Thursday, January 27, 2011

Amazing Grass: Product Reviews

I recently sent an inquiry to Amazing Grass for some information on their energy bars and Amazing Meal. I am quite familiar with their SuperFood products as I tend to use it in my smoothies for a "green" boost of 5 servings of veggies and fruits in a single scoop. I love the flavor (it doesn't taste like I am eating a mouthful of freshly mowed grass). Gack. I've tasted other products that make me gag from that. Not so with Amazing Grass's SuperFood. You'll have to check out their website as I could not possibly cover the extensive details,  amazing organic ingredients (including pre and probiotics), and health benefits without sounding like a robot spewing advertising plugs. I am very impressed with all of their flavors but my favorite still remains their chocolate version. Throw that in with a glass of milk and a small scoop of peanut butter (oh my god- eyes rolling back in head) it's just like a peanut butter cup. **singing**

Anyway, I digress...

A day or two later I received a very pleasant email response from Amazing Grass and a few days after that I was greeted at my front door with a box of goodies:

So, ladies and gentlemen, this is just my preliminary review of Amazing Grass products. I have heard the positive chattering over their goods, now I'll have to see for myself if they stand up to the greatness of their SuperFood.

Review #1: Chocolate Peanut Butter Protein Bar

As I unwrapped this chunk of chocolate-y goodness my first thought was "whoa buddy, that's some thick dark fudgy chocolate!" I bit a chunk off and instantly made an "uh oh" face while swiftly sliding the chunk into a pocket of cheek (safety zone) when I saw the exposed center of the energy bar in my hand. It was GREEN. A moss, scrape the clumped wet grass off your shoe green. It was odd and unfamiliar and I suddenly became concerned as to what my taste buds were going to say as I cautiously exited the chunk from the safety zone and chewed thoughtfully on the protein bar. My furrowed brow instantly melted away as my taste buds awed in harmony. Expecting something that tasted like it looked, I was pleasantly surprised when I tasted sweet, nutty, chocolaty, GOOD. Now, mind you, it still does have a very slight "green" flavor to it not unlike it's SuperFood counterpart but it is still fabulously delicious.
Doing some immediate research on their website I learned that the Energy Bars contain 2/3 serving of their original blend SuperFood (which explains the green color). An excerpt taken from their site

 "Our blend is a unique and potent combination of nature’s most nourishing, cleansing and rebuilding green superfoods and enhanced with digestive enzymes and active probiotics to improve nutrient absorption. The blend combines nutrient dense green food concentrates with superfruits like Acai, the powerful purple berry from the Amazon Rainforest, high in antioxidants, protein and healthy omegas. We also add maca, the amazing adaptagenic root grown at high altitudes in Peru that is known to provide sustained energy, boost the immune system and support vitality and mental clarity

This bar has so far single-handedly beat out all my other protein bars in taste and natural ingredients. I felt that I was ingesting a product that was not formulated, injected, and scanned straight out of a laboratory and marketed as the "next best thing" for athletes. The label impressed me with it's ingredient list: all pronounceable and recognizable. Things like organic spinach, pineapple, green tea, organic dates, whey protein concentrate, organic beet and carrot. No artificial anything and it didn't taste like chalk. Me likey. 

Review #2: Vanilla Chai Amazing Meal
I am such a glutton for all things Chai (ok, and peanut butter). I've tried sniffing the chai through the packet, just to see..

I was super excited to tear into this packet. I did so at 0630 this morning while at work, finishing up the last hour of my shift and feeling the beginning pangs of hunger. This is it! It's time! I tossed the fine pale green powder into a cup with 8oz. of skim milk and stirred, bringing it up to my nose for a whiff. It No calming aromas of vanilla or chai were detected yet it wasn't an offensive odor either. 

Taste: I think they stretch a bit far when they claim it to be "vanilla chai". It was not an unpleasant taste in the slightest, but I really couldn't catch many hints of either flavor well. It was definitely a green drink and lightly gritty, but the notes were mellow and pleasing to my pallet. It wasn't sweet nor spicy, something I felt it could have leaned a little more in both directions. In fact, there really wasn't much flavor to it at all. I did indeed drink it all down and thought to myself that I would drink it again if I had more. The health benefits were great, the ingredients all natural and organic with probiotics...I had to compare this product with SuperFood.

Here's the run down. From what I gather, the Amazing Meal is more of a meal supplement or after work-out drink. The calorie and protein count is much higher than the SuperFood, as well as the carbs and fiber. For the Vanilla Chai the protein was 10g per one scoop (23.5 grams), 13g carbs, and 6g fiber. Right in the range I want to be in especially when you add the extra values with mixing it in milk. It would be a great drink for me for those reasons. The SuperFood has an overall higher content of vitamins, minerals, and probiotics (significantly higher) which I wish the Amazing Meal included. The Amazing Meal carried a vastly higher quantity of Antioxidant Fruit and Veggie Blend. 

Overall I like it, I am interested in trying the other flavors and comparing their nutritional content. I would use it both as a meal replacement for those days I just don't feel like eating solid food (it happens often) or for post work out shakes. 

Recommendations: I wish it had a more distinct flavor of both sweet (though not overly) and spice, like a real Chai drink does. When you pick up a chai latte or chai tea, there's no question you're drinking I right? So more ginger notes, cinnamon, cardamom, etc (as a side note- spices are great for your body! Ginger is a great stomach soother, cinnamon is wonderful for the metabolism and immune system, and cardamom fights inflammation and infection). Sweetness? What about considering the benefits of powdered honey? Second, I wish it had the same benefits nutritionally as the SuperFood, just with protein and fiber added. That way you can choose SuperFood with or without protein and not feel like you are skimping anywhere.

All that said, I'm excited to dive into the rest of the samples! Will keep you posted.

1 comment:

JeffO said...

Wow - interested. I'll check them out.