Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Well, I wouldn't dive off a clif(f) for one.

Loyal readers may recall a recent encounter I had at the Jewel, wherein a well-intentioned young man recommended I try his favorite breakfast: a Clif bar and a banana. This morning I did just that.

I admit to feeling a little sad while getting ready this morning when I remembered that there was no Lean Cuisine pizza in my immediate future. (Though, I actually did not even have a pizza for lunch. I wonder if something is wrong with me.)

I will now compare and contrast the Clif bar and the Lean Cuisine pizza as breakfast items.

LC pizzas are $2.00 each on sale. The Clif bars I purchased on sale yesterday were $1.00 each.

LC pizzas come in many varieties as my first post on the subject attests. Clif bars also appear to come in many varieties. The shelves of Clif bars had been ravaged (probably because of the sale price) when I happened upon them yesterday morning, but I managed to secure a Peanut Toffee Buzz, a Carrot Cake, a Black Chery Almond, and an Oatmeal Raisin Walnut.

Nutritional Information:

The Clif bar has fewer calories than the Lean Cuisine pizza, but not by all that many. The Clif bar also has slightly less fat. I was surprised to see that the Clif bar only contained slightly more fiber. Some of you may recall that the young chap at the Jewel was concerned about the sodium content of the LC pizzas. The Clif bar has 200 mg of sodium and the LC pizza around 540 mg of sodium. The rest of the nutritional information in small print on the Clif bar suggests that there may be more vitamins and other good stuff in the bar than in the pizza. The Clif bar also boasts of being "made with organic oats & soybeans."

I was fond of the Clif bar packaging, but it doesn't make my heart race like that of the LC pizza. However, if like Pavlov's dog, I began eating a Clif bar every morning while doing pleasurable tasks like checking email and drinking Diet Coke, that might change. My husband, who also participated in the Clif bar breakfast experiment, found the packaging "too crunchy" for his taste. He clarified, "as in political 'crunchy.'"

I sampled the Peanut Toffee Buzz. I was delighted to see that something like icing was swirled on top. I liked that it was dense and had texture. The bar tasted better than most energy bars I have had, but I was not in love. It still seemed to have a little bit of that energy-bar aftertaste that I do not enjoy. I ate with a Diet Coke, and the beverage helped a lot.

I sent my husband to work with the Carrot Cake bar and a banana. When I called for his feedback around noon, he claimed he found the bar "better than expected." He was "not overwhelmed" by it, but he did enjoy it.

Nutrition for Sustained Energy:
The Clif bar's packaging promises "nutrition for sustained energy," and I will admit that I still felt pretty good when the bub's Gymboree class ended at 10:00 am. I'm not sure I'd be ready to repel down the side of a clif(f), but I did not feel hungry.

My husband suspects he has slightly more energy and was slightly less hungry later in the morning than when he eats his usual breakfast. (For him, the usual is a standard cereal bar not a Lean Cuisine pizza). He was quick to point out, however, that his additional sense of satisfaction might have been due to the banana eaten in addition to the bar.

My husband's summary: "All in all a pretty positive experience." I did not get the vibe, however, that I should keep Clif bars stocked for him though.

The Clif bar and banana breakfast was acceptable/good, but I don't think it is one that will get me excited to get out of bed in the morning. Thanks to this experiment, however, I may start trying to expand my breakfast rotation to include more than frozen pizza.

What do you eat for breakfast? Any suggestions? Your breakfast of choice may be featured in a future NTB post. How's that for an incentive to leave a comment?


Anonymous said...

For breakfast, I eat anything a normal person would eat for lunch or dinner. I do not eat sweets i.e. coffee cake, donuts and such for breakfast but have no trouble eating left over pizza, pasta or a chicken dish with a regular Coke, all the sugar, all the caffiene. If I were forced to go out for breakfast (not my favorite), I would definitely have pancakes because I do not like eggs. Egg casserole, dellicious, egg, not at all. That's all I know about that. M

Anonymous said...

You aren't going to get much good breakfast blogging material from me. Fruit loops, lucky charms, rice krispie treat cereal...things that, as you put it, would have you chewing the leather off your couch minutes later. I had a brownie this morning. Probably not a good habit to get into. I am very much of a grazer so I never feel the need to completely fill up.

Anonymous said...

I had a Morningstar Farms veggie patty for breakfast. I also added salsa on top of it. I don't like the usual breakfast foods so anything that resembles lunch or dinner makes me happy.

CJR said...

I think you may be writing for Slate, but not getting paid.

I am not a breakfast person -- actually, breakfast within 30 minutes of getting up makes me nauseous. That's why I pour a cold, smooth can of Mountain Dew over my freshly-brushed teeth daily. I substitute LiveWire Orange, which tastes like Orange Jello, if I stop at Sheetz on the way to work.

It's different on weekends. With slow, lazy time getting up, I make full scrambled eggs, bacon and toast for any number of people.

I pride myself on serving only good, quality bacon.

Anonymous said...

We were into Clif bars around here for a while, even buying them when NOT on the 10 for 10 sale at Kroger. My husband goes on what I'd call "breakfast jags" wherein he will eat a certain food for a month or two, then abandon it altogether and not tell me that he has "gone off it" until I notice a pileup in the coffee cabinet where he keeps his foodstuffs. His breakfast experiments have included the Quaker Oatmeal squares, granola bars both chewy and crunchy, really expensive oatmeal/crunchy bits cereal, and most recently, cinnamon raisin English muffins. I then am faced with whether I should pitch all of it and feel guilty, or eat it myself and feel not breakfast satisfied. I think Clif bars are a vast improvement over PowerBars and the like (my brother's breakfast choice) -- I found I liked any of the chocolate versions (brownie, chip, peanut butter chocolate crunch), but was not won over by the whole concept. It's gone too quickly to really make me feel like I've had a real breakfast. These days I've been eating Honey Nut Cheerios with water (due to the lactose intolerance-- weird, I know) or Nutrigrain Eggos in a false attempt at healthiness, then succumbing to either two donuts in the grocery store (I always tell the cashier what was in the empty bag when I check out, I promise) or a brown sugar cinnamon Pop Tart at about 10:30AM. I've been telling myself it's okay because I'm pregnant/nursing, but I realize this double breakfast trend cannot continue much longer.

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