Recently, the protein gnome was ’round our way and dropped off a surprisingly dense package from his friends and ours at Clif.  Inside, we found an intimidating stack of the Californian company’s new Builder’s Protein Bars.  Despite a number of tasty-sounding flavors (Chocolate, Chocolate Chip, Chocolate Mint, Chocolate Peanut Butter, Cookies ‘n’ Cream, Crunchy Peanut Butter, S’mores, and Vanilla Almond) it would be a lie to say that we dove right in.  After all, recovery food isn’t expected to be tasty, is it?

Well, we needn’t have worried.  The bars–now available in 10g, 20g, and 30g sizes–are pretty darn tasty.  Especially the Chocolate Mint.  Hit the jump to find out more.

Taking on some protein and carbohydrates post-ride is never a bad idea.  It helps the body to recover and the rider to be ready for the next day’s ride.  That said, not everyone is looking to maximize muscle growth or is even particularly hungry after riding.  As a result, Clif have broken the Builder’s line into three sizes:

  1. The 10g Builder’s Snack Size: when you want something smaller that also packs a protein punch, CLIF BUILDER’S Snack Size delivers with 130-140 calories, 10 grams of complete protein, and the vitamins and minerals you need to boost protein metabolism.  10 bars for $10
  2. The 20g Builder’s Protein Bar has 20g of complete protein, the vitamins and minerals you need to boost protein metabolism, and carbohydrates for sustained energy. BUILDER’S never contains ingredients like artificial sweeteners, sugar alcohols or trans fats.  $2 apiece
  3. The 30g Builder’s Max has 30g of TriBuild Protein Blend, crafted to promote muscle growth and available from April.  $2.70 apiece.

So there you have it.  Three different protein bars to help you recover or, if like me you tire of your arms being mocked by preteen girls, to build muscle.  In keeping with their usual approach, Clif maximizes organic content wherever it makes sense and the ingredients are few and pronounceable.  Best of all, eating them isn’t a chore.




  1. Chuck on

    All the flavor of protein bars are so heavy. I ate a lot of the builders a year or so ago when they had the lemon flavor. I just add pea protien, and maca to kale smoothies anymore. Less gas and it leaves me feeling full longer.

  2. Ernst on

    Mmm, i’d rather take a protein shake instead of any of these bars; no fat and way easier to digest. And cheaper. Note that post rides proteins are also necessary to protect against protein depletion and related muscle break down.

  3. Mark on

    Protein depletion with a Western diet? We eat more than enough proteins to prevent depletion, no need to take additional proteins to prevent depletion. You take protein to recover faster. When adding some protein after long and/or intense exercise the body takes up carbohydrates faster.

  4. Dan on

    Why is everyone so scared of fat? Assuming it’s coming from a good natural source, which is generally the case with Clif Bar products, then it’s good for you. There’s actually no real connection between fats and heart disease, and high cholesterol issues are usually because of the types of carbs people eat. You know, like the bun on that hamburger.

  5. Confuzzled on

    It has always seemed a little ridiculous to me that they are packing 30g of protein into one bar… Please correct me if I’m wrong, but can’t the human body only process about 15g of protein at a time, anyway? The rest of it just causes floaters on the way out.

  6. Andrew on

    Confuzzled “can’t the human body only process about 15g of protein at a time”…no. Floaters are due to fat content, not protein.


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