Review: Go Max Go Candy Bars


gomaxgobars1024x768 I wanted to lead with a photo.  You don’t mind, right?

While this picture makes it look like I went out and bought a Snickers bar and an Almond Joy, let me assure, I have not fallen off the vegan wagon.  And let me also assure you: life is about get better for vegans who like a little junk food on occasion.

A couple of weeks ago, both Ken from Cosmos and Chad from Food Fight made cryptic comments on their respective twitter streams about vegan versions of popular candy bars that they had just tried and would soon be carrying.  I gently nudged Ken for some info, got it, and before long had two of my own candy bars to try out.

The company is Go Max Go and is run by two long-time vegans (11+ years) who had an unfulfilled hankering for the “chocolatey, nougaty, caramely, peanutty, almondy, coconutty crazy” candy bars of their pre-vegan days.  While their site obviously can’t mention which big name bars that theirs bear a resemblance to, the names and descriptions hint at it (the Jokerz is like a vegan Snickers, the Twilight bar mimics a Milky Way, the Buccaneer is similar to a Three Musketeers, and the Mahalo is reminiscent of an Almond Joy).  The bars have no animal ingredients (and, therefore, no cholesterol), hydrogenated oils, trans fats, or artificial ingredients.

The two bars above are the ones I was able to sample.  On the left is the Jokerz bar and on the right is the Mahalo.

When I was in college, I had a number of 8am computer science classes.  Not being a morning person, I rolled out of bed at 7:55 and walked to my class, not getting breakfast until afterwards.  I always had a Snickers bar with me because it kept me full (and was cheap and readily accessible).  I certainly haven’t had one in the last four-and-a-half years and I probably haven’t had one in nearly ten.

The Jokerz bar is a tad thinner than the traditional Snickers bar, but let me tell you: the taste is all there.  The peanuts, the caramel, and the nougat.  Oh, the nougat.  The chocolate is rice milk-based, but is much truer to the traditional milk chocolate taste and texture than other rice milk chocolate bars I’ve tried.  I detected no funny aftertaste at all (though my wife said she could taste a very, very slight hint of rice, she was still incredibly impressed by the bar).

The Mahalo bar is also very true to its Almond Joy inspiration.  It has just the right balance of coconut and almonds.  I’m pretty sure I moaned out loud when I took my first bite.

Both bars were thoroughly enjoyed by both my wife and my two-and-a-half year old daughter.  (Side note: it makes me so happy that there all of these great “vegan equivalents” popping up.  It’s going to make it a lot easier on her when she’s eating with friends.  She won’t feel like she’s missing out on anything because she’s vegan.)

While there have been some forays into vegan versions of classic candy bars in the past, most of them have been too “healthy” tasting (I love you, carob, but…) or come in tiny little packages that rival “Fun Size” bars.  The sample bars I got were full size candy bars and hopefully they’ll be available in that size when they hit the streets.  I also hope they’re available in boxes of 100 that I could have automatically delivered to my face each month, but that may be wishful thinking.

I really can’t speak highly enough about these candy bars.  If a good candy bar is  one of those things you’ve missed as a vegan or if a Milky Way is your last non-vegan vice, Go Max Go has you covered.  I can’t wait for these to become available later this year just so I can hear what you all have to say about them.


Go Max Go Foods

11 Responses to “Review: Go Max Go Candy Bars”

  1. Melisser

    So glad to hear they’re delicious! I’ve been reading the buzz about them online & I’m desperate to acquire some!

  2. Fallopia Tuba

    One reason a lot of vegans—myself included—were able to lose weight when we first went vegan was that there wasn’t such an array of junk foods available. As things like Soy Delicious, Hip Whip, Soy Whip, Teese, and Terra Nostra Ricemilk Choco became available, my weight has crept right back up to where it was.

    In the long run, of course, this is a tremendously positive step, because more people will wonder why they’re continuing to eat animal products when there are delicious alternatives.

  3. Ed Coffin

    I think products like these are fantastic! Although, I personally try and stick to a whole foods diet as much as possible, I agree with Fallopia Tuba that these are great for getting people to realize they have the same options whether they are vegan or carnies!

  4. Cuca

    Thank you for this!
    I don’t know if they’ll ever be able to ship some bars here to Mexico but I’ll still stalk them until they do because those look yummy. No, they look YUMMY. Ha.

  5. Mark

    They sound tasty, but I can’t seem to find any nutritional analysis or breakdown of what’s in these products. Personally, if I don’t know what’s IN something, especially how much fat and/or sodium, I’m reluctant to eat it.

    The bars seem great, though, I’d just like to know more about the ingredients. I’ve sent the company an e-mail asking that they put that information on their website.

    In any case, thanks for the heads up on what could be some cool indulgences.

    FYI, Mark

  6. ryan

    Mark — That stuff needs to be on the label by law, so I suspect that information will become available as the bars hit the stores.

  7. gladcow

    actually, labeling depends on the size of the company, but I’m sure these will be labeled because they are going to sell like gangbusters!

    someone tell me there is something gluten free in their line. PLEASE. :)

  8. deborah

    oh my goodness! i just ate one–it is a vegan milky way bar. being vegan forces you to eat more healthy, whole foods, but when you think about the fact that there are certain junk foods that you will NEVER again eat, it’s nice to know that these babies exist!

  9. Lazurii

    I had the Twilight bar and a few bites of my hubby’s Jokerz bar. Very, very yummy! Dark chocolate is good, but it’s nice to get a “milk” chocolate every once in a while. They’re not spot on, but the only reason I know that is because I’ve been vegan for less than 2 years. Give me a few more years and I’ll never know the difference. It’s like veggie hot dogs.

  10. Nicola

    The Snap! bars produced by Go Max Go Foods are NOT vegan. My 6-year old has life threatening allergies to dairy and he had a very severe reaction after consuming a Snap! bar. To say these are vegan is absolutely not true because they absolutely contain milk. The labeling is irresponsible, unethical and inaccurate.

  11. ryan

    Nicola —

    First of all, I’m sorry to hear that your child has such severe allergies. That’s got to be really tough to see, as a parent.

    My question, though, is why you would have your child consume the bar even though they explicitly state that they’re produced in a facility where dairy is also processed, so the possibility of cross contamination is there. (It’s generally accepted that a product is still vegan even if it’s produced in the same facility as dairy or egg since neither is actively used in the the production of the product and doesn’t contribute to the dairy or egg industries.)

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