Think back to what you were doing when you were 18. You were probably starting off your freshman year of college, trying to figure out how to work the laundry machine at your dorm or enjoying the freedom of going out whenever you wanted. That wasn't the case for 21-year-old Daniel "D" Katz, who, right out of high school, founded D's Naturals, the dairy-free protein company taking the markets by storm.

A Little Background for You

3 years ago, D was a 16 year-old high school graduate (he graduated a year early) enrolled at Indiana University. However, 3 months in, he knew that school wasn't for him, so he packed his bags and moved to sunny LA.

"I wasn't even old enough to lease an apartment yet, so I found a family on Craigslist to live with," he told me, chuckling at how ridiculous it sounds in hindsight. Moving across the country to start up a company all by himself. At the time, he did it all because "hungry" to get into the energy drink market, but he soon was diagnosed with a dairy intolerance, much like 65% of the population, from living off of protein bars.

There was no dairy-free protein bar on the market, and that's when D's Naturals was born. 

D first started off with a protein bar, the No Cow Bar, and recently introduced Fluffbutters, which are peanut and almond spreads. For the first 2 and a half years of D's Naturals, he was a one man show. Now, D's secured investments from General Mills and his products are available in retailers nationwide, blowing his company into the stratosphere.

Why D's Naturals is Revolutionary

Along with being dairy-free, all of D's Naturals' products are low in sugar. Originally in the "specialty foods" market, D's Naturals has broken into the mainstream, providing allergen-friendly and vegan for all. 

But, what about the taste? Is it as good as its ingredients list? I tried out some samples of both the No Cow Bars and the Fluffbutters, and here's what I thought.

The No Cow Bars

Protein bars have never been my favorite. The ones that I've had in the past all had a weird chemical aftertaste or didn't have flavors that were exciting. However, D's Naturals has been vouched for by fitness enthusiasts for its formula and flavors alike. With flavors like raspberry truffle and blueberry cobbler, I was pumped to try them out.

Lemon Meringue Pie 

The first flavor I had was the Lemon Meringue Pie Cow Bar, which was rated the best-tasting and most nutritionally-sound protein bar by Eat This. Naturally, I had high expectations, and they were met—perhaps even exceeded.

It tastes like you molded a slice of your grandmother's lemon meringue pie into a bar, without all the added sugars. It only has 1 gram of sugar, so it won't make you crash in the middle of the day. Plus, the lemon flavor is strong but not overpowering; the perfect post-workout summer snack.

Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip 

It's an undisputed fact that Reese's are the superior chocolate candy. Sadly for chocolate and PB fanatics like myself, it's also known that Reese's are not the healthiest indulgence. To satisfy my cravings, I make conscious efforts to try healthier alternatives, and boy am I glad that I stumbled upon the Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip cow bar. Not only is chocolate and peanut butter the best flavor combination, but you can tell that D's Naturals put in quality ingredients to make their bar. The dark, slightly bitter chocolate is the perfect complement to the indulgent peanut. You'll forget that you're not eating a candy bar.

The Fluffbutters

If there's one food that I could dedicate a new food group to, it would be nut butters. They are great sources of protein and healthy fats; they are super versatile; there are tons of different types; and they just taste so damn good. I love nut butters, especially whacky-flavored ones, so D's Naturals' Fluffbutters were right up my alley. They have a plethora of cool flavors to try out, and here are some of their most popular.

Salted Caramel Sundae Peanut Spread

I've been on a major salted caramel kick lately, so I tried this flavor first, and let me tell you, it was the perfect introduction to the world of D's Naturals. I think this flavor encapsulates the Fluffbutters best: they're spreads with a wonderful consistency (thick but not to the point that it sticks to the roof of your mouth) that taste like the flavor they set out to be, without sacrificing the integrity of the nut butter. The Salted Caramel Sundae flavor is spreadable, sweet yet salty, and makes me crave peanuts even more than I do.

Creamy Chocolate S'mores Peanut Spread

There is no better, nostalgic summer dessert like s'mores. The slightly charred marshmallows, melted chocolate, and crisp graham crackers never fail to make me smile. Now that I'm in college, though, it hasn't been feasible to go out into the middle of the woods and start a campfire, so whenever I find anything s'mores-flavored, I immediately grab it. The Creamy Chocolate S'mores Fluffbutter is the first s'mores-flavored nut spread that I've tried, and the only one you need to try. The blend of all three, essential elements will bring you back to simpler times camping with your family on those warm summer nights.

Vanilla Maple Almond Spread

By far the most popular is the Vanilla Maple Frosting almond spread, which tastes as amazing as it sounds. Almond butter is great and all; I love it in all shapes and forms. But when it tastes like the top of a cupcake (the best part), love becomes an infatuation. I can eat this for breakfast, lunch, dinner, and dessert, and as a snack in between. I don't think you can get tired of this addictive spread.

Brownie Batter Almond Spread

One of my favorite memories as a kid was making brownies with my family and licking the bowl clean. Though I look back now and shudder at the health risks associated with raw dough, the ooey-gooey chocolaty goodness overshadows any fear. With D's Naturals' Brownie Batter Almond spread, there's nothing to worry about. It's basically edible brownie batter, but in a nut butter form. The balance between the cocoa and almonds is perfection.

Final Thoughts

D's Naturals is the brand to watch. With new flavors churning out and exciting new developments in the coming months, there's certainly no stopping D and his company in continuing to dominate and change the nut butter game. And, once you try out the No Cow Bars and/or Fluffbutters and see for yourself the quality and passion behind every bar or jar, you'll surely be impressed and obsessed, much like myself.