Protein-Packed Cereals: The New Breakfast Trend

Mar 06, 2016 11:27 PM EST | By Mark Jason Alcala

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Prompted by consumer demand for healthier options for common everyday food items, manufacturers have launched new breakfast options as alternative for the ubiquitous breakfast cereal deemed too unhealthy due to its high carbohydrates content. Protein-enhanced cereals are now a recent trend with major food companies launching their own version for this healthier breakfast option.

Michigan-based Kellog Co. recently offered a new cereal option for its Kashi brand, but this time it comes enriched with plant protein. The Kashi GoLean Clusters Vanilla Pepita Cereal is considered healthier with its 9 grams of protein per serving sourced from rolled red beans and pea crisps. The company also plans to introduce snacks and bars offering the same protein rich formulation according to an article by Jeff Gelski for Food Business News.

Denver-based Love Grown Foods have a protein cereal of its own. Named Power O's Cereal, it contains plant-based protein of between 2 to 6 grams per servings and between 1 to 3 grams of fiber per serving depending on variety. Its protein and fiber content is derived from navy beans, garbanzo beans and lentils.

According to Tyler Lorensen, president of the protein and ingredients division for Iowa-based World Food Processing admits that coming up with a plant-based protein cereal that tastes and is as crunchy as the original has been challenging. Fortunately, the company was able to come up with a pea protein under its Puris brand that works.

Mr. Lorenzen added that World Food Processing uses peas that are not bioengineered and free of hexane. Actually, World Food offers soy protein but it seems grain-based food firms prefer the pea based variety.

Illionois-based, Ingredio Inc. Also offers protein alternatives such as the Homecraft pulse flour and the Vitessence pulse protein-based products. According to Jim Zallie, an Ingredion executive, pulses are non-genetically modified and often contain fiber. In addition, Mr. Zallie confirms that the company is currently formulating new products from fava beans, yellow pea, chickpeas and hummus.

Pulses are the edible seeds of a variety of crops of the legume family such as peas, beans or lentil. They are high in protein and could be easily used in large scale production as they are already widely cultivated.

On the other hand, San Francisco-based Solazyme Inc. opted for a different approach in sourcing its protein requirement. Its product AlgaVia sources its protein from algae, along with dietary fiber, healthy lipids and essential micronutrients.

With all these available products, how does one decide the best breakfast option? An Australian website Goodness Superfoods offers this simple guide: high protein content, high fiber content and low glycemic index.

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