Run Oregon Test Kitchen: SANS Meal Bars

Looking for a meal replacement bar that doesn’t include artificial ingredients and extras that you really don’t need or want in your diet? SANS has you covered. SANS Meal Replacement Bars are made from real food! The core ingredients in SANS Meal Bars are egg whites, dates, nuts, gluten free oats, flaxseed, spinach, fruits, cacao, spices, and natural flavors. Those ingredients provide 14-16 essential vitamins and minerals in each bar. The name SANS is derived from the Latin word “sine” which means “without.” This is because SANS bars are without added sugar, dairy, gluten, soy, and artificial colors and sweeteners.

Every balanced SANS Meal Bar includes only rich, wholesome ingredients. While other meal replacement products advertise scientifically formulated nutrition, at SANS we are proud of our unprocessed ingredients, engineered by the earth. It’s all-natural, all-whole, and all in a convenient package delivered right to your door.

Meal replacement bars are my go-to for breakfast, as I don’t tend to have much time in the morning. I usually eat a bar at my desk when I first get to work while checking email, etc. Finding a bar that doesn’t upset my stomach due to added protein powders or soy, but still has a decent amount of protein, is challenging. And then there’s the added challenge of taste and texture that I can stomach. And, did I mention I’m a ridiculously picky eater? The SANS bar met my ingredient and protein requirement, but I was nervous – as I always am with new bars – about the taste and texture. I was pleasantly surprised! The texture was somewhat cookie-like in that it was chewy and somewhat crunchy at the same time. I tried the blueberry flavor first and it actually tasted like real blueberries and had dried blueberries throughout. It also had a subtle lemon flavor, which I could have done without, but I still was a fan of the Blueberry SANS Bar.

My absolute favorite flavor was the Coconut Bar. Not only did it have good coconut flavor, it also had a hint of cinnamon. In my opinion, you can’t go wrong with those 2 flavors. In all of the bars I liked the crunchiness of the nuts and the texture of the dried oats. I couldn’t taste the dates or the dried spinach, which seemed like a good thing in this case, but I could tell the dates were the texture that kind of held the bar together. The Cherry Cacao Bar kind of threw me for a loop. I was expecting more of a chocolate and cherry experience, but it was pretty much just the taste of dried cherries. Perhaps I don’t really know what cacao really tastes like, but I felt like I couldn’t really taste it. This bar was more of a tart cherry bar, which was still decent. The final flavor I tried was PB & J. I’m not a peanut butter fan, so it wasn’t really my thing. But, I have a feeling you peanut butter lovers out there will probably be all over it!

Each bar has 17-18 grams of protein and some fats, which, together, did a good job of holding me over until my pre-workout snack. SANS Bars have between 350 and 380 calories, depending on the flavor. I found this to be a reasonable amount for a meal replacement bar. With no added sugar, there was no sugar crash to worry about and I was happy to discover that the ingredients settled well in my stomach. For me, the bars were a great breakfast option.

The only negative is that the price of the SANS Bars is higher than what you probably usually pay for a bar. However, the good news is that SANS has a Buy Meals, Give Meals program. For every pack of meal bars you buy, SANS will provide a meal for someone in need.

I would definitely recommend SANS Meal Replacement Bars.  They are a healthy option for when you don’t have time to make a complete meal. And, you’ll be giving back at the same time.


Company: SANS

Products & Price: Meal Bar, from $3.29 each

  • $79 – 24 pack
  • $45 – 12 pack
  • $18 – 4 pack

More About SANS:

We created SANS to help solve two of the greatest problems facing humanity today: the prevalence of unnatural, harmful foods in our diet and worldwide hunger.

In the United States and other developed countries, we have been poisoned by the “Western diet” as evidenced by the rapid increase of metabolic disease. Our meal bar products are designed to help solve this problem – making it very easy and affordable for anyone to eat a whole, balanced meal.

There are over 800 million people in the world who don’t have enough food to live a healthy, active life. The vast majority of these people live in developing countries. Through our Buy Meals, Give Meals program, SANS will give a nutritious meal to someone in need for every pack of meal bars purchased.

Thank you to SANS for providing us with a sample pack. Please read our transparency page for info on how we do our reviews.

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