Trader Joe’s makes cereal bars in a handful of flavors, and we decided to put its most standard variety, strawberry, to the test.
These cereal bars are obviously intended to mimic Nutri-Grain bars, and they do a very good job of doing just that. They have the same general look and smell, even though these are a bit thicker and have a little more filling. The shell contains organic wheat flour, and the filling contains real strawberries along with a whole host of natural thickeners and sweeteners. Each bar also weighs exactly 37 grams.
There are two major differences, however, between the Kellogg’s and Trader Joe’s varieties. First, the Kellogg’s brand contains ingredients like niacinamide, potassium bicarbonate, and dicalcium phosphate, whereas the Trader Joe’s ingredient list is made up entirely of easy-to-pronounce words like organic wheat bran, baking soda, and invert cane juice. Second, the Trader Joe’s bars are much sweeter, almost candy-like: containing 17 grams of sugar per bar, they pack in 6 more grams than Nutri-Grain. They also contain 20 more calories, 2 fewer grams of dietary fiber, and .5 fewer grams of fat.
So if you’re looking to eat a cereal bar that has more real food in it than Nutri-Grain does, go for the Trader Joe’s brand. Don’t expect it to have less sugar, however.