Lärabar's six Jocalat bars contain only a few organic whole-food ingredients. Ninety percent of the ingredients are raw -- only the cocoa beans that give the bars their chocolate taste have been roasted. The bars have 190 calories, with 24 or 25 grams of carbohydrates and 4 or 5 grams of protein. German Chocolate Cake is the only flavor with more than two grams of saturated fat. The low protein is offset by the healthy fat from the nuts they contain; that along with the fiber slows down the digestion of carbs and provides sustained energy. There are no preservatives or added sugar. If you want a whole food bar without the chocolate flavor, you may want to try one of the Larabar flavors (*Est. $1.35). These bars are less expensive, but not organic.
We found the most credible reviews of the Jocalat bar at BackpackGearTest.org, where testers took samples of the bars with them on backpacking trips to rate how they perform in the field. Real Simple magazine and MightyFoods.com offer brief reviews, commenting mainly on their taste, and users weigh in at Amazon.com. Finally, Heidi Ahrens, who maintains OutdoorBaby.com, describes her family's responses to Jocalat bars, which they took on one of their outings.
This review site features user reviews as well as field-test reports/reviews written by people who volunteer to try out a particular kind of bar while camping or hiking. Three people field-test Jocalat bars and write reports on how well they held up in a pack, what kind of energy they provided, how they taste, and other factors.
Review: Reviews: Larabar Jocalat Bars, Jo Ann Moffi, Larry Kirschner, Shelia Morrissey, Spring 2008
2. Real Simple
Real Simple magazine rates energy bars for their taste based on the responses of unidentified testers, and has a nutritionist weigh in on the winner in each category. Larabar Jocalat Chocolate flavor is named best chocolaty energy bar, with the comment, "The nuts pack in heart-healthy mono- and polyunsaturated fats."
Review: Best Energy Bars, Editors of Real Simple magazine
MightyFoods.com is a site for those interested in natural foods. In this review, Rachel Cole explains that she decided to taste-test energy bars made with real foods, by which she means "predominantly made with some combination of dried fruit (usually dates) and nuts and without any added sugars or proteins." She tasted 35 bars in all, and likes the taste of eight bars enough to consider buying them again - including the Jocalat Chocolate Coffee flavor. Note that this flavor has about 32 grams of caffeine from the coffee and cocoa beans.
Review: Real Food Energy Bar Review, Rachel Cole
Close to 40 users have posted reviews of Jocalat bars at Amazon.com, giving them an average rating of 3.6 out of five stars. Most focus on the taste or nutritional content. Comments from those who rate them highly include "Insanely delicious" and "the ingredients are just marvelous." However, some people complain that they're not sweet enough.
Review: Larabar Jocalat, Contributors to Amazon.com
OutdoorBaby.com is maintained by Heidi Ahrens, who describes it as a site for "families who enjoy the outdoors." She notes that her family doesn't really like energy bars all that much, but they tried out three of them on several of their outings: Larabar, Larabar Jocalat and Clif Bar. Of the three, Ahrens says that all three members of her family would choose to take only Larabar Jocalat bars along on future outings.
Review: Energy Bar Review, Heidi Ahrens, Sept. 14, 2009