The best cereal container
The average cereal box offers approximately eight servings, but before you reach the bottom, there’s a good chance your cereal won’t taste too fresh. When you upgrade to a cereal container, you can enjoy crunchy, delicious cereal every day.
Cereal containers are pantry storage essentials that can last for nearly a decade of use because they’re made with durable plastic. If you’re open to a unique design with a high storage capacity, Oxo Good Grips Countertop Cereal Dispenser holds a whopping 5 1/2 quarts of cereal or oatmeal.
What to know before you buy a cereal container
Why you should use a cereal container
Cereal containers, which have sealed designs, prevent moisture and debris from entering. In turn, they prevent cereal from going stale or getting soggy. While this alone is often the main reason why people invest in cereal containers, there are a few more benefits of using them.
For one, cereal containers have special lids that offer easy, controlled pouring. Regular cereal boxes and bags, on the other hand, are prone to spills. Cereal containers often fit into kitchen pantry organization systems seamlessly, especially when they have boxy designs that fit easily around other containers. They are also eco-friendly because they’re ideal for storing loose cereal and dry goods you purchase from farmers' markets or specialty stores.
What is a cereal dispenser?
Cereal dispensers are a subset of cereal containers. They have inverted designs, similar to top-loading water coolers, in which the container is upside so the unit can pour cereal. Cereal dispensers are largely viewed as convenient options, especially because their simple, controlled mechanisms typically reduce the potential for spills. They do, however, have fairly large footprints that may not be conducive to every breakfast-area setup.
What do you put in a cereal container?
Cereal containers and dispensers are primarily used to hold cereal, but they’re also used to store other dry goods. Oatmeal and muesli, other popular dry breakfast foods, are often kept inside cereal containers. Some people even use them as small dog-food storage containers, particularly during road trips.
Cereal container features
Cereal containers typically have plastic bottoms and lids. Lower-quality containers have bottoms made with thin, lightweight plastic that is often pliable, whereas high-quality designs are made with thick, dense plastic.
Generally speaking, cereal container lids share the same basic design. They’re made with flexible plastic, and select designs have silicone edges that create airtight seals. One side of the container usually has a flip-up lid for pouring. Another part of the lid usually has a tab or button, so it can be removed for cleaning or filling.
Many people gravitate toward BPA-free cereal containers, which are made without bisphenol A, an industrial chemical present in many consumer plastics. Studies show that BPA has been linked to some health effects, such as cardiovascular and brain disease. Fortunately, it’s easy to find a BPA-free container; not only are there many available, but they’re also clearly marked on packaging or in product descriptions.
Almost all cereal container capacities are listed in quarts or cups. Depending on the design, cereal containers hold up to 5 1/2 quarts, or 22 cups. This may be surprising to some people, considering cereal boxes are sold in ounces — and a quick conversion may be in order to determine how much cereal will fit in a container.
Cereal container cost
Lightweight plastic cereal containers cost $10 and below, whereas better-quality designs run $12-$25. Cereal container sets usually cost $25-$40, while most cereal dispensers are around $35-$75.
Cereal container FAQ
How do you clean cereal containers?
A. Some cereal containers are marked as dishwasher safe. For lists with this distinction, it’s usually recommended to place them in the top rack. Other cereal containers require hand-washing. Regardless of the washing method, the containers should be dried thoroughly before they’re refilled with dry goods.
Should I get a cereal container with a label system?
A. There are two schools of thought when it comes to label systems for cereal containers. Certain people find them useful, including for children who are learning to read. Other people feel they’re unnecessary because most cereal containers are transparent, and it’s easy to see their contents.
Which cereal container should I get?
Best of the best cereal container
Our take: If you’re looking for storage and convenience, this tabletop dispenser is worth exploring.
What we like: It holds up to 5 1/2 quarts of cereal, which is more than most traditional containers. The canister is removable for easy filling and cleaning. It has a few mess-minimizing features, such as a controlled trap door and spillage tray.
What we dislike: It’s 16 1/2 inches tall, so it may not fit on the counter if the cabinets above it are too low.
Best bang for your buck cereal container
Chef’s Path Cereal Containers Storage Set: available at Amazon
Our take: The three-piece storage set, a favorite among cereal aficionados, even comes with labeling accessories.
What we like: Containers come with spoons for easy measurements and portion control. They have silicone-locking lids that keep moisture and dirt at bay and prevent cereal from getting stale. Pieces are made with food-grade, BPA-free plastic.
What we dislike: Some buyers felt the containers looked much different in person and that the quality wasn’t what they expected.
Honorable mention cereal container
PrepWorks from Progressive Large Cereal Keeper: available at Amazon
Our take: Not only is this cereal container durable, but its lid and bottom are conveniently dishwasher-safe.
What we like: It has a reliable, easy-to-open lid mechanism. The lid also has a crescent-shaped design that offers controlled pouring. Considering it holds 4 1/2 quarts, it boasts one of the higher capacities among traditional designs.
What we dislike: There are isolated reports that the container arrived with notable damage.
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Sian Babish is a writer for BestReviews. BestReviews is a product review company with a singular mission: to help simplify your purchasing decisions and save you time and money.
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