Gluten-free! Organic! Vegan! And the big one–Paleo-friendly! Snacks with exclamations like these typically cause me to become skeptical because I’m always under the impression that it’s secret code for “boring hippy food”. Why can’t food with a healthy stamp be delicious and not bland? Being an unprofessional baker myself, I experiment with all sorts of combinations to find a ratio of ingredients that are nutritious and tasty. It’s so weird, but no matter what I try, my experiments always result in cookies. Buttery, full-of-sugar, full-of-gluten, non-vegan cookies. (Let’s face it–we all know that the best things in life are actually those that come in cookie form.) Lo and behold, I tried Rickaroons. And was it a cookie? Was it a bar? Why did I feel so good after eating one?

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Photograph courtesy of Rickaroons

This company is a father-and-son-owned business based out of southern California that is dedicated and driven by a passion that understands that energy snacks should fit an active and healthy lifestyle. Read their story (it’s A Love Story) here. (It’s pretty cool.)

Ingredients such as coconut, almond butter, chia seeds, java, and cacao nibs guarantee a good tasting bar, but I’m almost convinced that it’s what they DON’T use that makes the magic happen. No white flour, no wheat flour, none of that cricket flour stuff. The components of a ‘roon are simple, add substantial nutrition, and taste great. All of their ingredients are organic–always. My favorite flavor so far is the Megaroon, a superfood concoction filled with omega fatty acids, antioxidants, and fiber. It’s moist and delicious and not as dense as other energy bars–oh, and there are cacao nibs in every bite.

Their other flavors won’t disappoint: Mocha, Chocolate Blonde, Mint to Be, and Peanut Butter Protein. Each of them is rich and packed with the same power. They are the ultimate dessert fuel, whether you are constantly on the go in an outdoor arena or tackling the chaos of daily life.

Photo by Irene Yee-M60C6730
Before, during, and after racking up for a climb in Icebox Canyon. Photograph by Irene Yee

Mint to Be – Chocolate and mint: I want it in my mouth.

Chocolate Blonde – This baby is packed with almond butter, coconut, and choco chips. Whether or not Blondes are your type, you’ll fall for this one almost immediately!

Mocha – Coffee, coffee, coffee. Espresso and cacao were just meant to be.

Peanut Butter – Loaded with pumpkin seed protein and peanut butter, you’ll be satisfied with a whopping seven grams of protein to kick-start your day.

On this trip, they were the first thing I’d throw into my climbing pack whether I was heading out to crag for an afternoon or spending a full day climbing a long multi-pitch route. They’re light and delicious and travel really well, plus they filled me enough to keep my hunger at bay and provided me with slow-burning fuel while I continue to gain elevation.

Personally, I’m a savory and sweet kind of girl, and I don’t really dig the cardboard-tasting energy bars that are neither. Rickaroons keep the glycemic index on the lower side by sweetening their bars with agave and maple syrup. My craving for something is satisfied because my brain is convinced I’m chowing down on cookies. In short, all good things come in some form of a cookie. Rickaroons embodies the kind of company that I love to support: people who believe in starting from the ground up, grow their business with love, and believe that happiness and health go hand-in-hand.

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A day at the Gallery. Photograph by Irene Yee

Visit the Rickaroons website and use discount code “CLIMBON” to save 15% on orders! Code does not expire.

Disclosure: The kind folk at Rickaroons have exchanged ‘roons in exchange for this review. All of my opinions are honest and my own.

Cover photograph courtesy of Irene Yee.

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