Frontier Energy Bites look like bird food, something which I can already tell from the look of this month’s Goodies box that I will be saying a lot. What on God’s green earth is an energy bite, you ask? Simple: It’s bird food. You can try to convince me otherwise, but I am 99% certain that my old Cockatoo ate these same cubes as a treat once a week or so. Each cube is about the size of a set of dice and held together strongly enough that I was able to paint each side and play through an entire round of Dungeons and Dragons without any pieces falling off.
Frontier Snacks is a company that prides itself on products that are gluten free, soy free, dairy free, and do not use any genetically modified ingredients. Energy Bites contain a simple list of eight ingredients, and are advertised to “give you clean, delicious energy one bite at a time.” The particular bag I will be reviewing is is macadamia pineapple coconut, because why the hell not. The bag boasts a healthy dollop of ingredients: macadamia nuts, sunflower seeds, brown rice syrup, puffed millet, puffed rice, pineapple, and coconut. The cubes have a very obvious rice taste to them, not just from the brown rice syrup but from the fact that roughly 70% of the cube is made out of puffed rice.
The cubes certainly live up to their name. Each cube is very crunchy, quite nutty, and about as flavorful as you would expect a natural product to be (ie: light). It isn’t terrible by any measure, and I am still convinced that I fed this to my bird, and this is exactly the kind of thing that the health food group will go macadamia over (see what I did there?). On the crunchy scale, they fall right underneath the point where you start fearing that if you bite too vigorously, you might chip a tooth. The cubes themselves are a little awkward to eat, small enough to be considered “bite size” while still being rather awkward to try and fit into your mouth.
For the fact that this is called “macadamia pineapple coconut,” there is a distinct lack of something important. Is it the puffed rice? No. Not enough brown rice syrup? Not that either. Oh, right, the pineapple and coconut. I know my sense of taste is questionable at best, but I do know that both pineapple and coconut have a pretty distinct and powerful flavor and texture. There are no coconut flakes, nor are there any pineapple chunks. The two flavors were so absent that Frontier might as well just go the mile and add chocolate, bacon, and maple syrup to the ingredients list as well. At least now I know why both ingredients were listed at the very end, where it could simply be claimed that my Prol level of class doesn’t allow me to appreciate more subtle flavors.
Like any decent politician, Frontier macadamia pineapple coconut runs on a great premise and decent image, until you head to the ballot box of a grocery store and elect these crunchy little bites into your stomach and realize that the voting platform it took was a lie and that the hope of prosperity and a pineapple/coconut flavor were really just empty promises to get you to contribute to the super PAC. Frontier’s macadamia coconut pineapple crunchy bites are a nice light snack, especially if you don’t like pineapple or coconut and won’t miss their absence, but some customers will find the super-crunchy nature to be unattractive. The taste is rather bland, but I don’t think anyone browsing this product would expect differently.
Ultimately, the absence of two out of the three primary ingredients is sinful on the same level as opening a box of Lucky Charms and seeing that there is not a single marshmallow in the lot. On the politifact scale, I give Frontier Snacks a pants on fire rating for their claim of pineapple and coconut.