Friday, June 29, 2012

UNREAL #8 Chocolate Caramel Peanut Nougat Bar

Unreal 6 Chocolate Caramel Peanut Nougat Bar UnjunkedThe final candy I have in the initial launch of the UNREAL candy line is the UNREAL #8 Chocolate Caramel Peanut Nougat Bar. If the description doesn’t spark any recognition for you, it’s a Snickers-type bar.

Like my other profiles of the UNREAL candies, there’s a lot to explore and expose in this new line. There are inconsistencies and it’s a little hard to find things out, but if you’re just interested in the review, skip to the third picture and read on from there. If you’re interested to know more about what’s inside and what they say is inside, well, then read the whole review.

DSC_9569rb

I was really surprised with the #5 Nougat Caramel Bar being so low in calories, but figured it was all the protein. It clocks in at 106 calories per ounce, which usually pure sugar candy, like Starburst or gummi bears. York Peppermint Patties are about that level of caloric density, but they have so little chocolate and a

So I went through and added up all the elements to get to the listed 200 calories listed for the #8 Chocolate Caramel Peanut Nougat Bar.
12 grams of fat (9 calories per gram) = 108 calories
25 grams of carbs (4 calories per gram) = 100 calories
5 grams of protein (4 calories per gram) = 20 calories

Well, that adds up to 228 calories (and accounts for 42 of the 49 grams, fiber which has no calories makes up an additional 5 grams)

The only way it adds up to 200 is if you only added the sugar, not the full carbs. The package lists 17 grams of sugar (4 calories per gram) which would be 68 calories, making the whole bar 196 calories (rounded up to 200 calories). That would make the calories per ounce a more believable 134 calories for a chocolate and nut candy bar. (For the record, a Snickers bar is 135 calories per ounce.) When I redid the calculations for the #5 Chocolate Nougat Caramel Bar I got 191 calories instead of the stated 170 calories on the package. They’re off by 10-12% of what I believe to be the true calorie count. (The other candies in the UNREAL line seem to add up properly.)

DSC_9574rb

The bar is the same size as the #5 Nougat Caramel, about 3.5 inches long and a little more than one inch wide. It smells like toffee and roasted nuts. The bite is soft, the nougat on the bottom of the layers gives easily. The caramel has a wonderful stringy pull and chewy texture. The chocolate is creamy, has a light bitter chocolate note to it, but a good dairy profile to emulate the milky caramel experience that was missing in the #5 bar for me. In this case the peanuts are what changed it. They’re crunchy, not roasted too dark and all fresh and perfect. If there was an extra level of protein enhancement to the nougat on this bar, I didn’t catch it at all.

The textures meld well, the bar isn’t too large and is completely satisfying. It’s great that it doesn’t have partially hydrogenated oils in it, though I’d prefer a bar without palm oil. The darkness of the milk chocolate also keeps it from being too sweet with the really sugary filling of caramel and nougat.

This bar is a winner on so many levels. I have to hope that the company gets through it’s labeling and transparency issues (still haven’t heard back from them) and can expand to make snack size version for easier portion control and Halloween.

The bar is made in Canada and is Kosher. It contains dairy, eggs, peanuts and soy. Made in a facility with tree nuts and wheat. The website says the ingredients are GMO free, but not the package.

UPDATE 9/17/2012: After many months and more than a half a dozen attempts to get answers from UNREAL, I did get a reply. Here is what I can tell you:
UNREAL works closely with a broker to secure cacao from co-ops in Ecuador and Ghana. They said, “Our Brokers on the ground work with them daily to ensure the best quality of product and that people and planet are not being damaged in the process.” There is no third party certification for any of this, so it is not certified fair trade or sustainable but they did say that there is an auditing process by the buyers.
UNREAL sources their milk from California (using no hormones or antibiotics) and the dried milk products from New Zealand.
UNREAL’s chocolate is made in the United States by “a family owned and operated chocolate company.” They declined to give an actual source.
UNREAL defended its use of inulin (which can cause digestive upset in some people and is considered a filler and may actually disqualify their chocolate coating from being called chocolate by FDA standards) saying that it lowers the glycemic load of the product.

Related Candies

  1. UNREAL #5 Chocolate Caramel Nougat Bar
  2. UNREAL #41 & #54 Candy Coated Chocolates
  3. UNREAL #77 Peanut Butter Cups
  4. Route 1 Racer Bar
  5. Justin’s Peanut and Almond Candy Bars
  6. Snickers Slice n’ Share (1 Pound)
  7. Dark Angell Organic Candy Bar
  8. Go Max Go Jokerz Candy Bar
  9. Snickers Dark


Name: #8 Chocolate Caramel Peanut Nougat Bar
    RATING:
  • SUPERB
  • YUMMY
  • TASTY
  • WORTH IT
  • TEMPTING
  • PLEASANT
  • BENIGN
  • UNAPPEALING
  • APPALLING
  • INEDIBLE
Brand: UNREAL
Place Purchased: CVS (Silver Lake & Park LaBrea)
Price: $1.19
Size: 1.7 ounces
Calories per ounce: 134
Categories: All Natural, Candy, UNREAL, Caramel, Chocolate, Kosher, Nougat, Peanuts, 9-Yummy, Canada, Sav-On/CVS

POSTED BY Cybele AT 11:30 am Tracker Pixel for Entry     All NaturalCandyReviewUNREALCaramelChocolateKosherNougatPeanuts9-YummyCanadaSav-On/CVS

Comments
  1. The reason the calorie count for the #5 bar is only 170 calories is due to the fiber (inulin and fructan) which has almost no caloric content. As it says on the wrapper, 5 of the 28 g of carbohydrates are fiber. Therefore:

    Fat: 7g x 9 = 63 kcal
    CHO: (28-5)g x 4 = 92 kcal
    Protein: 4g x 4 = 16 kcal

    Total = 171 kcal

    Comment by Lauren on 6/29/12 at 2:21 pm #
  2. Cybele's avatar

    Lauren - I know there’s a lot of rounding off in these things, but that still leaves 6 grams unaccounted for. And inulin is reputed to have about 1 to 1.3 calories per gram.

    I didn’t adjust the #5 count in my stats box because it seemed like it might work out.

    But for the #8 bar, it’s still at least 215 calories when deducting the fiber from the carbs.

    Comment by Cybele on 6/29/12 at 4:42 pm #
  3. Actually, all carbohydrates aren’t 4 calories/gram.  The fiber plays a big role—some fiber provides no energy (calories) because they can’t be absorbed and therefore when lab tested, they don’t show in the calorie count.  So it’s definitely possible.  I would assume they are tested by an independent lab; some smaller companies use calculations by recipe, which is extremely unreliable, but given how much hype the company is getting, they would be foolish not to lab test

    Comment by Joy R. on 6/29/12 at 8:45 pm #
  4. True, inulin does have some caloric value. However, the amount of inulin in this formulation is not enough to affect the rounding of the total amount of calories.

    Also, the missing 5 grams of the #5 bar is mainly water. Nougat and caramel both have moisture contents around 10%. Therefore, about 4 g of the bar would be water. The remainder of the bar would be vitamins and inorganic substances.

    I think the difference in the UNREAL “M&M’s” weight is more interesting. Chocolate only has a moisture content of about 1% and peanuts have a moisture content of around 1.6% (peanut butter is about 1.8% moisture), so the amount of water in the products is minimal. The calcium carbonate makes up for 1.25 g (extrapolated from the calcium DV) in the #41 candies and slightly less in the #54 candies. So, there is about 2.3 g of remaining ingredients, which I guess is the wax and other ingredients in the coating.

    Sorry if this seems like I’m trying to argue with you; I’m not. I have a degree in food science, so I find product formulations to be highly interesting… 8) (Nerd smiley)

    Comment by Lauren on 6/29/12 at 9:53 pm #
  5. Lauren - you’re right! I totally forgot about the water. I couldn’t figure out the inert ingredients but forgot about water.

    Comment by cybele on 6/29/12 at 10:36 pm #
  6. I would just like to say that I am in awe of my fellow posters mathematic/scientific abilities. Rock on!

    Comment by glampire on 7/01/12 at 2:44 am #
  7. Maybe the reason the labeling and transparency is poor is that it’s run by a kid:

    http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052702303410404577464700830700754.html?mod=googlenews_wsj

    Comment by Stephen on 7/02/12 at 6:29 am #
  8. To my suprise I found this bar an the other candies from this line at my local CVS I just love it when you review something I can find!an sink my teeth into!! I allways say to my mom wow this was on candy blog!!! thanks!!!!

    Comment by artemis on 7/02/12 at 12:23 pm #
  9. Just wanted to say that Walgreens has Unreal candy on sale for 3 for $2. I am getting the 8, 77, an 54 (similar to snickers, Reese’s, and peanut m&ms;). Can’t wait to try them, thanks for the review. I was on the fence about them, wanting them because I can actually pronounce the ingredients, but not sure if they were tasty -your blog to the rescue smile

    Comment by Lysa on 7/10/12 at 2:31 pm #
  10. Having been a fan of your blog for quite some time, I ran right out and bought this bar.  I have to say, I don’t know why this bar received such high marks.  It hardly tastes like chocolate at all and the caramel is devoid of flavor.  This just tastes like a bar with peanuts and oil.  If I want something without corn syrup, I will eat a Vosges bar.

    Comment by Kate on 7/10/12 at 5:59 pm #
  11. Does anyone know where in Canada these products are made?

    Comment by Sandra on 7/25/12 at 1:56 pm #
  12. I won a complete bunch of these candies in a contest and this one is my absolute favorite and when I see it I buy it now, taking one for the team but in a good way. I’m pretty sure that how they do it is by making it small but I tell ya that is one satisfying bar so if you haven’t eaten one don’t worry about that. I really like it.

    I’m not sure the numbering and description thing is working out that well, but now I know the bars and what they are.

    Comment by Margot C on 8/03/12 at 6:02 pm #
  13. Great review!
    I was given some coupons for this candy and can not find it yet.

    One thing I noticed on their website is the calorie comparison to the brand name bars.
    The problem I have is the unreal size says they are lower in calories, but they are comparing themselves to bigger portions- therefor look to be lower in calories.

    This is very sneaky of them

    Comment by ptr on 9/16/12 at 6:41 am #

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