Best Energy Bars for Hiking

Untitled-1As any seasoned hiker will tell you, not all energy bars created equal. Some are nutrient-dense, whole food powerhouses whereas others are essentially sugary candy bars dressed up in sporty packaging. When choosing a bar to take on the trails, it’s important to consider your nutritional needs. Will you be needing a protein-rich to keep you going for that extra dozen miles or will a little energy boost suffice? Before you head out, check out this guide to some of the best energy bars for on the market, perfect for casual daytrippers and die-hard trail adventurers alike.

With flavours like cinnamon roll, cashew cookies, blueberry muffin, and key lime pie, it’s no wonder that these whole food bars are so popular. Each bar is made of unsweetened fruit, nuts, and spices and contain no more than 9 ingredients. They’re gluten free and won’t melt, which is a definite plus on a hot day. They don’t have a lot of protein so be mindful of this when packing your backpack. Chances are you’ll need to add something extra if you’re worried about replenishing energy stores. A safe bet for day trippers who don’t expect to expend too much energy but still want a nutritious and satisfying pick-me-up. A 48g bar (in this case, Cherry Pie) has 210 calories, 8g of fat, 4g of protein, and 30g of carbohydrates.

Made with natural ingredients and absolutely nothing artificial, KIND bars are delicious and you know that you’re fuelling your body with good stuff. They’re great for a mid-hike energy boost but it is worth noting that some find them to be a little insubstantial. Paired with a piece of fruit, however, they make for a more than adequate snack. They’re also a hit with kids and make a great option if you’re hitting the trails with little adventurers.  A 40g bar (Nut & Spices Madagascar Vanilla Almond) contains 210 calories, 16g of fat, 7g of protein, and 14g of carbohydrates.

Clif Bar
Clif is a heavy hitter of an energy bar meant to sustain serious athletes through serious treks. They’re intended for people going on long hikes who need refueling and they provide the nutritional necessities to ensure that you don’t start flagging mid-way through the day. They’re filling, provide much-needed energy, and don’t weigh you down. An excellent choice for hardcore hikers. A 68g bar (Carrot Cake) contains 240 calories, 4g of fat, 10g of protein, and 46g of carbohydrates.

Created by nutritionists, Zing bars offer a lot of healthy benefits in one small package. They’re heavy on the protein (you can choose between whey and vegan options), contain no artificial sweeteners, preservatives, or colours, and are free of gluten, and synthetic vitamins. They’re satisfying and taste great which is something that you’ll be grateful for when you’re taking a break on the trail. 1 bar (Chocolate Coconut) contains 210 calories, 10g of fat, 10g of protein, and 25g of carbohydrates.

Balance Bars
Balance bars are created with active types in mind. They’re designed to provide you with the nutrients you need to sustain physical activity. They pack a serious protein punch, boast a low glycemic index, and tend to taste pretty good. They’re easy to stash in hiking packs (they taste fine when they’re a little smushed which is definitely worth noting) and are an excellent source of fuel for more arduous treks. A 50g bar (Chocolate Mint Cookies) contains 200 calories, 7g of fat, 14g of protein, and 23g of carbohydrates.


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Kate Walker

Who is Kate Walker? She's a freelance writer, yoga addict, and citizen of the concrete jungle. When not on the mat, Kate can be found at the dog park or on the dock in Muskoka. She is also pretty fond of running, skiing, and Settlers of Catan.

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