Friday, November 18, 2011

Good Greens are good!

Wow! This week has been so busy. Hayden and I went to Parent Observation Day at Jacob's school (although Hayden is not his parent, the teachers were very welcoming and let her participate; she even danced and sang with Jacob in his music class), followed by her usual story time (only one more before the end of the fall session; Jacob is allowed to attend with her next week when he is off from school). We also got a chance to hang out with some of my friends from high school, and help make bons bons at our church.

Thank "good"ness I received a box of Good Greens Plus Bars in the mail to sample. The company was so nice to send three of each of the four flavors for us to try. It was perfect timing, as I tend to pack bars along with me when I'm out and about. They are so convenient to toss in my purse for when hunger strikes (along with some veggies sticks and bananas, which always seem to pack well in a pinch).

As my friends and I had never tried Good Greens bars, I thought it would be fun to do a spontaneous taste test at the table together (I brought one of each flavor, since I wasn't sure which one I wanted to try first). Luckily, I had my trusty camera with me (I have to get some photos when we get together, as it doesn't happen very often), so we videotaped our reactions.

I figured my friend Becky would be okay with the idea of doing a sampling video, since she shares a love of fresh, organic food and has allowed me to post pics of her and her son Leo on my site in the past (here she is pictured with Hayden and Leo during our Target shopping excursion).

Stacy, on the other hand, I hadn't seen in a while. The last time I did, she ate completely the opposite of me, and I wasn't sure if anything had changed.

To my surprise, she was very open to the idea of taste-testing these "green" (I warned her in advance that they contained various green foods, like spirulina, barley grass, wheat grass, broccoli spouts, alfalfa sprouts, etc.) bars, and even mentioned a good experience she had recently with spinach (yes, the food she spoke of contained spinach, but it was hidden very well).

I think she still may have been a little concerned about what the bars might taste like, but I knew the actress in her wouldn't let it show. The funny part was that when she tasted the Chocolate Raspberry bar, there was no need to act; she genuinely liked it, comparing it to a chocolate-covered candy bar with a nougat-like filling.

Three of the bars (the Chocolate Raspberry, Chocolate Coconut and Chocolate Peanut Butter) resembled candy bars due to their yummy dairy-free dark chocolate coating. I was expecting the center to be green, as I've had other chocolate-coated green bars in the past, but they looked as chocolaty as the outside.

The Chocolate Raspberry bar had a soft chocolate center with a slight hint of raspberry. It wasn't overpowering at all. As Goldilocks would say, "it was just right."

The Chocolate Coconut bar looked a lot like the Chocolate Raspberry until you tasted it. Instead of raspberry, it had a slight coconut flavor. Although Becky and I were expecting a creamy white filling like a Mounds bar, it was nice to find the less intense, soft chocolate coconut macaroon center with specks of freeze dried raspberry sprinkled throughout (I don't know why they were in there, but I kinda liked it).

Stacy and kids went gaga over the Chocolate Peanut Butter, which was the most decadent flavor of the bunch. This tasted the most like a candy bar, and probably would fool anyone in a blind taste test.

For those of you who either need to take a break from chocolate or don't like chocolate (although I can't imagine such a thing), we also sampled a Wildberry bar. Think of it as the "naked" bar of the group; it's center exposed due to not wearing a chocolate coat (I bet a nondairy white chocolate or vegan coat would also be delicious on this one).

When Stacy first revealed it to me, I thought it resembled a Power Bar. Fortunately, it had a much lighter, fresher texture and pleasant flavor. Stacy said it reminded her of the center of a berry Newton, but I think these aren't as sweet, which in my book is a good thing.

If you want to see what the bars look like without their wrappers, you'll need to watch our video below, or check out the Good Greens Bars website ( to purchase your own.

Here's some more info about the bars, along with some more cute kid pics from our day hanging our at Target and Starbucks (I got a Vanilla Rooibos tea, as recommended by Kimberly Snyder of "The Beauty Detox Solution." Love it!).

According to the packaging, Good Greens Plus Bars (the "plus" refers to the fact that these are the soy-free versions of the original Good Green Bars) supply 100% of your daily fruits and vegetables, are vegan and gluten-free. They also say "raw" on the wrapper, although after reading the ingredients, I don't believe they are entirely raw (they contain evaporated cane juice in the coating, along with brown rice crisps, brown rice syrup, etc. in the fillings). However, I do see a place for them in my high raw (not always 100% raw) vegan diet.

If you are avoiding peanuts, I noticed that there is peanut paste in all the bars. I rarely eat peanuts, but I do enjoy them on occasion, just like how I sometimes make room for some cooked vegan foods in my diet.

I think these bars are some of the best tasting bars on the market, which outweighs the fact that they are not entirely raw and do contain sugar. If I'm on the go, in for a sweet treat and want to get a good boost of nutrition all at the same time, I will certainly pack some of these along with me. They are full of superfoods and are fun to share, even with those who need to "candy-coat" what's good for them.

Speaking of candy, I've been helping with the bon bon making at my church for the past couple days. It is a fundraiser we do every year (we make larger, egg-shaped versions at Easter time). Being surrounded by buttercream, coconut, peanut butter and chocolate-filled bons bons for hours does give me a craving for those flavors. The Good Greens Plus Chocolate Coconut and Chocolate Peanut Butter bars really have hit the spot.

Thanks again Good Greens! I will definitely purchase more of your bars in the future ... and perhaps my friends will, too :-)

BTW, please excuse Leo's fussiness in the video. It was his naptime ... and he really couldn't wait to try one of those bars :-)