My personal favourite cereals growing up were Weetabix’ Alpen muesli – Original, not the low sugar version (I don’t think it existed back then!) and Kellogg’s Coco Pops. Both of these are pretty high in sugar and all that other nasty stuff we’re not supposed to be feeding our children. I still eat them both (less of the Coco Pops). I also eat sugary sweets and full fat Coke (If I’m going to drink Coca-Cola I may as well go all out). I’m an adult though, and therefore aware of the crap I’m putting into my body. I try to be better with Mushroom. Sugar did not pass his lips until he turned one. He had a chocolate cupcake that day (he ate the whole thing at once and grinned) and now has such things occasionally and understands that they’re treats (Coco Pops included). So, when Kellogg’s got in touch to say they were launching four new wholegrain cereals, with a lower sugar content (low enough that they can now advertise on Children’s TV) I was interested. I accepted the offer of a box of each to try.
The first thing I did was look at the nutritional information. I won’t list it all here but one average, each of the above cereals have (per 30g serving) around 113 calories, between 5 and 9g sugar and the salt ranges from 0.1 – 0.42g (Honey Loops – guilty). I compared these to Rice Krispies (115 calories, 3g sugar and 0.3g salt) and Mushroom’s current favourite – Weetabix’ Ready Brek (112 calories, 0.3g sugar and less than 0.10g salt). It’s not that different! However, I looked up the nutritional information for Coco Pops and found (116 calories, 0.8g fat and 11g sugar)! So although nutritionally, the clear winner here is Mushroom’s favourite, the new cereals are marginally healthier than other sugary/chocolate covered cereals out there. Looking into this has made me think more about what Mushroom eats for breakfast but as some days he just has a banana, I think we’re getting it about right.
So… The new cereals. Well, despite the makeover, they still have a fairly high sugar and salt content so they would be more of a treat for Mushroom but we tasted them all over the course of a week (both with milk for breakfast and dry, as a snack), and here’s what we thought:
Yum Yum* score: 2
Dry taste test: He liked the crunch but tried a few others before coming back to these ones.
With milk test: He refused to have these with milk until today, when he swiped some from my bowl! He asked for more.
Mummy score: I like that they stay crunchy. They are very sweet, but I like that about them so 8/10
Coco Pops Croc Prints
Yum Yum score: 3
Dry taste test: He ate one of these, his eyes widened, he tried something else (a Honey Pop) and went back to the Croc Prints, eating them all.
With milk test: He liked them at first but as they started to go soggy he spat them out!
Mummy score: Not keen on these at all. I agree with Mushroom that they go soggy far to quickly but they are too chocolatey for me to start with, I think. 4/10
Rice Krispies Multigrain Shapes (Strawberry flavour)
Yum Yum score: 2
Dry taste test: He ate one, frowned and spent some time examining the next. Something then ‘clicked’ I guess, as he nodded, said ‘Yeah,’ and slowly ate another before moving on
With milk test: He wouldn’t have them with milk
Mummy score: Not keen on the strawberry flavouring (it’s my least favourite milkshake flavour, which is effectively what you get in the end…). They taste alright with milk but I have to eat them while they’re still crunchy. 6/10
Yum Yum score: 1
Dry taste test: Again, he liked the crunch. Dry, he preferred these to the loops.
With milk test: He enjoyed these and occasionally asks for them after eating his fill of porridge
Mummy score: I like these, they remind me of a cereal I used to eat when I was younger and they stay fairly crunchy too. 7/10
While the Coco Pops Croc Prints were a clear winner in the dry taste tests, Mushroom made the most appreciate noises while eating the Honey Loops. This was the only time he asked for more. However, at the end of the week I let him choose his own cereal. What did he pick? The Ready Brek. And he asked for fruit. I guess he knows what his body needs! I, on the other hand, have been eating the Honey Loops and they have nearly all gone (I think Mr B likes these too so it’s not just me)! I’m sure Mushroom will ask for the others at some point, and I will continue to give them as dry snacks sometimes as they are very handy for that… I’d recommend them all but I’ll be giving them more as an occasional treat rather than an everyday breakfast cereal.
If you would like try the new cereals for yourself, then you’re in luck! Kellogg’s have given Mushroom and I a box of each for one lucky winner. It’s enough cereal to keep you going for some time! To win, just add a comment in the box below telling me what your favourite childhood cereal was and what your child(ren) usually eat for breakfast. The winner will be picked at random – I’m just
nosy curious! The competition closes on Friday 29 March.
*Very scientific this, it’s the number of times Mushroom says ‘Yum yum,’ while eating.
Disclosure: We were sent four free boxes of cereal (one of each in the new range) and asked for feedback. Writing a blog post was optional. Opinions are mine (Mushroom’s Mum) and Mushroom’s own. Kellogg’s are providing the four free boxes for the competition. Read my full PR and disclosure policy here.