Cereal. A word that evokes memories of soggy bran flakes, a Ziploc full of oaties eaten on the way out door and cocoa pops that turn a bowl of milk into a chocolate drink.
Cereal goes all the way back to 1863, where a fellow named James Caleb Johnson created the first breakfast cereal. So hard it was, it needed to be soaked overnight in milk, much like current day “overnight oats”, but I imagine not as tasty or Instagram worthy. Since then cereal has evolved from being a digestive aid, the breakfast of champions and a sugar laden snack to the current day where it toggles between the world of health food and sweet indulgence.
As I look at the four boxes of Herbivore Super Cereal taking up real estate in my pantry, it’s clear that it falls into the health food category. A cross between cereal and granola, Herbivore Super Cereal comes in four flavours: Coconut Cacao, Gingerbread, Vanilla Pecan and Fig and Cinnamon.
The ingredient list reads like the who’s who of the superfood world. Sprouted buckwheat, sprouted quinoa, flaxseeds, sesame seeds and chia seeds make up the base of all four flavours. The remaining ingredients are those which create the flavour.
Ginger, mixed spice and cinnamon combine to create the Gingerbread Super Cereal
Cacao and coconut combine to create the Coconut Cacoa Super Cereal.
Dried Figs and cinnamon are added to the Fig and Cinnamon Cacao
And Pecans and vanilla bean are added to the Vanilla Pecan Super Cereal.
Sweetened with banana and dates, Herbivore Super Cereal contains no added sugar and that comes through in the taste. It’s not a sweet cereal and you can identify the ingredients in each delicious clump.
It’s the type of cereal that makes you feel good after eating it. It’s also clumpy enough that you can pop in a Ziploc and have it as a snack. The Fig and Cinnamon was a personal favourite with its huge chunks of dried figs and the subtle cinnamon flavouring. Next came the Vanilla Pecan and Cacao Coconut followed by the Gingerbread.
Not a big cereal eater, the last time I had cereal was at New York’s KITH Treats store (a must visit) and that had more to do with the packaging than anything else. This time round, the taste was phenomenally better and the packaging? Have you seen the Herbivore Super Cereal Boxes? The boxes are adorable! They’re faced with fuzzy characters with open mouths in which you can see the Herbivore Super Cereal Peaking out. This is the type of box that makes you smile when looking at it and would make any kid choose it. The packets inside are delicate so open with care and for best storage empty the contents into a glass jar.
When it comes to nutrition and dietary needs Herbivore Super Cereal ticks all the boxes: Raw, Certified Organic, Certified Kosher, Hallaal, Gluten Free, Vegan, Preservative Free and no added sugars.
Much like Herbivore’s Kale chips, the packaging is biodegradable (which means you can basically plant it in your garden and let it decompose into the soil) and the box is printed with vegetable inks! It’s a product that’s good for you and the environment.
You don’t need directions to eat cereal. You can just pour it into a bowl and top with milk, yogurt and fruit. Or sprinkle it on top of a smoothie bowl. You can do either, but, that’s not what I did. Taking each box of Herbivore Super Cereal I created a recipe inspired by each flavours, using each cereal as the recipe’s centrepiece.
If you – like me – want to take a bowl of cereal and see what else you can do with it, try out….
Herbivore Super Cereal retails at R70 and is available from http://herbivore.co.za/ and selected health food stores.
Zissy is the co-founder of Nutreats. She likes to make things, do things and wear things.