9 Best Cereals for a Quick & Healthy Breakfast

Some days, you just can’t beat the convenience of a bowl of cereal for breakfast. However, cereal is often villainized as being “unhealthy” and not good for you!

This is usually because some contain refined grains and a high amount of added sugars. If you know what to look for a breakfast cereal can, in fact, be a very nutritious choice. Here are 9 of the best cereals and some tips to ensure a healthy breakfast high in protein and fiber.

Bowls of cereal next to glasses of milk on a dining table.

Most breakfast cereals are fortified with vitamins and minerals to help fill in those nutrient gaps- which can be especially helpful for busy and exhausted moms (or soon to be moms).

A bowl of cereal in the morning can even be high in protein, fiber, and vitamin D – three of my favorite nutrients!

What to Look For When Selecting a Breakfast Cereal

First and foremost, I think a breakfast should contain a good amount of protein and fiber so you’re not starving an hour after eating it. Plus, both nutrients play a role when it comes to weight management.


I’m a big believer that meals should contain at least 20 grams of protein to improve meal satisfaction and keep us fuller for a longer period of time. When it comes to breakfast cereal, you will see below that there are some options that are higher in protein.

To increase the protein content when consuming cereal in the morning, here are a few tips:

  • Select a higher protein milk, but be aware that liquids are digested quicker than solids. However, this will still help to increase overall protein intake.
  • Mix protein powder with milk for a significant increase in protein.
  • Make a Greek yogurt parfait, and top with your preferred cereal.
  • Eat with a side of peanut butter (or as a topping for a yogurt parfait).
  • Add nuts, seeds or hemp hearts to the bowl for added crunch, healthy fats, and protein.


Most of the cereals on this list are good sources of insoluble fiber, which helps prevent constipation and also assists with keeping us full.

Some of the food labels for breakfast cereals will actually differentiate how much soluble vs. insoluble fiber it contains (often cereals containing oats). A good balance of both is preferred, as soluble fiber can improve the gut microbiome and reduces the risk of many chronic diseases.

Add flaxseeds to your bowl of cereal to increase the soluble fiber content, or eat it with a side of fresh fruit. Apples, nectarines, apricots, and pears are good sources of soluble fiber.

If you’re not consuming much fiber in your diet, it is best to start low and go slow. This means start with a small serving of a high fiber cereal and gradually increase over the next few weeks.

Added Sugars

As most everyone understands – too much added sugar can increase the risk of type 2 diabetes, cardiovascular disease, and cancer.

Added sugars add no health benefits, and can lead to blood sugar spikes. As a rule of thumb, it’s best to select one with less than 10 grams of added sugar.

However, a little added sugar combined with fiber and protein from a breakfast cereal can slow down digestion and help prevent those spikes in blood glucose.

Ingredients List

When talking about the list of ingredients on a nutrition facts label, I usually say the shorter the better. However, breakfast cereals are often fortified with vitamins and minerals – which can make that ingredients list look long and confusing.

Healthy Breakfast Cereals to Try For Busy Mornings

This post does contain Amazon affiliate links. At no additional cost to you, I receive a small compensation if a purchase is made.

Here are my top picks for a well-balanced bowl of cereal for those busy mornings.

Cascadian Farm Hearty Morning Fiber

A box of Cascadian Farms Hearty Morning Fiber breakfast cereal.
Image Credit: Amazon

An option a little higher in added sugars, but it’s worth it because it actually tastes good and has a little bit of protein. The granola clusters add some texture and crunch.

This is a good option if you want a tasty cereal in the morning to help improve bowel regularity.

Per 1 cup serving:

  • 220 calories.
  • 6g protein.
  • 10g fiber.
  • 10g added sugars.
  • First ingredient is whole grain wheat and contains 30 grams of whole grains.

Post Premier Protein Cereal

A box of Premier Protein breakfast cereal.
Image Credit: Amazon

There isn’t much fiber in this cereal, but I love how much protein it contains with only 4 grams of added sugars (it’s also sweetened with Stevia). There are dried strawberries and sliced almonds for some texture.

Serve with some apple slices or add flaxseed for some soluble fiber.

Per 1 cup serving:

  • 180 calories.
  • 20g protein.
  • 4g added sugars.
  • 1g fiber.
  • No vitamin D.

Special K High Protein Breakfast Cereal

Special K High Protein Cereal has 20 grams of soy and pea protein, with more fiber than Premier Protein.

It is a good source of numerous vitamins and minerals, and provides 20% daily value of vitamin D with a 3/4 cup of skim milk!

Per 1 cup serving:

  • 240 calories.
  • 20g protein.
  • 4g fiber.
  • 9g added sugars.
  • Fortified with nutrients, including vitamin D.

Kashi GO Chocolate Crunch Cereal

A box of Kashi GO chocolate crunch cereal.
Image Credit: Amazon

Another cereal higher in added sugars, however, the high protein and fiber content makes up for it. I love that we know it contains both soluble and insoluble fiber.

It does contain soy – but there is much more research confirming soy’s benefits than concerns.

Per 3/4 cup serving:

  • 200 calories.
  • 10g protein.
  • 9g added sugars.
  • 9g fiber, 5g soluble fiber and 4g insoluble fiber.

Post Original Shredded Wheat

A box of Post Shredded Wheat breakfast cereal.
Image Credit: Amazon

Shredded wheat cereal is the healthiest cereal on this list, in my opinion. It has a great balance of protein and fiber, just one ingredient and 0 grams of added sugars!

Shredded wheat is a little on the boring side, so I recommend adding some fresh berries and nuts.

Nutritional information for 1 1/3 cup serving:

  • 210 calories.
  • 7g protein.
  • 8g fiber.
  • 0g added sugar.
  • Only 1 ingredient: whole wheat!

Nature’s Path Organic Heritage Flakes

Heritage Flakes breakfast cereal box.
Image Credit: Amazon

Crunchy and nutty, not too sweet with healthy, wholesome ingredients like wheat, spelt, millet, barley and quinoa.

Per 1 cup serving:

  • 160 calories.
  • 5g protein.
  • 7g fiber.
  • 5g added sugars.
  • Contains wheat flour, barley, and quinoa.

Great Grains Crunchy Pecan Cereal

A box of Great Grains Crunchy Pecan breakfast cereal.
Image Credit: Amazon

Made with whole grain wheat, crunchy pecans, clusters and flakes for a variety of different textures.

I love that it is fortified with vitamins and minerals, but it should be noted it contains 90% daily value of iron in one serving. This could lead to constipation- especially if you take a multivitamin that contains iron.

Per 3/4 cup serving:

  • 210 calories.
  • 5g protein.
  • 5g fiber.
  • 5g added sugars.
  • Excellent source of numerous vitamins and minerals.

Food for Life Ezekiel 4:9 Golden Flax Sprouted Organic Cereal

This is a very well-rounded breakfast cereal with a good balance of both protein and fiber. However, the serving size is very small.

It is made out of healthy ingredients like sprouted wheat, flaxseeds, barley, lentils, soybeans.

Per 1/2 cup serving:

  • 180 calories.
  • 8g protein.
  • 6g fiber.
  • 0g sugar.
  • Some vitamins and minerals.

Purely Elizabeth Honey Peanut Butter Superfood Cereal

This cereal is higher in calories for a small serving size but is made with “superfoods” quinoa, chia, and sorghum. It also tastes really good.

I also love that it is fortified with vitamin D.

Per 2/3 cup serving:

  • 230 calories.
  • 5g protein.
  • 6g fiber
  • 7g sugar.
  • Contains vitamin D.

Related Posts:
Increased Vitamin D Intake Through Foods (with Recipes)
High Fiber Breakfast Ideas for Health and Weight Management
30 Breakfast Ideas with 30 Grams of Protein

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