Sainsbury’s Choco-Hazelnut Squares

I have to give some credit to Sainsbury’s here.

Most imitations are blatant, wholesale rip-offs of the branded good. Today we’re talking about an imitation product of the Kellogg’s Krave cereal: cereal squares filled with chocolate or hazelnut ganache.

Sainsbury’s took this idea, but with one pretty major difference. They’ve sold it in handy lunch-box sized packs, marketing it as an “on-the-go” breakfast cereal alternative which does not require milk. Although this concept is new in the UK (cereals as packaged on the go-no-milk snacks), an earlier review of Cadbury’s Chocolate Squares in SouthEast Asia on this blog shows that it’s been around in the eastern market for a year or two.

Sainsburys choco hazelnut squares(2)

Although Nestle has got it’s 5-in-1 sachets of Cheerios and Cookie Crunch in supermarkets, those aren’t advertised as “milk-free” alternatives (then again, eating cereal out of the box has been something so many of us have been doing!)

So you see: the packet itself is small, at 40g, constituting what “should be” one serving of cereal. I paid 59p for this; which is pretty expensive considering an average 375g box of cereal costs less than 2 pounds per box, and which contains upwards of 8-10 servings.

I don’t like the animal on the packet. I (think) it’s an Owl, and 20 guesses how Sainsbury’s related that to it’s Choco-Hazelnut squares. It clearly does not exclude the “children” target market, given its colours and graphics which could appeal both to young and old.

Small squares. Deformed. Bent? Sheesh. Talk about some bad product consistency here. In my history of eating “squared” cereals, I’ve never encountered such mishaps. Broken is fine, but totally misshaped? That points to some manufacturing defects in the product “baking / forming” itself, which shouldve been picked up early in the developmental process.

Sainsburys choco hazelnut squares

At least it’s light and puffy, despite it’s thi character. To me that’s a good thing, since this leads on to the thicker (texturally) ganache. Too thick an exterior wouldn’t let you enjoy the smoothness of the inner filling; and this cereal avoids that pitfall. It’s got a good crunch initially as well, which collapses into the light puff, and finally, the ganache.

I wonder if it’s worth mentioning this; but I thought the corners were  sharp; angular squares are appealing, but I can imagine something too “sharp” being dangerous to little mouths (I.e Kids).  This might be due to the thin-ness of each piece, since a “fat” corner wouldn’t be sharp would it; but I guess that’s something we’ll have to ask the manufacturer.

The outer shell of the cereal didn’t taste very wheaty: some might like this, some might not. It was more like a “pillow puff” version of Cornflakes, with a clear corn / grit taste to it. It’s also lightly sweetened; I did not detect any “distinct” sweetness worth mentioning on its own.

The ganache was dull as well. It wasn’t “bad” tasting. It had little hazelnut aromas, not even the cheap-sweet-nutella-esque that is so common in hazelnut confectionery. I suppose one can’t expect very much from a grocery store brand. Kellogg’s Chocolate Hazelnut Krave beats this on Hazelnut taste hands-down. There was “chocolate”. Nothing deep-cocoa-ey, but just plain sweetness. As you can tell, I’m having difficulty explaining the taste characteristics of this cereal. It’s just that bland.

A sad thing then, that what was the perfect “canvas”  (the puff) for the ganache had ultimately gone to waste. Sainsbury’s Choco Hazelnut Squares’ ganache was a let-down.

Nutritionally, I’d expect this to fare better, sugar-wise, then Krave. This wasn’t the case. There isn’t much too different between this cereal and Krave’s nutritionals. At 420kcal /100g, they’re roughly identical, sad to say. The 40g serving-size  pack that you buy this in will surprise you as well, as 40g isn’t very much.

(Sorry for not having a picture of this one. I snapped one, but it was blurry, and oddly enough didn’t show that it was blurry when I previewed the shot after.)

Sorry Sainsbury’s, but Kellogg’s Krave takes the cake, and it’s cheaper for the box too.

-The Exercising Male

Mornflake Orchard Oat Granola

Sorry for the lack of reviews recently folks – it has certainly been a busy time with Christmas coming up, but do not fear there is another new review today of a delicious granola from Mornflake.

Although I flit to and fro trying various different types of granola, this one is always a staple in our house, one of my family members absolutely adores it- she eats it hot, she eats it cold with milk or smothered in yoghurt in a delicious parfait..and I can certainly see why she loves it so much as it is absolutely delicious!

Mornflake Apple & Sultana Granola

The granola holds a wonderful light apple flavour, whilst including some freeze dried apple pieces and a good amount of juicy moist sultanas that add a tad extra sweetness to the overall cereal. However it is the texture that I find to be the most pleasing; to me there is a very fine line between too crunchy and too soft – too crunchy and I feel like I’m going to crack my teeth, yet too soft and it just dissipates instantly in milk. Mornflake, well done, as you’ve definitely got it right on this one – although the granola clusters aren’t huge and there are quite a few “tiddly” ones the texture is ideal; it holds its shape well in milk for a considerable amount of time yet still has that gorgeously chewy flavour we all desire when tucking into a bowlful of granola.

Mornflake Apple & Sultana Granola

Of course; however; with any granola, this doesn’t come lightly on the calorie scale and you can soon find yourself pouring a huge bowl that seems a lot less than it actually is in terms of weight – so maybe not one to buy if you’re trying to lose some weight (after Christmas of course, when all the New Year’s resolutions begin). Nevertheless if you don’t really care and just wish to tuck into a good bowl of tasty cereal then I can’t recommend this more…and the best way to eat it? In my opinion has definitely got to be parfait style…sorry milk!

Mornflake Orchard Oat Granola
per 100g

432kcal
8.2g protein
64.6g carbs (22.1g sugars)
13.7g fat (6.2g saturates)
8.9g fibre
0.03g salt

Nature Path Love Crunch Aloha Blend

American granola always seems so much better than the UK varieties; more innovative flavours that never seem to disappoint in terms of satisfying chunks and delicious mix ins. I just knew then, that when one of my family members was going over to the US a month back that I had to say “pretty please” and do my sweetest smile and hope that they would bring me back some cereal I requested.

Thankfully they did and so here I am reviewing one of the delicious morsels that was brought back : Nature Path Love Crunch Aloha Blend.

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I’d tried the Carrot Cake blend before and had fallen in love therefore I was hoping that the Aloha Blend would be equally inspiring;  crunchy granola clusters, toasted coconut, juicy pineapple and huge white chocolate chunks..I mean really what’s not to like?!

I love how huge the clusters are in this granola; there’s certainly no skimping when it comes to the hefty crunchy oat morsels and the white chocolate chunks..all I can say is “wow”, this is the type of  cereal where you just know you’re gonna end up rooting around in the bag to try and find all of the ‘good bits’ and then when you come to pour yourself a bowl..all you’re left with is the oaty clusters!

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The sweet white chocolate, refreshingly juicy pineapple flavours and the earthy toasted coconut create a wonderful mix of flavours that when combined with the granola base just take you away on a tropical taste sensation (I know cheesy or what, but really I can’t express how good a cereal this is).

The granola clusters soften ever so slightly on the outside once popped into milk but still remain a deliciously crisp centre; whilst the milk is flavoured in a perfectly sweet creamy pineapple/coconut flavour..a bit like a non alcoholic pina colada. Wowza!   I know this cereal isn’t particularly cheap in comparison to other granola on the market, I think in the States it is priced around $5.99 for around a 400g bag which is pretty hefty; however if you want a special treat it is definitely worth it. It’s probably a good thing I can’t get my hands on it more easily or else I’m pretty sure both my waistline and purse would be suffering!

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Nature’s Path Love Crunch Aloha Blend
per 100g
500kcal
67g carbs (20g sugar)
7g protein
23g fat (7g saturates)
7g fibre

Dorset Cereals Toasted Coconut & Wheat Flakes

It’s always appealing to me when cereal companies produce small one serving packets – either for on the go, or just to try before you launch into buying a big box and end up eating a cereal that you’re not too keen on for weeks on end! Dorset Cereals started out just making various different muesli but recently they have expanded into granola, wheat flakes and the like.

Dorset Cereals Toasted Coconut & Wheat Flakes

The thing that really appealed to me about the Toasted Coconut & Wheat Flakes variety was the fact that it seemed to be a mixture of all three: oats, oat granola clusters, wheat flakes, pieces of dried coconut, dried fruit & sunflower seeds; it was like a cross breed between various different types of cereal.

I am pleased to say that there was no scrimping on the amount of dried fruit here with a decent 38% consisting of raisins, flame raisins, dates & dried apricot; meaning that every spoonful had a succulent sweet piece of moist juicy fruit. Unfortunately however this is about where the good points end for this cereal; yes the coconut flakes and the sunflower seeds add a nice earthy element to it and yes, the granola adds a bit of body against the lighter toasty wheat flakes and oats, but ultimately its just extremely average.

Dorset Cereals Toasted Coconut & Wheat Flakes

The flavour I found to be quite bland and unexciting and for all of you people out there that think that eating “boring” cereals like muesli etc is just like eating cardboard/rabbit food then this is probably one of the culprit cereals to re-enforce this image. The state of affairs becomes slightly worse when left in milk for a while with the wheat flakes becoming like soggy pieces of cardboard floating in a pool of milk dotted with delicious pieces of dried fruit that deserved such a better background cereal base.

Dorset Cereals Toasted Coconut & Wheat Flakes

You’d think with this being quite a “bland” cereal that it would be relatively healthy/low calorie..to make matters worse..its not! At 381kcal per 100g its hardly the lightest of cereals on the waistline and for that many calories you certainly could get a lot better.

Dorset Cereals Toasted Coconut & Wheat Flakes
per 100g

381 kcal
8.2g protein
54g carbs (28.2g sugar)
8g fat (3.5g saturates)
8g fibre

Sainsbury’s Wholegrain Cinnamon Malties

It is with this review that I have to bring you some shocking news my friends – I think there has been some slight inter-continental cereal “hanky panky” going on in Sainsbury’s cereal innovation department. When I popped into my local Sainsbury’s a few weeks ago I noticed these new own brand Cinnamon Malties gracing the shelves; cinnamon is so often a flavour that is completely overlooked in the UK and despite me despising it as a child I can’t get enough of it now so was pleased to see something a bit different compared to the usual boring flavour combinations we are subjected to.

Sainsburys Wholegrain Cinnamon Wheaties

 

Essentially, from the packaging, these “Malties”..oh wait no, not just “Malties” but “Wholegrain Malties”, looked as if they were the same structure as the popular Nestle breakfast cereal “Shreddies”; albeit with cinnamon flavouring and accompanied by a flying super-hero type figure who obviously thinks these Malties are so good that he just cannot resist pointing at them with his big yellow finger whilst eating a spoonful of the things in the other hand (be careful Superhero Malty that you don’t crash into the gigantic sized bowl!)

Obviously these are marketed at children yet are trying to portray they are also a healthy choice so parents don’t have to feel too bad about buying their kids a box full of them – “wholegrain”, “full of fibre”, “low fat”..need I go on.

Sainsburys Wholegrain Cinnamon Wheaties

So you may wonder what I am babbling on about with “inter-continental cerealy hanky-panky”; well you see these aren’t really like Shreddies – infact I’d say these were a cross-breed between Shreddies and the well known American Cereal Cinnamon Toast Crunch. When I poured myself a bowl full of them and took the initial bite I immediately noticed that these had far more of a “crunch” and “bite” to them than the usual Shreddies; much more akin to the texture of Cinnamon Toast Crunch..maybe even crunchier! I know is that possible?!

It feels as if the “Malties” are coated in a sort of sugar glaze..however looking on the ingredients list they aren’t..whatever it is these hold up superbly in milk and stay crunchy for a remarkable length of time. As usual I preferred mine warmed up and they did start to soften a bit then, but still held an unusual firmness to them that gave a nice extra “bite”.

The flavour is exactly as described really – “cinnamon” and “malt”; nevertheless they do have quite an overall sweet flavour to them but the wheaty malty flavour stops this becoming one of those sickly breakfast cereals where you are worrying about how much sugar you are actually consuming first thing on a morning; although looking at the nutritionals it still does pack quite a hefty sugar punch!

Sainsburys Wholegrain Cinnamon Wheaties

So there you have it folks – Sainsburys have produced something that look like Shreddies yet taste/texture wise are similar to Cinnamon Toast Crunch and have a surprising firmness when poured into a bowl of ice cold milk – maybe its because these aren’t “knitted by Nanas” but instead seem to have been plucked out of the air from strange “Superhero Malty”.

Sainsbury’s Wholegrain Cinnamon Malties
per 100g

366kcals
8.3g protein
75.5g carbs (27.3g sugar)
1.5g fat (0.3g sats)
8.4g fibre
0.57g salt

Banana Nut Cheerios

Ah Cheerios; “so much goodness in those little Os” apparently, yet the original variety I find to be fairly displeasing, not particularly appetising and with not the best of nutritionals compared to other “healthier” cereals, I rarely find myself striding home with a big box full of things. However in the U.S. of course everything is always bigger and better and the Cheerios market is no exception with various different flavours to choose from! Although not being a huge fan of regular Cheerios I just knew that I had to sample one of the wonderful varieties the U.S. market had to offer.

Banana Nut Cheerios

Looking through the supermarket aisle I decided upon “Banana Nut”; I rarely have the chance to sample banana flavoured cereals back home, other than the odd occasional instant oatmeal, so I knew that this was the one that I had to try!

It seems to be that, looking at the packaging, this is once again marketed as a “healthier” cereal to appeal to those that want something “nutritious” for breakfast but aren’t too keen on a bowlful of bran what with “wholegrain” and “flavoured with REAL banana”. However marketing, as we all know, can be deceiving and looking at the nutritionals of these they actually weigh in at a whopping 32g of sugar per 100g! Maybe not the healthiest choice after all.

Banana Nut Cheerios

Unlike other more calorific cereals – granola etc, the good thing about these Cheerios is that despite their higher sugar levels they are actually pretty light, so although you may pour yourself a large bowlful they’ll probably only end up weighing in at around 30-40g and leave you feeling as if you’ve had a decent portion despite minimal calories.

Banana Nut Cheerios

Anyway enough about the nutritionals! How do these taste? Well actually they are quite nice; the banana flavour is fairly authentic and real tasting and don’t worry there is no horrific artificial aftertaste burn to be had here! It is pleasantly sweet and mixes nicely with the well known oaty corny flavour of the standard Cheerio with a slight nutty background flavour element to be experienced.

They hold up pretty much the same as regular Cheerios in milk; staying crunchy/firm for a reasonable amount of time whilst the outside slowly softens up leaving a faint banana flavour in the milk – unfortunately the cereal milk left in the bowl isn’t ground-breaking, it’s lightly flavoured of banana but certainly nothing to write home about, I wouldn’t wanna buy a carton full of the stuff!

Banana Nut Cheerios

I ended up eating the rest of this box of Banana Nut Cheerios as I would the standard ones; either as a yoghurt topper or mixed in with other bits n bobs. I don’t know what it is about Cheerios but they never really appeal to me to have as a full bowl of cereal , I guess I just don’t find them exciting enough. Never mind, they were nice to try.

Banana Nut Cheerios
per 100g

357kcals
3.6g protein
85g carbs (32g sugar)
3.6g fat (0g saturates)
7g fibre

Barbara’s Chocolate & Peanut Butter Puffins

Barbara’s Chocolate & Peanut Butter Puffins..a flavour and variety that sounds as if it should be so unhealthy, yet marketed and sold as being “virtuous”, “healthy” and “all natural”. I’ve tried the original Peanut Butter Puffins in the past and I must say I was impressed, their crunchy corn like texture that softens delightfully in milk and with a flavour that tastes so real and authentic, (no awful artificial tang here), I was eager to see how the Chocolate & Peanut Butter variety fared up..I mean really its a combo made in heaven!

Barbara's Chocolate & Peanut Butter Puffins

Consisting of both chocolate & peanut butter flavour corn squares I’m sure this would appeal not only to children but also to adults and health-conscious folk alike who are looking for a cereal that will not only taste good but not make them feel awful about themselves after they’ve enjoyed a bowl! Tasting both squares dry, without milk, the chocolate flavour isn’t too overpowering with just a light cocoa flavour, not too sweet, but not so strong and intense that it’s going to deter from the nutty flavour the peanut butter corn squares were going to offer.

Barbara's Chocolate & Peanut Butter Puffins

Tucking into the peanut butter variety it didn’t seem as powerful as it did in the sole Peanut Butter Puffins cereal; nevertheless it was still good, with a delicious natural peanut butter flavour, with a slightly salty sweetened flavour that is so amazingly moreish.

Barbara's Chocolate & Peanut Butter Puffins

So what about the chocolate+peanut butter + milk? Pouring them all into a bowl and topping it with milk it does make for a tasty start for the morning, or for a snack throughout the day; however I wouldn’t say these were AMAZING. They aren’t the nicest Puffins I’ve tried; when eating them together you get a light cocoa/peanut flavour but these aren’t going to satisfy a huge chocolate hit on a morning and because of the lesser amount of Peanut Butter squares compared to the sole variety they don’t provide enough of a peanut butter hit for me either.

Barbara's Chocolate & Peanut Butter Puffins

Now I’m not saying these are awful, they are still tasty; the texture is really good, a nice solid crunch with the the outside softening slightly once left in milk, and a tasty peanut butter chocolate treat left at the bottom of your bowl in the form of cereal milk. And heck..these are Chocolate and Peanut Butter flavour yet have pretty good nutritionals with only 367kcal per 100g! I just wish they’d packed a bit more of a flavour punch. Unfortunately you can’t buy these in the UK but you can pick the up from   iherb.

Barbara’s Chocolate & Peanut Butter Puffins

per 100g

367kcal
80g carbs (20g sugars)
6.7g protein
3.3g fat (0g saturates)
10g fibre

Nestle Original Shreddies, Nestle Coco Shreddies

Shreddies. I have to admit that I had never taken much notice of this cereal prior to coming to Oxford  to commence my studies. Nestle Shreddies never quite caught my eye in the supermarkets in Singapore; there were tonnes of other options like Waffle Crisp, Cheerios, which you read so much more about online. Also, I couldn’t source the Shreddies maker-equivalent in the States, though I had read that Post used to make a version of it. (More on this at the end)

Nestle Shreddies seem to be a “bare-bones” cereal that no one quite bothers about. You could say that they are analogous to Cheerios, as a “base” cereal, hence the Coco Shreddies and Frosted Shreddies incarnations.

These were offered as an option during college breakfast in my first year, and I usually chose these over the muesli also offered; as these were plain, and I could top it off with some nutella diluted in milk, or with some Honey Sugar provided for the morning porridge.

Enough banter. Let’s get to it. The plain Shreddies will be discussed first; the Coco one later, as they only differ in an aspect or two.

A squarish creature with eyes, a mouth, arms, and legs, jumping in, or out, of your bowl of cereal. That’s what’s on the Nestle Shreddies Box. Clearly targeted towards kids / teens; not exactly marketed as a health food since it doesn’t make huge claims of “Cholestrol-lowering” powers or Fiber.

Nutrition-wise, this cereal is actually decent! The ingredients list shows that you’re essentially eating shredded wheat. So not too different from Shredded Wheat Biscuits; that explains the 4 – 5g of protein you get as well. The amount of sugar isn’t TOO alarming; not like Lion cereal (w/ 13g of sugar per serving!) Or the traditional Cocoa Krispies.

Texture and appearance-wise: you can see the obvious “net” structure; akin to a stiff deep-fryer basket. It’s hard too; as hard as you’d expect any “shredded wheat” cereal to be.


The picture should be able to show you its thickness. This gives it a crunchy, biscuity bite that reminds you of water crackers. They’re dense too; and sink to the bottom of the bowl.


There isn’t a caramelized exterior in the plain Shreddies, nor any shiny / glitzy coating akin to Nestle’s Honey Stars. I think that’s why the next point comes up…

In milk, these turn soggy fairly quickly. 2 to 3 minutes, I’d say. I think they lack the “armour” that some cereal manufacturers employ to keep their creations crunchy even in milk (such as a thick exterior ala Peanut Butter Bumpers). They don’t discolour in milk; which is a good thing I guess – it shows that you really ARE eating a plain, unadulterated wheat masterpiece.

Cardboard. That was my very first thought when I bit into this, soaked in milk, back in my first year. I regretted my choice of this cereal immediately. But; after a second, a third, a fourth, and a fifth bite, it grows on you. I realized this was the taste of wheat, that I had misinterpreted. It was earthy, and dull in a good way.  It was “well-bodied” like a solid 70-85% dark chocolate, or a “thick” Colombian coffee.

I doubt kids would like Nesle Shreddies though. I’m perplexed as to why the box-art is so kiddy-minded.

It’s time we talk about Coco Shreddies. They’re the same as the plain variety, except with a brown coating that’s meant to emulate chocolate.

As you can see from the first picture above- it’s a darker shade of brown here, akin to Koko Crunch, unlike Cocoa Krispies which are slightly lighter coloured. This coating is a sugary-one; it’s ALMOST caramelized as a shell on its, but dissolves quickly in your milk, and loses a fair amount of its colour. 

The brown coating gives it a powdery bite when you eat it dry, but yet retains the original’s texture in milk.

Chocolate-hit? Average. Making it similar to your average chocolate crispy cereal, without any rich dark chocolate hit; but simple. I have to admit – Coco Shreddies nails this chocolate bit in a basic, crave-ending sense. It’s like having Hersheys or Cadbury chocolate – you know what you’re in for, and you appreciate the simplicity.

Nutritionally, Coco Shreddies obviously have more sugar in them then the plain variety,  but it’s a worthwhile addition given the chocolate “add-on” it entails.

That’s that. Nestle Shreddies is something more of us should sample as a healthier cereal alternative. For those in the States, I haven’t been able to source who makes these on your end. Perhaps these exist as Chex? I know Post does these in Canada though.

Give Shreddies a chance.

-The Exercising Male

Chocolate Lucky Charms – General Mills

This post should ruffle some feathers.

(Note – this is a “British / UK blog” perspective on an American cereal)

In the numerous debates of which Chocolate Breakfast Cereal reigns supreme, the likes of Chocolate Chex, Chocolate Lucky Charms, Chocolate Frosties, Chocolate Cheerios, Cocopops, Kokoa Crunch, Cocoa Puffs, and Count Chocula have been named. Note that I have only named cereals which have some potential of colouring your milk: “healthy” variants like Special K don’t count, since the remnants of chocolate in that one hardly qualify.

Chocolate Lucky Charms aren’t available in the UK. You can get them from American Soda, with relatively cheap shipping too, since they don’t charge some GBP5 flat rate like most online grocers do.

Attack of the elves. It doesn’t get much better than that. The box art consists of this creature munching on a HUGE bowl of cereal. Does this attract kids? I have absolutely no idea. It actually seems almost nightmarish, akin to a massive Clown attack (many of us have a secret clown phobia that lies deep within us.)

Chocolate cereal with dehydrated marshmallows. Not much deviation from typical Lucky Charms here – I suppose there isn’t any reason for changing a successful formula that’s lasted through the decades.

Curious shapes. Another manufacturing masterpiece – akin to the Cascadian Farm Clifford Crunch shapes which had holes in them. Wait a minute – these two cereals don’t merely resemble each other in aesthetic complexity:  they DO have similar shapes. That’s odd. The only difference being their colour – one is massively cocoa-stained.

Size is similar too, so I need not delve into that.

The key difference in Chocolate Lucky Charms is the heavy-handed addition of dehydrated marshmallows. These are similar to the ones in the conventional Lucky Charms, multi-coloured little tykes. You can see that there really ARE quite a lot of marshmallows in this cereal. The producers aren’t deceptive producers like Kellogg’s who add minuscule chocolate pieces to Special K Chocolate. The only way to explain this, would be through a picture.

Texture – ooh. I’d expected threethings:
1) Typical chocolate / cocopops crunch
2) Some crispy, then puffy bites of marshmallow
3) Cereal gets mushy like any typical Cocoa Puff out there.

Guess what? My expectations were met.

There’s nothing SPECIAL about this one. Mediocre crunch, expected marshmallow texture, expected duration-to-mushy-ness. Note how I don’t say I was “disappointed” here. I had expected this.

Maybe the good part of this cereal is something I will never understand. I think it’s the NOSTALGIA evoked when one chews on the marshmallow; the yield of the crispy crunch to the “dissolving puff” of it, that I can’t associate with, having never eaten this cereal in my childhood.

Texture – PLAIN, with some surprise through the marshmallows.

Oh yes – a note on the cereal milk produced. This one stains your milk. A nice brown – like your horribly sweet Cocoa Krispies. Not just physically – but you can detect that faint chocolate taste in the milk as well, though not as apparently as those in Cocopops / Krispies. Some would say this alone makes Chocolate Lucky Charms worthwhile as a chocolate cereal. I don’t think so. That’s just one aspect of the following.

Now: the deciding factor in most battles of the “Chocolate Breakfast Cereal” kind, which many so-called cereals have lost: Does Chocolate Lucky Charms confer the chocolate hit that so many of us crave?



Nope. Sad to say. To me, it fails to. Why?

On biting into this, there was a vague familiarity in the cereal. As the trapdoors of cereal memories opened in my mind, with tastes of previously-had breakfast cereals revealing themselves, I realized these tasted of Cocoa Krispies. Plain, simple, low-cocoa content sweetness. I had expected so much more – taste-wise – of the famed Chocolate Lucky Charms which theimpulsivebuy, Grubgrade, and others had spoken of. The chocolate-y flavour was there: it was just too simple.

Of course, you could say that I’m being an ass for expecting so much. After all, this is a kids’ cereal we’re talking about here. Not some artisan chocolate product.

“You buy these off the shelves, for crying out loud.”

My rebuttal: Yeah, but if Reese’s Puffs, Cap’n Crunch, and Barbara’s Peanut Butter Puffins can give me that rich, dense PB hit, why can’t this? If some granolas can give me a decent cocoa hit, why can’t this?

Chocolate aside, the marshmallows were fabulous. Lightly sweetened to match its light texture, a dissipating, fine sugar-compound that is more complex than you think, as if it was “packable cake icing”. Phew. I see why people can succeed on creating businesses around the sole purpose of selling these cereal marshmallows. Cereal marshmallows are incredibly versatile, and match any breakfast cereal base.

Nutritionals:  120 kcal for a 3/4 cup. Not bad – similar to your range of chocolate breakfast cereals out there (pretty close to Chocolate Cheerios too). So this cereal doesn’t score particularly highly on this point.

Plain-jane chocolate cereal with some fancy-schmancy, yet time-tested marshmallows to add a crispy-puffy bite. I wouldn’t pick this over Cocopops for chocolate-y-ness, but I would pick it over the rest for it’s marshmallows.

UK readers: pop by American Soda, to get some!

-The Exercising Male

Reese’s Peanut Butter Puffs

The line between cereal & chocolate/candy is slowly being blurred it seems;; only recently in the UK have we started to see the development, Lion Bar/Crunch cereal from Nestle for example, but over in the States this sort of stuff has been going on for decades, I have here an example for you brought to you courtesy of American Soda, Reese’s Peanut Butter Puffs, consisting of Reese’s Peanut Butter & Hershey’s Cocoa to create a cereal containing a mixture of peanut butter and chocolate crunchy corn puffs.

Reeses Peanut Butter Puffs

I wish that peanut butter was as big a “thing” here as it is in America, the endless choice of peanut butter cereals that grace their aisles, ranging from the healthy to the not so healthy, I believe that this is meant to be one of the latter..I mean any cereal based on candy can’t exactly be brimming with goodness and vitality can it, but yet it still seems that General Mills are ensuring that this cereal is Wholegrain guaranteed and fortified with all the essential vitamins and minerals; however these work out at around 400kcal per 100g and around 35g sugar, not the worst offender I’ve seen but still pretty sugary, but I guess when you compare it to the likes of Frosties..weighing in at 37g sugar per 100g..I know what I’d rather be munching on!

Reeses Peanut Butter Puffs

Taking this all into account I guess you’ve gotta view them as more of a treat than a breakfast cereal that you would wake up to every morning to keep you going through out all of the day..and once you’ve got this clear you can begin to fully enjoy just how delicious these little puffs are! So hey ho they may have a lot of sugar in, but they don’t taste too ridiculously sweet…not so cloyingly so that you’re left with that searing throat burn that we all know so well. The chocolate puffs have more of a light milk chocolate flavour rather than anything deep and defying, no where near as strong as anything like Nesquik or Coco Pops etc, with the peanut butter puffs being allowed to take centre stage with all the strong salty sweet flavours of the innards of Reese’s you have come to know and love.

The puffs themselves hold up pretty well in milk; they don’t go too soggy and have a sort of waxy sugary sheen to them that stops them just completely disintegrating and turning into mush; nevertheless they do have a nice give way to them in the milk allowing their flavours to seep in to create our beloved cereal milk, yum! To me this is one of the best aspects of this cereal; not only how delicious it is to eat dry, minus milk, as a sort of popcorn style snacking treat, but also how amazing it is complete with milk and as you slurp down the chocolatey peanut butter milk that remains..who cares about the calories and sugar because it is so totally worth it!

Reeses Peanut Butter Puffs

These are fairly hard to lay your hands on in the UK  but you can order them online at American Soda and wait with anticipation until your delicious peanut butter chocolate cereal arrives…mm!