In the past few months, there's been a lot of time spent at home. And while relaxing at home might be just the refresh you need, it's easy to fall into a routine. At Bob's Red Mill, we love making activities at home even more exciting with delicious food. Whether we're hosting an at-home dessert contest or spicing up movie time with fun popcorn recipes, we love adding flavor to every situation.
When it comes to homemade snacks, popcorn surely tops the list as one of our favorites. Not only is popcorn incredibly easy to make, but depending on how you cook it, it can be a healthy, whole food snack. A whole grain food, popcorn is packed with nutrients that are essential to your health. While movie theater popcorn often gets a bad rap for being loaded with butter and salt, you can choose toppings that make this snack even healthier when made at home. Plus, making popcorn is a fun cooking activity that everyone in the family can get involved with when made on the stovetop.
How to Cook Popcorn at Home
What You'll Need:
- ¼ cup White Popcorn
- 1 Tbsp Oil
Air Popping Method
When it comes to air popping popcorn, every air popper works a little differently. To ensure that your popcorn is cooked to perfection, follow the instructions provided by the manufacturer of your popping machine.
To cook popcorn on the stovetop, begin by heating one tablespoon of oil in a medium pot over medium-high heat. Next, add ¼ cup of popcorn kernels and cover the pot with a tight lid. Continue to shake the pan frequently until the majority of the kernels have popped.
Place ¼ cup popcorn kernels in a small paper bag. Next, set your microwave for 1 ½ to 2 ½ minutes. Open your microwave and stop cooking once you notice that there are 3 seconds between pops.
How to Make Homemade Popcorn Seasonings
Typically, when making popcorn, just a little butter and salt is needed to create a mouthwatering treat. However, if you're looking to take this snack up a notch, there are several different DIY popcorn seasonings that you can experiment with. Keep scrolling to discover a few of our favorite popcorn seasonings and recipes that are sure to take your movie night to the next level.
Pro tip: when creating seasonings for popcorn, we recommend using a vast array of dried herbs and spices that can be stored for several weeks at a time. Doing so will ensure that you always have the ingredients to make delicious popcorn when the craving arises.
Nutritional yeast is one of our favorite ingredients to use while cooking. Nutritional yeast is most commonly used as a vegan cheese substitute in many dips and sauces. Additionally, it can be sprinkled on pasta, soup and popcorn to create a delicious and nutritious cheesy flavor that is sure to satisfy your snack cravings. Whether you follow a vegan diet or are avoiding dairy products, adding nutritional yeast to your popcorn is a great way to create a cheesy flavor plant-based snack. Enjoy it alone or mix it with salt and herbs for an even more satisfying flavor.
Garlic Salt and Herbs
You'd be amazed how a little garlic salt goes a long way when used as a topping on popcorn. If you're craving a light, savory after-dinner snack, try mixing garlic salt with a few of your favorite dried herbs like oregano and parsley. To use as a popcorn topping, add a bit of olive oil onto freshly cooked kernels and then sprinkle with your garlic salt blend. The oil will help your homemade seasoning stick the popcorn and coat the kernels to perfection. Not only does this blend take the flavor of your popcorn up a notch, but it also creates a light and healthy snack that you can enjoy guilt-free.
Though it may not be a traditional popcorn topping, it's a delicious one. Much like herbs, to top your popcorn with cinnamon you'll need first to apply an oil-like base so that it sticks. Butter and coconut oil are two of our favorite pre-toppings that taste great when combined with cinnamon.
To create sweet cinnamon popcorn, blend the cinnamon with sugar, or a natural sugar-free alternative like Stevia. Doing so will take your popcorn from a yummy snack to a sweet dessert. In fact, this popcorn is the perfect way to satisfy your little one's after-dinner sweet tooth, without causing too much of a sugar rush. Additionally, if the cinnamon is combined with natural sugar like coconut sugar or Stevia it remains a healthy indulgence.
If you're looking for a way to create popcorn that is more filling than your typical bowl, we recommended adding peanut butter! A healthy popcorn topping, the peanut butter adds a boost of protein and flavor to your bowl that both children and adults will love. Add in your favorite type of nuts, or turn this dish into a dessert by adding chocolate covered peanuts or sunflower seeds. While adding peanut butter to your popcorn will create a delicious treat, it will also turn it into quite a sticky one. When enjoying this popcorn, be sure to have wipes on hand for easy cleanup.
Though protein powder might not be the first thing that comes to mind when you think of popcorn seasoning, you're sure to be hooked after trying it just once. Protein powder comes in multiple flavors. Here at Bob's Red Mill, we have a wide variety for you to choose from, including chocolate, vanilla and hemp. To add protein powder as a topping to your popcorn, you'll want to make sure you add an oil-like base so that the protein powder will thoroughly stick to your kernels. We love using coconut oil to coat our popcorn and then adding the protein powder on top.
Not sure which powder to try out first? Nearly everyone loves chocolate. Make your next batch of popcorn with our Chocolate Protein Powder Nutritional Booster. An excellent way to turn a healthy snack into a protein-packed treat, just one serving of this protein powder, provides 20 grams of protein. The complete protein source in our flour contains natural ingredients like pea protein powder, chicory root fiber, chia seeds, probiotics and monk fruit extract. Great to enjoy at home, or as an on-the-go snack, it's the perfect pre/post-workout indulgence.
Craving a plate full of nachos but trying to stick to a healthy diet? This Nacho Popcorn is everything you're looking for and more. Bursting with flavor, it brings the nostalgic taste of your favorite childhood nachos back into your life, without the extra calories. Spices, herbs and nutritional yeast is used in this recipe to create a wholesome, cheesy treat that will have your mouth watering before you even take a bite! Pair this popcorn with your favorite movie, or bring it to your little one's next soccer game to enjoy on the stands!
What you'll need:
- ¼ cup Coconut Oil
- ½ cup Yellow Popcorn unpopped, may also use White Popcorn
- ¼ cup Nutritional Yeast
- 1 tsp Salt
- 1 tsp ground Paprika
- ½ tsp Garlic Powder
- ½ tsp Onion Powder
- ½ tsp Chili Powder
- ¼ tsp Ground Cumin
- ⅛ tsp ground Cayenne Pepper
Brown Sugar Banana Flax Popcorn
Popcorn seasonings don't have to be all about spices and herbs. In fact, some of our favorite popcorn toppings combine a mixture of sweet ingredients to create a desert-like dish. Take this Brown Sugar Banana Flax Popcorn, for example. Made with wholesome ingredients like crushed banana chips and Bob's Red Mill Flaxseed Meal, it's a dessert that you can enjoy and benefit from. To make this treat even better for you, swap the melted butter out for a vegan substitute like ghee, and trade in the brown sugar for coconut sugar. Just one serving is enough to satisfy all of your sweet cravings for the night.
What you'll need:
- ½ cup Yellow Popcorn or White Popcorn
- ¼ cup Butter, melted
- ¼ cup crushed Banana Chips
- 2 Tbsp Brown Sugar
- 1 Tbsp Bob's Red Mill Flaxseed Meal
- 1 tsp Salt
All of these seasonings and recipes can be added to either stovetop popcorn or microwave popcorn. Remember, when making popcorn at home, you get to choose what the result will taste like. While these toppings are meant to be used as a guide to help you create a delicious treat, we urge you to get creative! Whether that means adding more salt, spices or sugar, take the time to make your next bowl of popcorn a personalized treat. Have a DIY popcorn seasoning that you'd like to share? Let us know how you top your popcorn in the comments below!