33Fuel’s Chia Energy Gels use just four real-food ingredients and allow you to add carbs to your hydration from a resealable pouch…

33Fuel Chia Energy Gel

$30.21 / £23.99 for 10, 33fuel.com  

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  • Only simple real-food ingredients 
  • Taste great 
  • Even energy release  


  • Need pre-filling 
  • Resealable caps can break off 
  • Difficult to stash  

Taste: 5/5
Energy: 3.5/5
Portability: 3.5/5

Almost as important as picking the right running shoe is choosing the best running gel. 33Fuel Natural Sports Nutrition’s chia-based gels are simple, tasty and 100% natural. In many ways, they change what you should expect from a gel. They swap the maltodextrin-based artificial chemical goop for real-food ingredients, fresh flavours and a textured mouthfeel that you look forward to consuming. 

Each gel uses just four ingredients: chia seeds, coconut palm sugar, organic vanilla and Himalayan pink salt. It doesn’t get much simpler than that. 

Rehydrating 33Fuel Chia Energy Gel

Unlike all the other gels in our test, the ingredients in the resealable packs come dried, so you have to add liquid to rehydrate them ten minutes before you plan to use them. The hydrated gels are more bulky and a less stashable shape than other gels, and the extra step is a double-edged sword. Yes it’s extra prep, but if you’re carrying fuel for a longer ride or run, the dehydrated gels take up less space.   

In dried form, each gel delivers 11g carbs. That’s quite a lot lower than most other gels. However, you don’t have to use water to rehydrate them. You can boost the carbohydrate hit by adding milk, fruit juices, coconut water or whatever liquid you want. There’s added salt to help balance your hydration, but if you’re looking for a caffeine boost you’ll need to add your own espresso.  

Unlike some rush-and-crash sugar-based gels, the energy boost is nice and even. The puffed-up chia seeds are a pleasant change from the usual non-descript sludge of regular gels and these are incredibly easy on the stomach. Plus, there’s no lingering artificial taste to get tired of.  

The flip-top resealable lid also means you don’t have to down a whole gel in one. However, I found sometimes the chia seeds clogged the lid and I had to take care not to snap it off. Overall, though the 33Fuel Chia Energy Gel is a refreshingly different take on on the standard energy gel format.

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