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Breakfast Cereals with Fruit – Tried and Tasted

With breakfast being "the most important meal of the day" and everyone needing their "5-a-day" portions of fruit, fruity cereal seems like a match made in heaven's kitchen. But as usual it's not always easy to pick the tasty healthy foods from those that are a little flakey.

So, always in need of a wake-up, the WLR Taste Team stepped up to test low fat breakfast cereals with added fruit. Spoons at the ready, it was crunch time.

Table 1: Breakfast Cereals with Fruit Compared
Product Sainsbury's BGTY Balance with Red Fruit Waitrose Special Choice with Raspberries, Strawberries & Cherries Kellogg's Special K Red Berries
  Sainsburys BGTY Cereal Waitrose Speaial Choice Cereals Kellogg's Special K
Ranking 1 2 3
Our Conclusion A good texture carrying a fairly good cereal. Not everyone's favourite, and the fruits may be too tart for some, but this floated to the top of the test. Great as a dry snack. Fairly bland and not trying very hard to be distinguishable from the rest. To wake your taste buds it's more of a pleasant radio station than a screeching alarm clock. One of the best for cereal flakes, as you might hope from the large K on the front of the pack, but the fruit pieces, though nicely whole, may be too sharp and sweet for some.
Serving Size 30g + 125ml semi-skimmed milk 30g + 125ml semi-skimmed milk 30g + 125ml semi-skimmed milk
Calories (kcal) 166 166 171
Fat (g) 2.5 2.5 2.5
Table 2: More Breakfast Cereals with Fruit Compared
Product Weetaflakes Raisin, Cranberry & Apple Asda Vitality with Red Fruit Nestle Fitnesse & Fruit
  Weetaflakes Asda Vitality Nestle Finesse
Ranking 4 5 6
Conclusion Described by one of the team as looking "fierce" and this gradually made more sense. An overpowering coriander presence, and very spicy aftertaste lurking in the low calorie ratings, intimidated the judging. Not a challenger for top cereal. Top criticism fought between the "baby food"-like flakes and the "unnaturally sweet" fruit pieces. Without milk, you get the real contrast between dry, bland flakes and the dry, hyper-sweet fruit. Not hugely popular with the team; some wondering if they were eating bits of the box. Though the fruit pieces tasted more natural than some of the others. Significantly better when dry; the fruit definitely feeling more natural as well.
Serving Size 40g 30g + 125ml semi-skimmed milk 30g + 125ml semi-skimmed milk
Calories (per serving) 135 170 171
Fat (g) (per serving) 0.5 2.5 2.4
Table 2: More Breakfast Cereals with Fruit Compared
Product Weight Watchers Multi-Grain Flakes with Apple
  Weight Watchers Multi-grain Flakes
Ranking 7
Conclusion Described as "off" and "like mouldy bread" this had a disappointing taste and feel in the mouth and seemed reluctant to leave, clinging on to teeth. A little better when eaten dry.
Serving Size 30g + 100ml semi-skimmed milk
Calories (per serving) 147
Fat (g) (per serving) 2.1

Although there were no real stand-out winners the taste test showed a wider range of quality than you might expect. It's a very competitive market and the fruity-milk taste can be a difficult one to get right. Maybe the manufacturers are playing it a little bit safe. Maybe we've taken fruity cereals as far as we can for now.

Either way, with all the options here around 1% fat, and quite low in calories for cereals, they would each make a fairly healthy breakfast. Though it's worth remembering the few bits of fruit per bowl are mainly for flavour and you would need about ten bowls to get 1 portion of fruit. Adding your own fresh fruit to cereal would give a more nutritious start to the day.

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