Oh, the joys of opening a pack of Nature Valley’s crunchy granola bars. They may have a tooth-breaking, crumbly reputation, but you can’t deny their addictive power. After trying all nine flavors, I was reminded of just how delicious these bars are.
The best part? You’re bound to find a flavor that suits your style. But which one gets the gold medal? That’s what you’re about to find out.
9. Pecan Crunch
As a pecan fanatic, I had high expectations for this last-place flavor. Maybe they were too high because I was definitely disappointed. It took quite a bit of concentration to pick out the pecan flavor, and even once I did, it was barely there. Honestly, it’s the fraternal twin of Oats ‘n Honey without as much honey.
Just like number nine, I was looking for a bold flavor in the cinnamon bar. While I found it in the aftertaste, the chewing portion of my adventure was lacking in flavor. Sure, it still tasted good, but if I’m in desperate need of a cinnamon fix, I’d finish my snack ready to scarf down some Cinnamon Toast Crunch.
7. Oats ‘n Honey
This classic of all classics would’ve placed higher if the other flavors weren’t so delicious. (Definitely not a bad problem to have.) You can’t go wrong with this flavor. If you’re introducing a friend to Nature Valley, start here. It’s the gateway bar that’s bound to get any granola-bar-virgin addicted.
6. Maple Brown Sugar
If you’re always reaching for maple brown sugar oatmeal, then you need to buy a few cases of these. They’re sweet, but not too sweet. Nature Valley has definitely mastered the sugar ratio for this flavor’s recipe. I do wish the maple part would’ve been more of a forefront flavor – it was a tad overshadowed by the brown sugar. Overall, a quality addition to any morning, afternoon and/or night.
5. Peanut Butter
Hello, comfort food. Biting into this bar triggered tasty flashbacks to my peanut butter-filled past… and present. The nutty drizzle on top is not only flavorful, but it’s also creamy and pairs beautifully with the crumbly texture. If you’re not a peanut butter fan, this is not the flavor for you. But, if you like your nut butters bold and rich like I do, this needs to be at the top of your grocery list.
4. Oats ‘n Dark Chocolate
This one’s for you, fellow chocoholics. I was expecting the dark chocolate to be subtle to a fault and not nearly enough to satisfy my chocolate cravings. Thankfully, I was proven wrong. Even though the chocolatey goodness was far from lacking, it still didn’t take away from the oat flavor Nature Valley is known for. Perfect flavor balance here. Bobby Flay would be proud.
One bite was all it took to transport me to the beach. This one gets the award for strongest flavor. Run to the store if you’re pro-coconut, but stay at home if you’re strongly opposed to the faux nut flavor. I would’ve liked a hefty dose of shredded coconut added to the mix for texture, but overall I was pretty happy with this coconut cake taste-alike.
2. Apple Crisp
Yum. So much yum. Forget the calorie-loaded apple pie and grab one of these instead. I was happily surprised by the amount of apple I could taste, and the cinnamon addition was more than just complementary – it was delightful. The full, well-rounded flavor palette made it a serious contender in this competition.
1. Roasted Almond
We have ourselves a winner, ladies and gents! A big, Spoon shout-out to this flavor that has everything you could ever want in a granola bar.
No false advertising here. Your tastebuds will become fast friends with the almond flavor. It’s powerful and lasting without giving you a headache and ruining almonds for you. The roasted portion of the flavor evens out the overall almond impact. Plus, a nutty flavor is almost always well-received when you’re crunchin’ on a granola bar.
Congratulations to roasted almond for being #1 in our hearts and grocery carts.