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Cereal: For Breakfast & Beyond


Beat Breakfast Boredom

Attention cereal monogamists: Staying true to the same old oat flakes or bran nuggets day after day can be a yawn for your taste buds. Try mixing and matching hot and cold choices with healthy toppings.

* If you like it sweet

Mix 1/2 cup Cheerios, 1/2 cup Special K, 2 tbsp. walnuts, 1/2 cup sliced peaches, and 1 tsp. honey. Add milk.

* If you like it warm

Stir 1/3 cup canned pumpkin-pie filling and 1 crushed graham cracker into 1 cup cooked plain oatmeal. Sprinkle with about 1/4 tsp. each ground ginger and cinnamon.

* If you like it crunchy

Mix 1/2 cup Wheaties, 1/4 cup lowfat granola, 1/4 cup trail mix, and a sliced banana; add milk.

Beyond the Morning Bowl

Cereal is a great way to start your day, but don't stop there: It also makes a nutritious snack or recipe ingredient. In fact, one study from Wayne State University in Detroit found that women who had cereal and lowfat milk as a bedtime snack lost more weight than those who had their usual pre-snooze pick. For an easy take-anywhere treat, make your own trail mix from whole-grain cereal, nuts or seeds, and dried fruit. You can also use cereal as a healthy substitute in your favorite recipes. Try using flakes as a coating for "fried" chicken or mixing it into your favorite cookie batter. Here are some suggested recipes:

Cereal and Fruit Parfait

"Crispy" Chicken Bake

Cocoa-Nut-Grain Treats