Product Review: Exo Protein Bars
Does Your Family Have Its Emergency Bags Packed?
It has been almost 1 year since there was a house fire here on the first floor of our home. According to Ready.gov, it only takes 2 minutes for a house fire to become life threatening. There is no time to gather important documents or beloved belongings.
Having our emergency bags packed and accessible made our evacuation both quick and safe. No one was tempted to grab this or grab that. We had clothes, personal items, and other emergency supplies ready to go. We just grabbed them and got out.
Since then, I have been putting time and effort into improving our emergency bags. I’ve upgraded a lot, but one area that has been tricky is what kind of food to put in the pack.
(Video review below!)
Finding The Right Protein Bar For Picky Preppers
See, I have this adorable daughter who excels at being a picky eater. I make loads of fun bars, puddings and other treats that she will eat. I hide the healthy stuff inside. But, for an emergency bag, it also has to be shelf stable and take up little space.
One of several items I wanted to add is a protein bar. This had to be:
- Low in carbohydrates so I don’t spike my blood glucose.
- Tasty enough for my daughter to want to eat it.
- Soy-free, gluten-free, and free of synthetic/fake ingredients.
Prepping with food restrictions can be so much fun- not!
Exo Protein Bars
I ended up on the Thrive Market website. This was my first time there, lured in by an offer for free mayonnaise (which I used in this recipe here). I decided to check out their protein bar selection and found a potential candidate, Exo Protein Bars made with, of all things, cricket flour.
That’s right. Crickets. As in Jiminy. As in, “chirp chirp”. As in, a bug.
Pros and Cons
I’d never heard of cricket flour, so I looked up their company’s website. I read about their company and their process. There were some pros and cons.
Crickets are a sustainable source of protein, and can be raised with little space and little input.
The bars are made with all real food ingredients.
They don’t contain soy or gluten, and have only moderate amounts of net carbohydrates.
I wasn’t sure I could eat bugs.
I wasn’t sure if the kids would eat bugs.
Cricket flour isn’t a common item, making these bars a bit pricey.
I ended up ordering a box to test out.
How were they?
Honestly, they were tasty. They are mostly almond and dates. There is some cricket flour and some additional flavorings. The Cocoa Nut variety which I bought had cacao nibs and a little bit of honey. The bar comes in at 16 net carbs, which is a little high for me if I were to grab one to snack on while I worked. But, if I were on the go, walking to a safer location, those few extra carbs aren’t going to matter. Still, they are less than half of the typical carbohydrate load in a Lara Bar, also made with a lot of dates.
Going with the comparison of the Lara Bar, the Exo Protein Bars are also twice the cost. Still, they blow Lara Bars out of the water when it comes to protein. And protein is what I wanted them for in the first place. Exo’s 10 grams of protein per bar is pretty decent.
But, would the kids eat them?
Honestly, that’s all that really mattered to me. Will the kids, especially my daughter, eat these bars? In an emergency, my husband and I will make due. But, I want to make any crisis easier for my kids. I really don’t want to be begging them to eat some emergency food that they hate. And I definitely don’t want to add the irritation of hunger to an already stressful situation. If they were willing to eat the bars, then they would be worth the price.
I didn’t know what would happen, but I decided to make a video of the kids (and me) trying it out.
So, it turns out, it was a win, at least as a supplemental food for the emergency bags and vehicle emergency kits. It is not something I will stock in my pantry. Unless cricket flour becomes all the rage and is so common that the cost comes down, it’s not frugal enough for me.
But, to add a high quality protein bar, that’s low in carbs, high in fiber, that the kids will actually eat, and still accommodates my food restrictions to our emergency bags, this was a win.