Snacks That Pop!

On family movie nights when we’re all snuggled up on the couch watching the latest Pixar flick, my family and I like to nosh on popcorn. My husband loves anything salty and crunchy. My daughter loves anything sweet. And mommy … well, I need a snack that is indulgent and satisfying but won’t make me feel like I’ve derailed my diet. Snack savior, thy name is popcorn!

Try these ideas the next time you bust out your Whirley Pop.

1. Dark Chocolate and Sea Salt Popcorn Bark

In a saucepan, melt 2 tbsp of unsalted butter and 1 cup of dark chocolate chips. (I highly recommendGhirardelli or Guittard.) Stir constantly until the butter and chocolate have melted, and then remove immediately from the heat.

Spread the popcorn out on a cookie sheet lined with parchment paper or a Silpat. Drizzle the melted chocolate and lightly sprinkle sea salt all over the popcorn. Place the baking sheet in the fridge to cool and set the chocolate.

Worried mom side note: I know what you’re thinking. This popcorn recipe calls for chocolate. How is it healthy? By using dark chocolate, I sneak powerful antioxidants into my little girl’s diet … and she’s happy because it’s chocolate.

2. Cheesy Is So Pleasy

This popcorn hack wallops a mighty punch of calcium. While your popcorn is still warm, sprinkle on your favorite grated cheese, tossing the popcorn as you go along so it is evenly distributed. Parmesan is one of my favorite cheeses on popcorn. Although it doesn’t melt as well as other cheeses, it has a strong, rich taste, which means I don’t have to use as much. This saves me calories, and saving calories makes my thighs happy.

3. Spice is Nice

If you prefer savory popcorn, this one is for you. Drizzle extra virgin olive oil all over your bowl of popcorn. Toss. Sprinkle on a mixture of paprika, garlic powder, pepper and salt. You can experiment with any variety of spices.


Joelle Pauley-Fine is a freelance writer/editor specializing in health and medicine and has been writing professionally for more than a decade. At her one-person editorial shop, WordSpark, Joelle writes engaging and optimized content for a variety of organizations, in addition to her food and lifestyle blog, Terroir and Tater Tots. Joelle is a member of the American Copy Editors Society and the proud mom of a precocious 4-year old who is full of moxy.

#foodforkids #movienight #snacksforkids

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