Sunday, April 10, 2016

Millville Summer Berry Single Serve Oatmeal Cup (Aldi)

Great option for those that like to overpay for average oatmeal.
I very rarely eat oatmeal, but when I do, my absolute favorite kinds are the cheap little “fruit and cream” varieties.  And best of all, it’s only a couple of dollars for somewhere around eight packs.  There’s just something about fake fruit pieces (or maybe they’re real…hard to tell these days) floating around in a bunch of sugar that just hits the spot every once in a while.

Well, since “natural” oatmeal seems to be gaining in popularity, I guess it only makes sense that Aldi would jump on the bandwagon.  Here, we have a single-serve cup of oatmeal, containing "summer berries", which would consist of strawberries, blueberries, and raspberries.  But unlike the packets, these aren’t little pieces of questionable-looking fruit “flakes“--these are huge, full-sized blue- and raspberries, and large chunks of strawberry that looks pretty darn inviting.

I must say that I was thrown for a loop when I came home one day to a barely-eaten cup of this sitting on the kitchen counter.  It was from my wife, who was the one that made the decision to purchase these; it didn’t take a whole lot of investigating to deduce that this meant she did not like it.  And if she didn’t like it, then chances were probably good that I wouldn’t like it.  And so I kind of put off eating the second, and final, cup that we had purchased, instead relegating it to a dark existence sitting in our pantry.  But it was only a matter of time until I got too lazy to go grocery shopping, got hungry, and needed something to eat.  Naturally, this was easy, and was otherwise serving no purpose, so I decided to go for it.

As can be expected, prep work is easy: Fill up the cup to the “fill line” (which is curiously located on the outside of the container), pop it in the microwave for about a minute, let it sit for a few, stir it up, and breakfast is served!  It gets nice and thick after setting, and is the perfect consistency even for me, and I prefer mine to be pretty watery.  But how does the flavor compare to my little packets?

Honestly, I prefer the little cheapies.  I stirred for a while, and the first few bites were pretty weak in the sweetness department…even the berries themselves are more tart than anything.  As I got down farther and farther into the cup, however, the brown sugar became more and more noticeable, but it wasn’t until the final couple of bites that it was as strong as I like.  I guess I’ll have to spend even longer stirring it up next time.

I did like having the multiple berries, but they don’t really pack a whole lot of flavor.  So what you’re pretty much getting is a slightly flavorful, slightly sweet cup of oatmeal for a ridiculously overpriced $1.19.  I’m sure these are better for you than the packets that I like, but then again, I can get eight of those for the price of just two of these.  And artificial flavors or not, those taste a hell of a lot better.  I didn’t dislike these at all, but the price just isn’t in line with what I’d be willing to pay for a breakfast food that I hardly partake in, and the flavor tradeoff isn’t worth that inflated price, either.  This just isn’t a product for me.  Or my wife, who absolutely hated it.

Overall: 5/10.  It’s not that bad, and I actually liked having “fresh” berries in there, but I am of the opinion that, at $1.19 per single serving cup, there’s just really not much in the way of value.  In fact, I much prefer the taste of the cheap “fruit and cream” oatmeal packets, of which you can get 8 for about the price of two of these cups.  There’s also an astonishing 18g of sugar, even though I barely got any sweetness until I was about halfway done with the cup.  For me, it was definitely edible, it just wasn’t even close to being worth it.  If these dropped in price by around half (I think $.79 would be a more realistic number), I’d think about getting them again.  Otherwise, I’m fine considering this purchase a one-off.

6 comments:

  1. Honestly I prefer my cereal COLD like, IMO it's intended, and cannot stand oatmeal but my daughter loves the stuff. Like you, she prefers the fruit varieties but many of the instant oatmeal packets I've bought for her always come up short on the "fruit" portion. If I was more productive in the morning, I'd probably just buy steel-cut rolled oats and some fresh strawberries/blueberries and make a bowl from scratch, but I barely have the energy in the morning to turn on the coffee pot so that's not going to happen. I haven't seen these individual oatmeal cups at Aldi yet, but at $1.19 I doubt I'd consider them for her, that price tag seems a bit steep (considering she eats the stuff 5 days a week, that would add up quick) not to mention your review doesn't tell me it's worth that price anyway

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    1. Yeah, it's definitely NOT worth the price. I honestly think you'd just be better off sticking to the packets. And I'm with you: I'd love to add the fruit and stuff myself, but no way I'm exerting that much energy for some oatmeal, lol.

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  2. What ever happened to Mellville Oats with strawberries, blueberry raspberries cereal? I would buy 3 or 4 boxes at a time

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    1. If you're talking about the oatmeal featured in this review, it's available as a Special Buy, usually once or twice (maybe more) during the summer season.

      If you're talking about an actual cold cereal, then I've never seen, or even heard of such a thing...that sounds like it would be fantastic!

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  3. I love these cups as an alternative to the Quaker version that sells at my local convenience store for nearly $3 for the same size cup. When I consider that, this version at $.99 at my Aldi was a steal! The oatmeal was delicious - and I was happy to see that it utilized steel cut oats instead of the minced up oat pieces that are normally used in instant products. This is a good pick for someone on the go - I take it to work with me and use hot water, so no need to microwave it. 10/10 for me!

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    1. I do feel like a re-review is in order for a couple of reasons: 1.) The scores in this review are WAY too high, because these were memorably godawful the first time I tried them; and 2.) My wife and I got them again just a couple months back, and were both surprised at how much better they had gotten. The next time they're offered as a special buy, we'll pick some up and do a proper write-up.

      Thanks for your comment!

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