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Tesco Light Choices Maple Cereal Bars

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4 Reviews

Brand: Tesco / Type: Cereal Bar

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    4 Reviews
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    • More +
      04.02.2010 16:55
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      A very sweet cereal bar flavoured with a bit of maple syrup

      Tesco Light choices maple cereal bars are a sugary breakfast cereal bar that costs £1.53 for a box of six bars and are described as "Rice and wheat cereal bars with maple syrup".

      I picked these up because I wanted a cereal bar and these were one of very few of the extremely large selection of cereal bars that didn't have dairy in it. I've not really got any idea why so many of them have dairy in other because than it is cheap - it's generally pretty low down on the list of ingredients, so it's not like they are trying to reproduce the "Morning bowl of cereal and milk" taste. So, I've given the product a plus one on the rating for the lack of dairy.

      ===The bars===
      The bars are quite small - about four inches long, an inch wide and half an inch deep and, as such, aren't filling. They certainly aren't a breakfast replacement!

      They are extremely moist and chewy and unbelievably sugary - good if you happen to be a sugar fiend like I am, but bad if you don't have a toothbrush with you to brush your teeth right afterwards. Beware them pulling at any loose teeth or fillings! These are basically rice and wheat that has been bound together with syrup, with a tiny bit of maple syrup in (2%) to give it the name. The maple flavour does come through pretty well though, so I think that it must have been fortified a bit by the unspecified "Natural flavouring".

      They have a little bit of that crystalline sugary taste that you get when something has a little bit too much sugar in, and I can't really taste the cereal through the sugar itself, so that's just there to give it bulk I suppose.

      ===So, is it good for me?===
      Sorry, depending on what measure of "good" you are using, these are not necessarily good for you, in spite of the Light Choices name, but I'm a firm believer that occasional treats are a good thing, so I don't personally care that the occasional snack is a bit high on sugar. Everything in moderation, eh?

      If you look a little bit closer at the pack, you see that what "lighter choice" means is (in their words) "Light on calories, sugar or fat". Yes, it's that magic word OR there. This product is relatively low in fat, but it's nearly 20% sugar by weight! Obviously they are going to make the most flattering claim for their product (and after all, why shouldn't they?), so pointing out the lack of fat in a sugary product is fine but only really useful if you are only monitoring your fat intake - most of us would care about all the nutrients not just one of them. Would you think that lard was healthy if you read the claim "Lard: low in sugar!"? No, you wouldn't. Obviously, it would be low in sugar if it were 100% fat, but unless you only care about sugar and not about everything else, then it's not going to help you choose a healthy option.

      But it's not all bad news - it doesn't have artificial colours, flavours or hydrogenated fat, and it isn't too high on the salt, which makes a refreshing change! And anyway, sugar is useful in its own right if what you want is an instant calorie hit e.g. if you go jogging.

      ===Nutrition===
      Each bar has 75kcal, 1.0g protein, 15.5g carbs, 4.2g sugar, 0.6g fat, 0.2g saturated fat and 0.1g sodium. Each bar has only 1 WW point. The ingredients are: Rice, FOUR different types of sugar/syrup (including maple syrup), wheat, glycerol, oil, malt, salt, natural flavouring and soya lecithin. The allergens are wheat, gluten and soya. It is suitable for vegetarians, and I can't tell if it's suitable for vegans thanks to the non-specific "Natural flavouring" - could be honey or similar, for all we can tell.

      Apparently the bar has 30% less fat than Tesco's cranberry cereal bars. Which mostly makes me think that I'd better not get the cranberry bars! These bars aren't big enough to be a meal replacement, but they are good for elevenses or if I need a sugar boost - such as on a hiking trip.

      ===Summary===
      The bar tastes quite nice. It's not the healthiest thing ever, but snacks rarely are. It's a good size to pack for a hiking trip, plus unlike chocolate, it won't melt too much in the heat. I'll probably buy this product again, because it's dairy free and pretty nice.

      Review may be cross-posted elsewhere.

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      • More +
        14.06.2009 07:54
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        A nice snack to kepp you going

        I shall be working on the RNLI stall on Llandudno seafront on Sunday selling lifeboat souvenirs and as the stall is open from 8am until 6pm I needed some food and drink to take with me that wouldn't ruin my diet which is still going well if a little slowly.

        When I was in Tesco's last week I looked at the cereal bars to choose a couple of packets of the ones which were relatively low in calories and sugar. I chose three different boxes so that I could take a mixture of flavours and they would last two or three weeks.

        The ones that I chose were Alpen Light which I had tried before and knew that I liked, Tesco Special Flake Bars with Peach and Apricot and Tesco Light Choices Maple Cereal Bars.

        As I was just sitting watching the TV I fancied something nice so I decided to try the maple cereal bars. I adore the taste of maple syrup so I was looking forward to this.

        The price

        The pack of 6 bars cost me £1.36 so that works out as just slightly less than 23p per bar.

        The box

        The box is as the category title suggests Tesco Light Choices as opposed to the box shown at the top of this review which is from the older Tesco Healthy Living range.

        The information on the front tells us that the bars are 'rice and wheat cereal bars with maple syrup' and that they contain '30% less fat than Tesco cranberry cereal bars'. This doesn't really mean much to me as I have never tried the cranberry cereal bars!

        The now familiar boxes showing the nutritional information expressed as a percentage of the recommended daily allowance appear at the bottom right hand corner of the box.

        There is further information on the back of the box showing ingredients, allergy warnings and detailed nutritional information. I was able to use this information to check the sugar and calorie content before I made my decision to buy these.

        The bar

        The bars are all individually wrapped in foil with a simple Tesco Light Choices logo on the front with the words maple cereal bar.

        I tore open the foil and the first thing I noticed was the lovely fragrance of maple syrup - I was going to enjoy this! The bar looked pretty much like any other cereal bar with lots of grains stuck together with what I assume is maple syrup.

        The taste

        Well I have to say that I was a little bit disappointed with the taste. The bar was slightly dry although the taste was nice enough. When I thought about it I suppose that if the calories and sugar content are low then I was never going to get that moist, chewy, sweet experience that I was naively expecting to get.

        So once I had realised that the dryer taste was inevitable I realised that, for the calories, the bar did actually taste quite nice. I could certainly taste the maple syrup and that taste did remain in my mouth after I had finished eating the bar so I was able to savour it which was nice. The whole thing leaned more towards being a biscuit than a cake whilst remaining somewhere in between.

        Nutritional Information per 22g bar

        Calories 75
        Protein 1g
        Carbohydrates 15.5g
        Of which sugars 4.2g
        Fat 0.6g
        Of which saturates 0.2g
        Fibre 2.8g
        Salt 0.1g

        Conclusion

        Although these bars are quite small they are tasty and remarkably filling for 22g and they helped to keep me going through a long day on the lifeboat stall.

        The calorie count and sugar content are both nice and low so they suit my diet and my diabetes and whilst they aren't the best I have tasted I will certainly buy them again in the future.

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        • More +
          01.06.2009 10:27
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          A low-calorie sweet snack bar, great if you like maple syrup

          I'd previously tried these a couple of years ago when the Tesco Light Choices range was known as the Healthy Living range. I didn't think much of them back then, finding them to be dry and flavourless, but being a lover of maple syrup I thought I'd give them another go.

          They are located in the cereals aisle and have been repackaged into a much classier looking white box with a simple photo showing a plate of the unwrapped bars.
          The writing on the box describes them as 'rice and wheat cereal bars with maple syrup' and a quick look at the ingredient list does indeed confirm 40% rice, 13% wheat and 2% maple syrup - so far so good. A box costs £1.36 (at the time of writing) for 6 x 22g bars, which makes them just under 23p a bar, not too bad.

          Each bar is individually wrapped in an almost plain white wrapper, with just the product title, best before date and allergy advice (contains wheat, gluten, soya and no guarantee of no nuts)
          Upon opening the maple syrup can be smelt and the bar looks like a glued together block of rice crispies that has been varnished. Texture is firm to touch but fairly soft to bite and the bar can be pulled apart quite easily but is not too sticky. They're sort of crispy and chewy at the same time. The taste has definitely improved; they're quite sweet and really do taste of maple syrup, albeit with a slight artificial kick to it which thankfully doesn't leave much of an after taste.

          Each bar contains just 75 calories, 4.2g sugar, 0.6g fat and 0.1g salt, and as ever with Tesco light choices range they give you the equivalent Weight Watchers point value on the box - these are just 1 point per bar which I was mightily impressed with. They are also suitable for vegetarians.

          However, they are by no means filling, four bites and they're gone and, in my case, forgotten about in seconds. But they do make a tasty little snack if you have a craving for something sweet. I was glad I tried them again and after eating all six in the box (not all at once you understand!) I've grown to really like them and will be adding them to my shopping on a regular basis.

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            24.07.2008 12:23
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            low calorie, tasteless cereal bar

            I needed a new type of snack whilst at work, so opted for Tesco Light Choices Maple Cereal Bars. I wasn't particularly looking for a healthy snack, just something to fill the gap. What attracted me to the cereal bars was the picture on the box, as they looked delicious, but how wrong could I be?

            Tesco's Light Choices Maple Cereal Bars are part of the new 'Light Choices' range, which used to be known as the Healthy Living range. The 'light choices' brand claim to be big on taste, light in calories, sugar or fat. Tesco also say that the range doesn't use any hydrogenated fat, artificial colours or flavours. Each of the products are either less than 3% fat or have half the fat of a comparable product. Compared to Tesco's Cranberry cereal bars they contain 30% less fat.

            Tesco's Light Choices Maple Cereal Bars can be found in the Cereal aisle and are available in a 132g box of 6 bars. Each 22g cereal bar is individually wrapped and contains rice, wheat and maple syrup. A box will cost you £1.29. Each cereal bar contains 75 calories, 4.2g of sugar, 0.6g of fat, 0.2g of saturates and 0.1g of salt. As a quick snack the cereal bars fill a gap and are low in fat and calories. If you happen to be following a Weight Watchers diet each bar is 1 point towards your daily total.

            The picture on the box of the bars is appetising, however in reality they are not much to look at, just a cluster of rice and wheat with a golden brown colour. You would expect the bars to be quite sticky and moist, especially as they contain syrup (like most cereal bars), but they are quite dry and stiff. Eating one of these bars is enough to give you jaw ache. They are very chewy, but not in a toffee kind of way, where the syrup sticks to your teeth, it is more like chewing cardboard, as the bars are stiff and makes eating them hard work. Also the bars only contain 2% maple syrup, so don't expect much of a syrupy taste and to be honest, they are bland and taste artificial.

            As you can gather I have rated these bars as poor. They only get 2 stars from me as you would only chose these cereal bars if you are looking for a healthy, low in fat, calories and salt snack and are used to eating healthy food, which is quite bland. On the other hand, if you don't like food which tastes artificial and want a snack that is enjoyable to eat and easy to digest, don't bother buying these. I don't recommend Tesco's Light Choices Maple Cereal Bars and definitely won't be buying them again.

            For more information please visit:

            http://www.tesco.com/superstore/xpi/9/xpi57523319.htm

            Thanks for reading xx
            © sweetdaisy 2008

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