JERF stands for Just Eat Real Food. It's an Internet acronym I wasn't aware of until I heard it mentioned on Sean Croxton's Quote Of The Day Show podcast. Sean coined the term JERF and since then, has invented the JERF Bar, a whole food, meal replacement snack that is, as the name suggest, based on real food. So, maybe you want to buy JERF bars or understand their ingredients. Either way, you came to the right place. In this unbiased JERF Bar review, I not only show you the ingredients in Just Eat Real Food bars but -I'll put them to the taste test. Keep reading and lets see if JERF Bars are right for you. Also see the review on RX Bars
1 JERF Bar Nutrition Facts
Each JERF Bar weighs 50g and contains the following calories and nutrition facts:
|Chocolate Coconut (1 bar=50g)||Cherry & Seeds (1 bar=50g)||Cinnamon Raisin (1 Bar=50g)|
|Calories From Fat||100||100||90|
|Total Fat||11g (17%DV)||11g (17%DV)||10g (15%DV)|
|Saturated Fat||3g (15%DV)||1.5g (8%DV)||1g (5%DV)|
|Sodium||35mg (1%DV)||35mg (1%DV)||40mg (2%DV)|
|Total Carbohydrate||20g (7%DV)||20g (7%DV)||21g (7%DV)|
|Dietary Fiber||13g (52%DV)||11g (44%DV)||12g (48%DV)|
In the table above “%DV” stands for percent daily value. This is the percentage of a nutrient that a food provides. For example, Chocolate Coconut provides 17% of the amount of fat we should be eating per day. The Daily Values are based on us eating 2000 calories per day. Eating more or less than 2000 calories will skew these daily values up or down.
Understanding Daily Values
When reading Nutrition Facts labels, it's always handy to know what the percentages (Daily Value percentages) mean. According to the FDA, anything that is 5% or less means the food is “low” in an ingredient while anything that is 20% or more is “high” in an ingredient.
So, just remember:
- 5% or less = low
- 20% or more = high
Armed with this knowledge, we can quickly scan the table above to see that the Just Eat Real Food Bar is pretty low in the bad stuff and kind of high in some of the good stuff.
Let's now take a look at the Nutrition Facts label above and highlight a few things that might be interesting to people.
2 How Much Fat?
From the Nutrition Facts labels above, we can see that the JERF Bars provides between 15% and 17% of the daily value for fat that should be consumed per day. While that is not technically “high” it's approaching high.
But all fat is not the same. Just knowing total fat doesn't tell us what kind of fat we are talking about. Saturated fat is worse than monounsaturated and polyunsaturated. From the Nutrition Facts panels above, we see that each bar doesn't have much saturated fat (that's
good). Cinnamon raisin is the lowest in saturated fat (1g or 5% DV) while Coconut Chocolate flavor has the most saturated fat (3g or 15% of the Daily Value).
Given that 20% is “high” (see “understanding daily values,” above), Coconut Chocolate flavor might be better called “almost high.” in saturated fat. Still, if this was the worst thing you ate all day, you'd still be eating a low saturated fat diet.
All this says to us that most of the fat in the JERF Bars are the healthier mono and polyunsaturated fats.
3 But what about omega 3 fats?
Omega 3 fats are generally regarded as more heart-healthy than omega 6 fats. I believe there are some omega 3 fats in these bars because they contain seeds (flax, pumpkin, etc). Seeds tend to contain Alpha-linolenic acid (ALA). This is not the same as EPA and DHA, the primary omega 3s in fish.
A small amount (maybe 1%-2%) of ALA can be converted into EPA and DHA. Whether or not this makes a big difference in most people is debatable. Regardless, alpha-linolenic acid does appear to have health benefits. For example, at least one study has noted flaxseed lowers blood pressure. Is that due to the ALA in flax or something else?
Difficult to say.
How much omega 3 fats are in JERF Bars? I cannot say but I do believe some omega 3s are present in these bars.
Medium-chain triglycerides (MCTs) might also be present in Chocolate Coconut flavor JERF Bars because coconut contains MCTs. Again, how many MCTs are present, I cannot say. If I ever have the opportunity to find out, I'll update this review.
4 How Much Fiber?
In my opinion, the fiber is where all of the Just Eat Real Food bars really shine. All of the JERF Bars are very high in fiber, providing between 11g and 13g of fiber per bar. To put things in perspective, according to the USDA, 1 cup of oatmeal has about 4 grams of fiber.
Depending on the bar you eat, it appears the fiber comes from a combination of organic inulin, organic vegetable fiber, organic pumpkin seeds, organic sesame seeds, organic chia seeds, and maybe organic goji berries.
The fiber in JERF Bars is a combination of both soluble and insoluble fibers.
Fiber is very important and most Americans -and I suspect those in other 1st world countries – don't get enough of it. Fiber is one natural way to lower cholesterol and triglycerides levels. According to the Mayo Clinic, as little as 10 g of fiber a day can reduce total cholesterol and bad cholesterol (LDL).
The JERF bar label mentions “prebiotic vegetable fiber” as one of the ingredients. I'm glad they included the word fiber in that phrase. What are prebiotics? Prebiotics the food that probiotic bacteria eat. Prebiotics are a sexy name, but in reality, they are just fibers. While I generally don't feel people need to take prebiotic supplements, as long as it's made clear that it's fiber, I'm ok with it.
The prebiotic vegetable fiber comes from the root of the cassava plant. Cassava, whose scientific name is Manihot esculenta, is also called yuca in some areas. The cassava plant is also the source of the tapioca in JERF Bars.
Inulin is a popular soluble fiber that is added to many processed foods to beef up the fiber content. In some fiber-rich foods, it's one of the first ingredients you see. But, with all 3 flavors of JERF bars, inulin is listed toward the bottom of the ingredients.
This is actually a good good thing.
This means there isn't much inulin in the product. It's not that inulin is bad, but rather that there is a greater diversity of other fibers in JERF bars. Greater diversity of fiber equals a heather gut (microbiome).
Sometimes inulin can cause gas and this can be a problem for those with Crohn's. The product website says that the organic inulin in the product will not cause gas or bloating problems.
5 Jerf Bar Protein?
JERF Bars contain 13 grams of protein per bar. Depending on the bar you choose, most of that protein will be provided by organic pea protein
or organic pumpkin seeds. To see how the JERF Bar stacks up against other bars, see the Protein Bar review.
6 The Sweeteners In JERF Bars?
All JERF Bars contain organic tapioca syrup and stevia (Stevia rebaudiana) as their main sweaters. The stevia, like all the other ingredients in the products, is organic. Each bar has other ingredients that provide flavor too (such as cacao in Chocolate Coconut).
7 JERF Bar Flavors
Currently, there are 5 flavors of Just Eat Real Food Bars. Those flavors are:
- Chocolate Coconut
- Cherry and Seeds
- Cinnamon Raisin
- Vanilla Almond Butter
- Chocolate Brownie
8 JERF Bar Ingredients
For the whole food nutrition, health-conscious person, the ingredients in the Just Eat Food Bar are pretty impressive in that they are:
- USDA Certified Organic (this is the best organic certification)
- Contain no GMO ingredients
- Kosher (certified by Natural Food Certifiers)
For those concerned with climate change, the website also mentions that JERF Bars are made at a facility that uses solar energy too.
Here's a list of all the ingredients in Just Eat Real Food Bars:
|Chocolate Coconut||Cherry & Seeds||Cinnamon Raisin|
|Organic almond butter||Organic almond butter||Organic almond butter|
|Organic prebiotic vegetable fiber||Organic prebiotic vegetable fiber||Organic prebiotic vegetable fiber|
|Organic pea protein||Organic pea protein||Organic pea protein|
|Organic tapioca syrup||Organic cherries||Organic tapioca syrup|
|Organic coconut||Organic pumpkins seeds||Organic raisins|
|Organic dates||Organic tapioca syrup||Organic sunflower seeds|
|Organic cacio nibs||Organic sunflower seeds||Organic cinnamon|
|Organic cocoa||Organic sesame seeds||Organic flax meal|
|Organic inulin||Organic chia||Organic inulin|
|Organic stevia||Organic inulin||Organic nutmeg|
|Organic goji berry extract||Organic stevia||Organic stevia|
|Organic goji berry extract||Organic goji berry extract|
In the ingredients table above, read the lists from top to bottom. This will tell you which ingredients are present the most and the least. For example, since organic almond butter is present first all 3 flavors, it's the most abundant ingredient.
9 What About The Vitamins?
At the bottom of the Nutrition Fact label, we see low levels of vitamin A and C and the minerals calcium and iron. Don't worry about these too much. Most people are not deficient in these anyway so I would not lose sleep that you don't see much here.
Also, remember these are not the only vitamins in JERF Bars. Because the product is based on foods, there are thousands of plant nutrients in JERF Bars in addition to vitamins and minerals. Because of the law, they can't list them on the label.
That said, I would be interested in knowing how much potassium is in JERF Bars. Potassium will be listed on the new version of the Nutrition Facts label and when that's rolled out, I'll update this review.
10 Any Artificial Colors?
No. The product website (JERFBar.com) states there are no colorings or dyes in the product.
11 Can You Eat JERF Bars With Celiac?
Yes. JEFR Bars are certified gluten-free so they should be no problem for those with celiac disorder or Crohn's.
12 What About Peanut Allergies?
JERF Bars contain no peanuts although the product website does say the kitchen that makes the bars also processes peanuts for other products. To be safe, those with peanut allergies may want to avoid JERF Bars.
13 Who Certified JERF Bar Organic?
Jerf Bars are USDA-certified organic. ECOCERT ICO (EcoCertICO.com), is the USDA accredited company that tested the bars to ensure that they are indeed organic. The company has been in business since 1991. In the US, organic foods must meet strict manufacturing processes which ensure that 95% of a product's ingredients are “organic.”
14 JERF Bars And Weight Loss?
The JERF Bar is a whole food meal replacement bar. In other words, you eat a meal replacement bar in place of an actual meal. Meal replacement bars – in general -tend to have fewer calories than what people normally eat. This, along with curbing the appetite, is how weight loss occurs. The JERF Bar is no different because it only has 220 calories per bar.
By substituting a 220 calorie meal for something of greater calories, it makes sense how this might work. This is the same logic for drinking meal replacement shakes too. When I taste-tested JERF Bars (see results below), I did feel my hunger was less for a period of time after I ate them. My guess is this was probably due to the fiber and protein in the bars.
See the Meal Replacement Shake page for more on those products.
15 How Do JERF Bars Taste?
I purchased 2 variety packs of JERF Bars for this taste test. Each variety pack had 3 bars (1 of each flavor). This gave me the opportunity to taste 2 of each of the original flavors. I have to say they all tasted pretty good.
The Cinnamon Raisin flavor had a hint of cinnamon when I opened the package. Chocolate Coconut definitively smelled like coconut and I
could taste little bits of coconut too. The Cherry and Seeds flavor, while not having a “cherry aroma” did have quite a few seeds that I could taste.
Both Cherry and Seeds and Cinnamon Raisin flavors left a little greasy (for lack of a better word) residue on my fingers but it wasn't too bad. Chocolate Coconut was the exception to this and did not have a residue.
While I really enjoyed all 3 flavors, my favorite overall was Chocolate Coconut. It's hard to beat a coconut and chocolate combo. That said, I would not turn down any of them if they were offered to me.
16 JERF Bar Expiration Date
The bars I purchased came with an expiration date that was 8 months from the date of purchase. While that might not sound like a long time to some, I actually liked it. It speaks to the lack of preservatives in JEFR Bars.
17 Can You Put Them In The Freezer?
Just as an experiment, I wondered what would happen if I put JERF Bars in my freezer. Since the Bars have around 10 grams of fat (it's mostly the healthy kind of fat) I wondered if being cold would have an effect on the texture. It did. Putting the bars in the freezer makes them hard as a rock and too hard to chew. Thawing obviously, reverses this condition.
Removing the Bars from the freezer and placing them in the refrigerator, causes them to be less hard, but still too hard for my taste.
From my taste test, freezing or refrigerating JERF Bars and then thawing them does not affect the taste in any way. This is good for those who buy a lot and want to extend their shelf life.
18 Who Makes JERF Bars?
The company is called JERF Nutrition LLC. The company website is JerfBar.com. The address listed on the bars is 5173 Warning Road #146 San Diego CA 92120. This address corresponds to a UPS Store so a hunch is the #146 is a company PO Box.
The company is partially owned by Sean Croxton, who is well known for his Underground Wellness podcast and the Quote Of the Day Show podcast.
Here's a list of my favorite podcasts.
19 JERF Bar Cost
When this review was created, JerfBar.com had the following prices:
- Box of 12 bars is $33.95 ($2.83/bar)
- Variety Sample Pack (9 bars) is $26 ($2.89/bar)
At less than $3 per bar, this puts them in line with most other protein bars. That's not bad given all the food-based ingredients and healthy certifications.
- The product website accepts all major credit cards and Paypal too.
- There is also free shipping on all orders shipped within America.
- Free shipping internationally for all orders more than $99.
I'm sure there are discounts for those who buy JERF Bars in bulk. Contact the company for details.
20 JERF Bars In Stores?
Sometime in 2018, the company promises JERF bars will be available in stores like Walmart, Costco, Walgreens, CVS, Wholefoods, Wegmans, Target, BJs, GNC, and Vitamin Shoppe. Until then, orders can always be placed at JerfBar.com.
21 Do They Ship Internationally?
Yes, the company ships the bars to all countries. All orders that total $150 or more come with free shipping.
22 JERF Bar Guarantee
JERF Bars come with a 60-day money-back guarantee. You have 2 full months to get a refund if you like. Just send back the boxes they came in for a refund. The company website says they will issue a refund even if all the JERF Bars are eaten. Just send back the empty boxes and you get your refund. Refunds can be issued by contacting the company via their website.
23 So, Are JERF Bars Good?
I honestly liked JERF Bars. They reminded me of something homemade, like what you might make in your kitchen. You can taste the food when you chew them and that puts them ahead of most other protein and energy bars I've tasted. If you've been searching for a healthy food bar, that won't make you feel guilty when you eat it, then you may have just found the answer you've been looking for.
I was over charged on my last order— I have e- mailed and no one has gotten back to me!! Such poor customer service!! Bulletproof bars and customer service are way ahead of you in the customer service dept!! Also— I need to find out which bars were affected by mold — I have severe mold allergies-if you do not get back to me— we are done!!! Jan jones Hooson.
Joe Cannon says
Hi Jan, I think you emailed me by mistake. Im not the JERF company. Ive never heard of BullitProof Bars but my interactions withe JERF company were pretty straight forward. Sorry to hear you were overcharged.Have you tried to reach out to them on Instagram or facebook? Have you tried to reach out to Sean Croxton himself? I have heard the issue with mold is no longer a problem. If it helps, I have not heard anything about this in some time.
I am a repeat customer of JERF bars, and they tasted fine in the past, all flavors, but mostly Chocolate-Coconut. However, on October 10, I received an order of Chocolate-Coconut bars that clearly tasted moldy. At first, I told myself it was impossible–it was presumably a fresh batch from the company. I swallowed some, but then ended up spitting out a bite. I hoped the problem was isolated to one bar, but the next bar tasted moldy too.
If I had to guess–based on what I tasted–it seems the mold might be in the shredded coconut, but I don’t really know. I found this site by doing a Google search for JERF mold to see if anyone else had experienced this. I have asked the company to let me return these for a refund. Based on comments on your site, I am surprised to realize that the company was aware of a mold issue before sending me my order. // I would be interested in any further information, such as the type of mold and which ingredient is the culprit? (I hope it isn’t aflatoxin.)
Hi Martha, I think I have some answers for everybody on the mold issue. Today, I spoke with Sean Croxton about this. I was told that the mold was traced to one of the companies involved in making Jerf Bars. That company added a little bit of extra water to the bars to improve the texture. They did not tell Sean they did this. This increased amount of water is what caused mold to develop. That company is no longer involved with the making of JERF Bars. JERF no longer does business with them.
There was no issues with the ingredients themselves. Rather it was the water that caused the problem.
Only the Chocolate Coconut bars were effected. Mold was not detected in any of the other flavors.
Upon learning this problem, Sean told me they sent an email to everybody who ordered the bars, telling them about the problem. Check your spam folder if you did not see his email. Search your spam/trash folder for this email : firstname.lastname@example.org
He told me they replacing all the bars that were purchased within 6 weeks of the problem to light. All people have to do is reply to the email and you will get replacements.
Martha, aflatoxin while did not come up in our conversation, I doubt if it was created. Sean said they did contact the FDA. The FDA did not require them to recall all of the bars. Since the FDA did not mandate a recall, it makes me believe there was no threat to public safety.
Sean was very open and honest with my questions. It sounds like this was an unfortunate accident. I have sympathy for those impacted by it. I believe the company is addressing it the best they can.
I really want to thank everyone who commented on this and giving me the opportunity to look into it for you. I didn’t know this was going on and Im so grateful for all who brought it to my attention.
If anyone has other questions, just ask.
Thank you for taking the time to investigate and report back to your readers! I am sure the company is ensuring the integrity of the product going forward. I wish them the best of luck!
Thanks Martha 🙂
Stevia is not the main sweetener, you forgot about the organic tapioca syrup. Which is listed before stevia, and as you said above means there is more of this ingredient than those listed after it. I’m a fan of Croxtons, but not a fan of his JERF bars.
Hi Millie, that is a good point. In reading over what I said about stevia, it appears I accidentally left out tapioca syrup. I appreciate you pointing out my oversight. I dont know much about Croxton other than I listed here. What makes you not a fan? Just curious. I like your website too 🙂
Thanks! I love the fact JERF bars have 12 grams of fiber! (Depending on the flavor). I mean, WOW! Not many protein bars will you give you that much fiber in one bar! The average person does not consume that much fiber in a day! I also love all the fiber is healthy gut bacteria feeding prebiotic fiber! Waahoo!
I do not love the added tapioca syrup, although 6 grams is not bad (a little more than a teaspoon). Compared to a RXBar, that can have up to 17 grams of sugar but comes from real food sources like dates and blueberries. I do not consider tapioca syrup “real food,” as it has been highly processed from the cassava root. I am also not a stevia fan as to the bitter aftertaste I think ruins the real taste of food.
In my opinion, the bars do not taste good or anything like their intended flavors.
I am a fan of Sean and love all his podcast, “Quote of the Day Show,” “The Sean Croxton Sessions,” and “Underground Wellness Radio.” He is an insightful interviewer and has done much to inform and inspire the wellness community.
Hi Millie, thanks for clearing that up. I’m not a fan of stevia either because of the aftertaste. I did notice on a recent Quote of the Day Show podcast, it was said that “JERF Bars are back.” That made me wonder if they were temporary removed from the market because of what others had said about mold being found in them?
My buddy and I heard there was mold growing on the bars so we tried for ourselves since we had gone in for a box and he was feeding it to his kids…. Sure enough there it was…Mold. Whats worst is that the person who told us about the mold found it on hers about 3 weeks ago which means the company still hasn’t addressed it or posted a damn thing on there website after all this time!
I emailed the email@example.com this week and heard back pretty quick. Guy named Jon said other customers have had mold too, and they would email a bunch of buyers tomorrow……….now that I know its true and its been going on for at least 3 weeks without telling the public.. I’m out!
I gave it a chance because I used to like Sean Croxtons podcasts before I figured out he had no idea what he was talking about and was really just spewing what he learned in a buncha books. His motivation one is pretty bad– I think he just missed making all that money so he came out with something where he could do the bare minimum and make a ton of money to support his lifestyle n arrogance. It’s a shame because the bars do taste pretty good compared to others on the market. Anyway, this was strike 3 for me, bye jerf bar
Peter, thanks for sharing this. I’m actually quite surprised by the mold allegations but I can definitely understand this being a deal breaker for you. Mold would be a deal breaker for me too.
I see the phone number you listed in your other comment. I googled it and found the linkedin profile of Jon Margalit who is a sales /marketing guy and the inventor of the “Gym Towel” which I’ve heard of. Here’s his linked in profile
I had my first jerf bar at a friend’s house recently and there was MOLD in it! The next 2 she had also had mold in them. I called the customer service line to report it and learned that all bars sold in the past THREE months tested for mold!!! They offered to replace them but I obviously said no.
Does their website even mention this? No!!! I was outraged by this so I researched these owners, only to learn that they literally have a failed podcast called Underground Wellness and after years of informing people about health foods and stuff, they realized most of the stuff they were spewing to their listeners was LIES so they ended it and blamed it on too much research to keep up with!!
Of course they made tons of cash and probably don’t even care. Just like this bar….they can’t even put a message on their website about the mold!!
Hi Linda, this is news to me. I did an online search for “JERF Bar mold” and didn’t see anything about this. The bars I received were not moldy. Underground Wellness was a podcast but it was around for a long time (348 episodes). Sean now does a podcast on motivation.
What phone number did you call to speak to JERF customer service? I will say that one of my problems when writing the review was that I could not find a phone number for the company. I wanted to know where the JEFR Bar was made. I did email the company but never heard back from anyone.
If you give me the phone # you used I can try to look into this.
” What Linda said
Try this number 619-583-0007
Peter, thanks I’ll give this # a call and try to look into this.
Peter, I tried calling that phone number you listed . when I tried the voicemail box was full and I could not leave a message. The phone number goes to someone named Jon Margalit, whose linkedin profile lists as head of direct sales at a cloud-based phone company called OnSIP.
I have emailed JERF bar and asked to speak to someone about the mold issue.
Hopefully I’ll hear back soon.
William L. Wilson, M.D. says
I think you need to update your views on fats. Certain saturated fats (coconut oil, fat from grass fed animals have health benefits. The polyunsaturated fats you seem to love are mainly omega 6 fatty acids and most folks get way to many of these fats relative to omega 3 fatty acids. Its the balance that counts. You want to keep you AA/EPA ratio between 1 and 3 (mine is 1.9). MCT 8 has also been shown to have health benefits as a fat. I pour it in my coffee in the morning.
Hi William, I would agree with the benefits of omega 3 fats and the ratio of omega 3 to 6 fats. I know JERF bars contain some omega 3 fats, like ALA although how much I cant be sure (I’ll ask them if I get the chance). I know the role of saturated fats (including coconut oil) and heart disease is currently being debated. I have not yet seen large interventional studies showing a primary outcome of saturated fats reducing heart attacks in humans.