Why Do Protein Bars Taste Bad | How to Find a Tasty Protein Bar

You love protein bars for their convenience as an on-the-go snack or a quick boost. But here’s the truth. Many options don’t taste good. So why do protein bars taste bad? 

If you look online, you’ll see a whole bunch of bad reviews on protein bars. You don’t need to be a science major to realize that statistically, lots of people think protein bars taste bad. The evidence is everywhere. 

So let's get into what’s up with how these bars taste. Why are they so famous for tasting icky? And let’s get to the answer of whether a protein bar can taste good. 

Why Do Protein Bars Taste Bad?

There are all sorts of reasons. Here are some of the most common. 

  • The source of protein can make them taste funky.
  • They can have weird fake sugars like sucralose or aspartame.
  • Preservatives and bulking agents can add on add taste.
  • They have lots of fake ingredients and just taste fake. 

Many of these bars try to “fake” decadence. But somewhere in the process, they go wrong.  

You end up with a bar that looks tasty in concept. But when you bite in, you’re left underwhelmed. You get where it’s trying to go in the taste department, but it never quite lives up to expectation. 

And much of this is the result of the above mentioned ingredients that just don’t taste normal. 

Protein Concentrate

Protein bars should contain a good source of protein. So many bars use protein concentrates to boost their protein levels. 

Most proteins we eat from day to day are things like meat, beans, and nuts. Protein concentrates are a whole different animal. Literally. 

These protein concentrates are dry ingredients added to supplement a food’s nutrition. So when bars use them as a major ingredient, you get a dry, crumbly, somewhat off taste. 

Whey protein concentrates are a common protein bar ingredient. You get these concentrates by collecting the liquid byproduct of something like cheese. Then this liquid goes through further processing to increase protein content. Then the concentrate is dried. 

And now you have whey protein concentrates. Not very tasty sounding, are they? 

“Sugar-Free” Protein Bars Can taste Off

Protein bars taste bad when many fake sugars are used. 

Yes, some bars use sugar. In fact, many protein bars have more sugar than a donut or piece of cake. These protein bars taste good, but that’s not what you want for a healthy snack.

So the alternative is sugar-free options that can taste weird. Here are just a few fake sugar examples.


  • Sucralose
  • Aspartame
  • Saccharine
  • Natural Flavors (Which are usually chemicals)

Preservatives Bars Use Differ in Texture

Many bars contain a variety of preservatives. These preservatives help with freshness and can  improve the taste. But they can be a contributing factor in how protein bars taste bad. 

Protein bars have a variety of textures that aren’t pleasing. 

For instance, some bars may crumble the moment you try to bite in. Others are so tough that you can barely get your teeth through them. 

Others are unnaturally mushy. They almost seem to evaporate in your mouth and not in a pleasing way. 

Still others are unpleasantly crunchy. The texture has way too much crunch for something that is supposed to be fresh and soft. 

In the end, these bars can end up tasting like something that is past its expiration date. Even when it is still in the freshness zone. 

So Can Protein Bars taste Good?

Believe it or not, there are some protein bars that do have a pleasing taste. Though they are few and far between.

These are bars that don’t have all the fake sugars. So they are more naturally sweetened with things like  stevia.

And they don’t contain protein concentrates. These bars have clean sources of protein like pure whey protein. 

Finally, they are missing the preservatives. 

A great choice is Jimmy Bars. These are made from real foods and not manufactured science. So you don’t have to worry about these protein bars tasting bad. Because after your first bite with their all-natural ingredients, you’ll realize they taste so good. 

Check out Jimmy Bars today. Which one of their amazing flavors will you try?