Have you seen this special offer of a box of 100 Jaffa Cakes for £3.99?! We’ve seen it, too! And the only thing that stops us (Pako, to be exact) from spending half of our salary on it and stacking up on them for the next month (or two) is… their nutritional value. But not all is lost! Saving us, once again, is Fulfil with their protein bars, this time with their Chocolate Orange flavour. They are a worthy substitute for our beloved Jaffa Cakes. To be honest, we’d bet on it that these hugely popular jelly sponges are at least as English as the Full English Breakfast, but what do you know…

Fulfil has already left a quite well impression with us thanks to their Milk Chocolate & Mint flavour Protein Bar (review soon!). We reckon that those are the almost perfect alternative for the equally popular After Eight Mint Chocolate Thins. Why almost perfect? Well, not everything went according to plan. You should see it for yourself, because it’s definitely worth it.

Fulfil Chocolate Orange Vitamin & Protein Bar
Fulfil Chocolate Orange Vitamin & Protein Bar

All the while, if you’re carefully reading our website, you’ll know that we not only have a passion for the gym, but also (perhaps an even greater one?) for good fit snacks. Even though we, of course, like to spend some time in the kitchen as well and prepare our own sweets, there are some that you just can’t replace and in order to be fully satisfied you just have to buy them. And one of them are Jaffa Cakes, that, if they were in any way a healthy alternative, Pako would substitute at least one meal with (the second would be Oreos, and the third Peanut M&M’s).

Why is that so impossible? You only need to have a look at the nutritional value to see why.


Even though, the amount of calories and fat per 100g of Jaffa Cakes (look at the table below) could be construed as acceptable (hello, they’re cakes, after all), but the amount of carbohydrates (70.9g) and sugar (52.6g) is just staggering. And very detrimental to your health. But show me a person who will resist the urge to eat more than just two or three Jaffa Cakes (along with 12.8g and 19.2g of sugar, respectively)? Exactly…

Fulfil Chocolate Orange Vitamin & Protein Bar

Moving on! Even though the Fulfil Chocolate Orange label has Jaffa Cakes on it, it’s not such a big surprise that they’re not very similar in the end. All of that, because on top there are soy nuggets covered in milk chocolate and on the inside there’s a mass with the famous orange sponge flavour. Therefore, this bar has a nice, sweet smell, very to the point, and distinct chocolate and orange smell. That’s a good sign. Like the ones before it, this bar is also rather firm on the outside, but not crumbly. Luckily, the inside is quite soft and perfectly moist, so that it’s easy to bite into and chew. The added crunch on top is also a nice sensation.

The taste. Oh, the taste!


It’s pretty sweet (as if Jaffa Cakes were bitter, right?) and both the orange and chocolate are very detectable. Both those flavours are ideally balanced, so that the bar is sweet, but not overwhelmingly so. The taste stays the same throughout the whole bar and even after the last bite. That’s what we’re talking about!

Do we want another serving after that one? Definitely yes, even though for some it might be too sweet (in that case we recommend preparing a cup of black coffee to go with it).

Now’s the time for comparing the nutritional value of the Fulfil Chocolate Orange bar with the legendary Jaffa Cakes. First, in the table below you’ll find the comparison.

Jaffa Cakes, per 100gFulfil Chocolate Orange
Flavour Vitamin & Protein
Bar, per 100g
Energy (kJ)16001547
Energy (kcal)379369
Fat7.9g13.0g
   of which saturates4.0g7.4g
Carbohydrates70.9g34.6g
   of which sugar52.6g4.9g
   of which polyols27.0g
Fibre2.2g0.9g
Protein4.9g36.4g
Salt<0.25g0.22g

That’s pretty solid, right? Yes, but what about the ingredients? Well, we don’t have any good news here. Good snacks, the very best in fact, won’t change the laws of the food industry. In both we’ll find the unholy trinity, meaning added sugar, palm oil and glucose-fructose syrup. That’s not good at all. If that’s any consolation, we can at least say that the Fulfil bar has way less sugar. And extra candied orange peel.

And those are the only good news here.


The situation isn’t helped by the added 9 vitamins and minerals (Vitamin C, Vitamin B6, Vitamin B12, Vitamin E, Folic acid, Thiamine (Vitamin B1), Riboflavin (Vitamin B2), Niacin (Vitamin B3), Panthotenic acid). That covers 100% to 100.9% of our daily required intake of all of the aforementioned elements. Nice.

Is this bar a sustainable snack on the go? No! All because of the unholy trinity (added sugar, palm oil and glucose-fructose syrup) that ruins everything. And that’s a pity, because a Jaffa Cake substitute like this with better macros would be a snack that even we would carry around all the time, just in case.

It would’ve been too good to be true


Great smell, great flavour, easy to eat, alright macros. A combination like this could be quite a triumph. And then sugar and its unwelcome friends entered the stage and ruined the whole fun. Sorry, but the party’s over. Go and wreak your havoc somewhere else…

Will we ever go back to this protein bar? We’d really, really love to (oh, that taste!) but it probably it won’t happen in the near future. Not unless we’ll get unstoppable cravings for Jaffa Cakes and their slightly healthier alternative, then we’ll just have to turn a blind eye on the unholy trinity and enjoy ourselves.

6.7
Score

Pros

  • Short ingredient list
  • Only 2.7g of sugar
  • Contains candied orange peel
  • Contains 9 vitamins and minerals covering 100% to 100.9% of daily required intake of each of them

Cons

  • Contains added sugar
  • Contains palm oil
  • Contains glucose-fructose syrup
Smell
8
Outer firmness
4.5
Inner firmness
6
Taste
8.5
Moistness
7.5
Nutrients
7
Ingredients
3.5
Overall experience
8.5

Final Verdict

Great smell, great flavour, easy to eat, alright macros. A combination like this can be quite a triumph.