Snack Review: Kashi Honey Sunshine Cereal

I eat a ridiculous amount of cereal.  Life. Lucky Charms. Apple Jacks. Heck, I’ve even been known to chow down on the original Fiber One from time to time.  A constant snacker who prefers the “hand in box” method of eating cereal to your more traditional “milk and bowl” concept, I consider a box of cereal to be among life’s greatest pleasures and among my go-to options for mid-afternoon snacking bliss.

capncrunch

"I want the one with the Pirate Guy" - Patrick, my four year old godson (when asked which type of cereal he would like)

Alas, as I’ve gotten older I’ve found that downing a box of Cap’n Crunch or Lucky Charms just isn’t feasible when 3 PM hits, a sad and apparent fact which has recently led me to “healthier” cereal alternatives.  Up to now I’ve still largely been stuck on mixing bland, all-purpose cereals like Cheerios or Kix with the good stuff (and by good stuff, I of course mean a classic combo of cocoa pebbles and cool-whip), but I’ve also delved into the world of Kashi in search of a hidden gem.  I am saddened and dismayed to report this was not my first experience with the company…(queue flashback music and mist, por favor)

I first became interested in Kashi cereals when I was a starving and poor sophomore in college (not too long ago). Frankly I could have cared less about how healthy it was, but fate had other plans for me in the form of a suitemate with an unnatural obsession for Kashi GoLean Crunch. A member of my school’s ROTC unit, I would get super hungry after early morning PT sessions, and not wanting to burst my bank account on Fruit Loops I instead would plan secret “snatch and grab” operations into my snoozing suitemate’s room in hopes of finding a suitable breakfast. Problem was, all this kid literally ate was Kashi GoLean Crunch, in the process forcing me down the road of (and yes, this is truly horrible) ORGANIC EVAPORATED CANE JUICE SYRUP.

I am sad to say they got me hook, line, and sinker.

But that is the past, and despite my odd affinity for Kashi GoLean, I’ve never really tried out any of their other products.  That is until last week, when a coupon led me to Kashi Honey Sunshine in the supermarket.

cereal-001

I hate using bowls, but for you people I gladly give in.

Looking like a “grown up” version of Cap’n Crunch, I figured it couldn’t be that bad.  After all, how can you screw up the ridiculously sweet taste of the cereal which my four year old godson affectionately calls “the one with that pirate guy.”  Honey Sunshine may not blow you away in the taste department, but it does have an interesting and lingering sweetness that – go figure – actually tastes like honey. It’s something which I can appreciate now that I’m older, as the original Cap’n Crunch seems to derive its flavor only from that initial (but decidedly more awesome) burst of sweetness you’d expect from a ‘kids’ cereal.  Still, for as much as I find Kashi’s combination of seven whole grains intriguing, I do have to admit that this cereal is underwhelming when compared to the Captain’s.

cereal-004

A serving of Kashi Honey Sunshine. I hate cereal serving sizes.

While both cereals have 100 calories per 3/4 cup serving, Kashi’s Honey Sunshine obviously wins out health-wise with 6 grams of fiber and only 6 grams of sugar to the Captain’s 1 gram of fiber and 12 grams of sugar. Also, it doesn’t have partially hydrogenated oil in it, which my nurse practitioner mother tells me is a good thing but my taste buds lead me to believe is a bad thing. Look, comparing Honey Sunshine to Cap’n Crunch is like comparing a turkey burger to the beef burger. They may look the same from far away, and they both have their relative merits taste wise, but they can’t be measured in comparison to each other. Cap’n Crunch screams bursts of sugary goodness that every nine year old living somewhere deep inside our skulls can enjoy, while Honey Sunshine just seems to want to have a polite – if not affectionate and intellectually enjoyable – conversation with you on the merits of sustainable crops.

cereal-008

Good vs. Evil. But which one is good? Which one is evil? My world is turning upside down...

Pros: Tastes like honey. Very good for me. Has a complex and enjoyable taste to the refined cereal palate. If I didn't have taste buds and didn't have my contacts in I'd probably confuse it for Cap'n Crunch.

Cons: It tastes like it has half the sugar of Cap'n Crunch...Leads me to the sad realization that I am in the process of walking my childhood cereal memories off the plank.

Taste: 5.25/10
Value: 6.75/10
Price: $2.50 (with coupon and on sale at Weis)

Overall GrubGrade: 6.00/10

More Info: Kashi.com
Nutrition Facts:
Serving Size: ¾ Cup
Calories: 100
Calories from Fat: 15
Total Fat: 1.5g
Saturated Fat: 0g
Cholesterol 0mg
Sodium 135mg
Potassium 70mg
Total Carbohydrate 25g
Dietary Fiber 6g
Sugars 6g
Protein 2g

13 comments on “Snack Review: Kashi Honey Sunshine Cereal

  1. rob says:

    I like the Go Lean Crunch, it is like eating a handful of pebbles, can’t get any healthier than that.

  2. Bear Silber says:

    Adam – Haha, great post. Does it rough up the roof of your mouth like “the one with the pirate guy?”

    Original FiberOne is my go to cereal…I love it. Occasionally Walgreen’s sells them 2 for $5 and I literally purchase as many as they’ll let me. I think currently I have 7 boxes horded in my pantry.

  3. Adam Bomb says:

    I’m glad to see that Kashi makes something that has some flavor. I reviewed a couple of their frozen meals on my site, and they were bland, ick.

  4. Heather says:

    The Go Lean Crunch is great as a topping for yogurt. That is the only Kashi cereal I have tried. I’ll have to give this one a try.

    @Adam-Great review. I eat cereal for dinner a lot. Who says its just for breakfast? Of course, its always the healthier choices. 🙁

    @Bear-Yeah, “roughing up the roof of your mouth” is the only downfall I find with Captain Crunch.

  5. Adam says:

    @Bear,
    The thing is, I found myself having to chew this cereal a crapload just to try to “suck” the sugar out of it. So no to your question I guess. Damn that evaporated cane juice. Oh yea and Fiber One seriously makes some good cereals, and I dont even need that esp spokesman guy to tell me that either (I also love their honey clusters)

    @Adam Bomb- I actually used their free coupon deal to buy the Southwest Chicken Frozen Meal. It’s been sitting in my freezer…

    @Heather- The only cereal I would ever eat for dinner would be Honey Smacks. I have to take into account my 3 food groups, dont you know.

  6. Adam Bomb says:

    Adam, I had the Chicken Florentine and Lemon Rosemary Chicken varieties. They weren’t the worst things I’ve ever eaten, but they weren’t very good. Good luck with yours.

  7. Adam says:

    Yea, Italian food cannot be frozen IMHO. But back to cereal…I challange Kashi to come up with a name for one of their products that COULD NOT also be the title of a children’s book about diversity…I mean really…Good Friends…Heart to Heart…Autumn Breeze…

  8. orb205 says:

    Near my house in Brooklyn, Kashi cereal costs $7 so I never eat it. Your experience however, sounds delightful and as the name implies full of sunshine!

  9. Im confused. Why do you need to stop eating Cap’n Crunch? Ive tried these as well and I agree with everything you said. It will never compare to the Cap’n though.

    My cereal of choice though is Cracklin Oat Bran

  10. john says:

    Adam,

    Those kashi people and their coupons! They got my wife and I with a few coupons as well. We’ve tried a few, my wife likes their granola bars, but I enjoyed their ‘Kashi U’ cereal. I believe it was the most expensive kind, but we enjoyed it.

    Their Vive cereal is nice too. Very strong vanilla flavor.

    Although it’s been awhile since I’ve had the sugar cereals, these may come across as bland to some.

  11. I have tried a handful of Kashi products, not in love yet and not sure if this will push me over the edge. I am always looking for healthy cereal, so thanks for posting.

  12. Adam Bomb says:

    @WIBIA I keep telling myself that if I *want* Chocolate Lucky Charms to be health badly enough, that they might actually become healthy.

    It never works.

  13. jilly says:

    add splenda and its just like captain crunch but healthy 😀