Primal Kitchen Protein Bar Health & Happiness Review

Primal Kitchen Protein Collagen bar review health nutrition keto
The protein bars in this review are on the left.

No Gluten or Grains | 8/9g Protein | 2g Sugar | Cage-Free Eggs | Keto Friendly

Net carbs: 3/4 g      Added sugars: 1 g

Overall rating: 🤢💪🥚

primalkitchen.com

 

Flavor

Flavors sampled: Coconut Lime/Peanut Butter

Wow… I used to get annoyed when people complain about something “tasting healthy.” These protein bars are exactly what those people are talking about, though. 

Both flavors have a wet grainy texture that I find extremely unpleasant. It’s somehow both dry and pasty. 

The flavor has a weird savory quality that I attribute to the eggs. Both bars are essentially the same base, just with different additives for flavor purposes. 

The coconut lime flavor has real lime oil in it, so it gives off a delightful lime aroma. It smells exactly like Tostito’s hint of lime chips. 

You cannot underestimate the importance of flavor in food products, though. These taste primarily like eggy wet dirt, which is not a flavor any company should strive for. 

Honestly, I’m just so tired of peanut butter. It’s never going away because peanuts are tasty, nutrient-dense, and easy to grow. But it seems like when any company launches a line of protein bars, peanut butter is one of their go-to flavors.

To be fair, PK has a few creative flavors like Coconut lime. It’s a sound business strategy to sell people a product they already like.

Except its a bait and switch! People buy these bars thinking they’ll taste like peanut butter, but then they taste like eggy wet dirt. 

 

Packaging appeal

I have basically the same feelings about these as I do about Primal Kitchen’s Collagen Fuel Bars. The leaves are nice, the design is clean and modern, and I like that the show pictures of their ingredients.

The design team must have spent a lot of time comparing PK’s logo to Air Jordan’s jumpman. It’s too similar to ignore. 

And the implication is clear. Eat our products, and you’ll be fuckin caveman, bud.

Run, jump, and hunt your way across the Bering land bridge and right into your next set of kettlebell thrusters. 

I’ve noticed that people often use orange for their peanut butter flavor. Is that because peanut butter’s actual color doesn’t translate well to packaging?

 

Ingredient quality

These have some interesting ingredients. Similar to RX Bars, these have egg white in them. How does RX avoid the weird savory flavor?

Probably dates. Dates are the best sweetener nature ever created and they are probably powerful enough to obscure any weirdness from the egg whites. 

Most people need animal protein in their diets. If I was an urban millennial, rushing from freelance gig to freelance gig and wondering when I’ll ever have time to eat healthy, I would probably appreciate this easy access to egg whites.

Good thing I’m a suburban millennial who doesn’t stress about my schedule or diet. 

It’s important to talk about the soluble tapioca fiber. According to many Keto scholars, soluble tapioca fiber is only 60% as bad as eating regular old sugar. 

The FDA just ruled that as of 2020, this ingredient must be listed as a caloric sugar. Large companies (> $10mil is yearly sales) have to start labeling it as such in 2020, while small companies have until 2021. 

Luckily this won’t affect Dirtballs. WHEN YOU ONLY USE REAL FUCKING FOOD AS INGREDIENTS YOU DON’T HAVE TO WORRY ABOUT ANY OF THIS BULLSHIT!!!

Maybe this is the reason these bars say Keto-Friendly, but are not fully Keto Certified.

I get the sense that Mark Sisson doesn’t really give a fuck about these health food mafias. Your product does not have to be certified ketogenic to confer the benefits of ketosis. 

These food industry certification groups are essentially marketing operations that charge companies for the right to virtue-signal in accordance with different trends. 

Sisson and PK seem to have enough clout that they can grow a large business without having to deal with these groups. 

The shady aspect of these organizations is that they have the appearance and influence of government regulatory bodies, but they’re privately operated non-profits. 

Maybe it’s better that way. I’m always talking about how communities need to empower themselves rather than asking the government for help. This is a pretty good example of community members agreeing on a set of standards and values, then finding ways to enforce those values on a community level. 

The government wouldn’t necessarily do a perfect job of regulating these things. Or maybe they will build a good federal regulatory framework on the backs of these organizations.

For now, though, they’re basically the health mafia. 

 

Company practices

I don’t know where to stand on this. 

On the one hand, PK seems to sneer in the face of the health mafiosos, which I admire. I have an independent spirit that sometimes compels me to do the opposite of what mainstream society expects. Maybe I’m reading too much into this, but I have respect for Mr. Sisson’s hard work and dedication to building himself a niche in the health food space. 

But some of PK’s practices seem to conflict with my values. Why use weird ingredients and lie about the carb impact of your products? Are you actually keto-friendly or are you just another culinary clout chaser?

Who am I to judge, though? I’m not Judge Mathis.

I always try to avoid throwing shade on other entrepreneurs. Mark Sisson started out as an athlete then refined his passion for healthy eating into a successful business that makes products people want.

It’s unwise to assume you are the final authority on anything. I still have a lot to learn, and I may one day change my stance on food mislabeling. 

That’s unlikely though because lying is bad and I don’t believe you should sell any product that requires this much energy be put into obfuscating the true nature of your ingredients. 

 

Snackability

Aside from the flavor and texture issues, these are quite snackable. They’re tiny and soft, which makes them pretty ideal for health-conscious parents to toss one in your toddler’s tote bag for a snack.

 

Overall, Primal Kitchen Protein Bars get a rating of 🤢💪🥚

Health, Nutrition, Promo

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