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Archive for July, 2012

Raising the Bar

Tuesday, July 10th, 2012

School Nutrition Review
June/July 2012

Granola Gourmet’s 4Real Ultimate Energy Bars are low glycemic energy granola bars that can be marketed, in particular, to student athletes, diabetic students or any student with glycemic concerns while being enjoyed by all customers. The 4Rea1 bars are made with whole grains and are available in Ultimate Berry, Mocha Fudge, Fudge Brownie and Cran-Orange varieties. Each bar is individually wrapped for grab ‘n’ go convenience.

Bars With a Burst

Sunday, July 8th, 2012

by Rajiv Leventhal
Vitamin Retailer
June 2012

Alternative energy sources, such as energy bars, provide a convenient way to meet an individual’s nutritional needs on an occasional basis, according to A person with a busy lifestyle may decide to eat an energy bar instead of skipping a meal or eating fast food. Energy bars also make an appropriate snack for a long-distance walk, run or bicycle ride to help avoid an energy deficit. Since energy bars do not require utensils, preparation or refrigeration, people can store them in the car, gym bag or carry-on luggage for a quick snack or occasional meal replacement.

Aside from providing needed energy during a long workout, energy bars can suffice as an occasional meal-substitute. Most energy bars contain some vitamins and minerals, and they tend to be more nutritious than a candy bar, a bag of chips or nothing at all. Those that contain nuts, seeds and whole grains offer a healthy dose of protein and fiber.

And sales have been energized as well. According to Nutrition Business Journal, the value of the Sports Nutrition and Weight Loss (SNWL) market was up by nearly $2 billion in 2010, showing a sales increase of nine percent over the previous year. In the past 13 years, the SNWL market has seen a remarkable compound growth rate of 10.2 percent.

Further, a recent Packaged Facts report stated that in the energy/nutrition bar category, new flavor and ingredient introductions along with improvements in taste and mouth-feel have made the future of these products look a lot more interesting. Manufacturers are targeting broader consumer dietary needs, including new nutrient options, and leaving out problem ingredients. Among the functional ingredients that manufacturers are using to vary the nutrition bar formula are CoQ10, L-carnitine, omega-3, resveratrol and vitamin K2. Below are a few examples of energy bars that are available on the market today.

Low-Glycemic Energy Bars
Granola Gourmet (Santa Clarita, CA) 4Real Energy Bars are clinically proven to be low glycemic, and are therefore ideal for people with diabetes, athletes or anybody interested in stable, sustained blood-sugar levels, the company stated. They have been tested on people with type 2 diabetes to determine their glycemic index (GI) value by scientists at GI Labs, who developed the concept of the glycemic index. On a scale where a GI of 70 or more is considered high GI and 55 or less is low GI, Granola Gourmet’s Energy Bars had GI values of only 19 to 25. The bars come in four flavors (Ultimate Berry, Mocha Fudge, Fudge Brownie and Cran-Orange) and are free of wheat and dairy, are very low in sodium, and are kosher and vegan.

Dr. David Katz

Sunday, July 8th, 2012

Medical & Nutrition Expert
Director of Yale University’s Prevention Research Center

“Granola Gourmet beautifully demonstrates that those with, and at risk for diabetes, can have their snack bars and control their blood sugar, too! The low glycemic properties of these bars is highly commendable. Those with diabetes, like everyone else, should be able to love foods that love them back- and Granola Gourmet helps demonstrate that’s possible.”

Granola Gourmet

Sunday, July 8th, 2012

by Kyle Dodel
Food Review 101
February 9, 2012

We like to balance out the bad food we review with some healthier items like nutrition bars, and today that’s exactly what we’re going to be doing. While searching the internet for new products to try we stumbled across Granola Gourmet who produces “a delicious variety of 100% natural, low Glycemic energy bars”. While it might be difficult to find them at an actual store near you, you can purchase their bars online directly from them and receive them in about 2-3 days.  They make what they call original recipe bars and ultimate energy bars, and although were not really sure what the difference is we decided to try out the ultimate energy bars.  The ultimate energy bars come in four different flavors: Berry, Fudge Brownie, Mocha Fudge, and Cran-Orange.  If you want to learn more about Granola Gourmet, we suggest you check out their web-site and take a look at everything they have to offer.

First, we tried out the Berry bar, and our tasters thought the bar had an extremely strong strawberry flavor to it with hints of blueberries.  The berries are dotted throughout the bar, but the strawberry flavor comes in the form of an extract.  The texture of the bar is soft and chewy like a fresh-baked cookie, and we think a lot of people will certainly enjoy that aspect of these healthy bars.  Next, we tried out the Mocha Fudge bar, and our tasters thought this bar had just the right combination of chocolate and coffee.  The bar has bits of chocolate chips scattered throughout, and much like the first bar, this bar uses a coffee extract to get the strong mocha flavor that our tasters enjoyed so much.  Next, we tried out the Cran-Orange bar that has cranberries scattered throughout, and they decided to use orange extract to really give this bar a refreshing taste to it.  Lastly, we tried out the decadent sounding Fudge Brownie bar, and our tasters enjoyed this bar the most for several reasons.  Our tasters really enjoyed this bar because it had a really strong chocolate flavor to it that the other bars didn’t have.  Another reason we enjoyed this bar so much was because the texture of the bar actually reminded us of a brownie, hence why it’s called the ultimate fudge brownie.  Overall (4.5 out of 5).

The pros are that each of the four flavors taste like their namesake, they’re low in sodium, low on the glycemic index, and the texture is really soft and chewy.

The cons are that you have to order them from their web-site.

Granola Gourmet Ultimate Energy Bars Review

Sunday, July 8th, 2012

by Derek Howes
I Was Lazy
February 11, 2012

Recently I received the Granola Gourmet Ultimate Energy bar line in the mail. I’ve really been aiming to eat as clean and as healthy as possible on my cut so these fit my diet perfectly. Anything with the word “Gourmet” in it sounds appetizing, but the word “Granola” gives it that no-so-guilty feeling. I’m sure you’re wondering if these bars taste more like the “Granola” (healthy/bland) or “Gourmet” (delicious) part of the name.

I should note that each of these bars were ate before the gym – they all gave me energy. Not a caffeine-type jittery energy or anything, just a natural “thank you for eating healthy” type energy if that makes any sense?

The first bar that I ate was the Ultimate Berry

*low Glycemic Index (25), 590mg Omega-3′s per bar and 12g Whole Grains

Ingredients: Organic whole grain oats, organic agave syrup, blueberries (blueberries, apple juice concentrate, sunflower oil), almonds, organic flaxseeds, organic sunflower seeds,soy protein isolate, olive oil, natural flavors, natural strawberry extract. Contains Soy and Almonds. Manufactured in a plant that also processes milk, eggs, tree nuts, peanuts. This is a Kosher product produced on dairy equipment (DE) without dairy ingredients.

Now as we can see here the macros are good (on all of the bars I reviewed here). It doesn’t call itself a protein bar yet the protein is still up there for a 150 calories bar. The ingredient list is a beautiful on all of them (other companies should take note).

How about the taste? Well, “Ultimate Berry” tasted just like I’d imagine a mixture of berries into granola would taste. Actually, a bit better than that. It didn’t have that artificial fruit taste that a ton of these bars have (you know who I’m talking about). It wasn’t dry at all, it didn’t have that bland/chalky taste that most companies tend to have when the ingredient list is this small. I enjoyed it.

Overall Ultimate Berry would get a 9/10 (awesome ingredient list + good taste = high rating!)

The second bar I tried was the Cran-Orange

*low Glycemic Index (19), 530mg Omega-3′s per bar and 10g Whole Grains

Ingredients: Organic whole grain oats, organic agave syrup, cranberries (cranberries, apple juice concentrate, sunflower oil), almonds, organic flaxseeds, organic sunflower seeds, soy protein isolate, olive oil, natural flavors, cinnamon, natural orange extract. Contains Soy and Almonds. Manufactured in a plant that also processes milk, eggs, tree nuts, peanuts. This is a Kosher product produced on dairy equipment (DE) without dairy ingredients.

I’m really not much of (or wasn’t) a cranberry or orange fan so I wasn’t too excited to try this. I do have to say though – it was definitely tasty in a good way. The combination of orange and cranberry really stood out and it wasn’t dry/chalky at all. It’s kind of hard to explain how this one tasted but it was good. I would say it tasted like a fruity granola gummy. I’d say I liked this one equally as much as the Ultimate Berry.

Overall Ultimate Cran-Orange would get a 9/10 (Made me a fan of orange/cranberry combinations)

The third bar that I tried was the Ultimate Mocha Fudge

*low Glycemic Index (23), 530mg Omega-3′s per bar and 10g Whole Grains

Ingredients: Organic whole grain oats, organic agave syrup, chocolate chips (cane sugar, chocolate, cocoa butter), almonds, organic flaxseeds, organic sunflower seeds, soy protein isolate, natural coffee extract, alkalized cocoa, olive oil, natural flavors. Contains Soy and Almonds. Manufactured in a plant that also processes milk, eggs, tree nuts, peanuts. This is a Kosher product produced on dairy equipment (DE) without dairy ingredients.

This was probably my least favorite of the bunch. Not because the bar tastes bad or anything but I just can’t remember the last time I’ve said that I enjoyed something that was mocha (or maybe I’m just not used to it). The bar had a nice granola-fudge like consistency so it went down rather nice. Had a nice chocolatey taste/after-taste to it too…the mocha just doesn’t do anything for me. If you enjoy mocha I’m sure you would love this bar.

Overall Ultimate Mocha Fudge would get a 7.5/10 (Not really a mocha fan – bar itself was not bad)

The fourth and last bar that I tried was the Ultimate Fudge Brownie

*low Glycemic Index (23), 540mg Omega-3′s per bar and 10g Whole Grains

Ingredients: Organic whole grain oats, organic agave syrup, chocolate chips (cane sugar, chocolate, cocoa butter), almonds, organic flaxseeds, organic sunflower seeds, soy protein isolate, alkalized cocoa, olive oil, natural flavors. Contains Soy and Almonds. Manufactured in a plant that also processes milk, eggs, tree nuts, peanuts. This is a Kosher product produced on dairy equipment (DE) without dairy ingredients.

Two words: My Favorite.

This bar hit a home run in the natural-but-tastes-amazing category. Fudge like consistency in a granola bar that tastes like a brownie? Mouthgasm/sold! The only thing wrong with these bars is that it wasn’t long enough (I wanted more!).

Overall Ultimate Fudge Brownie would get a 10/10 (Awesome ingredients while tasting like a brownie = GREAT!)

These are definitely a nice snack before the gym/in general. They are low in calories, have great macros/ingredient list, and taste good to boot!

  1. You can purchase as well as find where to purchase these at their homepage.
  2. Visit them on Twitter at
  3. or Facebook at


  • Cost: 8.5/10 (About $1.60 a bar and sometimes cheaper. This is a great price point especially since it’s a lot more “natural” than the alternatives)
  • Healthiness: 10/10 (Can’t debate the healthiness of these!)

Also I feel I should state this in my reviews: I have no issue giving a company a bad review even if they do send me a product to try for free – they are NOT paying me for a positive review, these reviews all come from me with my complete honesty.

Meet the Producer: Jeff Cohen

Sunday, July 8th, 2012

Foodspring: gateway to food adventure
March 15, 2011

Jeff Cohen
Owner, Granola Gourmet

As a type 2 diabetic, Jeff Cohen was frustrated by a lack of snacks that wouldn’t cause a blood sugar spike but also tasted good. To fill the void, he started Granola Gourmet with his family, creating a line of energy bars that would meet the needs of diabetics, as well as athletes and health-conscious consumers. He made each bar with 100 percent natural and wholesome ingredients, all with low glycemic impact so they convert to sugar more slowly

What began in his kitchen at home quickly turned into a hit. His teenagers started getting requests for new flavors from their friends; soon after, he began selling to caterers on television show and movie sets. Designed to satisfy a sweet tooth, the bars have no refined sugar nor the fat and sodium content of other popular protein and energy bars. They are available in flavors like Ultimate Berry, Ultimate Mocha Fudge, Chocolate Espresso and Spiced Orange Cranberry. They provide such an energy boost that a group of 18 climbers brought Granola Gourmet energy bars to eat for their meals and snacks during an eight-day climb to the top of Mt. Kilimanjaro. To learn more about his business, look for Cohen on ABC’s Shark Tank, which will air later this year.


Cohen shared more of his story with us:

How did you get involved with supporting the Mt. Kilimanjaro trek?
I think we all have an athlete within, and when I went on my journey to make a great-tasting low-glycemic snack I knew it would appeal to all types of athletes, from casual walkers to marathon runners and those adventurous enough to climb the 19,298 feet of Mt. Kilimanjaro. In our humble beginnings making bars for customers at local farmers markets and selling to caterers, I had no idea people would rely on our product for sustenance and energy to make the huge climb. We were approached by a local group out of Santa Clarita, Calif., made up of committed hikers that knew they needed our product for the journey. We were excited to be able to participate in the effort that took place more than 10,000 miles away.

Did the hikers eat your granola bars at the summit?
They ate the bars all the way up the mountain and commented that the guides loved the bars as well. They took pictures of our sign at the top. Definitely one of the high points in our company!

What is the most challenging or satisfying part of your job?
The most satisfying part of our job is when we attend the American Diabetes Expo every year in Los Angeles. Diabetics and their families swarm our booth and find our healthy diabetic-friendly bars taste great. It’s particularly rewarding to see my two teenage sons talking to the attendees about how their diabetic father came up with a product that they love. We can never stock enough product for the show and sell out every year.

Do you have a favorite flavor from your line?
I love the fruit flavors but can finally enjoy the chocolate ones without blood sugar concerns. My favorite is the Chocolate Espresso in our original recipe line and Ultimate Mocha Fudge from our new line of individually wrapped bars. They’re great in the morning when I need to rush out of the house without my cup of coffee.

If someone could shadow you for one day at your job, what would surprise that person most?
How much time I spend talking with people. I’m sharing my experiences for hours every day. Thank goodness I have an unlimited cell phone plan!

When you were a kid, what did you want to be when you grew up?
My dad was a corporate guy who was very successful. He taught us that no matter what you did, do it for others. Today I know that the more people I can help, the more successful I will be. I guess I always wanted to be an entrepreneur, whether that was working for others or myself, as I do today.

Aside from your products, what three food items can you always find in your kitchen?
You can always find apples, lemons from our tree, and although it’s not technically food, we make some great meals in our wok.

MetroNow: Granola Gourmet

Sunday, July 8th, 2012

Metro Source
July 7, 2012

Healthy, kosher and vegan, Granola Gourmet energy bars have become our new favorite snack.  Using tasty organic ingredients, Jeff Cohen created a special recipe that does not cause a blood sugar spike. The treats are ideal for athletes and healthy consumers, alike. Flavors include brownie and berry. However, the Metrosource staff loves the orange-cran best!

Granola Gourmet – low glycemic energy bars

Sunday, July 8th, 2012

by Mariano Grinbank
October 14, 2011

Granola Gourmet sent along a sample of their various products for the purpose of review. Today we will consider their energy bars.

Granola Gourmet does not merely provide healthy products but are actively involved in treating health problems. Their products are endorsed by physicians as being low glycemic, diabetic friendly snacks with a portion of each sale going towards fighting diabetes. They contain no wheat, no dairy, very low sodium contain whole grains, are packed with healthy omega oils and are vegan, vegetarian and kosher—mazel tov!

In short, these snacks are perfect for diabetics and non-diabetic fitness enthusiasts in general as they provide circa 2-3 hours worth of energy sans a sugar spike.

Now, something which diabetics and non-diabetic fitness enthusiasts have in common is that occasionally they both need a sugar spike: diabetics when their blood sugar gets too low and fitness enthusiasts during post-workout. Of course, finding sugar spike educing foods is easier than shooting fish with a bazooka in a fish tank. The reason that Granola Gourmet’s snacks are so important is that is it much more difficult to find non-sugar spiking snacks. The energy bars come in these flavors:

Ultimate Berry
Ultimate Fudge Brownie
Ultimate Mocha Fudge
Ultimate Cran-Orange

Additionally, you can try their whole grain energy multi-packs. These are more akin to granola bars and come in Very Berry, Brownie, Spiced Orange Cranberry and Chocolate Espresso.

Due to their ease of use—easily packed into a gym bag, hiking backpack, etc. Granola Gourmet make for a great addition to a fitness / sports nutrition lifestyle.

Energy Bars for Diabetics

Sunday, July 8th, 2012

by JoAnne Barbieri
June 21, 2011

Energy bars, in moderation, are great to use as a meal supplement or a workout snack. Many energy bars are not good choices for diabetics because they are packed with sugars, carbohydrates and artificial sweeteners. Selecting these high glycemic products would cause large surges in your blood sugar levels. However, there are a number of energy bars that have low glycemic levels and are made from natural sugar supplements.

Granola Gourmet Energy Bar

Granola Gourmet’s energy bars are low-glycemic, made with whole ingredients and do not contain dairy or wheat products. These vegan bars contain approximately 10 g of sugar, allowing for a slow increase of blood sugar overtime. They are a great selection for you since they are not high fat, high sodium or high sugar. You can enjoy a variety of flavors, such as ultimate berry, chocolate espresso and brownie by either purchasing them on-line or in your local grocery store. “The reason why Granola Gourmet energy bars convert to sugar more slowly is because they are low glycemic, not because they have 10g of sugar. Low Glycemic foods provide longer periods of sustained energy, hunger relief and reduces the risk of experiencing blood sugar spikes.” (CORRECTION Explanation added by Granola Gourmet.)

New Products

Sunday, July 8th, 2012

Vitamin Retailer
January 2011

Ultimate Energy Bars

SANTA CLARITA, CA—Granola Gourmet Ultimate Energy Bars are 100 percent natural and contain 10-12g of whole grains and 530-590mg of omega-3. For those with other dietary requirements, these energy bars (MSRP $1.69) are natural, free of wheat and dairy, contain no refined sugar, and are kosher, vegan and very low in sodium (15-35mg).