Recipes // Snacks // Flavored Popcorn, 3 Ways

Flavored Popcorn, 3 Ways


By Reed Alexander

YIELD: 3 to 4 servings (11/2 to 2 cups per serving)

Popcorn is one of the healthiest, crunchiest snack options around, provided it isn't doused in heavy toppings like melted butter. Pop a batch to take on a road trip or the bus, or for after-school munching. These are three of my favorite versions, but you can use your imagination to come up with even more varieties.

3 tablespoons popcorn kernels

  1. Place the kernels in a brown paper bag.
  2. Fold and seal the bag with tape, leaving generous space inside.
  3. Microwave on high 1 minute and 30 seconds, or until the kernels are mostly popped but not burnt.
  4. Remove the popcorn to a bowl.

Popcorn Italiano

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1 tablespoon dried basil
  • 1 tablespoon dried oregano
  • 1 tablespoon garlic powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon crushed red-pepper flakes
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground black pepper


  1. In a separate bowl, combine the oil, Parmesan, basil, oregano, garlic powder, salt, red- pepper flakes, and black pepper and mix into a thick paste.
  2. Add to the popcorn and toss until fully coated.

Wasabi-Chili Popcorn

  • 1/2 cup wasabi-coated peas
  • 1/4 cup pretzel sticks, broken into large pieces
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon mustard powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon sea salt


  1. Add the wasabi peas and pretzels to the popcorn and toss to combine.
  2. In a separate bowl, combine the chili powder, mustard powder, and salt.
  3. Sprinkle over the popcorn mixture and toss to ensure all the ingredients are evenly distributed. 

Honey-Roasted-Peanut Popcorn

  • 3 tablespoons honey
  • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract*
  • 2 cups unsalted raw peanuts


  1. Preheat the oven to 350°F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and lightly coat the paper with canola oil.
  2. Microwave the honey in a small microwave-proof bowl on high for about 20 seconds. Stir in the cinnamon and vanilla extract. Toss with the peanuts in a medium bowl until well coated.
  3. Spread the peanuts on the prepared sheet and bake for 5 minutes. Remove, stir to break up any clumps, and bake 5 minutes more, until deep golden. Cool, stirring frequently, for about 5 minutes.
  4. Add the peanuts to the popcorn and gently toss. Mix until evenly distributed without breaking up the popcorn.
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