The mysteries of Grape Nuts



There is no cereal more disappointing when you're a kid than Grape Nuts. The commercials show attractive young adults running, working, driving big cars and talking about how it keeps them going. Plus it has the words grape (yum) and nut (double-yum) in the name, so it has to be good.

I should have known I was in for disappointment the first time I ever saw it at my grandparents' house. That should have been my first clue -- they couldn't run, didn't work and barely drove. I poured a big bowl of it. I don't really remember anything else except maybe crying and wondering if there had been a mistake.

I never ate them again. And today when I see Grape Nuts, I am terrified by their similarity in appearance to dry cat food. Seriously:


I am not the only one.

The Wall Street Journal did a big story on the cereal

essentially saying no one under 95 buys it anymore and that the only

reason people ever bought it in the first place was because of good

commercials. As one former brand manager put it, it "was people eating


Advertising probably explains the outrageous name, too (how can the FDA go after Cheerios for false advertising claims

and leave Grape Nuts alone?), but who knows. C.W

Post committed suicide before anybody thought to ask. "Mr. Post may

have called it grape sugar, or thought Grape Nuts looked

like grape seeds, or that grape seeds looked like nuts, or that malted

barley tasted nutty. Nobody seems to know."

The naming story left me just as unsatisfied as the cereal itself, as did the

answer to what Grape Nuts are actually made of. The official answer from the company is

...bread. Just bread.

Give me the cat food instead. (That would be the bowl on the left.)

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