Rating: 4.0 out of 5 –
GoMacro launched in 2004 after Amelia developed the vegan soy-free protein bar on her Wisconsin farm during her cancer battle. A year earlier, Amelia’s daughter, Jola, encouraged Amelia to fight breast cancer with a macrobiotic, plant-based diet. Amelia’s cancer went into remission and the mother-daughter duo has grown from selling vegan protein bars bars at local markets to distributing the plant-based products nationwide.
The family owned and operated company strongly supports plant-based diet and believes the quality of the ingredients is equally important. All GoMacro product ingredients are organic and non-GMO. Plus, the vegan snacks and bars do not have any additives or preservatives.
Over the years, the wholesome plant-based protein products have evolved to include macrobar minis and the Thrive bar but the original macrobars remain a consistent staple. The GoMacro macrobars are made with wholesome ingredients and are all vegan, certified organic, gluten-free, kosher, non-GMO, certified R.A.W., and certified C.L.E.A.N. You can find the plant-based macrobar available in 14 flavors: peanut butter chocolate chip, coconut + almond butter + chocolate chips, blueberry cashew butter, dark chocolate + almonds, mocha chocolate chip, sunflower butter + chocolate, peanut butter, cherries + berries, cashew butter, almond butter + carob, banana almond butter, granola + coconut, cashew caramel, and apple + walnuts. You can find all of the delicicous flavors here on Amazon but today we’re going to review the sunflower butter + chocolate flavor. Let’s dive in…
I was surprised after opening the vegan protein macrobar package, it didn’t smell more like sunflower seeds. Instead, it smells slightly like chocolate but more earthy and robust than the chocolate you find in most bars.
The bar is sticky and soft (likely from the brown rice syrup) but firmly pressed together. It’s pliable but still firm, similar to a caramel type of texture. It’s relatively heavy compared to other protein bars, likely because it the ingredients are pressed together and relatively dense.
I can see small specks of crispy brown rice flakes and flax seeds but overall the color and texture is a deep dark brown.
Ok, let’s try out the GoMacro Sunflower Butter + Chocolate Bar….
My first bite is ….interesting. It reminds me of straight up sunflower seeds dusted in cocoa powder but with a sticker texture. Because the bar is sticky, I held on to it through the packaging and it did get stuck in my teeth (which is kind of a pain in the butt). However, I appreciate that this bar is nut free and top allergen free. I do think the cocoa/chocolate taste could be richer and more decadent (but I love dark chocolate). The GoMacro Sunflower Butter + Chocolate Bar chocolate taste is super sublte…again, just like a dusting.
The sunflower taste and aftertaste is more distinct. If you don’t like sunflower seeds, you likely will not enjoy this flavor. If you like sunflower seeds or you are nut free and vegan, this can be a great protein bar option. I was was surprised I didn’t taste more of the brown rice protein but perhaps since that is the third ingredient where sunflower seed butter is the second.
Thankfully, the GoMacro Sunflower Butter + Chocolate Bar is not sweet (fake or with actual sweeteners) or salty. However, it’s not as flavorful as some of the other flavors (like Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip) and I find myself spreading on a layer of almond butter or peanut butter on top of the bar to keep it more satisfying and boost the overall taste/texture experience. This bar is also great chopped into pieces and added into smoothie bowls because it’s not super sweet. If you want to see how other people eat the GoMacro Sunflower Butter + Chocolate Bar (or other available flavors), check the vegan protein bars out on Amazon.
Each GoMacro Sunflower Butter + Chocolate plant-based protein bar has 260 calories with 80 calories coming from fat because of the sunflower seed butter base (it is the second ingredient after all). There are 9 grams of fat with 1.5 grams of saturated fat (again from the sunflower seeds). For far too long our culture has considered fat to be the enemy, especially in regards to weight loss and nutrition, but a diet high in nuts and seeds provides healthy fats to help keep you healthy and satisfied which in turn promotes weight maintenance. Plus, nuts and seeds provide trace minerals essential for eye, brain, and heart heart.
Like many vegan protein bars, GoMacro macrobars are cholesterol free (cholesterol only comes from animals) and trans-fat free (with no added hydrogenated or partially hydrogenated oils). Salt is not added but there is 50mg of naturally occurring sodium. Many protein bars and packaged foods provide an excessive amount of salt and it’s comforting (and totally awesome!) to see a mainstream protein bar brand not adding salt.
There are 37 grams of total carbohydrate in each nutrition bar to help energize the body and with 4 grams of fiber (more fiber than some GoMacro bars), the Sunflower Butter + Chocolate GoMacro is a great snack or mini meal option. The fiber comes from whole food ingredients and not an isolated form, so it is easier to digest. This is especially important if you follow a plant-based diet higher in fiber already. Trust me, if you consume a high fiber vegan diet, the last thing you want/need is a isolated fiber nutrition bar. Thankfully, you don’t have to worry about digestive discomfort with the vegan GoMacro Sunflower Butter + Chocolate Protein Nutrition Bar.
Each GoMacro Sunflower Butter + Chocolate nutrition bar contains 10 grams of protein from organic sprouted brown rice protein and organic sunflower seed butter. The plant-based protein with wholesome real food ingredients offer essential micronutrients including iron and calcium. Each bar has 6% of your daily value for calcium and 20% of your daily value for iron to help maintain electrolyte balance, bone strength, and oxygenate the body to prevent fatigue. GoMacro does not add vitamins and minerals to their vegan protein bars; these minerals are present in the sunflower seeds and other ingredients!
The GoMacro macrobars cater to many dietary restrictions and lifestyles. The macrobars, including the peanut butter chocolate chip flavor are certified gluten-free, soy-free, certified organic, kosher, certified vegan, certified non-GMO, certified R.A.W. and certified C.L.E.A.N. To be certified R.A.W., the guidelines state the foods must be Real (non-GMO, safe, and majorly organic), Alive (refers to how many bioavailable enzymes your body can absorb from the ingredients – for example cooked vegetables lose some nutrients in the cooking process and would be less “alive”), Whole (minimally processed from the original source). C.L.E.A.N. foods are a subset within R.A.W. food certifications and are Conscious, Live, Ethical, Active, and Nourishing. It can give the consumer an idea that the foods are not only non-GMO and organic but the process was intentional with the consumer in mind. These extra designations GoMacro has opted into provide consumers with more information and less doubt or concern in regards the nutrition and quality of the products. So no matter what diet you follow (or don’t follow!), check out these awesome bars on Amazon. Your body deserves this level of quality nutrition!
The Non-Vegan Review
So, what do we have here? Diez gramolas of protein! Pretty good for a vegan bar. Looks like GoMacro is getting all of the protein from the organic sprouted brown rice protein. The front of the package says “New Improved Recipe”, which makes me wonder how bad was the old recipe, because the new recipe is kinda of just okay. The flavor of this GoMacro bar is Sunflower Butter & Chocolate. The bar has a nice seed/nut butter flavor to it, but the chocolate flavor is on the weak side. If you like your protein bars to have a mild flavor, these GoMacro Sunflower Butter & Chocolate bars are going to be right up your alley. Overall, a quality vegan bar from a family owned and operated company. And, these GoMacro Sunflower Butter & Chocolate bars have a boat-load of certifications. They are organic, vegan, gluten-free, pareve, non-gmo, certified clean, certified raw, and sustainable. Pretty awesome, right? Get you sum on Amazon and put quality foods in your mouth. Non-vegan husband out!
The Vegan GoMacro Sunflower Butter + Chocolate Protein Nutrition Bar is gluten-free, soy-free, kosher, and organic but you’d never know from the sunflower seedy and slightly chocolate taste. The vegan nutrition bar doesn’t taste indulgent or decadent, but it does taste simple, straightforward and refined. The high quality minimal ingredients shine on their own with additives, preservatives, or any of that non-sense. I will say my favorite GoMacro bar is still the Peanut Butter + Chocolate Chip but if you cannot consume peanuts or you’re burnt out on that flavor combination, the Sunflower Butter + Chocolate is a neutral flavor alternative. If you are looking for a vegan protein nutrition bar that provides wholesome, organic, and allergen free ingredients, definitely check out GoMacro Sunflower Butter + Chocolate Nutrition Bars on Amazon and help support this family owned business and this omnivore husband/dietitian wife duo aiming to give you honest reviews on vegan products.