One of the (many, many) things I love about my job is that I get to meet with interesting, driven people who want to share their passions with me on a regular basis. Today, I was lucky enough to talk to Caue Suplicy, the founder and CEO of Barnana. See, Caue grew up eating dried bananas in Brazil, where his dad actually made the super-healthy snack in their backyard. When Caue moved to the U.S. to pursue a career as a pro triathlete, he couldn’t find anything like the dried bananas in the U.S.—so he’d stock up on them when visiting Brazil and then eat the snack in place of energy gels or chews while training for races. His friends and fellow athletes couldn’t get enough of the banana bites—so when Caue retired from racing, he decided to make and market something similar in the U.S.
I have to say, I’m not a huge fan of banana chips. But luckily for me, Barnana’s banana bites are totally different. The bananas the company uses to create the snack are only partially dehydrated, so they have a chewy consistency (almost like banana bread!) and retain their full nutritional value. There are currently two flavors on shelves (original—which is made with only organic bananas and organic banana powder—and chocolate). Caue also gave me a taste of two new flavors that will be hitting stores in the next couple of months: coconut and (my personal favorite) peanut butter. The snacks are raw, gluten-free, dairy-free, vegan, and non-GMO, so you can basically eat them no matter what your dietary restrictions may be.
They’re great for afternoon snacking or for taking with you on training runs/bikes in place of sports drinks or gels. In fact, the pouch they come in is the perfect size to fit in the pocket of a biking jersey (can you tell they were developed by an athlete?). They definitely pass my “I could eat the whole bag in one sitting” test. But luckily, it wouldn’t really be an issue if I did—each serving is 110-180 calories, and there are two and a half servings per bag. Here’s a peek at what the original Barnana banana bites look like (when arranged into a smiley face):
The chocolate and peanut butter flavors have a coating on them, so they feel more like candy (but are still good for you—no refined sugars!). OK, have I convinced you to give them a try yet?! You can buy them online or find them at a store near you.