Angie has been an online writer for more than 9 years and has strong opinions about muesli (and other things).
Should You Serve Muesli With Milk?
As far as Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall is concerned, muesli is a Swiss breakfast that was never meant to be eaten with milk—and I, for one, am with him on that. Muesli with milk is like chewing your way through the felt covering of a Mongolian yurt and just about as tasty.
And as for eating it with yoghurt . . . just don't get me started. The last thing I need in a morning, when my tongue has the only fur coat I'll ever own, is something thick and clarty (a Yorkshire word sort of meaning muddy or sticky) adhering to it.
Not Every Cereal Needs Milk
The muesli and milk thing, I think, arose from us trying to combine two separate disciplines. It is taking the by-now-standard habit of eating grains with milk, as advocated by Mr Kellogg when he invented cornflakes. There's nothing wrong with that; it can be delicious. But we have automatically transferred the liberal dousing with milk to every other breakfast cereal that has turned up since—even muesli, once it had left its homeland.
All I can say is, no wonder muesli seems like an acquired taste to many people. Sadly, it has gone even further for some, and they consider muesli as being only for vegetarian, sandal-wearing, Guardian-reading, knit-your-own-beard types.
Muesli With Juice Is Correct!
What I crave in a morning is something fresh and clean-tasting, and this is where the correct accompaniment to muesli comes in. It's juice. And this opens up a whole new range of possibilities when you think of how many juices there are out there now (and I do mean good-quality fruit juice, preferably not from concentrate, as opposed to those fruit drinks which have more sugar, water and flavourings etc. than fruit juice—as always, guys, read the label).
Which Kind of Juice?
My personal favourite is cloudy apple juice, or Cox's apple juice when I can find it, as it is just a little sweeter. (The Cox is an old variety of English apple with a wonderfully fragrant flavour). Fruit itself adds another dimension, and again I find grating a quarter of an apple into the muesli lifts the juicy quotient up another notch. Apple juice tends to strike the right balance because it's less sharp than orange juice but less cloying than some others such as mango or pineapple.
How to Make Healthy, Homemade Muesli
The trouble with a lot of shop-bought muesli is that it often has a lot of extras that not only do you not want but which are usually unhealthy, too. Quite apart from the unnecessary additions of sugar and salt, many contain wheat, a grain to which many people have an allergy. Even the slightest intolerance to wheat can result in bloating and other gastric discomforts. Wheat has no place in muesli; muesli is all about oats.
I always use as many organic products as possible, and the major component, of course, is oats. Organic 'Jumbo' oats are the best to use, in my opinion. Having got this base, you can start to create; the only limit is lack of imagination.
My Base Mix
As a starting point, I will tell you what I add to my oats and why I add them. These first six items are my 'base' mix:
- Oats: mainly because they produce soluble fibre which helps to regulate 'bad' cholesterol levels (LDLs).
- Pumpkin Seeds: to lower cholesterol, ward off arthritis and as a good source of valuable minerals including zinc.
- Sunflower: for vitamin E and again as another good source of minerals that help to fight cancer and cardiovascular disease.
- Flaxseed: for fibre, omega 3 fatty acids, to help with arthritis, cholesterol, menopause, hypertension, cancer—the list is endless.
- Nuts: usually walnuts for vitamin E and for their cardiovascular benefits and possible protection against Type 2 diabetes.
- Raisins: for boron, a bone mineral, and antioxidants that could help with macular degeneration amongst many other things. And also to add a touch of sweetness.
Now, before some of you write to me to say some of these benefits are only, as yet, conjecture, I would like to point out that my health will not wait until science gets its finger out and finds a way of proving these hypotheses. I would rather eat them now and trust that they are providing healthy, balanced nutrition to my poor old body.
Homemade Muesli Is Economical
Honestly, it may seem expensive at first as you buy all of these ingredients. However, when you have mixed them all up together, you will find you have an awful lot of muesli, so good storage is a must.
I keep mine in Kilner jars ready to grab off the kitchen shelf in a morning. Storing it properly also means that it will keep for ages; that's good if I ever want a different breakfast for a change.
Fruit and Nut Add-Ins
Breakfast need never be dull. Once you have your personal base mix, you can go as mad as you like with the add-ons. I tend to stick with the antioxidant approach whilst trying to get as many of my 5-a-day in at one go. So, along with a quarter of an apple, I will add:
- Blueberries: one of the all-singing, all-dancing berries that protects against nearly everything.
- Cranberries: again, full of phytonutrients but with the added benefit of being useful against urinary tract infections. (This is supposedly not yet borne out by science which would prefer us to still buy expensive drugs. However, as someone who drinks cranberry juice at the first twinge of infection, I can vouch for its immediate and beneficial curative action).
- Pecan Nuts: as these add a lovely hint of coffee that gives depth to the other flavours.
- Hazelnuts: again, another rich source of vitamin E with its many useful health benefits.
Obviously, one can add any fruit one likes and, of course, experiment with the many different types of nut available. These are just what I tend to stick to.
The Benefits of a Good Breakfast
Studies have time and time again proved that having a decent breakfast is vital for health. In fact, it could well be the most important meal of the day. It is thought that not only does it give your brain that all-important shot of nutrition to wake it up after sleep, but it may also protect against heart attacks and the development of diabetes. It also seems likely that people who make time for breakfast are less prone to obesity, and that can only be a good thing.
Eat Your Muesli in Moderation (It's Filling)
However, there is one thing I should warn you about before you rush out to the shop: You do not need, nor should you attempt to eat, a full bowl of muesli as shown in TV commercials for breakfast cereals. Four or five dessert spoonfuls is more than enough to set you up until lunchtime. Anything more and it could seem like you've got a second job.
- BBC NEWS | Health | Breakfast is \'most important meal\'
Eating breakfast is the secret to staying healthy, according to evidence unearthed in the US.
Gome2202@yahoo.co.uk on May 08, 2020:
Can your eat alpen with milk
Brian on May 21, 2018:
I just ate Muesli for the first time in my life and I have to say that it is amazing! Why didn't I try it before, Jesus.
1 portion was enough for making me feel satiated and full of energy. I have to give my friend many thanks tomorrow for recommending me to this tasty meal.
james on September 20, 2016:
Do we cook Muelsi before eating?
Angie Jardine (author) from Cornwall, land of the eternally youthful mind ... on November 05, 2013:
That was a lucky find then, Mart!
mad mart on November 04, 2013:
i had some muesli was six years old it was still lovey that is grate
Angie Jardine (author) from Cornwall, land of the eternally youthful mind ... on July 21, 2013:
I am not entirely sure but as homemade muesli contains no refined sugar or salt I would think it would be a good food to eat.
kumar on July 12, 2013:
is musli is suitable for diabatic
Angie Jardine (author) from Cornwall, land of the eternally youthful mind ... on January 12, 2013:
I must admit, Lorie that I am a late comer to muesli myself but now I really look forward to my breakfast.
And knowing exactly what is in it is even better, no hidden sugar or salt as in so many packaged cereals. It makes me feel very virtuous :)
Lorie on January 08, 2013:
Thanks for this! I've only recently started eating muesli for breakfast, so thanks for the awesome ideas!:-)
Angie Jardine (author) from Cornwall, land of the eternally youthful mind ... on September 30, 2012:
Sorry for the delay in replying, Kendra … HubPages has gremlins and forgot to tell me you have left a comment!
I am just so pleased that you found muesli with juice just as good as I do … I’ve probably got a long way to go before I convert the world though :)))
Kendra on September 28, 2012:
I just tried it using store-bought orange juice with no pulp and it was delightful. :) Thanks for the juice suggestion!
Angie Jardine (author) from Cornwall, land of the eternally youthful mind ... on September 06, 2012:
I suppose you could use fresh juice but apple juice (which is perfect for home made muesli) might t be difficult to process yourself?
If you are talking about orange juice then go ahead and try it and see if you like it. Personally, I find it just too sharp and not quite sweet enough to have with muesli.
I should imagine that most fruits that can be juiced will be suitable as the juices I buy already processed are simply juice themselves with no added anything.
RiRi on August 29, 2012:
I really want to try this, but wondered if your supposed to use freshly squeezed juice (for example having bought the fruit and squeezing it yourself), or whether it is ok to buy a nice bottled juice and use that instead?
Angie Jardine (author) from Cornwall, land of the eternally youthful mind ... on July 19, 2012:
Bless you, Phyllis ... you don’t need ratios. Just do what you feel like :)
Sometimes I find I have put in too many oats so I keep a plastic container with mixed seeds/nuts and dried berries in to sling a few more in the mix. Occasionally I even find I have put in just too many of these ‘interesting bits’ and it’s a bit over the top. So then I just top it up with jumbo oats ...
The thing about your own muesli is that it is ‘yours’ ... you can add whatever you want in whatever quantities you want. You’re just missing out the unwanted salt and sugar ...
Then you just add juice to taste ... some days my muesli is floating if I have a juice I like (cranberry and blueberry mix at the moment). And I never soak it from the night before either. I have never found it necessary.
It really is that simple.
Phyllis on July 06, 2012:
This sounds like something I could do. However, did I miss something? What are the ratio of oats to seeds to raisins to juice etc ???
Angie Jardine (author) from Cornwall, land of the eternally youthful mind ... on July 04, 2012:
Hi diplorging ... I’m with you on the milk thing. Even when I force myself to use it on things because I think it’s good for me I really do not like it. Finding out that juice actually improves muesli was a real breakthrough for me ... try peach juice on it ... it’s delicious if you like sweet things.
diplorging from Serbia on June 30, 2012:
I hate milk, so I don't eat muesli at all. Juice is a great idea, I'm looking forward to trying it
Angie Jardine (author) from Cornwall, land of the eternally youthful mind ... on June 05, 2012:
I guess if you eat muesli with milk at all you should be able to eat it anytime you like :)
Angie Jardine (author) from Cornwall, land of the eternally youthful mind ... on February 11, 2012:
@InTuneWithCooking - thanks for the kind comment, vote and share. Much appreciated!
@SanneL - I must admit that I have tried shop bought muesli since making my own and find I really don't like it. At the moment I am having my own muesli with a mixed juice of apple/pineapple and lemongrass - it's really zingy. I buy the juice in Sainsbury's supermarket ... which is no help whatsoever if you are in the US. Sorry ...
Many thanks for your vote and share.
SanneL from Sweden on February 11, 2012:
Just like you, I make my own muesli, since I know that the store bought muesli contains a lot of unhealthy extras. Furthermore, I always add the healthy flax, pumpkin and sunflower seeds into my home made muesli. However, I have never tried it with juice. Sounds interesting.
A very healthy and informative hub!
Voted up and sharing.
InTuneWithCooking from Australia on February 10, 2012:
Fantastic hub...I will share this one and voted up.
Angie Jardine (author) from Cornwall, land of the eternally youthful mind ... on January 31, 2012:
Hi sizzled ... thanks for this info.
The muesli you mentioned was almost like mine except for the yoghurt ... but that is just my own preference. I'm not really a yoghurt fan and I think it tastes cleaner and sharper without any dairy products.
sizzled on January 31, 2012:
Over 30 Years ago I was lucky enough to stay, on business, at the Dolder Grand Hotel in Zurich, Switzerland....a traditional 5* Deluxe establishment, renowned throughout the region.....
Their speciality for breakfast...traditional Swiss "Bircher Muesli".....and the main ingredients were ...oats, nuts, seeds, and grated apple and juice (all soaked overnight to soften the oats).....with the small addition of some cream or yoghurt stirred through, just before serving, to combine all the delicious ingredients.... and I can still recall the tasty meal after all these years!
So I'm sure that your recipe is also delicious with your inclusion of apple juice rather than milk!
Angie Jardine (author) from Cornwall, land of the eternally youthful mind ... on December 20, 2011:
Hi SilkThimble and 2uesday! Sorry for the delay in replying ... HP forgot to let me know I had comments. Thank you both so much for taking the time to give me your thoughts.
@Silk ... me too ... to me muesli with milk is eugh! Bland with a capital Blan ...
@2uesday ... I don't often do 'useful' so thanks for that. Sometimes healthy breakfasts can just seem too much like duty ... but with this muesli you can go wild ... it alleviates the boredom. :)
2uesday on December 16, 2011:
Useful page with ideas for a healthy breakfast.
SilkThimble from Philadelphia, Pennsylvania on December 14, 2011:
I will definitely have to try muesli with juice - I've always been underwhelmed when it's served with milk. And your suggestions for creating the base mix sound very tasty!
Angie Jardine (author) from Cornwall, land of the eternally youthful mind ... on August 23, 2011:
Hi SJmorningsun25 - thanks for backing me up!
All the best ...
SJmorningsun25 on August 11, 2011:
I agree--homemade granola is much better than the stuff in the stores. Yum.
Angie Jardine (author) from Cornwall, land of the eternally youthful mind ... on August 10, 2011:
Hi SJ - I do eat granola as well, with milk but not everyday as I find it a bit too sweet. It is the same base as muesli but is toasted ... it is easy to make your own so you can control the sweetness. I have made it in the past and it is much cheaper than shop bought.
So glad you found my hub enlightening! All the best ....
SJmorningsun25 on August 10, 2011:
I had no idea muesli was meant to be eaten with juice! What a revelation! Thank you for sharing and clarifying. I think granola is America's response to muesli, to make it sweeter and more fit for milk. But the real thing should be eaten the way it was meant to be eaten. Cheers!
Angie Jardine (author) from Cornwall, land of the eternally youthful mind ... on July 31, 2011:
You're welcome, fashion ... many thanks for your comment.
fashion on July 31, 2011:
This is informative and interesting hub.Well done
Angie Jardine (author) from Cornwall, land of the eternally youthful mind ... on July 25, 2011:
Thank you for your comment, Amie ... nice to know the muesli habit is spreading world wide!
amie on July 25, 2011:
last week was my fist time to eat muesli, i bought it from a supermarker, but it was nice i eat it with milk. its not common here in the ganbia
Angie Jardine (author) from Cornwall, land of the eternally youthful mind ... on July 06, 2011:
Thanks for the comment, NatureLover64. Yes, do try it but I think it's important that the juice is a good one ... not from concentrate preferably (but then I am a foodie). :-)
NatureLover64 on July 06, 2011:
Some great info. I for one have always had my muesli with milk never have tried it with juice. Seems like an interesting option. Definitely will try it.
Angie Jardine (author) from Cornwall, land of the eternally youthful mind ... on July 05, 2011:
Many thanks for your kind comment, Gentle Fist.
Gentle Fist from Serbia on July 05, 2011:
Very good hub, and informative too. I like muesli in the morning and agree that it shouldn't be eaten with milk. Although, I like it with cold yoghurt or kefir, it adds to freshness, and it does good for your stomach. But it's all about preferences... Nice hub in deed!
Angie Jardine (author) from Cornwall, land of the eternally youthful mind ... on June 27, 2011:
I guess it's a personal preference but it's too bland and tasteless with milk for me ... and I don't think that's how the Swiss ever meant it to be eaten. Here in the UK we have a lot of food gurus ... and it was Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall (top TV chef and seasoned campaigner) who started the move back to 'proper' muesli ...
Many thanks for your comment ...
Carolyn Jung on June 26, 2011:
How interesting to eat it with juice like that. I have to admit that when I visited Australia last year for the first time, that's when I realized how addicted Aussies are to their muesli. Most of the time, though, I saw it definitely served with milk. ;)
Angie Jardine (author) from Cornwall, land of the eternally youthful mind ... on May 26, 2011:
Wow, that sounds nice! Must try it ... thanks for commenting,OT.
Obscure_Treasures from USA on May 26, 2011:
Muesli is undoubtedly a very healthy food to eat! I sometimes mix it with cornflakes and add mango or banana slices on the mixture!
Angie Jardine (author) from Cornwall, land of the eternally youthful mind ... on May 25, 2011:
Good for you, moorea86!
It's even nicer when you realise the stuff is good for your body. I've presently made one up with seeds, walnut pieces, sweetened dried cranberries and dried blueberries! Super.
moorea86 on May 25, 2011:
I've heard about muesli for a long time, but I've never had the chance to try. Your suggestions are too delicious to pass up though, I'll have to gather the ingredients next time I go shopping!
Angie Jardine (author) from Cornwall, land of the eternally youthful mind ... on April 06, 2011:
Sorry for the delay in replying, Scribenet but HP seem to have stopped alerting me to comments made!
Muesli is just soooo refreshing with apple juice in the morning and making your own means you can constantly vary what you put in it so breakfast never need become boring... scrummy.
Thanks for taking time to comment : )
Maggie Griess from Ontario, Canada on March 28, 2011:
This is great...making your own muesli; sounds yummy and I like your suggestion to eat it with juice instead of milk. :)
Angie Jardine (author) from Cornwall, land of the eternally youthful mind ... on March 11, 2011:
Kind of you to say so, crystolite ... enjoy your muesli!
Emma from Houston TX on March 11, 2011:
Good hub,thanks for sharing.
Angie Jardine (author) from Cornwall, land of the eternally youthful mind ... on March 10, 2011:
Thanks Avamum - they are great photos, aren't they?
That reminds me I haven't had breakfast yet!
Sarita Harbour from Yellowknife, Canada on March 09, 2011:
Mouthwatering photos - great hub on one of my favourite breakfast and bedtime snacks!
Angie Jardine (author) from Cornwall, land of the eternally youthful mind ... on March 09, 2011:
Hi lilibees - thanks! Must own up to taking this photo off flikr.com but mine looks very nearly the same ... maybe not quite as artistic. But the flavour ... to die for.
Cheers, m'dear ...
lilibees on March 09, 2011:
Great informative hub, this dish looks wonderfully delighful!