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Energy Bar Review: BGood’s Peanut Ginger

BGood bar

They say that good things come in small packages, and that’s certainly true of BGood’s Peanut Ginger energy bar.

BGood calls it an “artisan chocolate energy bar,” foreshadowing the creative medley of flavors that is more fitting of a chocolatier’s fine truffle rather than an energy bar.

First, there’s a wave of bitter-sweetness from the dark chocolate, which coats the bottom of the bar, thus hitting your palate first. It seems to be a higher quality chocolate than we normally see–it’s Guittard fair trade Dark Chocolate–and, it has a nice firm texture to it.

10% Discount on These Bars from BGood

Order from, and use coupon code GOOUTSIDE for 10% off at checkout.

There’s a wholesome and satisfying feel to the nut butter filling, starring the organic peanuts, but also includes cashews, gluten-free rolled oats, honey, and organic flax seed meal. While small in size, you can really feel this bar sticking to your ribs.

Without being overpowering, the organic ginger elevates the complexity of the flavor with a fresh little zing. The sesame seeds on top are also a nice touch. It adds to the presentation, reinforcing the artisan nature of this bar, plus it imparts a nice texture.

This tiny bar surprisingly packs 240 calories, perfect if you’re focused on calorie-dense foods.

This bar has been a favorite of Trailfoody customers, which is why we’ve included it again, this time in the November Trailfoody.

Here’s What Our Tasters Had to Say

“I like to save this treat for when I reach the summit. The amount of energy packed into this compact bar amazed me.”

Grif Steele
Glissade Racer

“It’s like a piece of art. First, the dark chocolate liquor. Then, the peanut butter and a dash of honey combine, ending with a subtle zing of ginger.”

Britt Foodlove
Cheesecake Whisperer

“Britt dropped some on the ground, but Grif beat me to it.”

Iditarod Fan

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The Surprising Reason This Energy Bar Contains Sweet Potatoes

energy bar with sweet potato

Ally Stacher, former professional cyclist and founder of Ally’s Bar, writes this guest blog post about how she got the clever idea to make energy bars out of sweet potatoes and why that’s the ultimate fuel for your body. Ally’s Bar Original was selected to be included in the August 2017 Trailfoody.

Knowing Where Your Food Comes From

I grew up in the wild and rugged mountains of far northern California. My family always hunted, fished and grew a garden. When I was 11, I worked on a watermelon farm with my twin sister. We picked watermelons in the summer mornings then worked in an ice cream shop in the afternoons. At 12 I killed my first buck, making my Dad so proud; it was a rite of passage in my family.

My Grandparents were also big influencers in my early years. They owned a large pond filled with bass, catfish, blue gale, ducks and other critters. That’s where we spent a lot of time fishing. I remember Grandpa fueling us up for a day of adventure with left-over potatoes and beer in our pancakes for breakfast. It was delicious.

Falling in Love with Cycling

I fell in love with the sport of cycling when I was a senior in high school. I did a research project on endurance sports with an emphasis on bike racing. I found people that rode bikes and learned everything I could. While I wrestled during my first year of college, I still rode my bike for fun. Eventually I jumped into a couple local bike races and was hooked.

Ally Stacher (Specialized – lululemon)

My timing with getting into the sport was perfect. At that time a small North Carolina college was growing their cycling program and was offering cycling scholarships. They had sent out a letter to almost every racer under 23 years old. I got the letter, made the trip to check out the campus and happily accepted a small scholarship and moved to the mountains of North Carolina.

I went from never racing on the track or cyclocross to being a part of a national championship team. Cycling became my obsession. In 2009 I was invited to race with the US National Team and signed for my first professional cycling team in 2010. In 2011, I got an offer to race for one of the top international racing teams in the world.

Cycling–The Proving Ground for Fueling the Body

I was eager and willing to work hard to be my very best. I made sure that all aspects of my life were dialed. My boyfriend (now my husband) was racing as well so we both knew the value of nutrition. I honed in on our diets and made everything from scratch. I made sure all of my ingredients had a purpose. I was making home made bars in my kitchen because I wanted to know exactly what was in the food we were eating. I wanted our fuel for our bodies for maximum performance.

The Inspiration for Using Sweet Potatoes

The idea of adding sweet potatoes to the bar came from two inspirations. One from my Grandpa who put potatoes in our pancakes. But the other inspiration came from our soigneur when she gave me a cup of food to eat on my way to a race. It was a longer day with challenging hills and wind. Beth was like “Ally eat this for your race”. I literally had one of my best days ever. I think my performance was owed to the sweet potato goodness before the race.

In December of 2012 I took a bag full of my sweet potato bars to a 2-week team training camp in Portugal. The bars were a huge success. This is where the idea to launch Ally’s Bar was born.

I went from making bars in my kitchen, then moved into a commercial kitchen. Demand continued to grow, but I was racing full time as well. For us to hit our goals we needed to move to a manufacturer. We launched our Original Sweet Potato Bar in October of 2014. We added 2 new flavors in the summer of 2016 increase our shelf presence by 200%. Our growths have been exciting and we’re just getting started. My husband John is still a pro cyclist and I’m a new Mom. We’re eager and excited to spread the love our delicious sweet potato bars. Coming soon to a store near you AND available today online at

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Top 5 Essential Foods for Any Outdoor Adventure

Everyone knows that a day’s journey out in the wild requires the proper sustenance to keep you on the move, but many often wonder which food items, exactly, are essential to have on hand.

While choosing the right food is key, it’s also important to have a variety of snack items that can be eaten separately in small amounts to provide you with a constant flow of energy.

So, we’ve put together a list of the top five must-have food items that will work best to fuel your next adventure!

KIND energy bar

1. Energy Bars – Energy bars contain the complex carbs necessary for quick bursts of energy. They work to keep you going and are perfect for recharging your body. When eaten within 30 minutes of finishing a day’s physical activity, these complex carbs even work to restore the energy necessary for the following day’s adventure.

Conundrum Trail Mix

2. Nut Mixes/Trail Mixes – Nut and trail mixes are full of dense energy that usually provide both a little fat and protein, which combine to provide long term, endurance energy.

3. Jerky – Jerky primarily provides protein, which works to repair and build muscle tissue. Since protein is largely for muscle repair, only a small percentage of calories from this source is necessary.

Mestrength electrolyte drink

4. Electrolyte Hydration Mixes – Electrolyte hydration mixes work to replenish the electrical energy necessary for many bodily functions, including muscle contractions. They largely prevent cramping and are meant to optimize performance.

5. Dried Fruit – Dried fruits are high in fiber and contain a significant amount of calories per serving. The fiber works to help your digestive system run smoothly while the calories provide a natural source of quick energy for those who need it.

Having the right variety of trailfoods can mean the difference between feeling energized and drained.

Trailfoody makes it easy to fuel up with the right food for adventures. It’s the 93-octane gas your uncle Jim insisted on putting into his Outback, only, this fuel has some serious foody flare.

Learn more about how you can sign up for Trailfoody and get new trailfoods shipped to your door each month, in a stuff sack, ready to go–making it a cinch to get out there and explore.

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Energy Bar Review: Simple Squares Cho-Coco

Simple Squares Cho-Coco energy bar

Chewy, mildly sweet, and smooth. That was our first impression of Simple Squares’ Cho-Coco energy bar. The coconut and chocolate work a little magic together, much like chords on a piano, to create a brand-new flavor with bright sweetness and subtle creaminess that you have to try to “get.”

The texture is an unusual combination of chewy and crunchy, which we like. You take a bite, and it’s soft, then the chopped cashews and almonds add satisfying little bits of crunch.

“Simple Squares makes good on their promise to keep it simple with only five ingredients—just whole, natural ingredients.”

Simple Squares makes good on their promise to keep it simple with only five ingredients. There’s no refined sugar, no corn syrup, and no preservatives—just whole, natural ingredients. And, with 230 calories, this bar has plenty of spunk to get you to the top of the ridge.

We’re cuckoo for this Cho-Coco bar.

The Simple Squares Cho-Coco bar was selected to be part of the June 2017 Trailfoody.

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What’s in June’s Trailfoody?

See what’s included in June’s Trailfoody, with a handful of this month’s items hailing from the Northwest! With approximately 1300 calories, this food kit will fuel any adventure.

Conundrum Trail Mix

Conundrum Trail Mix

From Portland, Oregon, The aptly named Conundrum teases your taste buds with waves of earthiness, sweetness, and savory, yet leaves you guessing the ingredients that create such an interesting flavor. Goes well with a hand-crafted beer, but we recommend saving it for the trail.

New Primal Jerky

New Primal Uncured Maple Bacon Sticks

Because everything tastes better with bacon. This pork-flavored beef stick is a superior alternative to the gas station peperoni stick, and the perfect amount of protein for outdoor activities. Plus, the pork is naturally raised, so it’s healthier, too.

Simple Squares energy bar

Simple Squares Choco Coco

We went cuckoo for these choco coco bars (try saying that fast 10 times). The coconut is subtle, but adds a wonderful creaminess to the chocolate. This bar just feels wholesome to eat, so you know it’s good quality fuel.

LivBar energy bar

LivBar Lemon Ginger Turmeric

Also from Oregon, this bar combines sweet, salty, and zing! This bar is feather light, made from organic superfoods, and comes in a compostable wrapper. It left us craving more.

KIND energy bar

Kind Pressed Mango Apple Chia

This bar had us at “mango.” Two servings of fruit in this little bar, which is the energy bar equivalent of a smoothie.

Kates energy bar

Kates Real Food Grizzly Bar

Also from the Northwest, from Idaho, this high-energy meal-in-a-bar can get you wherever you’re going. A wonderful peanut butter taste combines with dark chocolate and dried fruit. And, just as the name says, it’s made from real food.

Made in Nature coconut chips

Made in Nature Toasted Cinnamon Coconut Chips

Somehow the cinnamon coconut work a little magic together, making a tasty, energizing treat. These coconut chips are cut a little thicker, so they impart a more robust flavor.

Mamma Chia energy squeeze

Mamma Chia Blackberry Bliss Chia Squeeze

Perfect a quick burst of fruity energy, just open and squeeze. Organic blackberries are the star, along with some purple carrot juice and chia.

Mestrength electrolyte drink

MeStrength assorted performance hydration drink mix

This drink mix provides 5 electrolytes, and contains no sugars or calories. Flavors are all-natural, making it cleaner than many electrolyte drinks. Just add one stick to your water bottle and shake.

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What’s in May’s Trailfoody

Take a peek at what’s included in this month’s Trailfoody! With over 1384 calories, this food kit will fuel any adventure. Retail value is over $25 (not including the stuff sack!).

  • Naked Cow Honey beef jerky—Robust in flavor, with hints of smoky, sweet and a touch of spice, this jerky hits the spot. Oh, and it’s grass fed, with no added sugar, MSG, nitrates or any of that “udder stuff.”
  • Back to Basics Crispy Wheat crackers—Thin and crispy, and finished with sea salt, these crackers contain no artificial preservatives or flavors.
  • Artisana raw cashew nut butter—This nut butter is very smoooooth and creamy with just a hint of natural sweetness.
  • Evo Hemp Mango Macademia bar—Mango and macademia: you’ll think you’re in Hawaii. The hemp hearts give a subtle nutty flavor. Plus, they provide a lot of omega-3 fatty acids, so it’s good for you, too.
  • Curate Dark Chocolate Hazelnut bar—The combination of chocolate and hazelnut is hard to beat. This sweet treat has a nice crunch.
  • Big Spoon Roasters Apricot Pepita bar—As soon as you tear open this bar, the aroma of the hand-roasted nut butter announces itself. The pumpkin seeds add dimension and the apricot gives just the right amount of sweetness. Read this fascinating story about inspired the taste behind their nut butters.
  • Speedie B’s Almond Cherry bar—Smooth and sweet, the combination of almond and cherry join forces in this hand-crafted bar that will hit the spot. Bonus: the resealable packaging is great for nibblers—it keeps the pocket lint out!
  • Nature Addicts Apple Raspberry Fruit Sticks—Made from 100% real fruit, these soft, chewy fruit sticks are naturally sweet. Great for when you need a quick jolt of energy.
  • Stur organic Lemon Ice Tea drink mix—Hydrate well with this organic ice tea drink mix. Sweetened with a mix of organic cane sugar and stevia so it doesn’t have that artificial sweetener taste.
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Hungry Inspiration

Big Spoon Roasters Apricot Pepita energy bar is perfect for hiking

Mark Overbay from Big Spoon Roasters pens this guest post for Trailfoody about how he discovered the secret behind his signature rich, fragrant, hand-roasted nut butter. It’s a key ingredient in the Apricot Pepita Nut Butter Bar, which is featured in May’s Trailfoody.

I had the idea for Big Spoon Roasters on a crisp fall day in October 2010. It was a Saturday. After a bike ride across the rolling hills of Durham and Orange counties, I was in the backyard of the house I had just bought (my first) sanding pieces of quarter-round to match the finish of the house’s original 1950s hardwood floors. I had eaten a good pre-ride breakfast and a filling post-ride lunch, but all that sanding with a revved up metabolism made my stomach growl with hunger around 3 o’clock.

I craved exactly one thing – my favorite snack – freshly sliced apples generously spread with peanut butter. By volume, the peanut butter to apple ratio is approximately 1:1. The best.

Big Spoon Roasters nut butter with climbing and hiking gearA Craft with Roots from Zimbabwe
For some reason, I didn’t automatically go into the kitchen, slice an apple, and spoon out a dollop of the “all natural,” organic peanut butter from the local natural foods co-op in my pantry. Instead, I thought about the delicious, fresh-roasted, handmade peanut butter I had learned to make as a Peace Corps Volunteer in Zimbabwe some ten years earlier. I thought about its roasty intensity and perfectly coarse texture; about the care that went into selecting and preparing the ingredients; and the craft of making it, passed down for generations.

After harvest, peanuts were roasted over open backyard fires and crushed by hand between stones as coarse salt was added to taste. Some families added a touch of local honey and fresh coconut oil to complement the salt and smooth out the texture. The rich, fragrant, mouthwatering result was a revelation to me, a lifelong peanut butter lover.

“The rich, fragrant, mouthwatering result was a revelation to me, a lifelong peanut butter lover.”

Giving Birth to Hand-Crafted Peanut Butter in the U.S.
That flavor, though. That’s what I remembered the most and, at that moment, craved more than any food I had ever craved before. I remember thinking, in the middle of the craft food explosion that was happening in the U.S. at the time, someone must be making fresh-roasted, handmade peanut butter; I just hadn’t discovered them yet.

But, not a single business in the country was roasting, milling, and mixing nut butters to order. Marketing terms like “small batch,” “natural,” “gourmet,” and “delicious” abounded, but everything was being made on a huge, industrial scale and chock full of sugars, stabilizers, and in many cases, the environmental catastrophe that is commercial palm oil.

Big Spoon roasted nut buttersA Reflection of Values
We would focus on the craft of making the absolute best possible version of nut butter, no matter how long, painstaking, or costly the process of doing so might be. It would set new, higher standards for ingredient integrity, flavor, and freshness. Every ingredient would be the best in class, no exceptions, and every ounce of nut butter would be made to order. We would never compromise on quality or sustainability. We’d put the food first and package only in jars made of glass and steel. We’d use biodegradable paper labels with non-toxic inks. When we hire people to help me, we’d pay them living wages and offer robust benefits. We’d guarantee satisfaction. We’d give an increasing percentage of profits to charities every year. We’d offer a safe, welcoming environment to all people. We’d partner only with wholesale customers who share our values and treat them like partners.

In short, we’d be the change we want to see in the world.

A Nod to Dad; A Mind Toward Health
The business would also be an homage to my dad, Gary “Big Spoon” Overbay, who has battled with type 2 diabetes for more than two decades. One day when I was six years old, I walked into the family kitchen to find my dad having one of his favorite snacks – a big spoonful of peanut butter straight from the jar. I blurted out, “big spoon!” and the nickname stuck.

To help him manage his diabetes, I sought out to become an amateur nutritionist and even spent years working at the American Diabetes Association’s national office helping translate clinical research into consumer-friendly information. In many ways, my initial interest in nutrition, food, and cooking stemmed from a desire to help my dad, and Big Spoon Roasters is a direct extension of that aim.

hand crafted, hand roasted nut butter for energy barsNut Butter to Energy Bars
My wife and partner, Megan, and I love nothing more than being outside on trails, beaches, and playing fields with our dogs, and as former competitive endurance athletes, we have spent much of our lives looking for the tastiest, most nutritious portable snacks.

In other words, we were early adopters of Powerbars, Clif Bars, and the like, and we’ve since bought and tried every bar out there. While lots of bars offered the basic nutrients we needed to curb hunger on the fly, we found most of them to be either packed with sugar, made mostly of the same 2-3 dried fruits, and lacking in texture and flavor. We wanted something that was not only delicious and nutritious, but also low-glycemic and packed with complete protein and heart-healthy fiber.

Big Spoon Roasters Apricot Pepita energy barMegan is a talented baker, and before we even started Big Spoon Roasters, she had been making homemade energy bars from scratch using peanut butter as the main ingredient, primarily just for us, as well as some close friends who became obsessed with them. She started using Big Spoon’s Peanut Butter as the base for her bar recipes, and the people who tasted the new Big Spoon Nut Butter Bars basically lost their minds about how good they were and inspired us to figure out how to scale up their production and sell the bars, as well.

We’re honored that Trailfoody has included one of our Handcrafted Nut Butter Bars in this box. Born from the same hunger for real, fresh, and wholesome food that created our nut butters, our bars represent the kind of homemade quality and ingredient standards that we simply couldn’t find anywhere else. They are truly a labor of love, but we think the quality is worth every ounce of effort.

We hope you agree!

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Rugged Living & Love of Outdoors Inspire this Indulgent Energy Bar

Enjoy this guest blog post about the inspiration behind BGood Bars, written by Katy Nesbitt. We are excited to include BGood’s Peanut Ginger Bar—a very special find—in January’s Trailfoody.

BGood Bars were born from a combination of practicality and indulgence – a healthy snack with delicious ingredients that fits easily in a pocket. This combination was designed by Judy Goodman – a woman who knows how to live well out of a backpack or in a cabin on a remote cattle ranch.

Judy says she grew up in Central Washington with a love of the outdoors and the opportunity to cook and garden with her mother and her grandmother.

BGood Bars
Making these rugged, yet indulgent energy bars.

“Living on a farm, they taught me how to improvise in the kitchen by substituting for things we didn’t have on hand.” My grandmother used to say, “You can always make something out of nothing.”

When she was 27 years old she was backpacking in the Wallowas and devised her first trail bar, primarily comprised of nuts, dried fruit, eggs, whole wheat and chocolate.

With 20 years as a fisheries biologist and 15 years living on a remote Idaho ranch where the best means of transportation for many months of the year was a snowmobile, Judy lived her grandmother’s mantra—maybe not making something out of nothing—but, a rugged lifestyle doesn’t have to mean “roughing it.”

Judy and her husband, Bob, left the Sawtooth Mountains and moved to the base of the Wallowas in Joseph, Oregon, where she was trained as a chocolatier by a retired fish biologist in a Main Street shop. There, she came up with recipes for a snack similar in taste to a fine chocolate truffle with the energy boost needed to finish the hike, bike or ski.

Now, Judy runs her own kitchen making fine, hand-crafted products on Joseph’s Main Street making BGood Bars from a special formula of the highest quality ingredients wrapped in recyclable packaging – energy bars for active people with a conscience.

When not making and shipping bars to customers around the U.S., Judy joins Bob on a ski out the back door of their log cabin with a BGood bar in each pocket and up to the top of Wallowa Lake’s east moraine. From the top of the ridgeline, they can take in the view of Chief Joseph Mountain and the lake in one direction and Idaho’s Seven Devils Range to the east – a perfect opportunity to enjoy a bar made with nuts and fruit and hand-dipped in the finest dark chocolate.

“Ultimately the best food choices are always those closest to their original forms in nature. BGood Bars are a sophisticated great tasting snack that is healthy enough for the athlete and outdoor enthusiast, or decadent enough to serve for dessert,” says Judy Goodman.