Many people may not be aware but every March 7th is National Cereal Day. Although its origins are shrouded in mystery, cereal aficionados celebrate this day in many ways.
Whether it’s baking your own treats, eating it for every meal or simply taking the time to savor a bowl of your favorite cereal in the morning, there are loads of ways that you can join in.
There’s a lot to learn about the story of cereal and why it deserves its own special day in the calendar.
So, grab a spoon and we’ll take you through everything you need to know about National Cereal Day.
A Brief History Of Cereal
It seems completely normal to us nowadays to walk down a cereal aisle in a grocery store and choose from one of the many different cereal boxes available. However, not many people know the story of how cereal became such a staple part of our diet.
Though we’ve eaten processed grains for thousands of years, breakfast cereal as we know it began with a man named Ferdinand Schumacher. He started making oatmeal using a hand oats grinder all the way back in 1854, and this small enterprise eventually grew into the Quaker Oats Company.
Several years later, a Seventh-Day Adventist by the name of James Caleb Jackson created his own cereal which he called granula, and it was so hard that it had to be soaked overnight to soften it.
At the time, most Americans were eating meat for breakfast, but Adventists like Jackson were starting to promote a more healthy diet and wanted people to eat meatless breakfast foods instead.
Another Adventist called John Harvey Kellogg was running a sanitarium in Battle Creek, Michigan, and started to try out his new invention, Corn Flakes, on his patients. As they were very popular he decided to start selling them to the public as a health food, and this is when the modern cereal industry was truly born.
A former patient of Kellogg, Charles William Post, liked Kellogg’s creation so much that he made his own cereal called Grape Nuts, which purported to be very healthy and nourishing.
When John’s brother William Kellogg bought the Corn Flakes rights in 1906, he began adding sugar to them and their popularity amongst the public exploded.
After the Second World War, sweetened cereal became commonplace, and cereal companies focussed their marketing campaigns on children, using radio and TV ads to great effect.
As time went on. and the 1970s and 1980s came around, Americans became more health-conscious and started to turn away from the sugary cereals they had been eating. This led to cereal companies focussing once again on trying to create more healthy options for consumers to enjoy.
The Best Ways To Celebrate National Cereal Day
There are many ways for you to celebrate National Cereal Day. The easiest way is to simply sit down and enjoy a bowl of your favorite cereal. If you usually skip breakfast in the morning, why not make an exception just for this day? It only comes around once a year so you might as well!
If you’re really serious about celebrating you could even have cereal for every meal of the day. Try something sweet like Lucky Charms for breakfast, something tasty and high in fiber for lunch like Special K Raspberry, and something healthy for your evening meal like granola with fruit.
Another option is to create your own delicious treats using your favorite cereals and other ingredients. Rice Krispie treats are a well-known classic and are really easy to make. You just need Rice Krispies, marshmallows, butter, and vanilla extract to get started.
If you’re feeling a bit more adventurous there are plenty of recipes online that you can try making yourself. A recent trend is baking with milk that has been infused with breakfast cereal, and this could be a fun and inventive way for you to celebrate the day.
Make sure you share your creations, and the ways that you celebrate, on social media. The most popular hashtags are #cereal day and #nationalcerealday.
The History Of National Cereal Day
Although we know so much about the history of breakfast cereal itself, and all the people and places that helped create it, the origins of National Cereal Day are a complete mystery.
Cereal enthusiasts are busy trying to uncover the facts of where it comes from, but so far we are still none the wiser. But, what we do know is that this day exists, so let’s make the most of it.
Fun Facts For National Cereal Day
- People love cereal so much they’ve even taken them to the moon. The astronauts aboard Apollo 11, which was the first spaceship to land on the moon, had Corn Flakes for breakfast and so took a box with them on their trip.
- Out of the 329 million people that live in the United States, almost half of them say that they eat a bowl of cereal for breakfast in the morning.
- The real name of Cap’n Crunch, the much-loved cereal mascot, is Horatio Magellan Crunch.
- In Greek mythology, Ceres was the Goddess of agriculture and harvests, and this is where the word cereal comes from.
- Each year, around 2.7 billion boxes of cereal are sold around the world.
- Because of its place in the history of cereal, Battle Creek, Michigan is now known as the cereal capital of the world.
The history of cereal is an interesting one, full of colorful people and places that made it into the world’s most popular breakfast food. Whilst we might not know the origins of National Cereal Day yet, that’s no reason not to take part in the celebrations.
Cereal deserves to be celebrated as one of the staple American foods, and regardless of where this day comes from, we should all take part!
So, next March 7th grab a bowl of your favorite cereal, and maybe even some baking gloves, and get involved.