It’s almost fall and you know what that means: The cereal aisle is about to get real spooky! And I’m not talking about scary quantities of dietary fiber. I’m talking about General Mills’ iconic Halloween-themed cereals, which are BACK babyyyy, and this year an old favorite is joining the classics.
Starting this month, General Mills’ Monster Cereals will return to shelves, including: Franken Berry (or “Franken Berry’s Monster” if you’re one of those people), Boo-Berry (the ~spooOOOoookiest~ of berries), Count Chocula (like the one from Sesame Street but with less numbers and more chocolate cereal), and finally, Frute Brute, which is bringing its bright red pizzazz to breakfast for the first time since 2014.
So what exactly is this Frute Brute cereal? In fact, what are any of these??
Good questions. These colorful, seasonal cereals have been around since the 1970s and have become synonymous with the Halloween season for many a child and “child at heart.” Franken Berry is hot pink and strawberry-flavored. Boo-Berry is purple-ish and blue-ish and berry-flavored. Count Chocula is a brown, chocolatey Cocoa Puffs-like cereal. And Frute Brute is a previously discontinued classic that is bright red with a flavor originally described as the “howlin’-good taste of fruit.” The new version is specifically cherry-flavored, but it’s still bright red, and still inspired by a howling wolf man (yes, the “Frute Brute” is a wolf man. Is that the same thing as a werewolf? Hard to say). All of the cereals contain marshmallows in a variety of flavors.
There also used to be a Yummy Mummy cereal which has been in and out of stores since the ‘70s, but this year they must’ve chosen Frute Brute instead, so I guess that’s a wrap (hehe) on the mummy one for now. Also, upon a closer inspection of all the boxes, I’ve noticed that all of this years’ cereals appear to be ghost-shaped. This is a change from past years when the shapes varied from monster shapes to waffle shapes. These cereals really have evolved like Pokémon.
And that isn’t the only change this year. In the past, General Mills has mixed it up in terms of who they ask to design their monster cereal boxes, from DC Comics illustrators to the person who drew the Trix rabbit. This year, however, they are collaborating with the American artist KAWS. Not only did KAWS design the characters on the packaging, he also designed the monster toys for the giveaway.
You can enter to win one of these artsy toy monsters here. This is slightly less fun than the old tradition of digging around in a perfectly good box of food to find a plastic toy that you will inexplicably cherish for 15 years. But, hey, it’s a cool way to feature an artist. And I may just have to try this Frute Brute cereal to see exactly how howlin’ good the fruit flavor is. Plus, I’m excited to try a new sugary cereal. I think this one in particular will make getting up early every morning a little less brute-al.