary Fiber) = 3g Net Carbs.
Flavors: Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough, Double Dark Chocolate Cookie Dough, White Chocolate Macadamia, Chocolate Coconut Cookie Dough, Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough.
Approximate price per bar: $3.00 – $3.12
Bar weight: 1.6oz (45g)
Description: High quality organic ingredients. Very highly rated, but a little on the pricey side.
Do you agree with our list? Which one is your favorite? Please consider sharing your experience by commenting below to help support others navigating a keto lifestyle. You do not need to provide your email address to leave a comment.
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