Updated: 07/11/2017 - Site sponsored by Dietspotlight Burn

Clif Bar Review

  • 35 User Comments
  • Rating: 3.7. From 29 votes.
By Summer Banks Jul 18, 2017
Clif Bar Readers: Click here to find out why we're giving away samples of our product, Dietspotlight Burn.

What You Should Know

Clif Bar Incorporated is an American company that deals in the production of energy bars as well as other foods all targeted to people that lead physically active lifestyles. Clif Bar is the firm’s flagship product created by owner Gary Erickson back in 1992. The location of the company is in Berkeley, California. The product was developed as an added option to the available energy bars in the market, which encompass a rather poor taste. Clif Bar uses non toxic packages and also eliminates the shrink wrap. The packaging color for Clif Bars is low-key, further stressing earth tones. Rather than the commonly used plastic, foil is used in making Clif Bars and organic ingredients comprise 70% of the product.

The website does not provide any information on weight loss or weight maintenance. The Clif bar online site is user friendly, however, with interactive videos and product packaging.


The Ingredients in the Clif Bars will vary based on the flavor of the bar. The organic ingredients used include rolled oats, roasted Soya beans and organic honey. All bars have high carbohydrates contents.

Product Features

The energy bars from Clif Bar normally provide a moderate and sustained increase in the levels of blood sugar, which is crucial for the enhancement of athletic performance. Non athletes that eat Clif Bars expect their energy boosts to be sustained during busy weekends and hectic workdays. Clif Bars contain organic almonds, meaning that the organic part is grown without fertilizers, bug killers, hormones, biotechnology and antibiotics.

Clif Bars are snack bars containing elevated levels of carbohydrates, natural energy and nutrition. They are mostly aimed at busy people and sports enthusiasts. Flavors include chocolate chip, Almond Fudge and cream and cookies. Due to the unique needs that women have, nutritionally, an additional Clif Bar, known as the Luna Bar was introduced mostly due to consumer input. The original flavors of Luna bars included the Chocolate Pecan Pie and Lemon Zest. Clif bars are energy bars containing an icing drizzle of chocolate, a shot of caffeine. The Clif shot is an energy boosting gel used for activities requiring endurance.


  • Eating organic food is healthy.
  • The brand name is well known.
  • The bar includes vitamins and minerals essential to daily life.


  • High levels of carbohydrates.
  • High calorie content.
  • Organic ingredients raise the price of the bar.


The Clif Bar is high in calories and carbohydrates. For someone trying to lose weight these calories may actually lead to weight gain unless the product is used as a meal replacement bar. The high carbohydrate levels may cause a spike in glucose followed by a huge dip causing increased hunger.

Give me two minutes of your time and I’ll tell you whether Clif Bar actually works. We’ll zoom in on Clif Bar ingredients. We took a closer look at the formulation, including the scientific research. Additionally, we analyzed hundreds of consumer comments. Then, we summarized the info to give you the bottom line.

What You Need to Know

First off, Clif Bar is a dietary product containing organic brown rice syrup, soy protein isolate, rice flour, malt extract, organic roasted soybeans, organic soy flour, rolled oats, evaporated cane juice, peanut butter, apple fiber, gluconate, among others. The recommended serving is a minimum of one bar per day, which supposedly helps to improve overall health and wellness. You can consume it on the go, one benefit.

The product, introduced as an energy bar in 1992, does appear to contain some natural ingredient, a good choice. Dieters can buy the supplements at health stores and via online and offline retailers. We like that the company has been operating for more than 20 years and that we located some favorable customer comments, but read on…

Sugar Content – “Not in a Health Bar?”

The first concern about Clif Bar ingredients was the sugar content. “This product is marketed as a healthy source of protein and nutrition,” said our Research Editor. “If there are too many empty calories, that’s an issue.”

“As far as healthiness, they’re pretty high in sugar: 23 grams,” reported a customer.

“The variety pack has three varieties that are all only 10 or 11 grams of protein each, with a whopping 24 grams of sugar. The blend is a basic recipe that they then flavor with various ingredients,” said a consumer.

FDA Warnings – “Product Recalls”

In January of 2009, Clif Bar worked with the Food and Drug Administration to recall products. Several of the bars contained contaminated ingredients, including peanut butter that was not listed on the label. The items were removed from the shelves.

Side Effects – “Headaches?”

Customers commenting on the web reported Clif Bar ingredients caused headaches. “All I ate yesterday for breakfast and lunch was about 4 cliff bars. Roaring headache today… So, I looked at the package for the first time, and there it was!! Gluconate,” reported a dieter.

“I too got the migraine headache after eating these, and I will NEVER eat another one!,” said a user.

“I am sitting here on the toilet writing this review, with the worst stomach pain I have ever had. Went out to mow my lawn and not even 20min later I had to stop due to excruciating stomach pains,” claims a customer.

Throughout our research, we’ve concluded that something small, like headaches, could derail long-term success. If Clif Bar causes side effects, why would dieters invest their money?

The Science – “Valid Claims?”

When we visited the official Clif Bar website, there’s a wealth of information relating to the benefits of the products, but what’s lacking is scientific research linking the ingredients to weight-loss. This is a little disappointing as there is some to support for protein for fighting hunger. At DietSpotlight, science is critical. If there are no studies for support, we turn our backs.

The Bottom Line – Do Clif Bar Ingredients Work?”

Are you ready for our final take on Clif Bar ingredients? We like that the company has been in business for decades and that we located some positive customer comments, but we have concerns about the lack of published scientific research linking the ingredients to weight-loss. Plus, we have issues with the products causing headaches and the high sugar content in a “health bar”.

If you’d like to drop those extra pounds, we suggest a product containing ingredients supported by published clinical research with no reported side effects.

Among the best products we’ve seen this year is one called Leptigen. The supplement contains a formula consisting of a proprietary blend of four-ingredients, which has been shown in published clinical research to help boost metabolism and ignite fat loss. Comments from customers highlight people seeing excellent results and there are no reports of harmful side effects.

Also, the company that makes Leptigen, in a good sign of confidence in the supplement, is providing a Special Trial Offer, which is a positive sign.

Learn More About Dietspotlight Burn »
Summer Banks Dietspotlight Author
About the Author:

Summer Banks, a content strategist at Dietspotlight, has researched over 5000 products in the past 10 years. She has years of nursing training, experience as a manager responsible for 15 supplement brands, and completed coursework on Food and Nutrition from Stanford University. full bio.

Rating: 3.7. From 29 votes.
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Leave a comment or review

Manny (Verified User)

These are really good even tho they are high in carbs.I eat half between meals as a snack, although I don”t eat them past 12 noon…

what are the psychological effects of this product?

what are the psychological effects of this product?

Troll Buster

On the physiological side: these bars give you somehting somewhat crunchy to munch on, they were filling (before being shrunk in size) and mentally it gives you that “i’m satisfied” thought and feelin’. So, like someone mentioned in a comment below, they were great for meal replacements because you dod’t feel like you were starving. Now you may actually feel hunger pangs with their smaller size. Plus i guess i have a mouse complex, i have to be munching on something sometimes…oral fixation??? probably…plus the chewing effect gives you some weird sense of comfort…hey, that was my reaction…again before they shrunk the danged bars….i am fixated on the shrinkage factor……LOL

BeverlyYour Name

KHON2 TV news reported Cliff bars as bad because it has sunflower seed oil that contains listeria. II am returning the last four bars I bought.


I am a healthy, active 31 year old who has had bites of Clif bars in the past (say 5 years ago). Yesterday I had about half of a macadamia white chocolate one, and about half hour later started to have symptoms of migraines (which I also haven’t had in over 5 years). I didn’t think it was related to the bar. Today I ate the other half at lunch and about 15 minutes later I started to get a headache AGAIN. I as well will not be eating these bars again, especially seeing the number of similar reviews.

  I so love Clif Bars
Izzy (Verified User)

I SO love Clif Bars! They seemed great for meal replacement & to eat when hiking. After not eating any for several months, have eaten 2 in the past fee days, followed by terrible migraine, which I had not experienced in months, with nausea & body pain. I read in the commits that others experienced the same thing. Upon reading label I saw the ominous words ‘natural flavor’ which can be ‘code’ for hiding MSG, which I have developed an extreme sensitivity to. If packaged products do not state ‘MSG free’, most do contain MSG, hidden under numerous monikers. Sadly, I will have to give up eating Clif Bars.

  I love this but not for me
Anonymous (Verified User)

I’ve experienced the same problem. I LOVE CLIFF BARS, and all I ate yesterday for breakfast and lunch was about 4 cliff bars. Roaring headache today… So, I looked at the package for the first time, and there it was!! Gluconate. Copper gluconate and manganese gluconate. AKA: Glutamic acid. AKA MSG. These essential nutrients break down to Glutamic acid which is the element in Monosodium Glutamate that gives me roaring headaches. Research MSG and similarly, aspartame, which breaks down to asparatic acid and causes headaches. Man. I love these things and I can’t eat them. 🙁

i eat for life

why would you eat so many. dumb….


i too got the migrane headache after eating these, and i will NEVER eat another one!

  It has caffeine
DKAC (Verified User)

If I’m not mistaken caffeine is an ingredient in Clif bars. This would explain why some people have developed migranes after consumption. Similar to how some people develop migraines after eating chocolate.

  Experiencing migraines
Andre (Verified User)

I been eating 2 chocolate mint bars a day and I experience migraines everyday, and I’m not allergic to nuts, I hope my body will get use to soon. if it does not stop in a week I will have to switch to a different protein bar.

  Experience migraines twice
joe (Verified User)

I had two migrains in a 15 day period while eating cliff bars. I hadn’t had one in over eight months.

  The taste is really good
adam (Verified User)

these are so good i eat about 5-10 per day. the mint ones are the best!


I eat about 12 a day. I have never been addicted to a food or drink before but I am, to these because I actually crave them in my sleep and eat them at night too. I do replace them for meals because I have no room for meals. They have totally made my bowels function properly again after years of constipation. I love em., bot I have gained noticeble weight from these


You eat 5-10 per day? Not to sound harsh but that seems a bit too much; don’t you think? Do you eat anything else besides that

  Didn't like the taste
Marie (Verified User)

These Clif Bars are so nasty! Dry, overly sweet, pasty tasting. Had one because of super low blood sugar one day and as hungry as I was couldn’t eat this disgusting bar! Yuk.

  Had some side effects
torrie (Verified User)

Hi, I got a very bad migraine followed by throwing up from one (I believe the migraine led to the nausea, not the bar itself). It also triggered body pain before the headache. Nothing in the ingredient list that I normally react to. I eat lots of nuts.


Soy… It can cause migraines for some people.


and i am not allergic to anything in the ingredients, i had never had such migraines or headaches. Those should be banned!

  Why eat six meals a day?

… Kef u eat six meals a day?? why.


because you are supposed to eat 6 small meals a day not three big ones or just one or just lettuce. Three small days helps regulate your systems, accellerate your metabolism and helps you plan for better choices. Not large meals portion size and healthy food is the key.

  These are all really good.
Kef (Verified User)

I eat these as meal replacements, usually one or two a day (out of six or so meals). Except for the carrot cake flavor, which is way too sweet, these are all really good. Even better microwaved, btw; the oatmeal raisin and choc. chip ones taste just like fresh cookies.

  Clif Bar

Has anyone experienced migraines after eating these?

Jacob Clagg

If you are having migrains, then you might have an allergy to nuts of some kind. Most of the Clif Bars have peanut flavor and i believe all have almonds. aka lots of nuts


No, but it makes me poop three times a day.


That explains why I’ve been pooping more, I just started eating about one a day a week ago and I’ve noticed I really nice start to my metabolism

  Can you give me some info?

I’m trying to figure Weight Watcher points on your delicious bar..can you give me cal, fat, fiber, etc. on the peanut butter and the chocolate mint? Thanks!


They are 8 smart points.

  i would highly recomend it.
meeeeeee (Verified User)

i absolutly love these! they have 10 grams of protein and the chocolat chip ones taste really good.i would highly recomend it.
(i eat them for breakfest)

  These are great!
Jill Hudson (Verified User)

these are great. they provide a high amount of protein and satisfy you for a meal replacment.

what are the physiological effects of this product?

what are the physiological effects of this product?


I feel cracked out from eating just one…….


Dude, I had one white chocolate macadamia nut clif bar yesterday and felt “cracked out” all day. No appetite, tons of energy verging on hyperactivity, and could not sleep to save my life. I drink a lot of coffee usually (I just had one small cup in the morning yesterday so I know that’s not it) so I’m not usually sensitive to caffeine or anything. Idk what’s in these things but all I know is that I’m going on 24 hours with no sleep and no tiredness. I’ll never eat one of these ever again!




i’ve noticed some green poop before… i think it’s becuase i was eating too many of them.