Muesli Vs Granola: The Ideal Breakfast?

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Muesli and Granola – Two of the most popular food items among health enthusiasts or people who just want to be healthy and lead a disease-free life. Both food items have seen a heavy rise in popularity among Indian consumers only in the last decade. Muesli and Granola are popular in most western countries. Both are usually sold side-by-side and can be interchanged as per one’s preferences and availability.

The most common question that arises among consumers who regularly eat both items is “what makes them different?.” Both food products are made from an assortment of oats, nuts, seeds, and dried fruits. So, where does the difference lie?

muesli vs granola

A little history lesson so we can put this into context and lay this to rest once and for all. 

Granola in its current form was created by John Harvey Kellogg at Battle Creek Sanitorium. However, this product was based on an American physician James Caleb Jacksons’ earlier invention called “granula.” The main purpose of this food item was to provide healthy and wholesome food to the patients in their facility. It became a popular breakfast option in the 1960s and 1970s and continues to be so to date. 


Muesli, on the other hand, was invented by a Swiss physician and nutritionist named Maximilian Bircher-Benner around the 1900s. It consisted of rolled oats or whole grains along with various fruits, vegetables and nuts. Unlike Granola, it is a loose mixture of all the ingredients which can be eaten with yogurt or milk. It is still popular in European countries as the go-to choice for breakfasts. 

How Granola and Muesli Are Made?

One of the key differences between Granola and Muesli revolves around the final stages of its preparation and the resulting texture, and taste of the final products. 

Granola typically consists of rolled oats, nuts, and seeds such as almonds, walnut, pumpkin seeds, etc. This mixture is then mixed with sweeteners such as honey, maple syrup or liquid glucose.  

Sometimes, the ingredients are heated in an oven until it’s golden brown and crispy and baked and bound together to make granola bars. 

Granola bars

In the case of Muesli, the components are the same as that of Granola. However, the ingredients are not roasted or mixed with any binding agents which preserves the nutritional value of the food. Once all the ingredients are properly mixed, it is packed and distributed for sale. Keep in mind, Muesli does not go through any processing that involves high temperatures, unlike Granolas. Often, they are unsweetened and unprocessed, making them a much healthier option compared to Granola.

Quite curiously, the most essential and common trait of both food items is the collection of ingredients and mixing them before they are taken for further processing. Both items can also be made at home if you can get the ingredients from the local market along with the help of an oven. 

You may also like our article on: Is A2 Milk Worth Twice The Price of Regular Milk?

Nutritional Information

Both food items use similar ingredients. Hence, their nutritional value appear similar. However, granola has more calories and sugar content since it uses sweeteners. To be clear, the nutritional value of either of the food items depends on its ingredients which can change from one brand to another. As we mentioned earlier, its ingredients are not fixed in most cases. In general, it is a good source of carbohydrates, protein, and good fats. It also contains fibres, vitamins, and minerals. 

A typical serving of Muesli, a cup contains up to 300 calories, 66 grams of carbohydrates, 8 grams of protein, and 4 grams of fat. It can also contain Vitamins B and E, magnesium, potassium, and zinc. Its calorie breakdown:

  • 23% Fat
  • 68% Carb
  • 9% Protein

In the case of Granola, a single cup contains 450 calories, 80 grams of carbohydrates, 10 grams of protein, and 12 grams of fat. It also contains various vitamins and minerals which are beneficial to our health. Its calorie breakdown:

  • 11% Fat
  • 79% Carb
  • 10% Protein

If you look closely, you will notice the stark difference in the fat content for both items for the same amount of serving. This is a clear indicator that users need to consider before they make their choices. 

Which Is Healthier? Granola or Muesli?

To be fair, the real question here is not about which food item is better or healthier, it has more to do with its suitability. As our readers might have already noticed, granola has more sugar and fat since it uses sweeteners to bind the ingredients while muesli is essentially in its original form. Quite obviously, muesli would be considered the healthier food in this case since its uses no additives, preservatives, or sweeteners. 

However, another factor we may want to consider is that granolas are mainly preferred by health enthusiasts or those are who physically active. The reason behind this is that the sugar and fat give them the energy they need when they miss lunch or need a snack between meals. The assumption is that they will burn that excess of fat and carb anyway by the end of the day. 

In the case of muesli, it’s more suited to those who are not physically active and focuses more on the diet to maintain their health. In such cases, muesli is just right for you since it provides you with all the right levels of nutrition you require for the day without the worry of sugar and carb. 

The bottom line is simple, either of the food items is made with a specific goal in mind. There are no hard and fast rules to attain good health. There is a reason why an athlete’s diet may not be considered healthy for regular people. Similarly, the diet of a commoner may not meet an athlete’s definition of “healthy.” And yet, both food types have the same sources largely speaking. The same principle applies to Granola and Muesli as breakfast options or snacks according to the preferences of the individual. 

In the end, it’s always a matter of creating the right balance.

Clean Granola To Consider

Here are some of the clean brands that sell Granola without any additives, preservatives and such bad stuff.

True Elements Protein Granola

Nourish Organics Oats Granola

JIWA healthy by nature Oven Baked Granola

Clean Muesli Brands To Consider

Some of the clean brands of Muesli without added flavours, artificial sweeteners and other additives are-

True Elements Berries Mix Muesli

The Whole Truth Nuts Fruits & Seeds Muesli

Yoga Bar Chocolate & Cranberry Muesli

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