The 9 Best Granola Bars of 2022

MadeGood’s Chocolate Chip Granola Bars are the ideal on-the-go snack

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The Spruce Eats / Amelia Manley

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If you want a tasty, allergen-friendly bar that will appeal to kids and adults alike, look no further than MadeGood’s Chocolate Chip Granola Bars. If you need to buy granola bars in bulk for a larger family and are therefore looking for a budget-friendly option, you can’t go wrong with the Great Value Oats & Honey Crunchy Granola Bars Value Pack.

Granola bars are an underrated snack (even—dare I say—treat?) these days. This quintessential on-the-go product is perfect for everyone, from busy parents who just need to give their kids a last-minute energy boost before soccer practice to college students on their way to 8 a.m. lectures and the working professional who needs something quick and easy between meetings. The variety on store shelves is a nod to just how popular these bars are.

And the options are endless. Crunchy or chewy? Sweet or salty? Fruity or chocolaty? Nuts or no nuts? No matter what your preferences, these convenient, kid-friendly, and travel-ready granola bars are the perfect snack to grab and go. 

Here are the best granola bars for all your snacking needs.

Best Overall

MadeGood Chocolate Chip Granola Bars

MadeGood Chocolate Chip Granola Bars

Courtesy of Amazon

There are all kinds of fun and creative granola bars out there, but sometimes just a classic oat and chocolate chip combo hits the spot, and that’s where MadeGood’s bars come in. "We’re not ones to mess with a good thing, but we did make it even better, by choosing organic, vegan and gluten-free ingredients," according to the brand’s website. 

These bars are considered "school safe," in that they do not contain peanuts or tree nuts, so you can rest assured they’re safe to pack in kids’ lunchboxes. But they’re not just great for kids; they’re a delicious on-the-go option for adults too, complete with gluten-free oats, a full serving of hidden vegetables, and no artificial colors or flavors. If you end up being a fan of this flavor, be sure to check out the other options available (birthday cake drizzled, vanilla drizzled, cookies and creme, and more).

Why I chose this: MadeGood’s Chocolate Chip Granola Bar is not only allergen-friendly but it’s made with wholesome ingredients and appeals to kids and adults alike.

Price at time of publish: $34 for 6 count (pack of 6)

Best Budget

Great Value Oats & Honey Crunchy Granola Bars

great-value-granola-bars

Courtesy of Walmart

You can’t beat the price of these Great Value granola bars, which is perfect if you have a large household that requires lots of snacks. Each pack of two whole grain bars contains 190 calories, 2 grams of fiber, and 3 grams of protein, so it’s still a solid snack choice when you’re on the go (and a nice portion size with two bars instead of one). These bars also received Walmart’s “Great for You” label designation, which means it meets the nutrition criteria from the 2010 Dietary Guidelines for Americans, U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), and Institute of Medicine (IOM).

Why I chose this: Everyone loves a good value, and for those households that are going through large quantities of granola bars, you want to find a good quality bar for a good price.

Price at time of publish: $4 for 12 count (pack of 1)

Best Kid-Friendly

KIND Kids Chewy Chocolate Chip Granola Bars

granola

Amazon

KIND bars have been a popular choice for adults over the last several years, boasting grown-up flavors like "Dark Chocolate Nuts and Sea Salt" and "Dark Chocolate Mocha Almond," but they also now offer several more kid-friendly varieties to appeal to the masses. Their chewy chocolate chip granola bars are "made with 100% whole grains and no artificial colors, flavors or preservatives, it's a bar that kids enjoy, with the ingredients parents want," according to the brand’s website. 

The first ingredient in the ingredient list is oats, and they contain 5 grams of sugar per serving, are gluten-free, and low-sodium. They also contain no artificial flavors, colors, or preservatives. Besides the chocolate chips, they are sweetened with tapioca syrup, cane sugar, and honey. 

"KIND has always been committed to bringing people wholesome and delicious snacks with ingredients that they can see AND pronounce. The first and predominant ingredient in all of our snacks is always a nutrient-dense food like nuts or whole grains," says a KIND spokesperson.

If your kids are big peanut butter fans, be sure to check out the other kid flavor, chewy peanut butter chocolate chip. (Note: adults will enjoy these bars too!) 

Why I chose this: It’s great to see KIND branching out to make kid-friendly flavors, and these bars are a great option for kids’ school lunchboxes, midday snacks, or pre-game fuel.

Price at time of publish: $30 for 30 count (pack of 1)

Best Low Sugar

JUNKLESS Chewy Granola Bars, 100% REAL Strawberries

granola bars

Amazon

This JUNKLESS bar is minimally sweetened with brown rice syrup, strawberries, and natural strawberry jam flavor, keeping the sugar to 6 grams per serving. The company prides itself on having "no fake stuff added." There is no high fructose corn syrup, no GMO’s, and no trans fats/hydrogenated oils. 

According to Founder/CEO Ernie Pang, "JUNKLESS bars do not use any sugar alcohols or sugar alternatives. We use real sugar but we put just a moderate amount in our food to make them taste great. In fact, on a sugar gram per gram of food basis, JUNKLESS granola bars have one of the lowest amounts of sugar of all leading national brands."

If you have allergies, note these bars contain soy and may contain wheat, milk, peanuts, and tree nuts. If you end up being a fan of this flavor, be sure to check out the other fun varieties out there, including chocolate chip, wildflower honey, cinnamon roll, and more.

Why I chose this: Fruit and oats are a great combination, and adding fruit to a product is a great way to naturally sweeten it.

Price at time of publish: $27 for 6 count (pack of 4)

"Sugar content is a key item to look at.  Many low sugar or no sugar bars use sugar-alcohols (e.g. maltitol or erythritol) or sugar alternatives (e.g. monk fruit). While zero sugar sounds appealing, it might not be appropriate for families with kids." — Ernie Pang, Founder/CEO of JUNKLESS

Best High-Protein

KIND Protein Bars, Double Dark Chocolate Nut

KIND Protein Bars, Double Dark Chocolate Nut

Courtesy of Amazon

With a whopping 12 grams of protein per bar, this crunchy nut-packed snack is the perfect fuel to keep you going throughout the day. It’s also gluten-free2, low in sodium, and a good source of fiber. KIND’s protein bars are 25 percent larger than the brand's standard bars, so you also get a slightly larger portion. If you think protein bars typically lack favor, you might be pleasantly surprised by KIND's offering. With flavors like Double Dark Chocolate Nut, Crunchy Peanut Butter, Almond Butter Dark Chocolate, Caramel Nut, and White Chocolate Cinnamon Almond, you don’t have to sacrifice flavor.

Why I chose this: This bar tops the charts when it comes to protein-packed bars on the market, so if you’re looking for a convenient, on-the-go protein boost, this is a great option to add to your cart.

Price at time of publish: $18 for 12 count (pack of 1)

"...choose a granola bar that supports your lifestyle since there are plenty of options out there.  As an example, if you’re taking it with you for outdoor activities, you might want to pick a bar that has whole grains for energy. If you’re looking for a bar for the gym or to strengthen your muscles, a protein based granola bar might be appropriate. If you’re looking for something for your kids/family as a quick on-the-go healthy snack, a basic clean but tasty granola bar just might fit the occasion." — Ernie Pang, Founder/CEO of JUNKLESS

Best Organic

Annie's Organic Chewy Granola Bars, Chocolate Chip

Annie's Organic Chewy Granola Bars

We all know and love Annie’s organic mac and cheese, but its granola bars are another hit. Though admittedly not as nutrient-dense as some of the others in the lineup, these still hold their own as a great snack, are kid-friendly, and are relatively low in calories (100 per bar). They are whole grain and made with wholesome, high-quality ingredients. What they don't have? Artificial flavors, synthetic colors, and high-fructose corn syrup.

And for those who don’t love a hard, crumbly bar texture, these chewy, softer granola bars are perfect for you. In addition to Chocolate Chip, Annie’s offers Oatmeal Raisin and Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip flavors, as well as gluten-free versions.

Why I chose this: For those who are partial to a softer granola bar and want high-quality, organic ingredients without any artificial ingredients (for yourself or your family), this bar is a no-brainer.

Price at time of publish: $60 for 6 count (pack of 12)

Best Gluten-Free

RXBAR Protein Bars, Best Seller Variety Pack

4.8
RXBAR Protein Bars, Best Seller Variety Pack

Courtesy of RXBAR

RXBARS are famous for their minimalistic ingredient lists (nine ingredients or less!), producing bars with just the nutritious necessities and no unpronounceable "filler" ingredients, making these bars a fantastic snack option for those following gluten-free, Whole30, or paleo diets. They are high in protein, thanks to egg whites and nuts, and come in a variety of crave-able flavors like Blueberry, Chocolate Sea Salt, Peanut Butter Chocolate, Coconut Chocolate, and more. These bars have a soft, chewy texture, so if you’re looking for a crunch, this probably isn’t the bar for you.

Why I chose this: You won’t miss the gluten once you taste these bars; with so few ingredients, they manage to pack in a ton of flavor and nutrition.

Price at time of publish: $28 for 12 count (pack of 1)

Best Dairy-Free/ Vegan

88 Acres Cinnamon & Oats Granola Bar

88-acres-cinnamon-oats-seed-bar

Amazon

88 Acres handcrafts its wholesome bars in small batches out of a small-scale bakery in urban Boston. These granola bars are a fantastic choice for households with allergens, as these bars are free from the eight most common food allergens (making them school safe). Additionally, they’re gluten-free, non-GMO1, FODMAP-friendly, and vegan. Each bar contains 190 calories, 3 grams of fiber, and 6 grams of protein. Other flavors include Spiced Cranberry Orange, Dark Chocolate Sea Salt, Ginger Apple, and more. If you want a higher protein option, 88 Acres also produces protein bars (at 12 grams of protein per bar).

Why I chose this: Although these bars are super allergen-friendly, the flavors are unique and delicious and don’t make you feel as though you’re missing out on anything.

Price at time of publish: $24 for cinnamon maple, 12 count (pack of 1)

Best Breakfast Substitute

Kodiak Cakes Crunchy Granola Bar Variety Pack

Kodiak Cakes Crunchy Granola Bar Variety Pack

Courtesy of Amazon

Kodiak Cakes is known for its high-protein baking products like pancake mix, but it also offers snacks like granola bars and protein balls. This pack comes with two boxes of Chocolate Chip and two of Peanut Butter, but other flavors include Oats & Honey and Maple Brown Sugar. These satiating bars offer an impressive 10 grams of protein, 2 grams of fiber, and 10 percent of your daily value of iron, and with 210 calories per serving, they make a solid breakfast substitute (especially the Maple Brown Sugar flavor, which will remind you of a tasty, hearty bowl of oatmeal).

Why I chose this: If you’re swapping a full meal with a bar, you want to make sure you’re getting good quality, hearty fuel, and with 10 grams of protein per bar plus fiber and iron, you can’t go wrong here.

Price at time of publish: $46 for 6 count (pack of 4)

Final Verdict

Having MadeGood’s Chocolate Chip Granola Bars in the pantry will come in handy for anyone looking for a snack. For an option with over 10 grams of protein, grab a box of the KIND Double Dark Chocolate Nut Protein Bars.

What to Look for When Buying Granola Bars

Ingredients

Read the label on the box before buying, so you know what is in these snacks. They might taste good yet have ingredients that you don't want in a granola bar. Some of them will include artificial sweeteners and preservatives, colorings, and extra sugar, while others offer options such as organic and gluten-free ingredients and whole grains, dried fruits, and nuts. 

Taste

Whatever you're craving, there is sure to be a granola bar that fits your needs. With so many different flavors and textures out there, it all comes down to preference. Get one you enjoy. From chocolate, fruits, sweet, or salty, to chewy and crunchy, these bars are the ideal snack for children and adults alike.

Serving Size

Check the number of bars allotted for a daily serving size. Some come in individual packets, while other packets have multiple bars in them. These snacks are so good, you might find yourself reaching for another packet and eating more than the daily recommended amount.

FAQs

What is granola?

Granola is a breakfast food that consists of rolled oats, nuts, and honey or brown sugar.  

How long can you store granola bars?

Store-bought granola bars will have an expiration date stamped on the box. Check the box before purchasing, and store them in a pantry or cupboard. They should last around six to eight months depending on that date.

When is National Granola Bar Day?

National Granola Bar Day is celebrated on January 21 every year. Join in and celebrate by eating your favorite granola bar.

How We Researched

To compile this list, our team of editors and contributors spent hours researching the best granola bars on the market, evaluating their key features—like ingredients, flavor, or price—in addition to reviews from customers and other trusted sources. We then used this research to assign a star rating from one to five (five being the best; one being the worst) to certain products on the list.

Why Trust The Spruce Eats?

The Spruce Eats writer Alyssa Langer is a registered dietitian and foodie, always curious about the next food or ingredient craze and hungry to learn and try more. Having worked in cookbook publishing, CPG label data, nutrition writing, and meal kits, her diverse background and varied interests provide a unique perspective that fosters clear, well-researched, and trustworthy reviews. She also updated this story with new products, nutritional information, and prices.

Sources

  • Ernie Pang, Founder/CEO of JUNKLESS
Updated by
Sharon Lockley
Sharon Lockley
Sharon Lockley has over 20 years of experience as an editor and writer and has been contributing to The Spruce Eats since 2019.
Learn about The Spruce Eats' Editorial Process
and
Alyssa Langer
Alyssa Langer
Alyssa is a licensed registered dietitian who covers food and kitchen products. She has written for EatingWell, Martha Stewart, and more and has worked on many America’s Test Kitchen cookbooks.
Learn about The Spruce Eats' Editorial Process
Article Sources
The Spruce Eats uses only high-quality sources, including peer-reviewed studies, to support the facts within our articles. Read our editorial process to learn more about how we fact-check and keep our content accurate, reliable, and trustworthy.
  1. U.S. Department of Agriculture and U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. Dietary Guidelines for Americans, 2020-2025. 9th Edition.

  2. Food and Drug Administration. Gluten-free labeling of foods.

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