BOSTON (CBS) — Phantom recently purchased four boxes of chocolate chip granola bars at a local supermarket. The chewy contenders were Annie’s, Cascadian Farm, Kashi, and KIND. All of the brands fared well in Phantom’s rigorous taste test, but only one ended up at the top of the food chain.
First up is KIND dark chocolate chunk. If you’re looking for a granola bar that tastes healthy, this is the one for you. Made with five super grains, including buckwheat and quinoa, this gluten-free snack is shaped more like a square than a traditional bar. It has a crisp texture, but not much chocolate flavor. And with just five bars in the box rather than the standard six, kind is a bit pricier than the other brands.
Next up is Cascadian Farm chewy dark chocolate chip. These organic bars are light in color, and feature a densely packed texture, resulting in an extra chewy eating experience. They’re made with fair-trade chocolate, unfortunately, the distribution of those chips is incredibly uneven, resulting in some bites that are overloaded with chocolate, and others that taste like nothing but vanilla.
The runner up is Annie’s. Phantom is a big phan of this brand’s purple packaging, but he was a bit apprehensive when he saw the size of Annie’s bars, almost 30 percent smaller than the other competitors. But despite the small size, these sweet and chewy snacks pack a big punch when it comes to flavor, delivering a pleasant balance of rich chocolate and wholesome oats.
At the top of the food chain is Kashi chocolate almond sea salt. This dark-colored bar has a lot going on. It has a semi-soft texture that’s enhanced by the pleasant crunch coming from the occasional almond. The interplay of chocolate and sea salt gives it an appealing salty-sweet flavor. And the addition of chia seeds delivers fiber that helps this snack satisfy your hunger. That’s why Kashi is at the top of the food chain.