Sensible snacks that really pop


From Family Features

Next time you reach for a snack, go for a great-tasting option that delivers on both flavor and nutrition. Sensible snacks can be surprisingly delicious when you choose ingredients wisely.

160805_food01One popular choice: popcorn. Ideal for between-meal snacking since it satisfies but doesn’t spoil the appetite, popcorn is also the perfect addition to treats such as snack bars and trail mix. The key to smart snacking is finding good-for-you ingredients that make your body healthy and your taste buds happy.

With no artificial additives or preserva­tives, popcorn is naturally low in fat and calories. The whole grain provides energy-producing complex carbohydrates and contains fiber, providing roughage the
body needs in the daily diet.

Find more healthy snack solutions at

Perfect Popcorn
There’s nothing like the taste of freshly popped popcorn and nothing like the disappointment of burnt popcorn. Follow these simple steps and you’ll have perfect popcorn every time.

• Whether on the stove or in the microwave, popcorn will begin popping in a few minutes.
• When the popping begins to slow, listen until you can count two seconds between pops. Remove the pan from heat or bag from microwave.
• Remember to lift the lid or open the bag away from your face to prevent steam burns.

Crispy Crunchy Apple Popcorn
Yield: 7 cups

6 cups popped popcorn
1 tablespoon butter, melted
2 teaspoons sugar
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
2 cups dried apple chips

Heat oven to 300 F.

Line 9-by-13-inch baking pan with foil; butter foil. Spread popcorn in pan and drizzle with melted butter; toss popcorn. Sprinkle popcorn with sugar and cinnamon, and toss again.

Bake 7 minutes.

Sprinkle apple chips over popcorn and heat an additional 3 minutes.

Serve warm, or cool to room temperature. Store in airtight container.

Popcorn Granola Snack Bars
Yield: 16 bars

Nonstick cooking spray
1/2 cup honey
2/3 cup peanut butter
1 cup granola cereal
1 cup roasted and salted peanuts
3 cups popped popcorn

Line 8- or 9-inch square baking pan with foil. Spray foil lightly with cooking spray; set aside.

In large saucepan, heat honey until boiling. Stir in peanut butter until well blended.

Remove pan from heat and stir in granola, peanuts and popcorn until coated. Press mixture evenly into prepared pan.

Refrigerate until cool; cut into bars to serve.

Yummy Yogurt Popcorn
Yield: 2 1/2 quarts

2 1/2 quarts popped popcorn
1 cup plain yogurt
1 cup brown sugar
1/3 cup light corn syrup

In large bowl, keep popped popcorn warm.

In 2 1/2-quart saucepan, combine yogurt, brown sugar and corn syrup. Cook and stir over medium heat to hard ball stage (250 F on candy thermometer).

Pour over popped popcorn, stirring to coat.




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