It was a glorious day… the sun was bright and the air was crisp. It was an ideal time to take up the quest of finding Keto bread… weeks of self-governing solitude has given way to cravings of bacon egg and cheese on toasted white bread. All that is needed I need to complete this Keto Quest is Keto Bread from the local Aldi Supermarket, this is where this review begins….
Aldi – The different store
ALDI – Shop Differentli – This is their tag line and they live up to it!
My adventure starts with a trip to Aldi’s …ALDI is the oldest discount grocer in the world and is a major brand across Europe. The first supermarket opened in Germany in 1961, and now more than 10,000 stores exist in 20 countries. The first U.S. store opened in Iowa, in 1976. There are over 1900 stores in 36 states.
This no-frills market focuses on keeping customers happy and prices low. With only four or five aisles of merchandise, the stores are much smaller than the Home Depot like grocery stores now popular all over the US. About 90% of the inventory is ALDI brands. But keep in mind many “off” brands are the same food or product as a big name brand but with a different label.
Getting into Aldi’s was my first challenge, they being socially responsible only allow 40 patrons to enter their store at one time, along with 10 active employees… so we waited, like we were trying to enter this socially distant nightclub, we waited for shoppers to leave one by one and we were permitted to enter in the same manner.
Having been to this rodeo once or twice before, I came equipped with my earth friendly reusable shopping bags and I remembered to bring a rare artifact to release the shopping cart from its corral…
the case quarter! That’s right, in order to release the shopping cart from the stack of carts located in front of the store you need to insert a quarter into the slot in the upper right-hand side of the cart. This releases the cart and allows you to remove it from the stack… When you’re done, in order to get your “quarter back” you need to put the cart back in the stack and locking it into place with the other carts releases your quarter…. Genius!
The Disappointment – No Keto Bread
Sad but true, along with the desolate wasteland once known as the paper goods aisle, Keto bread was no where to be found. Flagging down one of the masked Aldi employees was easier said than done, but persistence paid off and one of the Aldi desperado’s muddled something about Keto bread sells out quickly and I should check back often…lovely. My mysterious new friend then offered… “Aldi has a line of Carb Conscious Elevation bars that are perfect for the Keto diet…. I’ve often heard about the “bait & switch” technique in sales, but this didn’t feel so bad… maybe because I couldn’t see the big Cheshire cat-like grin going on under the mask?
Elevation Bar by Millville – Caramel Nut
This is one of the ALDI brands that compare to national brands but at a lower price point. I thanked my socially distant masked Aldi friend refraining from calling him “Kemosabe” and checked out the carb conscious Elevation Bar options.
The Carb Conscious lineup includes:
- Coconut Almond
- Caramel Chocolate Peanut Nougat
- Caramel Double Chocolate
- Chocolate Coconut
- Cranberry Almond
- Peanut Butter Fudge Crisp
- Caramel Nut…which is the bar I’ll review here!
Ingredients: Milk chocolate flavored sugar free coating (maltitol, chocolate liquor, cocoa butter, milk fat, soy lecithin, vanilla), maltitol, roasted peanuts, caramel (maltitol, fractionated palm kernel oil, milk protein concentrate, polydextrose, cream [heavy cream, carrageenan, mono and diglycerides], maltodextrin, sodium caseinate, natural and artificial flavor, salt, disodium phosphate, carrageenan, soy lecithin), soy protein isolate, polydextrose, inulin, whey protein concentrate, peanut butter, natural flavor, soy lecithin, salt, sucralose, acesulfame potassium.
The first red flag is Maltitol….a sugar alcohol. … It is also less expensive for food producers to use than erythritol, xylitol, and other sugar alcohols. It has been shown to raise blood sugar and increase insulin response… just like sugar, so right off the bat, Maltitol is not ideal for those on a keto diet. Too much Maltitol causes some people stomach pains and gas…wonderful.
Next is Carrageenan… a common food additive extracted from red seaweed. Manufacturers often use it as a thickening agent… Some scientists believe that carrageenan can cause inflammation, digestive problems, such as bloating and irritable bowel disease (IBD), and even colon cancer…. Aye yi yi!
Then there’s Maltodextrin: This highly processed sweetener is produced from starchy plants like rice, corn or wheat and contains the same amount of calories and carbs as regular sugar… at this point it’s clear that this isn’t what I’m looking for… thank goodness for the kids… they’ll eat anything
All of this, plus it’s a tiny little bar…only slightly larger than a fun size regular candy bar that packs 130 calories and 17g total carbs! The claim of 2 net carbs is calculated by deducting 15g of dietary fiber (5g of fiber & 10g of sugar alcohol). On the plus side it does come with 5g of protein and 8g of fat which comes from palm oil… not ideal.
The Taste Test….
With the numbers out of the way all that was left was to taste the bar, true to form this bar tasted great. Vaguely reminiscent of a Snickers bar, though not nearly as packed with peanuts. It really was good and I can see where folks could use these as a substitute for that afternoon Milky Way bar. Your regular Snickers bar packs 215 calories, 11g fat, 3g protein and a whopping 28g of carbohydrates & 20g of sugar, the Elevation Bar is a better choice. Think of it like walking in the bike lane vs walking on the freeway… neither is recommended, but one is certainly worse than the other.
Price on the box of (5) bars was just under $5, so each bar was approximately $.95 cents… areal bargain for a “carb conscious” product that you can buy off the shelf and keep in your bag/briefcase for times that you need that quick pick me up.
Amazon Buyers reviews:
Bandeeto’s Dos Centavos
My review isn’t indicative of the taste, but for use in my low carb/Ketogenic lifestyle. If anything the taste brought this up to a 2 out of 5 for me.
There are some “pros” it’s cost effective… it really does taste good, but it’s outweighed by the “cons” for me to add this to recommend this as a “Go To” snack to carry around. This is an example of what happens when a “Niche” diet begins to capture the attention of BIG FOOD. Low carb/Ketogenic diet has been trending for quite some time and here’s a food manufacturer cashing in on the wave, but there are certainly better choices available and the Elevation Carb Conscious series should only be considered when in a pinch if you’re concerned about staying Keto friendly.
Have you tried these or Elevation Bars? What’s your opinion?
Let me know down in the comments and I usually respond by the next day if not sooner!
Stay Safe… Stay Healthy… Stay Strong!