I am a goner when it comes to snacking. I can eat salads all day, every day, but when it comes to a salty mid-day treat or dessert, I can’t help but to have “just one.” The more chocolate the better, and if you cover it in peanut butter, I’m done for. So this year, as many years before, I have vowed to snack smarter. Carrot sticks, celery, raisins – they’re all in the mix. Doesn’t that sound exciting?
Well, with a little research, I’ve found a loop hole in smart snacking. It comes from the delicious movie snack that we all grew up with. Sans butter and 500 mg of salt, popcorn is truly a smart snack. It’s a whole, unprocessed grain and is full of fiber. It’s antioxidants can even help fight cancer and diabetes. Take an afternoon and try one of the recipes below as a three o’clock snack. You won’t be sorry!
- 1/4 cup popcorn kernels
- 1 teaspoon butter
- 1 teaspoon lemon zest
- 1 teaspoon fresh chopped thyme
- Juice of half a lemon
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Use an air popcorn popper and pop your kernels into a medium sized bowl
- Melt 1 tablespoon of butter in the microwave.
- Zest 1 teaspoon of lemon and chop up a teaspoon of fresh thyme. Add to the melted butter.
- Juice half of the lemon into the butter.
- Whisk the butter mixture together and drizzle over the popcorn.
- Sprinkle the popcorn with salt and freshly ground black pepper, then toss.
2-cup portion is approximately 85 calories
- 1/3 cup popcorn kernels
- 1 tablespoon coconut oil
- 1/2 teaspoon salt (may reduce or omit)
- 1 tablespoon hot cocoa mix
- Put coconut oil and salt in bowl. Microwave just until oil is melted, 20-30 seconds.
- Pour popcorn kernels out of the bag and into bowl; stir to coat each kernel with oil mixture. Even out kernels in bottom of bowl.
- Put vented cover on top and microwave on high for approx. 3-5 minutes, when there are 1-2 second between pops. Microwave times will vary.
- While still hot, sprinkle with cocoa mix; toss until evenly coated.
- 1/2 cup popcorn
- 1-2 teaspoon oil (olive, canola, coconut)
- 1/2 – 1 teaspoon granulated garlic
- 1/2 – 1 cup Parmesan
- 1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
- cracked pepper
- a pinch of salt
- In a heavy bottom pot, heat the oil on medium-high heat. Test heat by tossing in a couple kernels.
- When they pop, add popcorn, cover, leaving a crack for steam to escape. Turn heat down to medium.
- Shaking occasionally, pop until kernels are done popping. Turn stove off.
- Sprinkle with cheese, granulated garlic, salt, pepper and mix with a big spoon.
- Cover and let stand 10 minutes so cheese melts.