PhD Nutrition Smart Bar Nut Butter: Review

Yet another competitor in the protein peanut butter game. PhD’s highly anticipated high protein peanut butter comes in three flavours: white choc cookies and cream, choc peanut butter and dark chocolate brownie. So, how do they shape up in an already pretty saturated market?
We’ll discuss the product generally then delve into each flavour individually!
One of the first things I noted was the fairly high retail price. Of course, other brands charge around the £10 price tag, such as Nuts n More, and at 500g it’s a pretty generous sized tub… but regardless, it’s a lot of money to spend on yourself! A nice gift idea for sure though.
The peanut butters are all crunchy variations with a full smart bar in each tub. Something which definitely got my attention before trying the peanut butters as the bars are incredible, and in my opinion one of the best options on the market right now. Unfortunately, the chunks are huge. This would maybe make them a nice addition to add to oats, but means you have to dodge them if you want to use it as a spread. It also confuses things when weighing/tracking a portion size. For some reason the chunks are also extremely hard compared to the actual bars which I find difficult to explain.
Main point: use it as a hot oat topper
Nutritionally, the 7.2g of protein and just 1.4g sugar per 33g recommended serving size are great, although if you attempt to weigh your serving, chunks and all, you’ll find that it’s extremely calorie dense, even for a peanut butter. If you want to feel good about yourself, don't bother! The ingredients list is pretty disappointing, there are a lot of added things which don’t really need to be there- I'd rather they keep it simple!
The flavours:
white choc cookies and cream: this is the flavour that I was sure would be my favourite, as a big fan of white chocolate flavours. The white chocolate taste was clearly identifiable but unfortunately it’s spoiled by the strong chemically sweet taste, it would also be great if PhD released a white chocolate coated Smart bar in future to go in this! 7/10
Choc peanut butter: basically a very thick, sweet peanut butter with ridiculously huge chunks of protein bar mixed in… I’d stick with natural crunchy PB! 6/10
Dark Chocolate Brownie: This was the clear winner in my eyes. It is the only flavour with added crunchy hazelnut pieces and tastes like blended Ferrero rocher. Lose the Smart bar chunks and tone down the sweetener and this could be even better! 8.5/10
Overall: this is a tasty product, and would be greatly appreciated by any fitness friends as a gift. Kudos to PhD, it’s the first version of the product. However, I would love to see a stripped back version two with smaller, crushed chunks of bar! 7.5/10

About the Author

Savannah Westerby, BSc Sport and Exercise Nutrition. IG:@savannahwesterby
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