A Review of Jelly Belly Sports Beans
Like many of you out there, I loved a good jelly bean as a kid. But not just any jelly beans – Jelly Belly jelly beans. Especially the unusual flavors. Popcorn, Root Beer, Toasted Marshmallow, Strawberry Cheesecake… And though you won’t see me reaching for a bag of jelly beans all the time anymore, that doesn’t mean they don’t hold a special place in my heart (and stomach). Shortly after I started training for a race a few years ago, I heard that Jelly Belly was in the sports fueling business, and I was kind of excited. Really excited actually. Jelly beans as fuel? Sounds good to me!
Jelly Belly Sports Beans come in a variety of flavors, including an “Assorted” pack. These little packets of jelly bean goodness are easy to carry and easy to eat and yes, very delicious. Let’s take a closer look at two of their offerings: the Assorted Non-Caffeine and their Extreme Watermelon.
When you are reaching for a chew or gel or in this case, jelly bean, you are going to get sugar. Sugar enters into your blood stream quickly to give you that energy you need to pound out the miles. So ingredient #1 is good ole cane sugar. Followed by tapioca syrup (aka sugar). And then you have fruit juice (again, sugar). And unlike your daily diet, in this case, sugar is not a bad thing. It’s what you need. Quick energy.
That said, the upside of all this sugar is that there is nothing artificial in here. Everything, including the bright colors, are made from natural sources. And not only will you get your quick-burning carbs, but also electrolytes and Vitamin B & C too. Added bonus: it’s made with non-GMO ingredients. So while I wouldn’t label this as “healthy”, I would much rather put natural sugar (and natural ingredients in general) into my body rather than artificial, engineered ingredients that I can’t pronounce the name.
One packet contains 100 calories, 80mg of sodium, 25g of carbs, 17g of sugar and 40 mg of Potassium. The only difference with the Extreme Sport Bean is it contains 50mg of caffeine. I did notice that little extra boost after eating the Extreme Watermelon beans.
Yum. They taste like a jelly bean. I had no problem eating them. I actually didn’t mind popping a couple after the run too. (I mean, hey, they are delicious!) And though watermelon is not my go-to flavor of choice, the watermelon one actually tasted pretty good. I’m happy that running gives me the opportunity to essentially ingest candy during (or after) a run and not feel guilty.
These jelly beans come in a 1 ounce resealable bag. It suggest consuming 1 bag 30 minutes prior to activity. It’s easy to carry, but more importantly, I like that it is resealable. I usually do not down a gel/chews/bag of jelly beans all at once. Like many runners, I like to “trickle” my fuel. A couple beans here, couple of beans there. The resealable bag made that a little easier.
A 6 pack of Sports Beans will set you back a whopping $8. For running fuel, that is a really good price. Most gels or chews will cost you more than that. So these beans are great deal!
- Great taste
- Variety of flavors
- Vitamin B1, B2, B3 & C
- Caffeine options
- Low cost
The bottom line is that they are yum. A tasty treat that gave me the hit of energy I needed during a long run. Unlike some chews, they are a small, quick to chew size and the assorted pack kept my tongue guessing. These little sugary gems brought a nice nostalgic feeling and a bit of energy that I’m looking for. That said, I might even go buy myself some regular Jelly Belly jelly beans. Root beer float anyone?