The cheapest, healthiest + most delicious way to make popcorn at home

A movie without popcorn can be an incomplete experience.  I went to see the movie 'Chef' last night (yeah for date night!) but ended up being super bummed because I couldn't have popcorn!

Yes they said there was 'nothing' on the popcorn (so at first I was quite excited) however they pop it in oil and add salt.  

Adding oil (or butter) to your popcorn adds an excessive amount of fat calories to a hearty and healthy whole-grain food.

One cup of air-popped popcorn without oil contains 31 calories with 10% of these calories coming from fat (1).

One cup of air-popped popcorn with oil contains 55 calories with 50% of calories coming from fat (2).

It's the same amount of popcorn, but the popcorn with oil is 24 calories more!  But no one eats just 1 cup of popcorn.  

According to the New York Times, 1 large bucket of popcorn holds 20 cups (3)!  If you're eating oil on the popcorn, that's 1,100 calories versus 620 calories if that large bucket wouldn't have oil.  Plus, most people add butter adding even more calories and fat!  Aye!

Instead of fattening up your waistline and dulling your taste-buds with traditional popcorn, try this cheap, simple, delicious and nutritious way to make popcorn at home.

The easiest, healthiest and cheapest way to make popcorn at home

1.  Buy popcorn.  Check out the bulk section of your supermarket or a simple bag of just popcorn.  This normally runs between .50 and $1 per pound.  Cheap!  Or, try an organic, heirloom variety at your local farmer's market (not so cheap, but tasty!)

* I purchased Dakota Black organic, heirloom popcorn from Lonesome Whistle Farm, at the Corvallis farmer's market.  It's dee-lish!

2. Place popcorn (1/4-1/2 C) in a small paper bag (like the one your grandmother use to pack lunches in).

3. Fold top the of the bag over a few times and put in the microwave for one minute (no longer than one minute or the bag could catch on fire!)

3. Take the bag out, remove any popped pieces and return to the microwave for another minute.

4.  Repeat this process until popcorn is all popped.

5.  Eat it!

How to spice up your popcorn w/o oil or butter

  • Spray with Bragg's liquid amino acids (tastes similar to soy sauce).  Heads up: kids LOVE spraying (and eating!) this popcorn (it was our 5th grade classroom's daily snack when I ran the R.I.S.E. with Healthy Food Program in the McMinnville School District).
  • Add hot sauce and or nutritional yeast (my students called this fairy dust).  Nutritional yeast has a cheesy flavor but doesn't contain saturated fat or cholesterol like cheese.
  • Add your favorite spices such as chili powder, cajun seasoning or garlic power.
  • Or, just eat it plain!  It tastes great!

Now I'd love to hear from you.  Help yourself put this information into action by answering Today's Take Control Now question.  Put your answer in the comments section below.  And likewise, if you enjoyed this article, please share it with a friend <3.

Take Control Now

How can you enjoy popcorn without butter or oil?  How could you spruce it up?  Other thoughts?