Buck Up: Bucknell Creates Energy Bars

Parkhurst Dining Services at the university created its own nutrition bars to help fuel students.

By Lindsey Ramsey, Contributing Editor

Students at Bucknell University, in Lewisburg, Pa., can now grab a little pick-me-up, courtesy of dining services. As part of its Bucknell Nutrition Initiative Program (BNIP), Parkhurst Dining Services at the university created its own nutrition bars to help fuel students. John Cummins, general manager for Parkhurst Dining Services at the university, says while creating the BNIP the team worked with Tanya Williams, a clinical dietitian and sports nutritionist, who saw a need for freshly made energy and recovery bars for athletes and the larger campus community.

Nuts and bolts

The team, which also included Parkhurst Pastry Chef Steven Benscoter and Baker Vern Weller, tested several recipes with an emphasis on portion size and carbohydrate-to-protein ratio. The results were two pre-workout bars and a recovery bar. The pre-workout bars are an energy bar (oats, cranberry and apricot) and an almond honey bar. The recovery bar is a double peanut butter bar with Cheerios. The bars are made in house and retail for $2.25. The department also created the labels and packaging for the bar.

Challenges

Size matters with fitness bars. Cummins says that because the recovery bar was very dense, the staff wanted to make them bigger. “But we learned if you changed the size, it would change the nutritional integrity of the product.”