EXAM – I have a child who has never really eaten a “normal” breakfast. It’s probably my fault since I used to throw him in his car seat in the morning with dry cereal (he didn’t like it with milk) which he ate like kibble on the way to school. ‘school. Anyway, now that he’s a teenager, I make him get a protein bar in the car and eat it on the way to school, and he really only likes one flavor of a brand . When CTRL Meal on the Go bars wanted a review, I decided to see if we could maybe add some variety to my son’s morning.
What is that?
CTRL Meal-on-the-Go bars are meal replacements containing 15 grams of whey protein.
What’s in the box?
12 bars of chocolate chip cookie dough or magic charms flavors
Chocolate chip cookie dough
- 15g of protein
- 11 g fat (4.5 saturated fat/no trans fat)
- 27g of carbohydrates
- 9g fiber
- 12g of sugars
- 240 calories
- 15g of protein
- 10 g fat (4 g saturated/no trans fat)
- 27g carbohydrates
- 9g fiber
- 12 g of sugars
Ingredients (chocolate chip cookie dough): Roasted cashews, isomaltooligosaccharide, whey protein isolate, milk chocolate coating (sugar, palm kernel oil and hydrogenated palm oil, dry skimmed milk, cocoa powder [processed with alkali]soy lecithin [an emulsifier] and vanillin [an artificial flavor]), cookie dough bites (wheat flour, sugar, palm oil, water, chocolate chips [sugar, chocolate liquor, cocoa butter, soy lecithin, vanilla extract] molasses, corn starch, natural flavor, natural and artificial vanilla, salt, soy lecithin) honey, whey chips (whey protein concentrate, rice flour), cocoa powder, natural flavors.
Allergen warning: Contains milk, soy, cashew and wheat. Manufactured in a facility that also processes peanuts, tree nuts, milk, soy wheat and eggs. Contains bio-engineered food ingredients.
Ingredients (Magic Charms): roasted cashews, isomaltooligosaccharide, whey protein isolate, white chocolate coating (sugar, vegetable oil [palm kernel oil]hydrogenated palm kernel and cottonseed oils skim milk powder, milk, lacto glyceryl esters of fatty acids, soy, lethecin, salt, artificial flavour), honey, oat cereal (whole oat flour, sugar, marshmallows [sugar, corn syrup, food starch—modified dextrose, gelatin, sodium, hexametaphosphate, natural and artificial flavor, color [red 40, yellow 5 and 6, blue 1 and 2]) wheat starch, food starch – modified brown sugar, salt, calcium carbonate, tricalcium phosphate, color (titanium dioxide, caramel), trisodium phosphate, preservative (tocopherols), whey chips (whey protein concentrate, rice flour ), cereal marshmallows (sugar, corn syrup, modified food starch. Contains less than 2% gelatin, sodium hexametaphosphate, artificial flavor, natural flavor, artificial color (blue 1).
Allergen warnings: Contains milk, soy, cashews, wheat. Manufactured in a facility that also processes peanuts, tree nuts, milk, soy wheat and eggs. Contains bio-engineered food ingredients.
I’ve tried a lot of protein bars and I’m pretty picky when it comes to taste. A protein bar shouldn’t feel like a punishment – it should be at least as tasty as a healthy breakfast. In this department, CTRL Meal-on-the-Go bars don’t disappoint. Everyone who tried them loved them, and they were a mix of kids and adult family members. There was a slight preference in my limited sample for the Cookie Dough bar, but pretty much everyone agreed that the Magic Charms bar tasted like a cookie or cereal, but denser. They agreed that the cookie dough bar is gooey and tastes like a treat. Are they as good as a Snicker’s bar? No. But you shouldn’t eat a Snicker’s instead of a meal because you’ll feel like garbage about an hour after. These don’t give you the sugar despite having 27 grams of carbs.
So let’s talk about the ingredients of the CTRL Meal-on-the-Go Bar: the list of ingredients is TINY on the packaging and I couldn’t find it at all on the product pages so I wanted to put it on this article . It was a challenge to read and spell. You’ll find that cashews are the number one ingredient, which isn’t surprising. They are delicious, just like the bars! However, you will see that ingredient number two is isomaltooligosaccharide. It is a mixture of hard-to-digest short-chain carbohydrates. It helps you feel full and it’s marketed as a healthy low carb/low calorie/high fiber sweetener, which sounds great. However, since isomaltooligosaccharides are difficult to digest, they can cause gastrointestinal issues, especially if you eat too much. Neither my son nor I had any issues in this department, but I would advise anyone who eats more than once a day to stay near a bathroom until you know what it will do to you.
It should also be noted, if not obvious, that they are not keto-friendly, nor vegan. They certainly pass the taste test, but they are not very big. If I wanted to live dangerously, I’d pair them with a fruit or something else that would make you feel more full, because these little bars aren’t meal-sized. They are more of a snack to eat until you can make time for lunch, rather than a breakfast replacement. I find this to be the case with most protein bars.
You might notice that there aren’t many photos of the out-of-package bars in this article. This is because these things melted a bit along the way and as a result they didn’t look so good. In fact, they weren’t that strong in my air-conditioned house either. I kept my bars in a fridge as recommended, but I think they might get messy if you’re really “on the go”. You will also notice in the photos that they are not exactly filled with small marshmallows or chocolate chips as in the packaging photo.
I was also thinking of mentioning the CTRL Meal-on-the-Go bar price factor. They cost around $3 each, which I think is a little pricey. I guess it depends on your perspective, though. If you consider them a meal replacement, then $3 isn’t a lot for a meal. If you feel like they are more in the snack category, $3 is a bit more than my usual brand of protein bars.
What I like
- lots of protein
- No sugar crash
- Good taste
What I do not like
- The ingredients are so small on the packaging that they make me think they don’t want me to look at them!
- Can be fondant
CTRL Meal-on-the-Go bars are tasty, but may not travel as well if you can’t keep them cool.
Price: 35.99 for a box of 12.
Or buy: CTRL.
Source: The sample for this review was provided by CTRL.