Cereal Eats: The Battle of the 'Waffle' Cereals
In high school, I had countless bowls of cereal almost every morning for breakfast. But on the odd day when only plain Kashi Puffs were left or I needed a change-up (and my mom was in a very good mood and allowed them in the house) it was freezer section waffles.
Now, this in no way takes away from my love of cereal, but I have a wild, uncontrollable love for waffles, too. I'd happily eat them plain, or even frozen. Look, I'm also a big fan of made-from-scratch-and-an-iron waffles, but that's another story for another time.
We're talking about those eerily yellow guys that come pre-packaged. Even as I type this, my desire to eat one is consuming me. Usually I had to make do with some sort of health-food brand, but occasionally we could sneak in Eggos. My sister and I ate them with butter and syrup (Grade A Maple Syrup ONLY; "pancake syrup" does not touch these lips) and occasionally, the mind-blowing combo of peanut butter and syrup. Hey, don't knock it till you've tried it.
The bottom line is I love waffles. I've known that Eggo cereal has existed for a while, but my friend Megan recently nudged me about it and I realized I had never tried it. But something was nagging at me. Waffle cereal, Waffle Crisp! How had I never tried this one either? Neither one was very easy to acquire but with some help, I got both boxes in my possession.
Let the comparison begin.
Taking a look at shape, Eggo Cereal is bright yellow and follows the circular pattern of the waffles. They pretty much end up looking like squished Honey Comb (an underrated cereal in my opinion but that's not for now). Waffle Crisp attempts a square shape but has a darker, toasted color with a crystallized sugary crust.
Because maple is such an underused flavor in the cereal world (and possibly my favorite flavor), I instantly liked Eggo cereal, despite the fact that it tastes strongly of hateful fake maple syrup. Somehow, I wasn't bothered by it, as just the inclusion of maple at all was refreshing. The crunch texture is similar to Honey Comb and it's all around a nice change from the usual.
Unfortunately for my dear Eggos, once I tried Waffle Crisp there was no turning back. Though there may be fake maple flavor involved, the "well-done" crispy, sugary little waffle shapes have the exact flavor of waffles totally soaked in syrup. The flavor is warm, toasty and awesomely sugary. They get even better than milk, holding their shape and crunch, to the point of scraping my mouth at a Captain Crunch level. This cereal is dangerously delicious.
Opinions among the SE Staff were mixed. Carey had a nostalgic moment with the Waffle Crisp, and joined me in celebrating them. Meanwhile, our interns made a serious run at the Eggo Cereal. Robyn and Kenji's sophisticated palates found them both way too sweet and sickening. Kenji even complained that the scent of Eggo Cereal stayed on his fingers for hours after. (Meanwhile, he has no problem putting dried squid directly into Hambone's mouth...)
As for me, a breakfast of Eggo waffles with a side bowl of Waffle Crisp may be in my near future.
What about you? Were you, like me, unaware of the magic of waffle cereals? Have a favorite between these two or does the fake maple scare you off?
About the author: Aside from doing an awesome job with her role as Advertising Sales Manager, Leandra Palermo secretly harbors a lifelong passion with all things crunchy and served with icy cold skim milk. This column represents the culmination of that love affair.