A new kid’s cereal on the market: Freedom Messy Monkey Cereal product review
Although the healthy food industry has been booming over the last 10-15 years, and every week there are new food products appearing on the supermarket shelf claiming its unique health benefits, the majority of these products target the adult population. Very rarely, you see healthy products specifically designed for kids. I am not saying there are no healthy products for kids. At the end of the day, children can also eat healthy foods designed for adults. However, kids are very visual. They are first attracted to a food product due to bold colorful packaging with a cartoon character, if the food ends up tasting good, they become loyal; if it doesn’t taste good, kids won’t eat it again.
Therefore, it is quite a challenge to find a healthy food product designed for kids that meet both these standards. Recently, a food product designed for children has just caught my eye: Freedom Messy Monkeys Cereal. It comes in three flavours: Choc Crunch, Honey Buzz and Berry Shake.
It is interesting to investigate it and share some of my thinking with you guys. Since Messy Monkeys is designed to compete with traditional kids’ cereal, it is necessary to compare it with other kids’ cereal options. Meanwhile, it is also very important to compare with regular healthy cereal options targeting the general public as they belong to the same food category.
Packaging & appearance 10/10
Although it is very subjective to judge if a food packaging is attractive to kids and we are not a graphic designing website, I put them all here. I think Messy Monkeys with a cute modern cartoon monkey head does have a very nice kid-friendly and attractive appearance. For our lovely readers, what do you think?
Amazingly, I think they nailed the flavor as a kids’ cereal:
- Choc crunch is crunchy; bursts into chocolate flavor in your mouth with each mouthful. The chocolate flavour and color even leak into the milk, exactly like Coco Pops! (see the photo)
- Berry Shake is not overly sweet, which works well for me. It is great to even add some frozen blueberry and raspberry to increase fruit consumption and enhance the flavour.
- Honey Buzz has a very pleasant honey flavour. It goes quite well with milk. It could be eaten by itself or with milk.
Ingredient list 9/10
Choc Crunch: Chickpea Flour, Maize Flour, Rice Flour, Cane Sugar, Cocoa Powder (2.5%), Psyllium Husk, Chickpea Fibre, Natural Flavour, Emulsifier (Sunflower Lecithin), Canola Oil, Salt.
Berry Shake: Chickpea Flour, Maize Flour, Rice Flour, Cane Sugar, Psyllium Husk, Chickpea Fibre, Colour (Sweet Potato Extract), Emulsifier (Sunflower Lecithin), Natural Flavour.
Honey Buzz: Chickpea Flour, Maize Flour, Rice Flour, Cane Sugar, Honey (2.5%), Psyllium Husk, Chickpea Fibre, Natural Colour (Paprika Extract), Emulsifier (Sunflower Lecithin), Natural Flavour, Salt.
Wow, what a list of genuine natural ingredients full of prebiotic fibre and other goodies! The only thing that let it down is the cane sugar (~15g per 100g) content which is a bit high.
It is also worth mentioning is that there are no common allergens. All of the three flavours are also nut free and gluten free which is great for families which have other kids needs to be on a nut free or gluten free diet.
– Comparing with other classic kids’ cereal
|Messy Monkeys three flavours||1570-1575||12.1-12.3||2.9 – 3.3||0.7 – 0.9||68.7 – 69.9||15.0 – 15.1||8.6 – 9.2||55 – 90|
Comparing with others, Messy Monkeys has in average 50% less added sugar, 75% less sodium, higher protein content and four times more dietary fibre! What a huge improvement!
– Comparing with classic healthy adult cereal
|Messy Monkeys||1570-1575||12.1-12.3||2.9 – 3.3||0.7 – 0.9||68.7 – 69.9||15.0 – 15.1||8.6 – 9.2||55 – 90|
|All Bran Wheat Flake||1490||12.2||3.6||0.7||58.4||11||19.3||360|
According to their ingredients list, most of the sugar content listed on Nutrition Information Panel is added sugar. It is quite clear to see that Weet-bix and All Bran have less added sugar and more fibre. Interestingly, Messy Monkey still has the lowest amount of sodium. In general, I conclude that Weet-Bix and All Bran Wheat Flake are still the winners here.
- 50% less added sugar
- 75% less sodium
- higher protein content
- and four times more dietary fibre
Compared with all of the other kids cereals like cocopops, Froot Loops etc
Higher added sugar than healthy cereal for adults like Weet-Bix, All Bran Wheat Flakes etc
Currently, Freedom Messy Monkey cereal comes in three flavours: Choc Crunch and Honey Buzz and Berry Shake. They are currently only available in Woolworths.
My verdict and recommendation
Freedom Messy Monkey Cereals are absolutely the winners among all of the other kid’s cereal options: same great taste with much more goodies and much less crappy ingredients. Having said that, if your kids would not mind, or are willing to or even like those classic healthy cereals designed for general population such as Weet-bix and All Bran Wheat Flakes, those options still provide a better nutrition for your kids. However, if your kids won’t eat any breakfast except for most of the cereal options designed for kids on the market, Freedom Messy Monkey Cereal is absolutely bang on for your buck! On a separate note, if you’re an adult who live on Cocopops every morning, Messy Monkey could be your go-to option tomorrow morning as well.
At the end of the day, everyone is different. Now, with all of the analysis, the decision is over to you and your loved little ones.
Article written in May 2020
Data collected in May 2020