Finding “real food” boxed cereal is not the easiest thing to do! But I know not everyone is looking for perfection so today I’m going to give you the low down on some of the bad, better and best options that are out there. Our personal favorite cereal is homemade granola, but we do buy boxed cereal on occasion for the kids or house guests.
My Rules for Cereal
- Nothing Artificial
If the cereal looks neon in color or contains artificial sweeteners (or flavors) then just move right along. This one is a non-negotiable for me!
- Whole Grains
Is the cereal 100% whole grain? Or does it at least contain more whole grains than refined grains (i.e. what’s listed first on the ingredient label)?
- Low or No Sugar
Does the cereal contain added refined sugar (listed under a variety of names such as cane juice, rice syrup, agave, corn syrup, etc.)? If so, how high up is it on the ingredient list and how many grams of sugar are listed on the nutrition label? Ideally I prefer options with no more than 2 or 3 grams of added sugar per serving.
- Short List of Ingredients
The longer the list of ingredients the more (unwanted) additives a product likely contains! Shorter is better in most cases.
Breakdown of Cereals
There are of course so many things we could consider when looking at cereals, but based on my criteria …here’s how some of the more popular brands stack up!
Really Bad (The Worst Offenders!)
Is this post going to change what breakfast looks like at your house? I’d love to know the details in the comments!