Few cereals are extreme enough to warrant dropping a vowel from their names, but Post seems to think their new Cocoa Pebbles Xtreme cereal is worthy of the honor.
The limited edition cereal was only available at my local supermarket in a family size box, containing four more ounces than a standard box. The cereal claims to be even more chocolatey than normal Cocoa Pebbles, which means that the cer— hoooooold up.
What are you trying to pull here, Post? The nutritional facts on this box are identical to those found on a box of normal Cocoa Pebbles. The ingredients lists are strikingly similar, except the Xtreme variety lacks a single ingredient present in the original: a preservative known as butylated hydroxyanisole. (Yum.)
Well, well, well, it seems Post has taken me for a fool. At this point, I’m fairly confident they’ve simply repackaged normal Cocoa Pebbles in a fancy new box in an effort to sell more cereal to hyperactive, sugar-addicted children. I’ll be surprised if this Xtreme version is any different from the standard variety. A simple side-by-side comparison will reveal the truth.
Pouring out a bowl of Cocoa Pebbles Xtreme next to a bowl of the normal type, we find my hypothesis was as wrong as watching the movie Teeth with your family. (“That’s not her mouth, grandma.”) The Cocoa Pebbles Xtreme are noticeably darker in color than the normal variety. I’m stumped as to how Post Foods managed to accomplish this when the nutritional facts and ingredients are nearly identical, but it seems Post’s R&D team has been workin’ up some food wizardry in the kitchen. (Foodzardry, anyone?)
Cocoa Pebbles Xtreme smells quite similar to cocoa powder — the scent is slightly more chocolatey than the normal variety, which possesses a more noticeable puffed rice aroma.
In taste, the Xtreme variety is the clear victor.
The contrast between the two cereals is more apparent than I had expected. A spoonful of both Xtreme and normal varieties of Cocoa Pebbles begins with a grainy puffed rice flavor and a sharp crunch, slowly developing a sweet cocoa flavor as the cereal is chewed. However, the Xtreme has a much stronger cocoa flavor toward the end of the bite. Its chocolate flavor seems more mature and refined in comparison to the regular variety, which merely evokes a sweetness reminiscent of white sugar.
Cocoa Pebbles Xtreme cereal is further improved by the addition of milk, which really absorbs the cereal’s cocoa flavor. As I slowly approached the end of my bowl, I grew eager to test the claim on the front of the box, which boasts the cereal “turns milk xtremely chocolatey” and “it’s like an xtreme milkshake.”
My mind began to wander, imagining the full potential of an “xtreme milkshake.” Exactly how many boys could be brought to the yard by an “xtreme milkshake”? An xtreme number, for sure.
Good gravy, it’s gorgeous!
The milk left at the bottom of my bowl has turned the most beautiful shade of brown I’ve ever seen. Its flavor reminds me of chocolate milk made with a bit too much chocolate syrup, but with the aftertaste of Cocoa Pebbles.
Does it taste like a milkshake? Not quite, and though it only seems slightly more chocolatey than the milk left behind by normal Cocoa Pebbles, it’s satisfying nonetheless.
With its more substantial cocoa flavor, Cocoa Pebbles Xtreme cereal is a significant improvement upon the normal variety. Its only flaw is that it feels more like a snackfood than a breakfast cereal — a fault that plagues many of the sugary options found in your local supermarket’s cereal aisle.
I’m sorry I doubted you, Post. Our relationship has been tense ever since you discontinued Cröonchy Stars cereal, but maybe this is the start of a glorious new beginning. You’ve managed to enhance Cocoa Pebbles, and for that, I applaud you.
(Nutrition Facts – 3/4 cup without milk – 120 calories, 10 calories from fat, 1 gram of total fat, 1 gram of saturated fat, 0 grams of trans fat, 0 milligrams of cholesterol, 170 milligrams of sodium, 50 milligrams of potassium, 25 grams of total carbohydrates, 0 grams of dietary fiber, 10 grams of sugars, 15 grams of other carbohydrate, and 1 gram of protein.)
Item: Post Limited Edition Cocoa Pebbles Xtreme Cereal
Purchased Price: $3.59
Size: 15 oz. box
Purchased at: ShopRite
Rating: 8 out of 10
Pros: More chocolatey than the normal variety. Even better in milk. Leaves chocolate milk in bowl. Bringing an xtreme amount of boys to the yard.
Cons: Nearly identical nutritional facts and ingredients as regular Cocoa Pebbles? Feels more like a snack than a breakfast cereal. Watching Teeth with your family.