Quaker Instant Oatmeal Variety Pack Hot Cereal

Last updated date: May 14, 2020

DWYM Score
9.4


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We looked at the top Hot Cereals and dug through the reviews from some of the most popular review sites. Through this analysis, we've determined the best Hot Cereal you should buy.

Overall Take

If you need to reduce your daily sugar intake, but don't want to give up flavor, go with this hot cereal. Each bowl contains 35% less sugar, while still providing plenty of fiber. This variety comes with the following flavors: apples and cinnamon, maple and brown sugar, original and cinnamon and spice. In our analysis of 35 expert reviews, the Quaker Quaker Instant Oatmeal Variety Pack Hot Cereal placed 2nd when we looked at the top 11 products in the category. For the full ranking, see below.

Editor's Note May 14, 2020:
Checkout The Best Hot Cereal for a detailed review of all the top hot cereals.

Expert Summarized Score
9.4
4 expert reviews
User Summarized Score
9.2
1,292 user reviews
Our Favorite Video Reviews
What experts liked
This "Lower Sugar" option ranked more favorably on our list because it still contains some sugar, which means there's less artificial sweetener added to trick your taste buds.
- Eat This, Not That!
The “Lower Sugar” variety also, not surprisingly, has fewer calories than the original version — though the packaging does specify that the oatmeal is “not a low-calorie food.”
- The Daily Meal
Less than 1.5 tsp of sugar. 100% whole grain! More than 12% daily fiber!
- Fooducate
I was reaching for the usual box of oatmeal when I saw one next to it marked “lower sugar.” In my extreme naivete, I said to myself, “That’s fantastic! They finally cut down the sugar! They could easily reduce the sugar by half and lose none of the flavor.”
- Root Simple
What experts didn't like
Additionally, the serving size was still significantly reduced — without reducing the price. Essentially, consumers are paying for portion control, artificial sweetener, and a label that makes them feel better about their sugary breakfast.
- The Daily Meal
1 tsp of added sugars per serving. Highly Processed!
- Fooducate
I discovered that our oatmeal tasted dreadfully synthetic and sweet. Quaker did reduce the sugar significantly (from 12 g. per serving to 4 g.), but they did so by adding sucralose, the artificial sweetener known as Splenda (and kicking up the sodium significantly).
- Root Simple

From The Manufacturer

Even on busy mornings, Quaker Lower Sugar Instant Oatmeal lets you prepare a wholesome and tasty breakfast choice. The 100% whole grain oats provide energy you want to start your day. One serving of Lower Sugar Oatmeal contains calcium, iron, and other vitamins and minerals. And you can savor the flavors of maple and brown sugar, cinnamon and spice, or apples and cinnamon with at least 35% less sugar than regular Quaker Instant Oatmeal flavor varieties. The individual oatmeal packets make preparing breakfast simple. Just empty the contents into a bowl, measure and add boiling water, and stir. Your oatmeal is ready to eat only 90 seconds later. The packets make your oatmeal portable as well, so you can make a hot and wholesome meal wherever there's hot water.

Overall Product Rankings

1. Ralston 100% Whole Wheat Hot Cereal, 3-Pack
Overall Score: 9.8
Expert Reviews: 4
2. Quaker Instant Oatmeal Variety Pack Hot Cereal
Overall Score: 9.4
Expert Reviews: 4
3. Malt-O-Meal Original Wheat Hot Cereal, 3-Pack
Overall Score: 9.2
Expert Reviews: 3
4. Wheatena Toasted Wheat Hot Cereal
Overall Score: 9.1
Expert Reviews: 4
5. Bob’s Red Mill Organic Brown Rice Hot Cereal
Overall Score: 9.0
Expert Reviews: 3
6. Quaker Quick Steel Cut Variety Hot Cereal
Overall Score: 8.9
Expert Reviews: 2
7. Krusteaz Whole Wheat Zoom Quick Hot Cereal
Overall Score: 8.9
Expert Reviews: 1
8. Red River Hot Cereal
Overall Score: 8.9
Expert Reviews: 4
9. Quaker Instant Variety Oatmeal Express Cups Hot Cereal
Overall Score: 8.8
Expert Reviews: 2
10. Cream of Rice Gluten-Free Hot Cereal, 2-Pack
Overall Score: 8.8
Expert Reviews: 3
11. HMR Multigrain Hot Cereal, 18-Pack
Overall Score: 8.7
Expert Reviews: 1

An Overview On Hot Cereals

Breakfast has long been considered the most important meal of the day. WebMD reports that a nutritious breakfast not only gives you energy, but it also boosts your metabolism so that you can properly burn calories throughout the rest of the day. If you don’t have time to prepare a plate of bacon and eggs, but don’t want to resort to cold sugary cereals, you can make a bowl of hot cereal in just a few minutes.

When shopping for the best hot cereal, you need to consider your diet. For example, if you’re sensitive to gluten, you’re going to want a cereal made using gluten-free brown rice. There are also cereals made using 100% all-natural toasted whole wheat that is free of GMOs.

Next, you’ll want to check the nutrition label. There are hot cereals that contain 25% more fiber, as well as some that have added iron. Many are high in calcium and folic acid as well. You also want to make sure they are low in saturated fat and cholesterol.

It’s important to note that instant hot cereal packets often have sugar in them. Look for a lower-sugar version if you have to limit your daily sugar intake. It’s also a good idea to go with a hot cereal that is free of artificial preservatives, sweeteners and high fructose corn syrup.

DWYM Fun Fact

Merriam-Webster’s dictionary lists porridge as grains cooked in either water or milk until they become soft and thick. This is essentially what we refer to today as hot cereal. The dish has been around close to the beginning of time, although not all cultures used the same grains to make it. For example, Asian countries make their porridge out of rice grains, while the Scottish people use oats. Here in the United States, we have a choice of hot cereals. We can buy porridge made from rice, wheat or oats.

The Hot Cereal Buying Guide

  • Always follow the cooking instructions listed on the hot cereal’s product packaging. Typically, you’ll need to pour the recommended amount of cereal and water in a pot and bring it to a boil. The addition of salt is always optional. Once the mixture is boiling, you’ll want to lower the heat and stir constantly to avoid the formation of clumps. After the recommended amount of cooking time, remove the pot from the heat and let it sit until the cereal has thickened. If you prefer to prepare the hot cereal in the microwave, combine the cereal and water in a microwave-safe dish and cook for the designated amount of time listed on the hot cereal box. Again, you’ll need to wait a few minutes for the cereal to thicken.
  • When it comes to flavoring your hot cereal, there are an endless amount of possibilities. You can mix in a little brown sugar, vanilla extract or maple syrup. Perhaps you’d like to top your hot cereal with banana slices, a handful of blueberries or some coconut flakes?
  • It’s important to note that the FDA doesn’t regulate any health claims made by the companies that produce hot cereal.
  • To compare hot cereal prices, you must first determine how much the company is charging per ounce. The Quaker Instant Oatmeal Variety Pack Hot Cereal and the Malt-O-Meal Original Wheat Hot Cereal are among the most affordable. Moderately priced is the Wheatena Toasted Wheat Hot Cereal with the Ralston 100% Whole Wheat Hot Cereal coming in at the highest price per ounce.