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So, I often get asked what are the best options in terms of breakfast cereals that you can buy in the supermarket. So, I’ve put together my top 5 picks for healthy & family friendly options. Just to be clear, this is not me saying that these breakfast cereals are necessarily the healthiest breakfast choices in the world (unprocessed whole food breakfasts are always the healthiest options, see ‘Goodbye Sugar’ book for suggestions & recipes!
However, at the same time, I recognize that a lot of people are just looking for quick, handy, economical & family friendly breakfast options and cereals fulfill that criteria pretty well for a lot of people!
Tips For Choosing Breakfast Cereals
When choosing a cereal in the supermarket, make sure it fits the following criteria:
- Choose a cereal which is made with whole grains e.g. oats, whole wheat, wheat bran, millet, buckwheat etc.
- Choose a cereal with less than 4g sugar (equivalent to 1tsp) per 40g
- Choose a cereal with minimum 2g+ fibre per 40g serving, but ideally aim for 4g+ per serve.
- Choose a cereal with less than 0.7g salt per 100g (but less than 0.3g is ideal)
1) Porridge Oats – 3.3g fibre & 0.4g sugar per 40g serving. Natural, whole food full of B vitamins, great for slow release energy and keeping you fuller for longer.
2) Oatibix/Weetabix – 3.5g fibre & 1.5g sugar per 2 biscuit serve. Good protein content as cereals go (6.2g per serve). Nice served hot or cold.
3) Kellog’s Bran Flakes – 4.5g fibre & 4.2g sugar per 40g serving. This is a good option to keep bowels regular due to it’s high fibre content. Also fortified with B vitamins & iron.
4) Lizi’s Granola – 5.3g fibre & 4.6g sugar per 50g serving. This is a low sugar option as far as shop bought granola’s go. Oat based with nuts & seeds plus tastes great with milk or natural yogurt.
5) Oatibix Flakes – 2.2g fibre & 4.2g sugar per 30g serving. Although this cereal contains less fibre and a little more sugar than the others, it’s still a fairly healthy choice and it tastes great so very popular with kiddies! Also fortified with B vitamins & iron.
Tip: Remember you can increase the vitamin, fibre and protein content of your breakfast cereal by adding things like chopped fruit, milled seeds and natural yogurt so don’t be afraid to mix things up!
Elsa Jones is a qualified Nutritional Therapist & author of No. 1 Bestseller ‘Goodbye Sugar’. www.elsajonesnutrition.com
Genuinely Sugar-Free Granola (Makes 12 servings)
Taken From ‘Goodbye Sugar’ book by Elsa Jones
It is virtually impossible to find a tasty granola that is genuinely sugar free. Most brands you’ll find on supermarket shelves contain the equivalent of 3 teaspoons of sugar per serving, which is a lot. Even a lot of seemingly ‘healthy’ granola recipes contain lots of sugar in the form of dried fruit, honey or sugar substitutes.
The protein, fibre and essential fats in this granola will stave off sugar cravings and supercharge your energy levels at any time of the day. It works really well paired with natural yoghurt and fresh berries for breakfast or as a comforting snack to help ward off an afternoon slump.
¼ cup coconut oil
1 cup oats
1 cup sunflower seeds
1 cup pumpkin seeds
1 cup chopped almonds (you can chop them in a food processor or use a knife)
½ cup ground flaxseed
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon almond extract or vanilla extract (I use both)
pinch of sea salt
Preheat the oven to 190°C. Line two baking trays with baking paper or grease lightly with coconut oil.
Melt the coconut oil in a small saucepan and set aside.
Place all of the remaining ingredients in a large bowl and mix together. Make a well in the middle and add the melted coconut oil. Mix thoroughly until everything is lightly coated with the oil.
Divide the granola evenly between the two trays and spread out in a thin layer. Bake in the oven for about 15 minutes until lightly toasted and golden. Stir half way through to avoid burning.
Allow to cool, then store in an airtight container for up to 1 month.
Serve with milk of choice or natural yoghurt. Delicious served with fresh berries, grated apple or sliced pear.
Tip: Take care not to overcook as these ingredients burn easily and will taste bitter if cooked for too long. I find that the baking tray that’s placed on the lower shelf of the oven cooks a little quicker than the one on the upper shelf, so I take it out a few minutes earlier. You might need to do the same.