A relative newcomer to the energy bar scene, Washington based Mazama Bar was started in 2011 by husband and wife team Brittany and Derek Manwill. Looking for a way to combine their love of food, the outdoors, and being active, the duo set out to make a tasty, compact, and healthy meal replacement that would last on the trail.
Mazama Bars are hand-made using a variety of natural ingredients sourced from the Pacific Northwest, like whole rolled oats, dried fruit, nuts, nut butters, seeds, and real dark chocolate. Mazama Bars have a 5:1 carb to protein ratio to give your body the nutrients it needs without slowing you down.
The first two ingredients are whole rolled oats and dates for long lasting energy. Mazama Bars don't use overly-processed soy protein isolates, are preservative-free, and cold-pressed to retain the highest nutrient content. They remind me very much of my current favorite energy bars from Kate's Real Food, perhaps even a little less sweet.
Many energy bars you find are just mushy blobs of ingredients all mixed together. The Mazama Bars look like a Clif Bar but are textured almost like a Kind Bar, with big chunks of nuts, dried fruit, and full chocolate chips. I was impressed with the non-synthetic taste. Instead of one uniform flavor that you have to try and force down, these bars actually taste of their individual ingredients.
For cold weather adventure testing, I kept one of the Mazama Bars in the refrigerator for a few days. When I removed the energy bar, it was still very pliable. You are probably safe from teeth breakage down to around 20ºF-30ºF and definitely safe if you keep one in your pants or jacket pocket.
Be warned that the two Mazama Bar flavors with chocolate chips will start to melt when you are outside on a hot or sunny day. As these energy bars are nutrient dense, packing 410 calories each, I don't want to eat a whole one all at once. Instead, I like to nibble on a bar over the course of a day or maybe even spilt them between two workouts. The melted chocolate creates a bit of a mess when you try and stuff the bar back in your pocket or backpack. You might want to bring a plastic bag with you for stowing purposes.
Bottom Line: Mazama Bars taste homemade, using a bunch of your favorite whole food ingredients, and pack in enough nutrients and calories to power you through a entire day of being active in the outdoors.
The Mazama Bars come in three flavors: Wild Berry, Hazelnut Mocha (my personal favorite), Chocolate Banana and a box of 12 retails for $42.