From Our Readers

The Glory Days of Breakfast Cereal

Breakfast for me  has never been about toasting, spreading or frying anything.  I’ve never been a coffee drinker or a fan of bacon and eggs.  My name is Art Tavana, and I’m addicted to crunchy, puffy and colorful breakfast cereal.

Consuming these sugary treats formed a core ritual for the average kid growing up in America during the ’80s and ’90s.  Whether I was watching Muppet Babies or DuckTales while savoring my favorite milk drenched goodies, the combo of cartoons and cereal never failed to brighten my day and make the ensuing trip to school somewhat bearable.  Without the cute mascots, crunchy treats and early morning sugar buzz, I daresay my development as a human being may have been stunted.

The trend towards healthy eating has seen many cereals boasting of “puffs” and “treats” replaced with those gravely presenting their quotients of “whole grains” and “fiber”, while whole milk apparently no longer “does a body good”.  Soy milk, almond milk, skim milk, and even water have replaced the white gold that once comprised the soul of each saccharine bowl.

Look: I’m not saying we should be unhealthy in the face of the widespread nutritional facts and information we have at our disposal these days. However, the classic American breakfast cereal experience is endangered, and I think that deserves some acknowledgment. I, for one, intend to pay homage directly – if not everyday, then at least with the Saturday morning cartoons.

In a nostalgic effort to revisit the glory days of breakfast cereal, I’ve created a list naming my top breakfast cereal brand, mascot and accompanying cartoon from yesteryear. What are your favorites?

You can read more from Art Tavana here or follow him on Twitter.

Featured image via Ron English.

  • Bambi Troxell

    i’m a froot loops girl, all the way! who doesn’t love a good rainbow-colored toucan?

    • Bambi Troxell

      oh, and at Halloween, it’s boo berry or bust!! i, literally, get giddy when i see it hit the shelves in early fall :)

  • Samantha Lynn


  • John Jones
    • Jean DaRos Werner

      The main thing I notice here is how the free toys have disappeared. Seems even the healthy (-ier) cereals had toys at one time.

  • Wendy Berry Simmons

    Captain Crunch was always my favorite as a kid.

  • Stace Raposo

    Fruity pebbles and cocoa pebbles!!!

  • Rosalinda Gonzalez

    I still eat Cocoa Puffs! I’m cuckoo for Cocoa Puffs!

  • Robert Remillard

    I treat sugar like poison. Most colorful breakfast cereals are simply sugar disguised as something less toxic. Childhood obesity is a huge problem that will soon have to be reconciled.

  • Enrique Diaz Maldonado
  • Jean DaRos Werner

    Cinnamon Toast Crunch. Kiddie cereal that’s probably eaten by more college kids and adults than actual children. It’s perfection in a bowl. And Cocoa Pebbles beats Cocoa Krispies any day.

  • Brian Thorn

    Is Art Tavana Derek Hart? I only ask because the link that I assumed would lead to this link that Tavana mentioned leads instead to a bunch of UCLA Bruins articles by some guy named Derek

  • Art Tavana

    Brian – Derek is a fellow UCLA Bruin and I just started contributing to his blog. He is the editor. I contribute only as often as I can :) Here is an article I wrote.

  • Art Tavana

    Robert – childhood obesity can be curbed if parents just take away the Nintendo and Playstation; stop feeding their kids McDonalds on a daily basis; bring back ‘hide and go seek’ and just stop making watching TV a family activity. I will defend breakfast cereal, the colorful GOOD stuff, until the end of time. I was never fat (not even today, as I eat cereal daily), I have terrible metabolism, and I hate cocoa puffs every single day! So There! I just do this little thing called…playing sports. SHOCKER!

  • Emin Andreasian

    Can’t say I had a favorite Art, but cocoa puffs and frosted mini wheats just came to mind.

  • Laura Stuart

    I’ve become a health snob and insist of Kashi, or Cheerios when I’m broke. I can be easily convinced to have the occasional bowl of Lucky Charms though.

  • Jena Evans-Turnbull

    I am 8 months pregnant and my only craving is fruit loops with almond milk – it’s a staple in my diet, which I am sure my mid-wife would be thrilled to hear ha ha.

  • Marysol De Anda

    I one day had a craving for Trix cereal, I go to buy a box and see that they are not shaped like little fruits anymore they’re weird rainbow balls! WTF!!! I still love cocoa pebbles, fruity pebbles, smacks, and Lucky Charms.

  • Art Tavana

    Sugar is the nectar of the soul. Done and done! If you don’t like sugar – blame yourself!

  • Joann Marlis

    Get arty with your cereal – these designs are sure to brighten your day -look for your favorite cereals!

  • Syikien Oyob

    hmmm…Tom n Jerry and Disney cartoon that I always watch during those years while enjoying my Coco Pops!!

  • Kristen Wiley

    Art! if you ever come to Austin, you have to go to the Cartoon Cereal Party at Alamo Drafthouse…they line the front of the theater with every delicious cereal you could possibly want. And then they play cartoons on the big screen. It was the best day of my life.

    • Art Tavana

      Good God – that sounds AMAZING, Kristen. Thank you – now I need to head on over to the Lone Star state and rock some sugar at a party with beer? You made my day.

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