The Spotlight – All Things Cereal
People are rarely blasé about cereal. Strong opinions are more the norm: what brand is best, when to eat it, type of bowl, etc.
Devotees aren’t relegated to just kids either. It turns out adults, and especially celebs, are just as obsessed. For instance, Jerry Seinfeld (reportedly 17 varieties lined his ‘90s sitcom kitchen), Camilla Cabello (Tweet: “my blood is 99% cereal”), and LeBron James, who had a limited-edition Nike Zoom LeBron IV made featuring his favourite cereal, Fruity Pebbles.
Toronto showed serious love for the breakfast food years ago with dedicated eateries The Cereal Bar and Silo13, but they proved to be ahead of the curve.
Because cereal is back. Big time. At least as a breading, topping, or component in a dish.
Take a look:
Want further proof? Take a look at the current cereal-centric items available around town:
Cozy Coffee Co.
200 Queen St. W.
A thick, foamy Cereal Milk Latte ($5.75) sweetened with agave, dusted with cinnamon, and sprinkled with Lucky Charms, is sure to brighten your day.
The Canadian tea retailer’s new Frosted Cereal ($7.98/50 gm) is a caffeine-free, herbal premium loose-leaf tea blend “inspired by the dreamy milk at the bottom of your cereal bowl.”
This sweet creamy tea contains the ingredients not often found in drinkable form, including: Carrots, Bean Peels, Gluten-Free Oats, Vegan Marshmallows, Soy Protein, Coconut Chips, Gluten-Free Cornflakes, Raisins, Goji Berries, Quinoa, and Vanilla Pieces.
Breakfast on the go, but future.
1458 Danforth Ave.
Order the Fried Chicken ($18) battered in buttermilk and corn flakes, with fries and coleslaw for dinner at the pretty eastside eatery. For weekend brunch, choose the crispy poultry on mini waffles alongside a baby spinach and citrus salad ($17).
Chop Steakhouse & Bar
Crab Cakes ($15.95) arrive at the table with a corn flake crust and chipotle lime dipping sauce.
The Dizzy Gastro Sports Pub
305 Roncesvalles Ave.
The sandwich to end all sandwiches might just be this beast, Grand Slam Po Boy ($18): chicken enveloped in cornflakes, Ementhal, crisp bacon, and honey ranch sauce, all on a Muffuletta bun.
The plant-based restaurant offers a vegan take on the ubiquitous breaded snack. Popcorn Nuggets ($8) made with seasoned non-GMO soy coated in crispy cornflakes, are served with gochujang mayo, wasabi mayo vegannaise, or mild BBQ sauce.
1132 Dundas St. W.
The 24-hour diner at Dundas and Ossington has been around since 1932. In that time, it’s become famous for many things, including appearing in a slew of TV shows (Suits) and films (Cocktail, Hairspray, The Shape of Water), but it turns out their Cornflake Chicken is the real scene-stealer .
Brunch essential Chicken n’ Waffle ($15) features cereal-crusted chicken, accompanied by heavyweights hollandaise, Canadian maple syrup, and side of house gravy. Sando lovers, look to the Cornflake Chicken ($11.50) with sweet chili mayo, melted cheddar, lettuce, tomato, and red onion on a brioche bun, for brunch or supper.
4361 Hwy 7
The Markham breakfast spot tops its Buttermilk Pancakes ($12) with berry compote, cereal, and condensed milk syrup – ensuring the need for both a nap and late lunch.
100 King St. W.
Simply uttering the name Churro French Toast ($15.50) will induce drooling. So imagine what happens once the Petite Thuet brioche covered in corn flakes, with gala apple mint, whipped cream, and maple syrup, hits your table.
2790 Dundas St. W.
Brunching in The Junction? This Southern resto’s Cornflake Crusted French Toast ($12) with crushed cornflake-and-candied-pecan-covered challah, mixed berry preserve, and maple syrup is clearly the way to go.
70 Fraser Ave.
Class is always in session at this academic-themed spot in Liberty Village.
Krispy Krunchy French Toast ($16.75) with eggy bread rolled in “snap, crackle, and pop,” accompanied by peach raspberry compote, sugar “dust,” and brown sugar butter, gets top marks for making breakfast feel like dessert.
1614 Bayview Ave.
This sunny breakfast/lunch spot – and recent addition to the Bayview strip - offers a decadent spin on classic pain perdu.
Think of Pecan Cornflake Crusted French Toast ($13), with its toasted brioche bread covered in pecan and cinnamon cornflake crust, and accompaniments of fresh fruit, housemade whipped cream, and maple syrup, as a much needed break from your usual breakfast bowls and granola bars.
Of course desserts are where you’ll find the most iterations of your cereal dreams:
Glory Hole Doughnuts
One of the best ways to start your day? GHD’s Rice Krispie Treat ($4.25 ea., 6/$23, 12/$46) covered in marshmallow glaze, rice Krispy cereal, and chocolate drizzle. No bowl required.
San Remo Bakery
374 Royal York Rd.
Why get a regular donut when you get one covered in Lucky Charms, Fruit Loops, and Cinnamon Toast Crunch for the same price ($2.15 ea., 6/$10.99, 12/$19.99, mini $1.50 ea., jumbo $35 ea.)?
ICE CREAM + GELATO
Bang Bang Ice Cream & Bakery
93A Ossington Ave.
Good luck trying to select a flavour from the lengthy list at this popular haunt.
Pro tip: Use my cereal lovers cheat-sheet -> Look for Frooty Loops, Cinnamon Toast, Pnut Cookie, and Caramel Corn on the cone featuring Captain Crunch.
16 Vaughan Rd.
The shop at St. Clair and Bathurst offers an array of ever-changing ice cream flavours. Cinnamon Toast Crunch however, isn’t going anywhere.
Homemade with crunchy cereal bits throughout, you could enjoy it in a cup, cone, or sandwiched between warm pastry. But something tells me you’re going to want it in a, get ready for it, waffle taco.
Cauldron Ice Cream
502 Queen St. W.
No doubt you’ve seen these desserts from California on your feed - CIC’s ‘OG Puffle’ filled with liquid nitrogen and sweet creamy ice cream was made for Insta.
The Queen West outpost is currently doling out Milk & Cereal Ice Cream ($6.99-$9.99).
Liberty Commons at Big Rock Brewery
42 Liberty St.
At the modern brewpub nestled in Liberty Village, the Caramel Cornflake Cone ($10) features a classic chocolate dipped vanilla soft serve cone, with cornflakes and caramelized pistachios for panache.
Thick layers of whipped cream and corn flakes, topped with a large scoop of gelato, sliced fresh fruit, and two Pocky sticks?
Luscious parfaits are now legit breakfast food, okurrr.
JUST GIMME A BOWL + SPOON
Of course should you just want the regular ol’ stuff, a number of old-school restaurants and diners still offer it by the box or bowl.
Cartoons and prizes not included.
Note: menu items, ingredients and prices subject to change.