With the array of options lining the supermarket shelves these days, it can be hard to see past the pretty packaging and delicious sounding flavour combinations of all the cereals, mueslis and granolas each claiming a different health benefit. So we put our Nutritionist Melissa Fine to the test to let us know her top picks to help you start your day on the right track.
1. Mix My Muesli Gluten Free Deluxe Mix
Mix My Muesli has created a muesli for every taste and intolerance. If you aren’t a fan of grain-free mueslis but require something gluten free, then you’ll love this one. Puffed brown rice and bran sticks give a nice crunch (and some carbs, thank you!), and I’m impressed that no extra sweetener or vegetable oil has been added to the dried blueberries and cranberries, which typically have both.
Love the short ingredients list made up entirely of wholefoods; proof that sometimes simple is best and that healthy food can be full of flavour, without anything complicated or fancy.
2. The Australian Super Food Co Paleo Granola - Lime, Coconut, Macadamia Burst
I expected this to be on the bland side but am pleasantly surprised! Crunchy without being a jawbreaker, and there’s a unique tang from the native Australian Super Food Blend, which includes Finger Lime and Kakadu Plum. With just enough sweetness from coconut sugar and maple syrup, I like that these unrefined sweeteners are at the end of the ingredients list; ingredients are always listed in descending order of quantity on a food label, so there’s not too much sugar in here.
Two thumbs up to The Australian Super Food Co for not using any vegetable oil or refined sugars, and most importantly, for bringing Aussie consumers’ attention to food-grade indigenous native plants – we’d like to see more of these in the local muesli market so that hopefully they can become more affordable and accessible here, and chosen over imported ingredients.
3. Brookfarm Cranberry Macadamia Toasted Muesli
We’re all for local brands like Brookfarm, who use Australian ingredients whenever possible. Although quite a bit higher in sugar than the other mueslis we’ve listed, this is GM-free and one of the cleaner toasted muesli options for when you need to kick a granola craving. I like that this has no preservatives and that I’d keep everything on the ingredients list in my pantry – unlike many other commercial varieties which are full of numbered ingredients.
The creamy, crunchy macadamias are such a treat, and pair perfectly with the chewy, tart cranberries. This would be perfect sprinkled on top of a homemade acai bowl for a weekend treat…
4. Sunsol 10+ Natural Muesli
The ingredients in this give you a balanced breakkie to keep you going all morning, with a nice mix of carbs from the grains and fruit, plus protein and healthy fats from the nuts and seeds…not to mention filling fibre from all this plant-based goodness!
Although the dried fruit ups the sugar content, it isn’t the main ingredient, and so provides just enough natural sweetness without being sickly; and compared to a more commercial natural muesli on the market which has 21g sugar/100g (from a brand that rhymes with ‘solarium’), this one only has 10.2g/100g. Vegetable oil - which we aren’t such fans of - has been used to prevent the dried fruit from sticking, but this is only in a minimal amount so we’ll let this one slide.
5. Carman’s Natural Bircher Muesli
No preservatives, a nice short ingredients list, and sweetened naturally with a little honey and dried fruit. Most commercial mueslis tend to include vegetable oil as a preservative for the dried fruit, but there’s no oil in this one! Go Carman’s!
I soaked this overnight in coconut milk and topped it with unsweetened yoghurt and blueberries in the am. Thanks to the soaking process, this is easy on the digestive system, not to mention the taste buds (soaking helps bring out the natural sweetness in the oats and plumps up the dried fruit). Bircher is like a cold porridge though, so not one for those of you who like your muesli super crunchy.
6. Banting Food Co Cheeky Banter Muesli
Warning…this stuff is highly addictive! Banting has created the perfect flavour and texture combo here, while managing to be super pretty and the lowest sugar option of them all (just 3.9g/100 – that’s less than a teaspoon!). Ingredients like creamy hazelnuts, chocolatey cacao nibs, coconut and cinnamon prove that muesli can taste decadent without being sugar-loaded.
I ate this straight up as a trail mix, but I’m thinking of mixing it up with some rolled oats and serving it with some Greek yoghurt for breakkie. I also like that the nuts and seeds have been lightly baked in coconut oil rather than vegetable oil, which is prone to oxidation. There may not be any hazelnuts left in my bag of Cheeky Banter though…I may have foraged for all of them! How paleo of me ;)
Do you prefer store-bought or homemade muesli? We'd love to hear from you!