Go to the main content Menu
Real Food Bar
Real Food Bar
Sponsored Food & Drink
Kayla Pasko Kayla Pasko

These Vegan Protein Bars Are Made from Upcycled Ingredients

This woman-owned company is paving the way for zero food waste, one snack bar at a time!

Real Food Bar is a plant-based nutrition-bar brand that was founded by Anna Sullivan in Austin, Texas in 2019. These vegan protein bars are made from upcycled ingredients and pack a powerful 15g of plant-based protein per serving. Sullivan was inspired to create the company with her husband to fill a need for an on-the-go snack that could stand up to their adventurous lifestyle. The pair would often take these snack bars for breakfast on busy mornings or enjoy them on hiking trips—which accounts for the pictures taken by Sullivan and her husband that are now featured on Real Food Bar’s packaging. With the goal of creating a bar with a complete nutrition profile, Sullivan began experimenting in the kitchen with real, whole ingredients. Nearly two years later, Real Food Bar was born. And with tasty flavors like Espresso Chip, Chocolate Sea Salt, Peanut Butter, and Cherry Cashew, they’ve been a hit ever since.

While the aim of Real Food Bar is to provide a nutritious plant-based protein option, the company has also taken strides to create a circular food economy through the utilization of upcycled ingredients in the manufacturing process, which has a positive effect on the environment.

Let’s take a closer look at what exactly upcycled ingredients are and how Real Food Bar is making an impact on health and planet.

Ingredients That Reduce Food Waste

In 2019, the Upcycled Food Association was founded to help companies better identify ingredients that reduce food waste and to have a positive impact on the environment. According to the Upcycled Food Association, foods that are upcycled consist of ingredients that otherwise would not have gone to human consumption, are procured and produced using verifiable supply chains, and that have a positive impact on the environment. Upcycled ingredients can consist of soft or bruised fruits and vegetables like avocado seeds, potatoes, and bananas, as well as grains like rye and wheat. These ingredients might look misshapen, but they’re still safe and delicious for humans to eat.

At Real Food Bar, “ugly is beautiful,” meaning the company takes imperfect or upcycled ingredients—sourced from various producers in Canada, the Midwest, and California—and turns them into delicious snack bars. Since launching in 2019, the company has managed to rescue over 500 pounds of kale, cauliflower, and sweet potatoes that would otherwise go to a landfill.

Creating a Circular Food Economy

By upcycling ingredients like imperfect veggies, Real Food Bar is creating a circular food economy. According to the Ellen MacArthur Foundation, a circular food economy produces organic, healthy food using natural, regenerative, soil supporting growing practices. In addition, any byproducts or waste can also create new food—which in turn redistributes a surplus of edible products.

Food for Better Health and Planet

Real Food Bars are packed with 15g of plant-based protein sourced from peas, which are homegrown in Wisconsin and contain 85% protein per 100g (making them a tough competitor against animal-derived protein sources such as whey). The fiber in the bars is from tapioca fiber and is derived from cassava root. In addition, polyphenols from cherries (great for inflammation!), 11g of prebiotics, and hidden micronutrients such as kale, sweet potato, and cauliflower are also contained in the bars, making them a food for better health and the planet.

While Real Food Bar began with upcycled kale, cauliflower, and sweet potato, the brand has expanded their upcycled ingredient list to include coconut flour and Bing cherries. The company also plans to add peanuts and coconut oil to the list soon.

“We’re in the process and have exciting plans to upcycle additional ingredients, including peanuts, peanut butter, coconut oil, and coconut flour from Kenya, Uganda, and Tanzania in partnership with Field Better, a platform that eliminates the middleman by working with 40,000 smallholder farms with traceable and upcycled ingredients,” Sullivan told VegOut.

Where to Buy Real Food Bar Vegan Protein Bars

Real Food Bars are available at select Whole Foods (Texas, Arkansas, Louisiana, and Oklahoma), Gopuff, SnackMagic, and Royal Blue Grocery, as well as online at Walmart.com and Amazon.com.

To find Real Food Bars at a store near you or to purchase directly with discounted recurring delivery options, visit RealFoodBar.com.

Kayla Pasko


Kayla, a Midwest girl living in NYC, is a writer with a background in media sales. When she’s not scoping out trendy vegan spots, she’s usually taking a yoga class, shopping at Trader Joe’s, or catching a Packers game.

Articles by Kayla

More from VegOut

See the article best vegan-friendly fast-food chains across the us

Best Vegan-Friendly Fast-Food Chains Across the US

Fast-food restaurants broaden their customer bases by introducing meatless menus, some for the first time in their company's history.

Jared Cross Jared Cross
Panda Express
Food & Drink
See the article vegan mexican restaurant and wine bar opens in nyc’s chelsea market

Vegan Mexican Restaurant and Wine Bar Opens in NYC’s Chelsea Market

This month, New York’s historic market welcomes Pia, a restaurant featuring plant-based Mexican fare with natural wine pairings.

Anja Grommons Anja Grommons
News New York
See the article 14 vegan haircare brands we’re obsessed with

14 Vegan Haircare Brands We’re Obsessed With

Revamp your hair routine with these cruelty-free products.

Allie Mitchell Allie Mitchell
Fashion & Beauty
See the article vegan jewish delis and bakeries across the us

Vegan Jewish Delis and Bakeries Across the US

From Los Angeles to New York, these vegan Jewish businesses make nostalgic plant-based sandwiches, sides, and pastries.

Allie Mitchell Allie Mitchell
Lil' Yenta’s
Food & Drink
See the article vegan night market comes to san diego

Vegan Night Market Comes to San Diego

Burgers, nacho boats, and hard kombucha hope to attract steady crowds at this environmentally friendly vegan night market.

Jared Cross Jared Cross
Veggie Fam
Things To Do San Diego
See the article ben & esther’s vegan deli to open oceanside location this summer

Ben & Esther’s Vegan Deli to Open Oceanside Location This Summer

A vegan New York-style deli is bringing cold cuts to South Oceanside.

Jared Cross Jared Cross
Ben & Esther's
News San Diego
See the article these vegan cookies are better than grandma’s

These Vegan Cookies Are Better Than Grandma’s

Snag a few bags of Tate’s Bake Shop’s new vegan cookies!

Allie Mitchell Allie Mitchell
Tate's Bake Shop
Sponsored Food & Drink
See the article aapi-owned vegan restaurants, food trucks, and pop-ups in la

AAPI-Owned Vegan Restaurants, Food Trucks, and Pop-Ups in LA

From donuts and ice cream to burgers, dim sum, and sushi, there are so many great items to try from these businesses!

Allie Mitchell Allie Mitchell
Morning Nights
Food & Drink Los Angeles
See the article the best vegan food trucks in america

The Best Vegan Food Trucks in America

These food trucks are rolling into town with some of the best vegan eats!

Jared Cross Jared Cross
Lettuce Feast
Food & Drink
See the article sustainable period underwear brand proof expands to walmart

Sustainable Period Underwear Brand Proof Expands to Walmart

The sustainable leak-proof period underwear will be available at more than 4,000 Walmart stores nationwide beginning May 14.

Cayla White
See the article tabitha brown’s mccormick seasoning launches at stores nationwide

Tabitha Brown’s McCormick Seasoning Launches at Stores Nationwide

Customers will be able to find the popular seasoning in retailers nationwide this June.

Cayla White
Tabitha Brown
See the article aapi-owned vegan food brands to support now and always

AAPI-Owned Vegan Food Brands to Support Now and Always

From meat alternatives and pasta to ice cream and cookies, there are so many great products to try from these AAPI-owned brands.

Allie Mitchell Allie Mitchell
Must Love
Food & Drink


We’ll keep you updated on new information,
upcoming events, and the best deals in your area.

By signing up you agree to receive emails from VegOut Magazine
and accept our terms of use, privacy policy, and cookie policy.

Subscribe Now

Get the latest in plant-based news, entertainment, and lifestyle delivered straight to your door (or inbox!)
Order the magazine!
The Holiday Issue


The Holiday Issue

Subscribe Now

Order the magazine!



The Most



Test 2