Like all great brands, Clif Bar began with someone thinking to themselves, ‘I can do better than this.’ In Clif Bar’s case, that someone was Gary Erickson, a baker and mountaineering guide who decided, during a long ride, that he couldn’t take another bite of tasteless energy bars. He spent the next two years tinkering around in his mother’s kitchen, then debuted three flavours at a 1991 bike show. Within a year, he’d sold over $700,000 worth of product.
What is Clif Bar?
Clif Bar & Company – more commonly known as Clif Bar – is a performance nutrition company synonymous with the outdoors. The company is named for founder Gary Erickson’s father, Clifford, who was his childhood hero and constant companion in the Sierra Nevada mountains. Since 1991, Clif Bar’s range has expanded to include various bars, chews and gels that are well-stocked (and well-loved) in outdoor shops across the globe. Its athlete ambassadors include ultra runner Scott Jurek, climber Tommy Caldwell (of Dawn Wall fame) and Aussie skateboarding champion Taniah Meyers.
Where is Clif Bar based?
Since the first bar was baked in Erickson’s mother’s kitchen, Clif Bar has shifted its headquarters to Emeryville, California, across the bay from San Francisco. The office, which is within striking distance of Yosemite National Park and Lake Tahoe, boasts a climbing wall, gym, massage rooms and yoga and dance studios. Not bad for a humble oat bar, right?
Is Clif Bar a good brand?
Clif Bar has had a huge impact on outdoor culture and does what it can to minimise its impact on the world. The company has endeavoured to invest in renewable energy, use more ethical ingredients, limit plastic and incentivise employees to switch to hybrid cars. And in terms of products? Well, there’s a reason Clif Bar has remained one of the most popular performance fuels for 30 years. Their gels and chews taste great and the bars are thoughtfully crafted with a combination of protein, fibre and carbohydrates, providing sustained, plant-based energy for everyone from elite athletes to weekend warriors.
Best Clif Bar products
Read more about a few of Aid Station’s favourite Clif Bar products.
Clif Bar Energy Bars
As the OG Clif energy bar, these baked beauties have well and truly stood the test of time. They offer energy from multiple carbohydrate sources as well as protein, fats and fibre, meaning they’re ideal for both post-workout replenishment and pre-workout fuel. The bars contain 9–11g of protein, which helps with muscle repair, and are designed to steadily increase blood sugar levels without causing a dreaded sugar crash – and did we mention they’re delicious? Whether you’re out on a ride, run, climb or whatever, Clif bars are a top-notch fuel for an epic day.
Clif Bar Shot Energy Gels
Clif Bar’s Shot Energy Gels provide an easily digestible, fast-acting source of energy thanks to dried cane syrup and maltodextrin. Made with 85–90% organic ingredients, the gels come in a great range of flavours including Double Expresso and Citrus, both of which contain caffeine for an added boost. Try using them in conjunction with the Clif Bar and Clif Blok Chews for a well-rounded nutrition plan during your next training session and/or race.
Clif Bar Bloks Energy Chews
Need a quick energy hit? Look no further than these tasty lightweight chews, which can be stuffed into a pocket or pack and easily consumed on the go. Each packet provides 100 calories and easy-to-consume carbohydrates, making them a great option to prevent a sugar slump while racing or training. With a bunch of delicious flavours – some with caffeine, some without – these chews have quickly become a favourite for endurance events. Gobble up half a packet 15 minutes before training or racing to increase blood sugar levels, then top up every hour during activity for sustained performance.