Serious Eats

Cereal Eats: Cheerios Showdown, Part 3: Some Flavors You've Maybe Never Heard Of

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[Photographs: Robyn Lee]

And now we arrive at our final stop on our comprehensive Cheerios quest, the Odds and Ends. To be honest, most of these Cheerios were pretty new to me and I'm curious to find out if any of them have a big fan base. Let's get right to it!

Yogurt Burst Cheerios

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Birth year: 2005.

If there was any Cheerio that I was expecting to hate, it was this guy. While yogurt and cereal may be a great pair, I certainly don't need them coming out of the same box. I'm not big on yogurt-coated anything, and though I was drawn to the pretty pink box, the strawberry addition made me even more wary.

But I was proved pleasantly wrong! The Cheerios are lightly sweetened and delicious with a nice amount of yogurt-covered Cheerios mixed in. The strawberry flavor is very light and the "yogurt" coating has a smooth, pleasant sweetness. Everyone in the office steered clear of these for a while but eventually, a few people kept coming back for more and more handfuls, strangely drawn by the rosy glow of the yogurt burst. I'm not sure I would seek this one out, but it's a well-executed cereal that won me over.

Oat Cluster Cheerios Crunch

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Birth year: 2007.

I had the opposite experience with these. Everything about this cereal looked awesome. A blend of three lightly sweetened Cheerios (read: MultiGrain) and crunchy oat clusters Sounds like my dream cereal! The O's themselves are great; your standard MultiGrain Cheerios flavor. But it's the cluster that's the real problem.

Issue #1: I didn't even realize that "crunch" was part of the title until I really examined the box. Probably because there is no crunch involved in these clusters. They are basically just balls of oat. Which isn't too great of a texture, especially not when you are expecting a "bunches-like" crunch.

Issue #2: The "clusters" taste strongly of cinnamon. Do I like cinnamon? Yes. Do I LOVE cinnamon cereals? Obviously. And yet this unexpected and, frankly, uninvited, cinnamon flavor confuses me. I want salty-sweet oaty crunch, not a cinnamon bomb.

Issue #3: There are hardly clusters and they all sink to the bottom. I don't like the clusters, but if I did, I'd be pissed about this.

Banana Nut Cheerios

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Birth year: 2009.

While the many flavors of Cheerios lived in the Serious Eats offices, I had a lot of friends. People were coming by constantly to grab a handful of MultiGrain or a taste of Chocolate. But the one box that remained ominously full was the Banana Nut.

Now, I love bananas, and banana bread and other banana-y things. But these Cheerios taste of nothing but banana chips. And boy do I hate banana chips (anyone else?). I don't know where the nuts fit in, and I don't really want to. No thanks to Banana Nut.

Cinnamon Burst Cheerios

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Birth year: 2011.

I had no clue these existed, but this is one underrated cereal! Fantastic cinnamon flavor with that satisfying Cheerios crunch, this is the perfect example of a great cereal, only elevated. This is what a variation should be. It doesn't try to get too crazy, stays true to the original goodness and yet brings the cereal to a new level of delicious. These I would definitely seek out. Well done.

Apple Cinnamon Cheerios

Birth year: 1988.

You're already familiar with these guys. Check out my thoughts: here. In short, awesome.

Dulce de Leche Cheerios

Birth year: 2012.

Check out my thoughts: here. In short, not awesome at all.

MultiGrain Peanut Butter Cheerios

Birth year: 2012.

Check out my thoughts: here. In short, a little bit awesome.

That wraps our Cheerios adventure (see part one and two)! I had a great time with old friends and new. What say you, cereal folks? Any of these a keeper?

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.

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