Tasty healthy cold cereal?
- The Librarian Jul 16, 2011 02:37 PM
I'm thinking of strting to eat cold cereal for breakfast. There are about a million choices of cereal at the store. Totally overwhelming, so I'm hoping to get some recommendations. Here are some things that I'd like:
* not too sweet
* moderate calorie count
* tasty, not like cardboard
* good source of whole grains and fiber
* filling enough to more or less last until lunch
* dried fruit is ok
* no preservatives, HFCS, artificial anything including sweetners
* no hot cereals - I hate them!
I'm probably forgetting something, but thanks!
I will second Kashi. I'm a college student and looked for a very long time for a healthy, not-terribly-expensive cereal and GoLean was what I settled on. As a result I've ordered a few 6-packs of boxes (over a year or so). It's a great cereal because it's high in fiber and protein and is only mildly sweet. And when I say mild, i do mean mild, not just in comparison to Cocoa Puffs.
Note that this Golean and not GoLean Crunch. Crunch is much sweeter.
I've got a batch of granola in the oven as I type - I make a couple of cookie sheets at once and it allows me to control how sweet / what's in it. The one I have in the oven is:
7 cups rolled oats
1/2 cup flaked coconut
1 cup wheat germ
1 cup almonds, chopped
1 cup pecans, chopped
1 cup sunflower seeds
1/2 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup maple syrup
3/4 cup vegetable oil
1/2 tablespoon vanilla
1 cup raisins
1 cup dried cranberries
1 cup date bits
Preheat oven to 250. Combine all dry ingredients (excluding fruit), then add in liquids and mix with your hands. Spread over 2 large cookie sheets, bake for 2 hours, stirring after the first hour or so. Let cool completely, then add dried fruit & store in airtight jars.
+1 on Kashi cereals.
As far as keeping you full, a good balance of fat, protein, and fiber is key! I always chuckle when people eat a cup of cereal with half a cup of skim milk for a total of <200 calories (at 7:00) and then complain that they're hungry by ten. Well, of course you are! If I aim for a breakfast of around 500 cals, I a) don't get hungry until lunchtime, and b) eat less the rest of the day. Even the best cold cereal will likely let you down in the fat department unless you're eating it with copious amounts of whole milk, so throw a handful of almonds into one of those yummy Kashi cereals and you're set.
My go-to most mornings is bircher muesli, because I can make most of it the night before. I just get up, mix in the fruit and yogurt, and I'm out the door. I use this recipe, cut down to one serving: http://www.taste.com.au/recipes/494/b... but with more berries, or whatever other fruit I have on hand. It's insanely, unaccountably delicious.
Ate Grape Nuts for years until I decided it could've been responsible for a couple of cracked teeth. Now my go-to cereal is Nature's Path "Heritage" flakes, made with wheat, oats, spelt, barley, millet & quinoa. Good flavor, not too sweet, and -- most important -- doesn't get soggy that quickly. Look for it in the natural food section. (TJ's has it too.)
My normal every-other-day cereal (alternate w/eggs) is the Go-Lean Crunch, which I eat with milk and a sliced banana on it. My special-treat cereal is Grape-Nuts, or rather Ralphs (Kroger) store-brand knockoff, served the same way. My dirty little secret with those is the half-cup of half-and-half I pour over the cereal maybe ten minutes before pouring on the low-fat. This is a holdover from childhood, taught to me by my butterfat-loving Grandpa Kuntz, who always had "coffee cream" on his breakfast table. Not only does it move those pebbles well out of tooth-breaking range, it endows them with a warm richness that the low-fat renders less cloying.
Have you compared the nutritional labels? Based on the labels that I find online Heritage has no more fiber, and more sugar (and calories) than Cheerios.
Both are basically oat flour and sugar. Heritage adds a bunch of other flours after sugar. Do those flours really change the taste, texture or nutritional content? Or are they just a way of 'padding the resume'?
Oats are pretty high in fiber. But that fiber is soluble, so it does not taste as rough as wheat bran. Both types of fiber a beneficial.
I haven't looked at the labels in a long time, much less side-by-side, if only because I really prefer the taste and texture of Heritage Os -- they're much crunchier and hold up better to milk, plus they have a vaguely molasses-y flavour.
I do like Cheerios, though, and since they're infinitely cheaper, I buy them more often.