Special K Vs. Corn Flakes (Which is Best?)

Kellogs Special K and Corn Flakes are two popular kinds of breakfast cereal eaten in many countries worldwide; they look similar, but which is best?

In this article, I’ll be comparing Kellogs Special K and Corn Flakes against each other head to head to find out which is the best for nutrition, cost, and flavor.

Read on to find out everything you need to know and help us find out which you like best by participating in our voting poll.

Ingredients Comparison – Whats the Difference?

Before we get started on the nutrition comparison, let’s take a look at the ingredients for each kind of cereal.

As you can see from the ingredients table below, the main difference between Special K and Corn Flakes is that Special K is made from Rice, and as the name suggests, Corn Flakes are made from Corn.

Both kinds of cereal are fortified with various vitamins and minerals, which I’ll compare head-to-head later on in this article.

Special K IngredientsCorn Flakes Ingredients
Rice, wheat gluten, sugar, defatted wheat germ, contains 2% or less of salt, malt flavor, bht for freshness. vitamins and minerals: reduced iron, vitamin c (ascorbic acid), niacinamide, vitamin e acetate, beta-carotene, folic acid, vitamin b6 (pyridoxine hydrochloride), vitamin b1 (thiamin hydrochloride), vitamin b2 (riboflavin), vitamin d3, vitamin b12.Milled corn, sugar, malt flavor, contains 2% or less of salt. vitamins and minerals: iron (ferric phosphate), niacinamide, vitamin b6 (pyridoxine hydrochloride), vitamin b2 (riboflavin), vitamin b1 (thiamin hydrochloride), folic acid, vitamin d3. Vitamin b12.

Special K Vs. Corn Flakes Nutritional Comparison

We’ll now move on to compare each aspect of nutrition for each kind of cereal to find which is the best in each category.

Each cereal has a slightly different recommended serving size, so I’ve included a weight-for-weight comparison (per 100g) to ensure the data is as accurate as possible.

For confirmation, I’ll be comparing Kellogs Special K Original Vs. Kellogs brand Corn Flakes.

Best for Calorie Content

Starting with calorie content, I can confirm that the cereal with the least calories between Special K and Corn Flakes is Corn Flakes.

Although they have the same amount of calories per recommended serving at 150kcal per portion, a serving of Corn Flakes weighs slightly more, making them the lower calorie option weight-for-weight.

Cereal TypeCalories Per 100gCalories Per Serving
Kelloggs Special K Original385kcal150kcal (per 39g serving)
Kelloggs Corn Flakes357kcal150kcal (per 42g serving)

Best for Carbohydrate Content

Neither type of cereal is classed as low-carb, but if this is something you need to consider, then Special K is the lower carb option between the two, with 8g fewer carbs per 100g than corn flakes.

Cereal TypeCarbohydrates Per 100gCarbohydrates Per Serving
Kelloggs Special K Original74g29g (per 39g serving)
Kelloggs Corn Flakes86g36g (per 42g serving)

Best for Sugar Content

When it comes to added sugar, both types of cereal are relatively low in sugar, and both contain the same amount of sugar per serving, but weight-for-weight, Special K contains slightly more sugar.

Cereal TypeSugars Per 100gSugars Per Serving
Kelloggs Special K Original10.3g4g (per 39g serving)
Kelloggs Corn Flakes9.5g4g (per 42g serving)

Best for Protein Content

If you’re looking for a cereal that gives you more protein per serving, then when comparing Special K against Corn Flakes, Special K is the higher protein option with more than double the amount of protein per serving than Corn Flakes.

Cereal TypeProtein Per 100gProtein Per Serving
Kelloggs Special K Original18g7g (per 39g serving)
Kelloggs Corn Flakes7g3g (per 42g serving)

Best for Fat Content

If fat content is a consideration for you, then Corn Flakes are the best option, with no fat or saturated fat per serving. Although Special K contains some fat, it’s a nominal amount per serving, and they don’t have any saturated fat either.

The tables below show both fat and saturated fat content per serving and weight-for-weight per 100g.

Per 100g

Cereal TypeFat Per 100gSaturated Fat per 100g
Kelloggs Special K Original1.3g0g (per 39g serving)
Kelloggs Corn Flakes0g0g (per 42g serving)

Per Recommended Serving

CerealTypeFat Per ServingSaturated Fat per Serving
Kelloggs Special K Original (per 39g serving)0.5g0g
Kelloggs Corn Flakes (per 42g serving)0g0g

Cholesterol

If cholesterol is something you need to keep track of, I can confirm there’s no cholesterol in either Kelloggs Original Special K or Corn Flakes.

Best for Fiber Content

When it comes to fiber content, both Special K and Corn Flakes are low in dietary fiber compared to higher fiber whole grain cereals.

Corn Flakes contain slightly more dietary fiber, but it’s still a nominal amount per serving.

Cereal TypeDietary Fibre Per 100gDietary Fibre per Serving
Kelloggs Special K Original1.4g<1g(per 39g serving)
Kelloggs Corn Flakes3.3g1g (per 42g serving)

Best for Sodium/Salt Content

When it comes to sodium (salt), both kinds of cereal contain similar amounts, but Corn Flakes have slightly more than Special K per serving.

To put this into context, of a daily value percentage (daily allowance), Special K contains 12% of the sodium daily recommended allowance compared to Corn Flakes, which are 13%.

Cereal TypeSodium/Salt Per 100gSodium/Salt per Serving
Kelloggs Special K Original667mg270mg (per 39g serving)
Kelloggs Corn Flakes729mg300mg (per 42g serving)

Best for Vitamins/Minerals

Both Kelloggs Original Special K and Corn Flakes are fortified breakfast cereals which means they have added vitamins and minerals in a bid to get more of the consumers’ daily allowance into their everyday diets.

Special K has higher amounts of vitamins and minerals in more categories than Flakes, including more calcium, thiamin, riboflavin, Vitamin B6, and Vitamin C.

Corn Flakes contain more Vitamin D, Iron, Potassium, and Magnesium per 100g than Special K.

Vitamin/Mineral TypeAmount of Nutrient Per 100g of Special KAmount of Nutrient Per 100g of Corn Flakes
Vitamin D3.3mcg*7.1mcg
Calcium23mg*5mg
Iron28mg28.9mg
Potassium53mg168mg
Magnesium12mg39mg
Thiamin1.69mg1mg
Riboflavin1.91mg1.52mg
Niacin22.6mg17.9mg
Vitamin B66.44mg1.79mg
Vitamin C68mg21mg

*mcg = microgram / mg = miligram

Best for Flavor/Texture

When it comes to flavor and texture, it’s not easy to judge a winner because it’s down to the individual which they prefer.

To get a range of opinions, we’re taking a poll to find out which cereal Special K or Corn Flakes is the public favorite.

Submit your vote below (no personal information required) to find out which is the favorite so far.

Best for Price

At the time of writing this article (March 2022), Corn Flakes cost an average of $3.28 for a family-sized (18oz) pack, and Special K cost $3.72 for the same sized pack.

Based on these figures Corn Flakes are the lower-cost option compared to Special K.

Overall Winner

We’ve now covered all categories, and I can announce a winner of the best cereal for nutrition and price, and the winner is – Corn Flakes.

Although it was a close competition with Corn Flakes winning five out of nine categories, Corn Flakes came out on top for calorie content, lowest sugar, lowest fat, slightly higher fiber, and best for price.

Let’s not forget the runner-up, though, because Special K came out on top for lower carbs, higher protein, lower sodium, and higher vitamins and minerals.

So depending on what’s most important to you when it comes to choosing a cereal, you can now make an informed choice based on the information in this article.

Comparison CategoryWinner (Special K or Corn Flakes)
Best for Calorie ContentCorn Flakes
Best for Carbohydrate ContentSpecial K
Best for Sugar ContentCorn Flakes
Best for Protein ContentSpecial K
Best for Fat ContentCorn Flakes
Best for Fiber ContentCorn Flakes
Best for Sodium ContentSpecial K
Best for Vitamins/MineralsSpecial K
Best for PriceCorn Flakes
Overall WinnerCorn Flakes

Related Articles

I hope this article has helped you to find the information you were looking for; you might also find the following articles helpful too:

Original Cheerios Vs. Corn Flakes (Which Are Best?)

Cheerios Vs. Honey Nut Cheerios (Which is Best?)

References Used for this Article

To ensure the nutritional information used in this article is accurate, I have used data from both the original producers and the USDA; the links below contain the source information:

Special K USDA Nutritional Information

Special K Smart Label Nutritional Information

Corn Flakes USDA Nutritional Information

Corn Flakes Smart Label Nutritional Information