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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
Price: $2.50 (with coupon and on sale at Weis)
Overall GrubGrade: 6.00/10
More Info: Kashi.com
Serving Size: ¾ Cup
Calories from Fat: 15
Total Fat: 1.5g
Saturated Fat: 0g
Total Carbohydrate 25g
Dietary Fiber 6g