REVIEW: Kellogg’s Rice Krispies Multi-Grain Shapes Cereal

Kellogg's Rice Krispies Multi-Grain Shapes Cereal

It can be said that the less excited you are about something, the greater the opportunity it has to pleasantly surprise you. That’s the optimistic view, anyway. So when a product’s name contains the words “Rice” and “Multi-Grain,” well, it has a pretty good chance to impress you by being even halfway decent.

Fair or not, I tried to temper my expectations to reasonable levels when buying Kellogg’s Rice Krispies Multi-grain Shapes. I like regular Rice Krispies just fine, but they don’t top the list of my absolute favorite cereals, and multi-grain bread and I are historically not friends. (Actually, thanks to my younger daughter’s allergies, ANY store-bought bread and I aren’t friends, but that’s another story.)

That said, the box itself mitigates this a bit, offering hope via Pop’s sign proclaiming the cereal to be “lightly sweetened graham flavored.” That’s promising, and though it carries a hint of trying to have their cake and eat it too (“Hey parents, we’re healthy, buy us… wait, kids, come back, we also taste like graham crackers and have fun shapes!”), they’re certainly not the only cereal to try that tactic. Frosted Mini-Wheats, anyone?

Moving on, the rest of the box is rather bland, swapping out the classic blue Rice Krispies palette for bright yellow. On the plus side, the elves remain in their classic form; Kellogg’s hasn’t tried to youthanize them with baggy shorts, earrings, and baller shades.

The back of the box is surprisingly busy, combining bad jokes, a recipe for Popcorn Munchie Mix, and myriad reasons to buy this product. One touts that buying this cereal is a “Smart Move, Mom,” so as far as Kellogg’s is concerned, all you stay-at-home dads and men who do the grocery shopping can go fuck yourselves.

Opening up the plastic bag immediately wafts a strong smell into your nostrils, and I’m sorry to report it isn’t pleasant. Describing aromas is always hard, but just know that it smells slightly musty and not at all sweet, like your grandmother’s attic minus the slim chance of finding a copy of Action Comics #1. Not ideal, but then the taste is ultimately the only thing that really matters. So here we are: spoon in hand, milk in bowl, do-or-die time. Will the taste send Multi-Grain Shapes home in ignominious defeat?

But no! Far from it, that first bite is the equivalent of, if not a home run, at least a line drive past a diving shortstop for extra bases. This may actually be the only product I’ve ever tasted where the multi-grain version is more flavorful than the “regular” edition. Which is both surprising and terrific, frankly.

Oddly enough — because this is maybe the last cereal in the world I’d have expected to compare multi-grain Rice Krispies to — the taste isn’t entirely dissimilar to Waffle Crisp. I know, it sounds crazy and/or blasphemous, but the texture is very similar and the graham flavor of the Krispies shapes is somehow akin to the faux syrup flavor of the WC.

Honestly, if you’re a regular patron of Waffle Crisp, consider Multi-Grain Shapes as a viable alternative, if only because they’re a smidge healthier. (Only a smidge, though, in case you thought this was the breakfast equivalent of eating celery.)

Kellogg's Rice Krispies Multi-Grain Shapes Cereal Closeup

I didn’t pay a whole lot of attention to the shapes because they sort of morph a bit in milk, plus I’m ostensibly an adult. They’re not the most interesting of shapes, really — nothing like little C-3PO heads or ghosts. There are four in total: a stick figure, a tree, a Star of David, and a (Jesus?) fish. Which makes them pretty welcome in our dual faith household, and since the tree obviously represents Wiccans, it’s almost a shame the stick figure isn’t (as far as I know) a recognized symbol of Islam, or we’d have a damn progressive cereal on our hands here. Or maybe I’m looking at it the wrong way and it’s supposed to be a Wicker Man. Got to throw those pagans a bone too. (Lucky Charms don’t count.)

Okay, I’m getting weird, which generally means it’s time to wrap things up. Bottom line: don’t let the “multi-grain” part turn you off if you demand taste over healthiness. Conversely, if you ARE concerned with good nutrition first and foremost, you get a nice bonus of some delicious cereal to nom nom. Whether tempered expectations helped or not, I can honestly report that this is a pretty darn good breakfast option. Enjoy!

(Nutrition Facts – 1 Cup – 110 calories, 10 calories from fat, 1 gram of total fat, 0 grams of saturated fat, 0 grams of trans fat, 0 grams of polyunsaturated fat, 0.5 grams of monounsaturated fat, 0 milligrams of cholesterol, 100 milligrams of sodium, 50 milligrams of potassium, 24 grams of total carbohydrates, 3 grams of dietary fiber, 6 grams of sugar, and 2 grams of protein.)

Item: Kellogg’s Rice Krispies Multi-Grain Shapes Cereal
Purchased Price: $2.50
Size: 10.8 oz box
Purchased at: Acme
Rating: 8 out of 10
Pros: Tastes better paired with a beer than you’d expect. The price is right. Religiously inclusive breakfast cereal. Who ever thought a Rice Krispies affiliate would ever evoke Waffle Crisp? Reasonably healthy.
Cons: Smells like a mummy’s tomb. Distinct lack of any snap, crackle, and/or pop sound. I lied that none of the elves have been modernized, Crackle actually is wearing sneakers and jeans… you watch your ass, son. Now I’m going to expect ALL healthy cereals to taste good.

REVIEW: Kellogg’s Rice Krispies Gluten Free

Kellogg's Rice Krispies Gluten Free

I believe Gwyneth Paltrow was the first big celebrity to bring it to the attention of the mass public. Gluten free is supposedly the new rage diet of those settled in the film industry. But I ask you, what do they know? These people are the same dum-dums that gave us The Human Centipede and still allow Owen Wilson and Diane Keaton to collect a paycheck. Ask anyone with celiac and I bet you they would prefer to go back to a normal diet instead of that no wheat crap. So if you’re gluten free by choice, I have to say you are a tool with a glutton for punishment. Is it hip to say you choose to have herpes? Neither is it cool to say “I’m choosing to be gluten free” moron.

Eating and being afflicted with celiac is akin to that one bad relationship we all get ourselves into. You know where the sex is good but you have to put up with the needling snipes, the roll of the eyes, and the hours of arguing only to be followed by steeping oneself in cheap gin and tonics. As an aside, I will tell you that I was lucky because my comic book collection shielded me from many intimacies. You could say I was a connoisseur of scrambled porn. In fact, I watched so much of it in college that Picasso’s figures appear normal to me. (I lurve you channel 68!)

Celiac is the awful curse of being allergic to anything with wheat and my wife has it (Yes, I still have my comic books but she needed a green card). Seeing her bowled over in pain when she accidentally eats something with wheat is awful. Yet even with the stomach pangs and crippling discomfort that she suffers, my wife still misses eating a real slice of pizza or twisting her fork in a bowl of noodles. As a lark, I sometimes secretly toss flour in my wife’s food when she and I have a disagreement. Score one for the passive aggressive psychopathic behavior.

Amongst the quinoa pastas and breads made with tapioca flour, I have the misfortune of trying many things that are gluten free. A lot of them taste terrible or weird and some are passible. Now I have to admit, most gluten free versions suck but I have to believe when Marie Antoinette said let them eat some damn cake, she meant people who have celiac too.

So like most couples do on a mundane Sunday morning, we were shopping at our local supermarket hoping to beat the crowds and old people who leave their carts in the middle of the aisle looking for foot ointment.

Perusing the cereals, my wife let out a scream I haven’t heard since she got her said green card for our sham marriage. She stumbled on a box of the fabled Kellogg’s Rice Krispies Gluten Free. Leery of the cereal, I had to try it for myself. I was suspicious as Snap, Crackle and Pop had a fake smile on the box, but most elves do, right?

Upon opening the package, I noticed the corner was stamped “Whole Grain Brown Rice” in a cartoony font. Now all my friends know my extreme loathing for brown rice so this gave me a slight dramatic pause. We went ahead and tossed it in our cart and scurried home to try it.

I reached in the box and grabbed a handful of kernels to examine. They looked like the real stuff, felt like the real stuff but I was unsure if they would taste like the real stuff. Munching on a few, the familiar toasted rice flavor was immediate. The cereal was not too sweet like the normal version. So yes, despite using brown rice, they taste just like the ordinary Rice Krispies. I ate a bit more just to make sure because I couldn’t believe it was made from brown rice and they were gluten free.

Kellogg's Rice Krispies Gluten Free Bowl

I poured some in a bowl with milk, still not convinced they would still taste the same. I usually use skim milk but I selected the 2% in anticipation that it would taste bland. Like alchemy, the cereal let out that nostalgic popping once the milk touched the rice. Spoonful upon spoonful, it was hard to believe but these things tasted exactly like Rice Krispies. The cereal held up in the milk too, retaining that crispness.

These are a summer release and hopefully will be a part of Kellogg’s regular offerings. I am sure that if someone switched the cereals on me like those old Folgers coffee commercials, I would not be able to tell the difference. This was a winner in my opinion and for a gluten free option to taste like the real thing…well it’s rarer than me getting lucky in college.

I was excited because the back of the box has a recipe for Rice Krispies Treats. There is a shortage of really good tasting sweets that are wheat free so I’m sure this will be a godsend to my wife and others who have celiac. I plan on making a batch of these since we bought so many boxes.

This cereal is an example that gluten free is not synonymous with repulsive. I hope other manufacturers can take a page from Kellogg’s and give people suffering from celiac a delicious option. You truly do not appreciate great tasting gluten free choices until you’ve eaten a pretzel devoid of wheat or downed a sorghum beer. I think I would rather eat exactly what those girls did in The Human Centipede, which is probably gluten free too when you think about it.

(Nutrition facts – 1 cup is 120 calories, with ½ cup of skim milk, 160 calories, 1 gram of fat – none being saturated, trans, polyunsaturated or monounsaturated fats, 0mg of cholesterol, 190 mg of sodium, 90mg of potassium, 27 grams of carbohydrates, 1 gram of dietary fiber, less than 1 gram of sugars, 25 grams of other carbohydrates, 3 grams of protein and NO WHEAT)

Item: Kellogg’s Rice Krispies Gluten Free
Price: $2.99
Size: 12 ounces free of wheat
Purchased at: Publix
Rating: 9 out of 10 (if you like Rice Krispies)
Pros: You cannot tell they are gluten free. They still snap, crackle, and pop. Being able to tell if those are boobies or legs.
Cons: May be hard to find right now. Sham marriages. Choosing to be gluten free. Celiac sucks too.

REVIEW: Rice Krispies Treats Kazaam Crunch

kazaam

I’m really skeptical about anything named Kazaam.

I blame it on the 1996 movie starring professional basketball player Shaquille O’Neal called ”Kazaam”. It took away 90 minutes of my life that I will never EVER get back. It took away $6.50 that I’ll never see again. It also made me start my mental list called “Movies I Can’t Believe I Fricken’ Sat Through.”

“Kazaam” was in the number one spot for several years, until it was replaced in 2003 by the American Idol flick “From Justin to Kelly.”

Damn, the things I’d do for a woman.

The Rice Krispies Treats Kazaam Crunch are basically a chocolate dip away from being a Kudos Bar, with its granola, rice krispies, and chocolate chips. I happened to get my hands on the caramel one, but they also come in cookies & cream and rainbow chip.

They’re good. They’re sweet. They’re crunchy. They’re glorified granola bars.

Remember when granola was only eaten by dirty hippies who didn’t believe in deodorant.

I do.

Damn, dirty hippies!

Anyway, each box comes with eight bars and I went through all eight in two days. So they must be really good or I’m so bored that I have nothing else better to do than eat a box of Rice Krispies Treats Kazaam Crunch and watch Oprah.

So there are three things I want you to remember from this review: (1) Rice Krispies Treats Kazaam Crunch is good. (2) Shaquille O’Neal’s “Kazaam” is bad. (3) Hippies should use deodorant.

Item: Rice Krispies Treats Kazaam Crunch
Purchase Price: $3.00 (on sale)
Rating: 8 out of 10
Pros: Waaay better than the movie Kazaam. Granola is no longer for just dirty hippies.
Cons: Sort of like a Kudos Bar. Damn hippies!