Raising the Snack Bar with Functional Ingredients

Styling and Photography by Laurie Mosco

Health and wellness are a big focus for 2022, and with that a renewed attention on snack bars.  Early 2022 sales of snack bars/granola bars/clusters skyrocketed, totaling $6.77 billion (Food Business News). Consumers are working up an appetite for fun flavors and a filling meal and they want functional ingredients that fit within today’s dietary trends. Read on for the must-have ingredients certain to raise the bar of your snack selection. 


60% of Americans are looking to eat more protein, according to a survey by the International Food Information Council (Food Business News).  So, bars that highlight their protein-packed ingredients will go fast.

While they want protein, consumers are also seeking bars with simple, wholesome ingredients too. A snack bar that’s sure to go over well – one with protein from  cage-free eggs like Over Easy. Made from a blend of wholesome oats, cage-free egg whites, nuts, and honey, Over Easy ticks those must-have better-for-you boxes while also offering comfort-food inspired flavors like Apple Cinnamon Peanut Butter Chocolate, and Toasted Coconut.

Snack bars selection is often a snap decision when consumers are need of nourishment on the go. Bars with packaging that highlights the simple ingredients like Rx Bars make the decision easy. Each bar is made with a signature blend of protein-rich egg whites, nuts, and dates — facts listed on every label.  Their wide range of flavors from Blueberry, to Mixed Berry, to Maple Sea Salt, to Chocolate Chip keeps snacking interesting, and encourages consumers to stock up on a wide sampling. 

Fiber is the second most popular main functional ingredient, besides protein, found in recent cereal and energy bar launches (Baking Business). Keto is another claim big in the better-for-you space, too. A bar boasting fiber while maintaining the Keto-friendly label like Keto Krisp is like a snack match made in heaven.  While Keto Krisp’s simple ingredients, protein, and fiber appeal to adults, the flavors are reminiscent of all their childhood favorites like Plant-based Almond Butter and Blackberry Jelly and Almond Butter Chocolate Chip.


Immediately following protein and fiber, claims most popular with snack bar customers are allergen -friendly claims (Baking Business).  Under this umbrella are claims like gluten-free, nut-free, and dairy- free. 

If it’s a gluten-free snack bar they’re craving, they can’t go wrong with Bob’s Red Mill and their Bob’s Better Bar. Everyone knows and loves Bob’s Red Mill’s wholesome, gluten-free oats. So when they’re made into a whole grain, gluten-free, non-GMO snack bar with classic flavors like Peanut Butter & Oats, or exotic flavors like Peanut Butter, Coconut & Oats , customers are sure to add them into their snacking rotation.

Emerging gluten-free snack bar brand we’re also loving is Kate’s Real Food.  Featuring a blend of nuts, gluten free oats, honey, nut butters, and pure extracts, Kate’s Real Food offers the sustained energy consumers are seeking from their snack bars. Dessert-inspired flavors like Dark Chocolate Mint and Peanut Butter Dark Chocolate only sweeten the deal. 

Plant-based plays well in the snack bar space, too. Berg and their line of plant-based protein offerings is sure to please those who embrace the veggie life. Their Oat N’ Energy Bars really deliver on today’s lifestyle trends.  Gluten-free, dairy-free, and soy-free, Berg energy bars feature a signature blend of oats, agave, sunflower butter, pea protein, and are flavored with simple ingredients like freeze dried raspberries and dark chocolate. We love their Dark Chocolate Raspberry and the white chocolate in their Sunflower Butter White Chocolate, delivers everything customers love about creamy, white chocolate confections in a better-for-you bite.

When we’re talking allergen-friendly claims, nut-free snack bar options are also important, making Blake’s Seed Based a must for any snack bar selection.  Just like the name implies, Blake’s Seed Based bars are made from a hearty blend of pumpkin, flax, and sunflower seeds for a cravable crisp crunch.  They’re nut-free, gluten-free, soy-free, egg-free, dairy-free, peanut-free, and sesame-free, hitting a lot of today’s allergen-friendly needs.  But what keeps consumers excited about Blake’s Seed Based bars are the bright and bold flavors such as Raspberry, Blueberry Lemon and S’mores.

As the return to the office forges on and consumers continue to shift their focus to ‘clean’ ingredients, sales of snack bars are predicted to rise .  By highlighting functional ingredients like protein, and allergen-friendly claims, you’re set to have healthy snack bar sales – bar none.

Energize your snack and energy bar selection

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