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“Bowl of fruit and yogurt topped with nuts for a healthy breakfast” by Peter Hershey on Unsplash

Removing Choice From Breakfast

How to become the Steve Jobs of yogurt.

Steve Jobs was famous for wearing black turtlenecks. His wore the same outfit daily so he didn’t have to choose clothing each morning. Since everything in the closet was identical, Steve Jobs could just grab and go.

While I’m no Steve Jobs (yet), I limit choices during the morning routine. I can go months, years eating the same daily breakfast. This goes all the way back to college when breakfast was a Pop Tart on the way to class. Then I realized Pop Tarts are just about the worse thing on the planet and evolved to cereal.

My cereal routine lasted almost a decade. I limited choice to the box on sale when I needed more cereal. Often mixing two flavors for variety, the only other ingredient was almond milk. Then I looked at carbohydrate and caloric intake. Cereal had to go.

I graduated to yogurt. Simple, strawberry flavored Greek yogurt. A bowl of that daily with the occasional granola thrown on top. That satisfied me for a while. Then I looked at the sugar content of strawberry Greek yogurt compared to plain Greek yogurt.

My Greek yogurt game upgraded to plain with local honey and banana granola mixed in. Multiple flavors and textures created a wonderful breakfast. It required more time each morning, but the result was worth it.

Then I got the flu.

The doctor told me to cut out dairy until I was over the cough. I switched to applesauce each morning. The cough lingered for two months so I continued to eat applesauce for two months. Sometimes I added fruit. Sometimes I didn’t. Like a child, I ate applesauce daily. It wasn’t terrible but also wasn’t great. This boring breakfast also lacked protein and sustenance. So, you know, it was a great option. I needed to reintroduce yogurt to my morning routine.

Instead of returning to the tried-and-true plain with the extra fluff, the simplicity and speed of applesauce prevailed. I stood, mesmerized by the overwhelming number of yogurt options in the grocery store. The wall of little tubs beckoned. But which brand? Which flavor? Is one healthier than another?

Instead of settling on one type, I choose three for a yogurt battle royale. All were cherry adjacent because cherry is the best flavor there is. This also removes fruit bias from the taste test. Which little tub would be the one to rule them all? Only time will tell.

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Chobani: A Hint of Cherry ($1.50)

Chobani was my go to yogurt before The Flu™️, so two of the three test subjects come from their conglomerate. “A Hint of Cherry” is the most expensive of the three, but contains the least amount of sugar (8g). It also has potassium which I guess is a plus since I’m not eating a banana any time soon.

When eating yogurt, I don’t want to taste the yogurt. It’s kind of disgusting when you get down to it. Bland. Strange in texture. Yogurt is all about the additives. Hence the honey and granola in my pre-flu iteration.

Chobani’s “A Hint of Cherry” doesn’t provide a “hint” of anything but yogurt. The coloring was pinkish, so maybe that “hint” of cherry was all color related. Perhaps Chobani’s business model is tricking our brains to react in a way that acknowledges cherry? It didn’t work.

I ate about 70% of the little tub, flushing the unused portion down the drain. That’s like $0.45 of food waste. Not the ideal way to start the morning. Or my test.

Chobani: A Hint of Cherry: 🍒🍒 out of 🍒🍒🍒🍒🍒

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Publix Premium: Authentic Greek Yogurt ($0.90)

This store-brand option comes in one of those two part containers. The plain yogurt is in one side and the cherry filling in the other. Consumption required mixing.

Mixing ingredients defeats the whole “grab and go” idea of a quick breakfast. The container is small and the cherry glob almost overflowed the container. I mixed. And mixed a little more. When the color was nice and pink the yogurt was ready to eat.

The flavor was good. Whole cherry chunks appeared a few times providing a different texture, which I appreciated. The Publix yogurt was thicker than the “Hint of Cherry” concoction. I appreciated this.

At the bottom of the container, the yogurt lost the pink hue. The mix didn’t quite make it all the way to the bottom. It was still good, just not very cherry-y. Regardless, I enjoyed the entire container.

Publix Premium: Authentic Greek Yogurt: 🍒🍒🍒🍒 out of 🍒🍒🍒🍒🍒

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Chobani: Black Cherry on the Bottom ($0.90)

Considering this is of the “fruit on the bottom” verity, I didn’t expect the yogurt to be pink in hue right off the bat. Pre-flavored cherry yogurt with fruit on the bottom to mix in? Seems that’s how Chobani rolls. This allowed for less time mixing and more time eating. Never a bad thing.

While “fruit” is the focus, I counted two, maybe three cherries in the entire container. Not a lot, all things considered.

The flavor was good. There wasn’t a strong cherry flavor but the texture of the yogurt was right — not too thick while not runny either. However, because it’s a large “tub” of yogurt, it was easy to devour. I guess that could either be a good thing or a bad thing depending on your mood.

Chobani: Black Cherry on the Bottom: 🍒🍒🍒 out of 🍒🍒🍒🍒🍒

I tested three cherry yogurt varieties. One was terrible and two were decent. The problem is that I now have zero yogurt and no time to go grocery shopping before breakfast tomorrow. Sure, I could do that instead of writing this story, but that’s besides the point.

While I might have resigned myself to eating yogurt every day for the foreseeable future, I will hold onto a slight choice. So maybe I’m not akin to Steve Jobs, but a little variety is the spice of life. One thing is certain, I won’t be purchasing a hint of anything any time soon.

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