Cereals are grains with edible seeds. They are rich in carbohydrates, protein, and fiber making it suitable for an energy boost. Cereal grains include wheat, maize or corn, rye, sorghum, millet, barley, and oats. It is one of the most popular breakfast choices in the world and can be used to create other baked cereal treats such as energy bars, cookies, cakes, and pie crusts.
It was said that cereal treats were first invented by Mildred Day at the Kellogg Company during a fundraising activity for Camp Fire Girls. The original recipe called for cereal, sugar, butter, molasses, and some vinegar. The cereal treats were a hit and the Camp Fire Girls sold hundreds of these bars in Michigan. As the recipe was developed, Day decided to remove molasses and vinegar from the recipe, adding marshmallows. This gooey bar reminded people of the comfort and warmth of campfires and it wasn’t long before cereal treats become a national sensation.
Cereal Treat Trivia
- Americans love cereals, Half of the US population start their days with cereals and can consume an average 160 cereal bowls annually.
- During the first moon landing, astronauts ate Kellogg’s aboard the Apollo 11.
- The fastest record for consuming a bowl of cereal is at 19/47 seconds.
- The United Kingdom broke the largest cereal breakfast in the world. Over 286 spoons were lifted as students prepared to eat their cereal breakfasts, after 10 minutes of silences and drinking over 50 liters of juice, the UK celebrated their success.
Cereal Treat Buying Guide
Cereal oats can either be rolled or instant. Purchase good quality rolled oats for your porridge. Avoid buying flavored or portioned oats as it contains more sugars and preservatives. Real oats should taste nutty, grainy, and earthy with a hint of creamy milky sweetness from the natural earth.
Check the label to ensure it’s “100% whole grain.” Whole grain cereals contain health-promoting nutrients from the bran, germ, and endosperm compared to refined grains.
If you have a sweet tooth, choose cereals with at mot 5g of sugar per serving. 10 grams is too much sugar for a single serving, considering you’re adding more sweet items to your cereal such as fresh milk, dried nuts and fruits, or even chocolates.
Always opt for the non-fat or low-fat cereals, cereals with fortified nutrients such as calcium, Vitamin D, and Vitamin C are good options.
Cereal Treat Production & Farming in Texas
Texas holds an excellent agricultural profile, leading the US in the number of farms and ranches all over its state. Corn, sorghum, milo, wheat, and rice are abundant in the Lone Star State. Texas wheat is the considered as one of the most valuable cash crop and developments of more diseases resistant wheat varieties have expanded to other states.
Meanwhile, sorghum proved to beneficial to Texas’ cropping systems for cotton and corn. Sorghum and corn appeared to be benefiting each other’s growth during harvest season. The former breaks up the cycles of soil disease protecting the latter from wind damage.
Texas is home to the notoriously delicious Texas Trash – a healthy snack made of wheat squares, mixed nuts, pretzels, oats, and corn. You can add your natural, homemade syrup to sweeten it or sprinkle a mixture of your organic spices to transform it into a crunchy, savory snack.
Preservatives and Chemicals
Although both cereals and cereal treats are fond treats, consumers should be wary of the chemical additives in this treat.
Glyphoshate is the most common weedkiller used in crop farms. It was found that traces of Glyphosphate can be found in cereals and oat meals. The World Health Organization (WHO) attributes it to be a potential carcinogen, harming farmers and consumers in the process.
Arsenic can be found in the soil but over exposure to this chemical result to cancer and other deficiencies such as brain damage, and hormonal disruption.
As both Glyphosphate and Arsenic are Endocrine Disruption Chemicals (EDCs), small quantities consumed over long periods of time can put humans at risk of breast and prostate cancer, diabetes and obesity, and infertility; infants and young children may develop dyslexia even complicating into reading and writing problem, Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD), delayed learning, and autism.
In the end, real cereals sourced from small farms are a healthier option than the commercially produced ones.
Cereals are typically packed in cartons and pouches. Cereal box packaging is the more expensive, and less environment-friendly packaging. Stand up pouches are cheaper and lighter. The Food and Drug Administration declared cereal boxes as unsafe for packaging while stand up pouches were tested safe for food products.
Homemade cereal treats must be stored individually wrapped and stored in an air-tight container to maintain freshness.
Enjoying Cereal Treats
Cereals can be eaten for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. The easiest way is to eat it is to pour milk over a bowl. You can also mix and match cereals, dried fruits, and dried nuts to make a granola. Cereals can be also be used as a breading to add crunch to your fried fish fillets or pork chops.
Spend time with kids by making some cereal bowls with Fruit Loops and Rice Krispies.
A cool temperature is essential to improve a cereal’s shelf life. Whole grain cereals can be stored in a sealed container inside your fridge for 5 months. Cereals stored in room temperature can last up to a month.
Always avoid placing cereals in direct sunlight and heat to prevent spoilage.
Rice Krispies Treats
2 tbsp light butter
4 cups mini marshmallows
6 cups Rice Krispies
- Spray a 9×12-inch pan with cooking spray.
- Heat a large saucepan on low heat.
- Melt butter spread being sure to coat the bottom of the pot to prevent sticking.
- Add marshmallows and melt on low flame.
- Stir until completely melted, then remove from heat.
- Add Rice Krispies to the melted marshmallows, and stir quickly until completely combined.
- Press into the buttered pan with wax paper and cut them into 16 pieces.