Kirkland Protein Bars Review
This is our full review of Kirkland Protein Bars, here we look at these nutritional snacks from Costco to see how effective they are, and whether or not they are a healthy option for you.
Costco has gone through a love-hate relationship with their protein bars and have been known to change them around from time to time. In this newest iteration, their Kirkland Signature Protein Bars are claimed to be:
- Gluten Free
- No Artificial Flavors
- Kosher Friendly
Along with a few other features which varies flavor to flavor.
In this report, we give you all the information you need on their newest formula and whether it is the right option for you.
Kirkland Protein Bars Discontinued
Were Kirkland Protein Bars pulled?
Yes. In early 2018, Kirkland Protein Bars were temporarily discontinued. The absence of the product lasted for a few months – presumably to allow old stock to sell out before introducing the new formula.
The Kirkland Signature Protein Bars returned around July 2018, however there were some noticeable differences.
During the process, not only were some of the aspects of the bar changed – so were the flavors. The Cinnamon Roll flavor did not return the shelves after the switch up.
Kirkland Protein Bars also stopped being available from other vendors such as Amazon.com – and have not yet returned.
Kirkland Protein Bars New Flavors
These are the current new flavors of Kirkland Protein Bars:
- Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough
- Chocolate Brownie
- Cookies and Cream
- Chocolate Peanut Butter
As we’ve mentioned, Kirkland Bar flavors such as Cinnamon Roll and Cookies and Cream appear to be discontinued and are no longer available from Costco, Amazon or any of their vendors.
Kirkland Protein Bars Ingredients
Below is the full list of ingredients in Kirkland Protein Bars:
- Protein blend (whey protein isolate and milk protein isolate)
- Dietary fiber from tapioca starch
- Unsweetened chocolate
- Natural flavors
- Cocoa butter
- Sea salt
- Water sunflower lecithin
- Steviol glycosides (stevia)
*For these ingredients we used the Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough version the Kirkland Protein Bar (pictured below):
- Calories : 190 (60 from fat)
- Total Fat: 7 g
- Saturated Fat: 2.5 g
- Trans Fat: 0 g
- Cholesterol: 5 mg
- Sodium: 190 mg
- Total Carbohydrate: 22 g
- Dietary Fiber: 15 g
- Sugar: 1g
- Erythritol: 4 g
- Protein: 21 g
- Vitamin A: 0% RDA
- Vitamin C: 0% RDA
- Calcium: 15% RDA
- Iron: 6% RDA
- Phosphorus: 20% RDA
- Magnesium: 8% RDA
How to use this information
This nutritional information tells you the following about Kirkland Protein Bars:
- Not Vegan Friendly – They use whey and milk protein which are dairy-based.
- May Cause Allergies – Contains cashew nuts which could cause allergies.
- High in Carbs – 22 g of Carbs in each bar may be high for the keto crowd.
Below, we explore these points and look at why this matters in Costco’s Kirkland Signature Protein Bars:
1. Not Vegan Friendly
Kirkland Protein Bars get their protein source from whey and milk – which are both dairy products. The advantage of this is that it allows Costco to make and sell these bars at a cheaper price.
However, the disadvantages are far more noticeable. Here’s just a few of the issues:
Bovine sources have questionable cleanliness as it’s harder to know their origins. To consume whey protein it must undergo rigorous processing for it to be healthy to consume.
The taste on it’s own is not pleasant which means a lot of flavoring have to be added to improve it – which can affect the price.
Whey typically takes around 85 minutes for your body to absorb, whereas alternatives like rice protein can take just over 60.
The biggest issue is that whey protein is linked to causing digestive discomfort which may lead to issues such as gastric distress and a generally upset stomach.
2. May cause allergies
If you’re lactose intolerant or have any nut allergies – you cannot use this product. Kirkland Signature Protein bars are rife in dairy products such as whey and milk and also padded with cashew nuts too.
Although these are natural sources – if you’re intolerant you won’t be able to enjoy this product. We always find brown rice protein to be much more effective and friendly to most diets.
3. High in Carbs
The final point that’s worth mentioning here is that Kirkland Protein Bars contain 22 g of carbohydrates per bar. This is steep if you follow a ketogenic diet – and uses up a lot of your net carb allowance if you’re looking to stay in ketosis.
As we’ve mentioned, there are plenty of other options out there that can give you a high amount of protein – without the overlapping carbs.
Kirkland Protein Bars Gas | Side Effects
Kirkland Protein Bars may give you gas. This is common with most products that contain a large amount of whey protein.
If you are sensitive to dairy products, or have a sensitive stomach in general, you may experience the following side effects from the whey and milk in Kirkland Protein Bars:
- Gastric Distress
- Digestive Discomfort
If you have any concerns about these issues, we suggest that you speak to your doctor or a medical professional before using this product.
Kirkland Protein Bars Keto
Are Kirkland Signature Protein Bars Keto Friendly?
Yes and no. Kirkland Protein Bars contain 22 g of carbohydrate per bar – which is high for a such a small product.
Most keto diets recommend consuming 50 g of carbohydrates or less when dieting to keep your body in ketosis and running off your ketones and stored fat.
Although these protein bars from Costco’s Kirkland falls within this category – it’s nearly half your allowance. There are plenty of other high protein options out there which support a keto diet – while refraining from juicing up the carbs.
It’s not the best option for you, but if you really want to make it work – you could.
Kirkland Protein Bars Costco | Where Else Can You Buy Them?
We all know that Kirkland is owned by Costco, but is there anywhere else you can buy their protein bars?
You could, up until recently buy you could look up ‘Kirkland Protein Bars Walmart’ and get it from there, as well as Amazon and numerous other online vendors.
However, after the reshuffle in early 2018, no other vendors seem to sell Kirkland Protein Bars. Costco have brought these products back to being sold exclusively on their shelves.
There’s no other locations where you can find them available.
Are Kirkland Signature Protein Bars Good? | Summary
From our Kirkland Protein Bars review – we feel that they’re not the best protein option – but they’re not the worst either. At $39.99 there are better options on the market to meet your protein needs, but Kirkland does have one advantage: it’s convenience.
Kirkland’s Protein Bars are easy to have on the go, they’re in bar form and don’t need to be put in a shaker.
However, the catch is that it’s not the best type of protein. Kirkland Protein Bars are not vegan, they are not suitable for everyone (contain dairy and nuts) and they are only keto friendly at a pinch as it takes up a lot of your carb allowance.
If you’re looking for a fast protein solution to your diet – this might be it. However, if you’re looking for the best protein solution – it isn’t.