While it’s typically grouped in with other breakfast foods, cereal is really a meal that can be consumed at any time of day. Breakfast, lunch, dinner, or midnight snack, cereal has always been there for us. That’s just one of the many reasons why this particular food item holds a very special place in our hearts. With hundreds of different kinds of cereal lining grocery store aisles, it’s easy to forget about flavors that might have once been your favorites. In hopes of triggering some nostalgia, we’ve compiled a list of ten of the discontinued cereals we miss most.
10. Cinnamon Mini Buns Cereal
They may technically be classified as a breakfast food, cinnamon buns can be a bit heavy first thing in the morning. From 1991 to 1993, if you were in search of that great cinnamon bun flavor without the feeling of having just chowed down on a decadent dessert early in the AM, Cinnamon Mini Buns Cereal made for the perfect compromise. Its tagline was “eating 70 cinnamon buns can be nutritious!” This played off of the fact that the goal of the cereal was to appeal to parents who want their children to eat a healthy, balanced diet, as well as to children who love nothing more than a sugary cereal. The cereal itself was made of corn and whole grain oats and was shaped in a spiral just like the pastry it aimed to emulate. It also made good on its promise to provide that true cinnamon bun flavor. While the texture definitely differed from that of the pastry, the taste was strikingly similar. Needless to say, it was a sad day when this cereal was discontinued. On the bright side, in 2005, Kellogg’s released a cereal that bore several similarities to Cinnamon Mini Buns Cereal, called Mini Swirlz Cinnamon Bun Cereal. While it couldn’t fill the void left in our hearts (or stomachs) by the loss of Cinnamon Mini Buns, it was far better than nothing. Unfortunately, even this revamped cinnamon bun breakfast cereal didn’t stay around too long; it was discontinued in 2009, leaving us with only real cinnamon buns for comfort. Not that that’s necessarily a bad thing.
Nothing beats nights spent sitting around the campfire, toasting marshmallows and eating s’mores. Unfortunately, this is an activity reserved for the summer months, meaning that a good chunk of the year is spent s’more-less. Luckily, even though it lacks the authentic smokiness of marshmallows toasted over an open fire, Smorz cereal can satisfy your s’more cravings during the cooler months. Or at least they could until 2013. Although many cereals, the most famous of them being Lucky Charms, have included marshmallows, few have done so to the extent of Smorz. The pieces of this cereal were designed to look and taste like graham crackers, while the marshmallows contained a swirl of chocolate. Smorz was reintroduced in 2015, but the recipe was modified, and the chocolate was removed from the marshmallows. Now, can you really call it a s’more if there’s no chocolate involved? Considering there are only three components to the recipe, it kind of feels like the whole concept falls apart if you remove one of them. Apparently, the revamped version does taste quite similar to the original, but if you’re looking for the authentic taste from your childhood, be warned that this might not be it. Regardless, even if there are differences, we’re very lucky to have at least a version of Smorz cereal, because that’s not the case with most of the other entries on this list.
8. Baron Von Redberry
This is an oldie but a goodie. Baron Von Redberry cereal made its debut in 1972 and was advertised as being “Berry Flavored Oat Cereal Plus Sweet Berry Starbits – Vitamin Charged!” The berry flavor in question was a sweet one – it’s actually been described as tasting like fruit punch. As for the starbits, they were small, star-shaped marshmallows. Baron Von Redberry Cereal participated in the lost art of including premiums on their cereal boxes (seriously, why don’t they do that anymore?). On the backs of many boxes were order forms for wood biplane gliders, a package of crayons or a collection of 4 posters. Others contained a cut-out Propeller Plane, or had temporary tattoos included at the bottom of the box. The cereal’s mascot, Baron von Redberry was a pilot in goggles and a German helmet, flying a red World War II plane. It’s more than safe to assume that the character was based off of the Red Baron. A popular advertisement strategy of the time was to create feuds between the mascots of two cereals owned by the same brand. In this case, Baron von Redberry was the nemesis of a cereal mascot named Sir Grapefellow. This animated character was a British fighter pilot who flew a purple plane and represented Sir Grapefellow Cereal. Both cereals were produced by General Mills around the same time, and commercials often depicted the two of them arguing good-naturedly about whose cereal was better.
This cereal came about in an attempt to encourage kids to eat their Wheaties. They really went all out with this one too. Not only did they give the cereal a fun theme, they even threw in an interactive game – actually giving kids the okay to play with their food. The things we do for health. Dunk-A-Balls cereal was a basketball themed version of Wheaties, with the round pieces embellished with the characteristic markings of a basketball. The back of the box could be cut out, and there were instructions detailing how to use it to turn your cereal bowl into a basketball net. Then, you were free to shoot baskets with your cereal to see how many points you could get with each meal. Unfortunately, Dunk-A-Balls cereal was released as a limited time special, meaning that the plan was never for it to be sold for very long. While its discontinuation was inevitable, it was still enjoyed by many during its short run. In fact, it was successful enough that Kellogg’s decided to emulate the basketball-themed cereal by coming out with one of their own in 1999. Kellogg’s limited edition 3 Point Pops Cereal was pretty similar to Dunk-A-Balls, except the pieces were colored orange. Whoever made that decision probably thought that it would make the cereal look more like basketballs, instead of being interchangeable with any generic ball, but in the end, they came out looking more like Cheeto Balls than anything else. So, in terms of aesthetics, Dunk-A-Balls definitely wins this round. With both basketball cereals now gone, we’re back to eating regular old Wheaties and are lives are slightly more boring once again.
6. Dino Pebbles Cereal
Pebbles Cereal is a brand of Flintstones-inspired cereals encompassing several existing and discontinued flavors. The first, and longest running, flavors are Cocoa Pebbles and Fruity Pebbles, which have been available since 1971. Of the many discontinued Pebbles cereals, the one we miss most is Dino Pebbles, which was marketed as being the favorite treat of Dino, the Flintstone’s loveable pet dinosaur. Released in 1990 and discontinued before the decade was out, Dino Pebbles was composed of crispy rice cereal and colorful marshmallows in the shapes of different kinds of dinosaurs. A few years later, marshmallows in the shapes of palm trees, suns, and surf boards were added. These new additions seem like they would kind of break the cereal’s dinosaur theme, but, who knows, maybe Dino was surfing on his spare time. Making this cereal stand out from the crowd was the fact that it wasn’t just plain old, reasonably healthy rice cereal. Instead it was vanilla-flavored, which may have made the cereal a bit too sweet for some people, but probably made it all the more appealing for others. Dino Pebbles came with several premiums that any kid who was a fan of The Flintstones would probably have loved to get their hands on. There was a Dino’s Hawaiian Fun and Games Book, Dino Stickers, a color changing dinosaur toy, and an order form for a set of cookie cutters in the shapes of different dinosaurs. Pebbles cereal has done quite well for itself over the years, and while we do miss Dino Pebbles a lot, they’re constantly experimenting with new varieties of the cereal, meaning there’s always something to look forward to.
5. KISS Krunch
Ok, so we are cheating a bit with this one, as this cereal isn’t really discontinued, it’s more like, not actually real… Yes boxes of this cereal do exist, and they do look real, but they were never actually mass produced for your grocery store shelves. But, for a “fake” cereal, there’s still quite a bit of effort that went into making this look and feel real. On each box, directly above a drawing of a bowl of the cereal, are illustrations of the four band members. Many flavors were made, or made up in this case, as well as many different free prizes inside the box. These include glow-in-the-dark Kiss finger puppets, secret rings, posters and even free records! Again, all fictional, but they could of fooled us, these look real! There were other made-up variations, one pretending to be made by “Post Cereals” which actually featured completely different cereal designs for each band member of the band. There’s even some good news, while everything we’ve talked about so far is fictional Kiss Cereal. There is a real life Kiss Cereal, and what’s even better that’s available right now! They are called “KISS – The Demon Cereal” made by the company “Funko”. These are in stock and available right now and are currently exclusive to FYE, and this may be your only chance to get your hands on real life KISS cereal in the flesh!
4. E.T. Cereal
This chocolate and peanut butter cereal is the Reese’s Peanut Butter Cup of the cereal world. Since it’s comparable to one of the greatest candies out there, its a no-brainer why this is one of the best cereals to have been wrongfully discontinued. Inspired by the 1982 hit movie, this cereal’s crispy pieces were shaped like the capital letters E and T. Of course, anyone who’s seen the movie knows that the choice of chocolate and peanut butter as the flavor for this cereal was no coincidence – Reese’s Pieces make a famous cameo in the film, during which they are eaten by E.T. himself. E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial has such an enduring legacy and is beloved by so many, that there’s a good chance that an E.T. cereal would do quite well today. Even better, it might introduce the timeless film to a new generation of viewers. Another point in its favor is the chocolate and peanut butter combination. You really can’t go wrong with such a classic combo, so there’s no way that this cereal could be anything less than delicious. Just imagine a movie night, with the whole family sitting around the TV, enjoying bowls of E.T. Cereal and watching the iconic film. It’s almost cheesy how picturesque the idea is, but it’s heartwarming all the same. But in order to make this vision a reality, we need the cereal to make a comeback. So, if someone could make that happen, preferably in the near future, it would be very much appreciated.
3. Dunkin Donuts Cereal
If this cereal were still around, they would have to change its name, as the American fast food restaurant and coffee company from which this cereal gets its name dropped the Donuts earlier this year. Dunkin Cereal just doesn’t have the same ring to it, so maybe the discontinuation was a blessing in disguise. Released in 1988, Dunkin Donuts Cereal came in both Chocolate and Glazed Style, just like the best donuts do. Some of the more chaotic (and by chaotic we mean ingenious) children out there would actually mix the two flavors in a bowl and enjoy and Chocolate and Glazed Style combo cereal for breakfast. The cereal may have borne an uncanny resemblance to Cheerios, but from the name you can infer that the individual pieces were actually supposed to be mini donuts. Select boxes of the cereal contained a send-away form for a Dunkin Donuts duffle bag. Duffle bags are great, no matter what they’re advertising, so this is a definite win. While Dunkin’ Donuts cereal is long gone, word on the street is that Dunkin’ and Post have teamed up to create an all-new cereal. Unfortunately, it won’t be donut themed. Fortunately, it will be caffeinated. Look at that, it’s like your favorite childhood cereal is growing up right alongside you! This new cereal is reportedly going to be Caramel Macchiato flavored and spiked with caffeine, making this the best news we’ve gotten all day.
2. C-3PO’s Cereal
A New Hope was released in 1977, and Star Wars movies continue to be made to this day. Over the past forty years the franchise has been involved in every marketing gimmick imaginable, making it unsurprising that, at one point or another, they would come out with a Star Wars cereal. In this case, it’s C-3PO’s Cereal, a three grain, honey-sweetened cereal with pieces shaped like figure eights. Apparently, the shape gave the cereal a special “Double Crunch”, which made eating it twice as satisfying as eating any other cereal out there. The advertisement for this cereal actually featured C-3PO’s original actor, Anthony Daniels, which is the kind of authenticity Star Wars fans appreciate. This is another cereal that would probably do very well in this day and age. The Star Wars franchise is bigger than ever, and there’s a whole new generation of fans in love with the story. Between the new fans and their nostalgic parents, people would probably swarm to buy this cereal if it ever returned to stores. Additionally, if someday you happen to come across a mini-box of C-3PO’s cereal, count yourself to be extremely lucky. Very few of them were produced, and only ever in multi-packs containing several different kinds of cereal. These days, they’re considered to be a valuable collectable (if you don’t believe us, look it up on eBay…the prices are astronomical).
1. Nintendo Cereal System
This Ralston Cereal product seems like it should have been a hit, yet it was discontinued after only a year. From 1988 to 1989, Nintendo Cereal System could be found on grocery store shelves everywhere. The boxes were divided into two sections, each holding a different variety of the cereal. On one side, there was a fruity cereal, which was colored yellow, orange and green. This cereal was Super Mario Bro’s themed, and had pieces shaped like Marios, Mushrooms, Koopa Troopas, Bowsers and Goombas. On the other side of the box there was Zelda Adventure Cereal, with pink, purple and yellow pieces shaped like Links, hearts, boomerangs, keys and shields. This cereal was berry flavored. A 1989 ad for the cereal said “mix ‘em, match ‘em, crunch ‘em, you just can’t lose.” Some boxes came with four collectable Nintendo Power Cards, depicting different video game characters, and encouraged fans to “collect all 12.” In other boxes, you could be lucky enough to find a sticker of one of your favorite Nintendo characters hidden in the cereal. Despite the fact that Nintendo Cereal System didn’t reach great heights of popularity during its year-long run, today is a whole other story. Boxes of this cereal have become a major collectible and are typically sold for over $100. In fact, in 2010, someone paid over $200 for a box on eBay. You’ve gotta respect the dedication to the collection. We, however, are a bit sad that, despite the fact that there are still unopened boxes in circulation, this thirty-year-old cereal is probably horribly stale and therefore can never be tasted. It feels like such a waste.