Both muesli and granola are made from oats, nuts, seeds, and grains such as barley, quinoa, or millet. Both are counted amongst the healthy breakfast options.
Both can be taken with milk or yogurt and are equally tasty.
The only difference is how they are made and served.
What is Muesli?
Muesli is a mixture of oats, nuts, dried fruits, and seeds. It is a popular breakfast meal throughout Europe.
It is not baked like granola and is therefore raw and soft. It is soaked overnight in milk and juice and served cold. It can also be enjoyed, straight from the packet with milk or can be boiled in milk, or water to make porridge.
What is Granola?
Granola is a classic breakfast item in American homes.
It is prepared with oats, nuts, dried fruits mixed with oil and sweeteners such as honey, maple syrup, or cane sugar. The mixture is then baked to give it a classic crunchy taste.
Granola is mostly served cold. Just take it out from the packet, mix milk and it is good to eat. You can also add it to yogurt to get a crunchy topping.
Comparison Of The Nutritional Content Of Muesli And Granola
The ingredient, being similar, both the item varies very less in the nutrition quality.
1 cup of muesli contains 289 calories, 66.1 grams of carbs, 26.4 grams of sugar, 6.2 grams fiber, 8.2 grams protein, and 4.2 grams fat.(1)
1 cup of granola contains 404 calories, 54.2 carbs, 22.3 of gram fat, 11.6 of gram protein, and 8.4 grams dietary fiber.(2)
Muesli does not contain added sugar but is high in sugar content.
Also adding natural fruit can increase the carb and calorie contents of both muesli and granola. The nutrition values also depend on additions like seeds, nuts, and dried fruits.
Granola is higher in calorie, carb, and sugar content than muesli because of the added sweeteners. Otherwise, the nutritional profile is similar, but both should be enjoyed in moderation.
What Is Healthier, Muesli, Or Granola?
Both muesli and granola are oats based cereals and provide healthy glucans.(3)
There are a few downsides to both as well.
Added sweeteners in granola increase the sugar content. Additionally, dried fruits in both also raise the sugar level. Extra sugar intake can increase the risk of raising blood sugar levels, increasing weight, and the risk of heart disease.(9, 10)
Raw oats present in muesli are a source of phytic acid that is an antinutrient. It binds with zinc and iron and impairs their absorption.(11) Soaking muesli in milk or water or juice may lower the phytic acid content and improve the mineral absorption.
Should You Choose Granola Or Muesli?
Both granola and muesli have their benefits and drawbacks, though granola contains more calories.
Always consider the ingredient when you choose one over the other.
Whether buying granola or muesli, check the ingredients and the sweeteners. Also, do not opt for granola that has added candied fruits, chocolates as it would further increase its already high sugar content.
Granola and muesli are similar in many ways including their health benefits and ingredients. The difference is just in the preparation i.e. one is baked and the other is not, which further adds to their benefits or drawbacks.
Both are considered a healthy breakfast option but have a few downsides linked with them. Both have a high sugar content that is again comparatively higher in granola. Always look for the sugar content before buying any product and choose the best option for you.