Ingredient or standalone?

This post is inspired by my breakfast today, and also by a comment from Mom one time when I was with her on a grocery trip.  Please excuse the motivating “Foodstagram” as I know that some people find that to be a faux pas.
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Her comment was something to the effect, “I always see baby-cut carrots as a food, and whole carrots as an ingredient.”  Think about it–do you know of anyone who eats whole carrots straight up?  I know that I do not, but they are commonly put into soups, stews, and even stir-fries.

And this morning for breakfast, I had a bowl with Wheat Chex and Grape-Nuts… straight up!  This is quite rare for me, as when I have Chex most of the time, it is in a Chex mix instead of right out of the box.  But I really do like the taste of Wheat Chex alone, without needing the mix.  And, Grape Nuts add a good crunch to it, even though I ordinarily only use Grape-Nuts in yogurts or malts, rather than stand-alone (or, a think a better term is “dry”).

This is not my first time using this combination.  When I was at UNL, because I often had to go to work at Runza before the dining halls opened for brunch, I needed food in my room.  During my sophomore year, I won a $100 gift card to Super Saver through the Millionaire Mania promotion, and often got Wheat Chex and Grape-Nuts to re-stock my supply.  It also brings back memories of cross-religious Bible studies with Phillip.

Are there other foods that you would commonly consider an “ingredient” rather than a “food?”

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