Share

Nutrition

Clif Bloks energy chews – review

Tasty sweets for your ride which are great for dosing up your vital sugar intake

When you visit a feed station at a sportive, what do you find. Usually, there are an assortment of sports supplements, local foods, fruit, bars, cakes… and a bowl of jelly sweets. Clif, best known for their tasty bars, have taken the jelly sweet and turned it into an energy-specific and convenient sugar top-up in these Blok chews.

Of course, you could argue that the likes of Jelly Babies or, Peter Sagan’s favourite, Haribo, do exactly the same job, and on the face of it you’d be right. However, where the Clif Bloks differ is in the considered balance of sugars, as well as the packaging it comes in along with the subsequent convenience.

So, in the slim-line pack you get six chews each containing 33 calories of energy, with a 50/50 ratio of simple to complex sugars to help keep your energy levels consistent. As a result, they don’t represent such a sudden hit of energy that Jelly Babies do. Instead, it’s the inclusion of Maltodextrin alongside tapioca and dried cane syrup that allows the Clif Bloks to sustain energy levels for a lot longer.

Clif Bloks offer a tasty, convenient sugar top-up

Naturally, this will depend on how many you have. An entire pack of the jelly-like chews is 60g, of which 48g are carbohydrates in that 50/50 split of simple to complex sugars. Clif say you should consume up to one pack per hour of activity (between three and six chews) to keep your energy levels topped up, along with a healthy gulp of water to maintain your hydration levels. Of course, your exact requirements depends on what else you’re eating and the type of riding you’re doing but that’s Clif’s recommendation.

On top of that carbohydrate content, you also get 0.25g of salt and 80mg of potassium to help along your electrolyte intake – helpful for hydration, as long as you follow the instructions to consume water alongside them.

Each pack contains 48g of carbohydrates
  • Specification

  • Price: £46.62 (box of 18)
  • Flavours: Strawberry; mountain berry; margarita citrus; tropical punch (caffeinated); black cherry (2x caffeinated)
  • Website: Clif Bar
  • UK distributor: Extra

The bottom line though, is this. The tube packet the chews come in is easy open on the move without tearing the whole thing, and it’s very easy to slide out individual chews into your mouth. They’re easy to eat and naturally have a more food-like consistency and texture to an energy gels, while being much easier to get through than a sticky bar, making the Bloks a good alternative to both.

Additionally, the way Clif have made the chews means that, somehow, they don’t become gloopy or stuck together as they sit in your inevitably warm back pocket. My pack lasted through an entire century sportive, and was easily usable again on a subsequent club ride.

On test, I had the strawberry flavoured chews (mountain berry and ‘margarita citrus’ flavours are also available) and found them to be very tasty thanks to the naturally-sourced flavourings. I used them alongside the usual affair of sports drinks and energy bars, as well as a treat or two from the feed stops during the sportive, and it helped me to regulate my energy levels effectively.

The caffeine options

Alongside the strawberry chews, we also checked out the caffeine versions in the tropical punch flavour, and it’s worth making some notes on these, although our overall experience was largely the same.

While Clif recommend a daily intake of up to 12 regular Bloks (so two packets) the recommended dosage is down to nine chews with the caffeine option, although you still get six in a packet, just like the standard version. Each six chew pack provides 25mg of caffeine derived from green tea, 40mg of potassium, as well as the same 48g of carbohydrates in the same 50/50 ratio of simple to complex sugars.

Once again, taste is excellent, while the chews retain their shape and consistency when left in the pocket for an entire ride. When I used them towards the end of my sportive I found them to act as a gentle pick-me-up thanks to that small amount of caffeine, as well as a refreshing change from the ‘normal’ strawberry chews.

Clif Bloks are also available with caffeine – either 25mg in the tropical punch flavour or 50mg in black cherry

However, if the limited caffeine content doesn’t quite do it for you, you can also opt for the black cherry version that features twice as much (50mg of caffeine) – perfect if you really need a more vibrant boost at the end of a long ride.

Whichever option you choose, you can buy them in boxes of 18 packs, currently retailing for £46.62 (although if you shop around you can find them discounted).

Conclusion

As a result, Clif Bloks are certainly not cheap, but if a well-considered sweet treat to help you over the line is what you’re after, they’re certainly worth a try. We particularly appreciate the tube-like packets, which sit neatly in the side of the jersey pocket, and how the sweets retain their shape too. That convenience, along with the considered sugar make-up and flavour, helps set them apart from other jelly-based sweets on the market.

Pros

  • Great tasting
  • Easy to open
  • Easy to consume
  • Caffeinated options

Cons

  • Expensive

Share

Newsletter Terms & Conditions

Please enter your email so we can keep you updated with news, features and the latest offers. If you are not interested you can unsubscribe at any time. We will never sell your data and you'll only get messages from us and our partners whose products and services we think you'll enjoy.

Read our full Privacy Policy as well as Terms & Conditions.

production