Let’s Dish: Cereal Rocks!

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by Amy Flanigan on September 7, 2009 · 40 comments

All signs are pointing toward dishing about cereal.

First, while Haley was in the hospital, it’s one of the only things she would eat.

Second, my friend John’s fairly recent Facebook status read, “mixing three different cereals into one bowl for breakfast. I’m such a grain gourmet in the morning.”

Third, I came across The Cereal Project, an online database of U.S. cereals. Hoo ah.

Since we’ve had to tighten the reigns on our food budget, one of the items that has been hit the hardest is the amount of boxed cereal I buy. Not meat, not cheese, not snacks. Nope. Cereal! Seeing how much it costs these days, you can clearly understand why it’s one of the first to get the axe.

But I love cereal.

I love cereal because it’s easy, it’s filling, and requires no cooking. I can actually recall the first few months after Haley was born, eating cereal not only for breakfast, but also lunch and dinner. Standing up, of course.

And I’m not picky. I love all kinds with milk or just in the palm of my hand to snack on. I love granola on top of yogurt. I love corn flakes mashed up and used as breadcrumbs. I love healthy bran flakes, and yes, I love the sugar laden variety that makes gashes in the roof of my mouth.

I love cereal. It rocks.

…I’m eating a bowl right now.

What about you? Thumbs up or thumbs down for cereal?

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{ 40 comments… read them below or add one }

red mill cereal November 7, 2009 at 5:36 am

In search of ideas that fall into this model

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nora@ffr September 13, 2009 at 9:25 am

wow!! i should try this soon!! yummm!!

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Andrea@WellnessNotes September 12, 2009 at 4:29 pm

I haven’t had cereal in a long time… But I think it’s about time to get some again… :)

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daphne September 11, 2009 at 11:54 am

hehhe. I’m more in love with muesli-especially homemade ones.

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Chopper September 10, 2009 at 2:05 pm

“Muesli, it’s not just for prisoners anymore.”

I love it! Jude, be sure to mention that slogan to the marketing mucky-muck’s in cereal land! :-)

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Jude September 10, 2009 at 9:30 am

Muesli, it’s not just for prisoners anymore, Ethan!

Amy, now I understand why the cost of cereal is so high at your house. Have you considered a 12-step program for Paul’s addiction? I pity the fool who gets between him and his cereal bowl.

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Ethan September 9, 2009 at 9:58 pm

[Did you know that if you mix just the right parts Cinnamon Toast Crunch with Rice Krispies and Corn Bran, that you can make everything taste like Cinnamon Rice Krispy Corn Bran? So damn yummy.]

Add marshmallows, bake at 350° for 35 minutes, put a stick in it, and finish your conversation with me. I’m still sittin’ here…

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Paul September 9, 2009 at 9:44 pm

Well, haven’t we all just walked into Paul’s sweet spot…

I love cereal. I love it so much that I don’t give a hoot about cost. I don’t care who makes it or what’s in it. I’ll eat sugary leprechauns, multi-colored rabbits, crunchy captains, cinnamony chefs, frosted tigers, chocolatey counts, honey-nutted bees, and anything else I can get my hands on. I don’t care who makes it or what’s in it. I don’t care if it comes in a box or a bag. I don’t care if it has raisins or dried fruit or marshmallow chunks or a whole day’s supply of fiber. I don’t care if it has enough vitamins and minerals to make me big and strong. Put it in yogurt, put it with granola, share it with a European. I don’t care. I love cereal.

Every morning, I grab two cereals. I mix them together. If there is a little left of a third container, in it goes, including that two- or three-teaspoon helping of sugary cereal mash at the bottom of the bag. Right into the bowl. I rarely EVER eat just one type of cereal.

Let’s talk Milk. I will use any kind of milk in my bowl. Trevor is still at that “I need whole milk” age, so I use some of his sometimes. Sometimes I use the skim. Sometimes I use orange juice when we’re out of milk. Yes, I really do. I use orange juice.

I have eaten an entire box of cereal in one sitting. With milk in every bowl.

Did you know that if you mix just the right parts Cinnamon Toast Crunch with Rice Krispies and Corn Bran, that you can make everything taste like Cinnamon Rice Krispy Corn Bran? So damn yummy.

And I will eat it for breakfast. I will snack on it. I will eat it for dinner. I don’t care.

I love cereal.

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Ethan September 9, 2009 at 9:44 pm

Alex, our third-born, will have nothing but Cheerios to roll around in his ball. So we get Malt-O-Meal round things cause they’re cheaper. That should make everybody here happy.

As for muesli whatever, I never eat anything I can’t spell or pronounce or sounds like it’s given to prisoners. Sorry, Jude.

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Jude September 9, 2009 at 7:17 pm

Dorset muesli cereal was mentioned – I’m going to look for that. European’s got it right with their muesli, fruit and yogurt breakfast.

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Natashya September 9, 2009 at 5:33 pm

I am rather partial to cheerios. :)

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Amy September 9, 2009 at 11:53 am

Hey Chopper! Well, as I said in the actual post, cereal sure seems expensive to me. We’ve cut way back since Paul’s unemployment. The four of us go through SO much of it that I felt like I was heading back to Target every other to buy another box. And yes, add the price of milk, and I guess I might as well be cooking eggs every morning.

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food-4tots September 9, 2009 at 11:42 am

I seldom eat cereals. But since I discovered Dorset muesli cereal, I have it for breakfast quite frequent now.

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Chopper September 9, 2009 at 11:34 am

Very true. Add in the cost of milk and it does start to add up quickly. And as a kid I used to eat big bowls of cereal, or multiple bowls. Kids are funny that way. ;-)

As for smoking, yes it’s a terrible habit. But luckily it’s easy to quit…I’ve done it hundreds of times. ;-)

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Helen September 9, 2009 at 11:19 am

Chopper – I’m another one that thinks cereal is extremely expensive. Seems like you’re paying way more for the box than the actual food (marketing, like everything else.) No question that eating out or cooking a fancy breakfast is much for costly, but it gets pretty pricey when you have several kids. They can go through a box in one day. It adds up.

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Steph September 9, 2009 at 11:13 am

@Chopper – I think cereal is pretty expensive per ounce. Like chips. Big box, but the inside bag is barely full. And I hardly get anywhere close to 10 servings. Maybe I need smaller bowls ;-) Yes, clearly there are much more expensive items as you mentioned. Luckily I don’t smoke. Don’t know how people today can afford that!

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Chopper September 9, 2009 at 10:52 am

Everyone keeps talking about how expensive cereal is. Is it really THAT expensive? What is it, $4-$5 a box that offers about 10 servings or so? That’s not too outrageous. If you want to talk expensive, let’s talk the price or a carton of smokes or a bottle of good scotch! ;-)

Seriously, what’s a cheaper breakfast? Toast (with bread costing $3-$4 a loaf)? Eggs (at $2-$3 a carton)? Oatmeal (boring!)? What are people eating for breakfast instead? I’m just curious.

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jive turkey September 9, 2009 at 9:00 am

THUMBS UP. One of these days when I have 200 spare dollars laying around, I’m going to buy all the sugary cereals I haven’t had since I was a kid (Fruity Pebbles, I’m looking at you) and go to town. It’ll probably make me sick, but it will be so worth it.

Although I am very sad they discontinued my very favorite childhood cereal: Marshmallow Rice Krispies. OH HELL YES.

(Oh, and also? I HATE MILK. But will use it in my cereal.)

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Kim September 9, 2009 at 8:06 am

Eating it now! Special K with frozen black sweet cherries and a spoonful of wheat germ.

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Pigpigscorner September 9, 2009 at 7:10 am

Thumbs up for sure! I have cereal every morning without fail.

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Joanne September 9, 2009 at 5:50 am

I ADORE cereal and used to have it every night as a snack before bed. However, the expense got to me as well and so I’ve basically given it up. It tends to be pretty cheap at the drug stores around here (CVS, Rite Aid, Walgreens, Duane Read, Eckerd’s) but I figure I don’t really NEED it. Lucky Charms was always my favorite. And Honey Bunches of Oats with Cinnamon Clusters.

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Amy September 9, 2009 at 5:49 am

HI EVERYONE!! Thanks for joining in.

Can I just say that I am beside myself with shock…okay, not quite shock, at the amount of people that don’t care for cereal, but even more so, that don’t drink milk!! I cannot believe this.

At my house, we could buy a cow, we drink so much milk. Drink it. Not just with cereal, but in an actual cup. We probably go through 4 gallons a week. (I guess I need it, considering the Pepsi is rotting my bones away. Balance.)

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Julie September 8, 2009 at 11:48 pm

Hi Amy,

I do not eat cereal because of the Milk factor. (I don’t do Milk) However, the girls… different story. Now that they are older Sophmore & Seniors, with their sports schedules there are nights when we can’t eat together anymore so, it’s a Free-for-All which to them means cereal. My oldest loves Frosted Mini Wheats and the youngest Raisin Bran, both Sugar cereals, both both very cheap at Target. I don’t buy cereal anyhwhere but. FMW’s $2.33 on sale $2.67 for Raisin Bran and if you buy the Target brand of any you can get for $1.99 or less at times. Have your cereal and eat it too! Love your site!

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pam September 8, 2009 at 6:38 pm

Thumbs up! I love cereal so much that I make my own granola. No one else adds as much fruit and nuts as I like!

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Jan Winning September 8, 2009 at 11:08 am

Yeah….my kids would string cheerios on a (duh) string and wear the necklaces aound their necks….a ready (if not 100% immaculately clean) snack

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Lora September 8, 2009 at 11:06 am

Love cereal. Gets some fiber into my kids as well. Am a bit peeved at how prices are going through the roof on something that I believe is inexpensive to make, and the boxes are getting smaller. Hard to give up, though, as it can be such a reliable standby.

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Chopper September 8, 2009 at 12:56 pm

Thumbs up for cereal! I usually have a bowl of cereal every morning for breakfast, and I have since I was a kid. Except these days my tastes have changed to cereals like Total or Life, rather than Cap’n Crunch or Super Sugar Bombs.

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Jennifer September 8, 2009 at 11:45 am

I love cereal, but I haven’t eaten it (except at my sister’s house) in…hmmmm…about four plus years. It just got way too expensive. Besides the price, I also found I was unable (yes, absolutely unable) to stop at one bowl. And I admit it; I love the sugar laden kind, BUT I have to say my favorite is Rice Krispies.

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Karen September 8, 2009 at 11:37 am

Are you kidding? With three kids, I don’t know what I would do without cereal. THUMBS UP.

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Natasha - 5 Star Foodie September 8, 2009 at 10:23 am

I’m not big on milk, so I don’t often eat cereal. I like cereal bars though or granola by itself or on top of my acai bowl. My husband & daughter are big on cereal though, their favorite is Honey bunches of oats.

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Sharon September 8, 2009 at 9:45 am

With the price of most cereals, I would rather get my breakfast from other nutritious sources. Unless I have no choice, I will only buy cereal at Costco or on sale. Adding nuts and raisins to Cheerios or Bunches of Oats adds substance. I must admit, it is quick, easy and perfect for something on the light side, but most cereals on the supermarket shelves are just loaded with sugar. You might as well just eat a candy bar for breakfast. That will bring cheers from some!

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Jude September 8, 2009 at 9:20 am

Not a fan of cereal, although I’ll eat a bowl of Kashi once in a great while. What I loved as a kid I now find too dry, dusty and sugary. I opt for applesauce or yogurt instead.

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John September 8, 2009 at 9:03 am

I include oatmeal and the like (Malt-o-meal, Cream of Wheat, etc.) as cereals. Good for a change of pace, and much less expensive as the stuff in the box with pretty pictures on it.

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Jacqueline September 8, 2009 at 7:38 am

I have never been very fond of cereal, although I will have a notion to try it now and again. I like porridge in the winter and toast or yoghurt with fruit, the rest of the year.

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Rebecca (Foodie With Family) September 8, 2009 at 7:20 am

Personally? I’m not even a breakfast person. If I’m going to eat cereal it’s usually by the handful as a quick pick-me-up in the afternoon. Two of my five sons like it (one without milk as a rule) and three of them love it. But curiously, one of the boys really doesn’t like it for breakfast. He prefers, and I quote, ‘pastry’. (THAT is probably my fault.) My husband LOVES it but he’s happiest with my homemade granola.

The problem I have, and I’m curious as to whether anyone else has it too, is that there seems to be a great deal of waste with cereal (too much left in the bottom of the bowl, etc…) Considering the price of cereal these days the amount that goes uneaten seriously drives me up a wall.

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Nancy September 8, 2009 at 6:02 am

Yes, the cost of cereal could possibly eat us out of house and home. We go through so many boxes a week, but I have several growing kids. I never buy it without coupons – at my market there’s usually a 10 box for $10 deal.

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Lisa September 7, 2009 at 10:08 pm

Big cereal eater here, too. I’m partial to the kinds with nuts and fruit.

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Casey September 7, 2009 at 9:00 pm

Cereal is my favorite food. That and S’mores. Sick, I know.

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Anonymous September 7, 2009 at 8:16 pm

I love cereal but for a different reason than you – it pays the bills at our house!

My husband does a lot of engineering work for Malt O’ Meal in Northfield and sometimes he even brings a bag home!

Marie

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Mellissa September 7, 2009 at 7:00 pm

I LOVE LOVE LOVE cereal and try not to keep too much in the house because I will eat multiple bowls of it. I have found that cereal at Trader Joe’s is a bit more affordable or the store brands and try to limit myself to coupons as well. Having a bit of cereal is also the only time I actually drink milk so I use that as my ‘excuse’

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