Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Review: General Mills Hershey's Cookies 'n' Creme

It's been awhile since I've conducted a review here, mainly because there have been few new significant cereal introductions since the onslaught at the beginning of the year. From what I'm observing, that's about to change.

The latest cereal to catch my eye is General Mills' Hershey's Cookies 'n' Creme cereal, a product that taps into the widespread familiarity of the popular U.S. chocolate company, and specifically their Cookies 'n' Creme candy bar. This is not the first time a cereal company has co-branded with a candy. The most notable example is Reeses' Puffs, also a Hershey brand cerealized by General Mills. And, the similarity doesn't end there. Both of these cereals are flavored corn puffs, so in many ways this latest offering is just another variety in a "Hershey chocolate candy line" of cereals. (Could this mean other Hershey cereals in the future, like a Hershey's Milk Chocolate cereal, or even Hershey's Eggs cereal around Easter?)

Chocolate cereals have been one of the major trends in recent years. Who could go wrong making a chocolate cereal? Cookies 'n' Creme cereal definitely contains chocolate, but it's balanced with the "cream" pieces. A nice change from chocolate laden cereals like Cocoa Puffs or Count Chocula. To no one's surprise this new cereal is sweet and enjoyable to eat, even as a snack without milk.

As corn puffs Cookies 'n' Creme are light and airy, and really easy to eat (you probably don't even need teeth!). Put them in milk and even after 10 minutes they retain their shape, but become extraordinarily soft. This is not for those looking for a hearty cereal, but the texture works for what it is.

The real strength with this cereal is its experience. The Hershey branding gives you the feeling that you are eating legitimate candy, but for breakfast. And, if that's what you need to kick-start your day, this marketing position works.

The weakness, of course, is nutrition. Apart from the branding, this is yet another sugared cereal (over 30% of weight) with artificial flavors and low fiber (despite the laughable "made with 100% Whole Grain" badge on the box). You will not be buying this cereal for its powerhouse nutrition qualities.

If you're looking for a fun cereal or snack, Hershey's Cookies 'n' Creme is worth trying. At minimum it will make your breakfast a little more decadent!

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