Updated: Jan 20, 2020
I discovered some time ago that I was Fructose intolerant. Sounds like I can't ever eat sugar again right ? well NO, in fact there is a whole world of food I can eat, and yes there are some foods i need to avoid.
Luckily for this article, I can eat oats. Why bring this up ?
I say this because when you find out you have a food intolerance or allergy you start reading every food label that has ever been written.
It takes more time to shop nowadays, but once you know your foods you can just shop as you did before the reading addiction.
Whilst reading the ingredient list on everything I discovered that the Carman's Porridge sachets contain only a few ingredients. I did some research and found that I can get 3.35 times more product, which is fresher and better quality in my opinion, because i get to choose what goes into it, and costs much less for little more effort than opening a few packs and mixing. I mean how lazy am I ?
Almond Coconut and Chia Flavour
Carmen's Sachets $5.70 (8 sachets of 40g) per box
Total 320g food
Almond Coconut and Black & White Chia Flavour
Your Own $6.57 (1 Tupperware container full)
Total 1.07KG food
The ingredients are the same, in the same percentages for the example above. The added benefit when you make your own version, is that you can have more or less of the ingredients to taste, which you cannot control when you buy pre packaged. The other thing is that Carman's has coconut flavour added and you can just have the actual coconut which I can tell you tastes much better.
Plastic waste : 4 Plastic bags with your own version versus 27 with the pre packaged Carman's brand if you were to buy enough to match the amount we made on our own - 1070g
It took me about a minute to open and pour the ingredients I wanted into the Tupperware container and it was done. I know that is 1 minute more than just placing a box on the shelf, but again how lazy am I ? When I can save this much money on 1 product, I am all for the 1 minute workout.
So lets talk apples.. Oh yeah, Carman's has apple in it as well. It's a cheap filler and flavour I guess. It doesn't mention apple on the big bold flavour heading. You will find a lot of products have apple sneakily hidden as it adds a less expensive way to fill and add flavour without using the more expensive flavours they promote the product to actually be. Anyway back to apples..
let's compare the ingredients and the dollars
Whole Grain Oats 83%, Fruit(Apple, Coconut 2%), Raw Sugar, Seeds 3% (Chia 1%, Pepitas, Linseeds), Almonds 2%, Natural Coconut Flavour.
$1.78 per 100g
Sometimes on sale for $4. This still works out to be $1.25 per 100g
Whole Grain Oats 93%, Coconut 2 %, Chia Seeds (Black and White 3%) Flaked Almonds 2% - NO ADDED SUGAR
$0.62 per 100g
Of course you can add in anything you want, add the Pepitas and Linseeds or any other ingredient you choose. You will always save big compared to pre packaged and you can choose better ingredients.
I add fresh berries in season during summer, and fruits I have preserved in winter, then top with some yoghurt. Yummo !
You will need to ensure you use the 1kg container before any ingredients stale, but that will take some time and if you use Tupperware you know you have the best freshness possible inside.
Oh, I just heard someone say the pre packaged is already measured out and they don't want to weigh and measure. Well to that I say. "Once again after research" I have found a 1/3 cup measure or scoop is actually 40g (Carman's serving size) and therefore if you simply scoop out 1/3 cup into your bowl and then add 2/3 cup measure of milk you have exactly the same ratio and you can even cook it according to the same directions found on the Carman's pack ! 1 minute on high in the microwave, mix and then another 1 minute and it is done. 2 minutes total.
I used the following ingredients (pictured below) for my mix, you will have chia seeds for 5 more 1kg mixes left over, unless you use more I did. You will have Coconut left for 10 more mixes but again I used more, and you will have almonds left over for 10 more 1Kg mixes.
You do use all the oats however.
You could up the game and buy all Organic ingredients and you will still be saving big time.
I should say that I adore Carman's products and this article in no way implies that they supply an inferior product, it is simply a comparison on cost and the need for the home maker to NOT use any ingredient that doesn't add real value for your body such as fillers or flavours or preservatives such as sugar.