Everybody loves popcorn! Well, almost everybody. For those of you who don’t love this tasty snack, you’re missing out. Popcorn is a great way to satisfy your hunger without eating a lot of unhealthy calories. But just because it’s healthy doesn’t mean you can eat as much as you want.
If there’s any consolation, you can keep your popcorn a healthy snack by doing some recipe tweaks. You may also check out gourmet popcorn products that offer healthy options in case you are closely monitoring your diet.
The health benefits of popcorn
Popcorn is a healthy, tasty alternative to other snacks such as chips and fries. It’s higher in antioxidants than many fruits and vegetables-so don’t be shy about popping some up! Popcorn’s fibre content also makes it an excellent snack option for those looking to stay fit with their diet; just one handful can provide 10 grams of resistant starch which has been shown time after time as promoting lower blood sugar levels.
The best part about all this? You’ll never know that eating popcorn could have helped improve your health because its flavour does not interfere with other foods.
However, popcorn can also rack up the calories especially when served with flavours and toppings. Here are some tips in to keep in mind when preparing popcorn in a much healthier way:
- Pop them on the stovetop.
Air popped popcorn is a healthy way to snack on the go. Not only does it have few calories, but you can make this in under 10 minutes with just some pot and lid! Plus, there’s no oil required so its fat content will stay low for your taste buds – perfect if snacking isn’t something that usually floats one’s boat (or whatever).
Because of the growing popularity of healthier options, gourmet popcorn makers choose to pop their kernels in a stovetop. This method not only produces popcorn with minimal fat content; it also adds a unique rustic aftertaste, similar to how popcorn was made and served during its early times.
- Should you use oil…
What’s the best cooking oil for popping corn on a stovetop? Walnut, avocado or extra virgin olive oils are your top choices when making popcorn. Canola is another alternative oil to use for popping, while flaxseed and wheat germ are better for seasoning since they do not heat up enough to make the kernels pop.
Coconut and palm oil should be used only sparingly, mainly because they contain high amounts of saturated fat that can lead to unhealthy outcomes, such as heart disease when used often in popcorn.
- Avoid butter, as much as possible.
Buttered popcorn might be the favourite treat of many people but it comes with hidden calories and chemicals. If you feel like eating this movie theatre food, use 2-3 teaspoons for an average serving size instead of adding more butter (which contains extra fat). You’ll get one and a half times the normal amount when at home because there’s no need to rush out during snack time.
- Keep kettle corn intake to a minimum.
Kettle corn tastes great mainly because it contains refined sugar, salt and oil. It’s not as nutritious because of this addition but most people can still enjoy it by limiting their kettle corn intake.
Health experts recommend eating only up to 2300mg of kettle corn per day, which is roughly about 1 teaspoon per serving. It is likewise better to make your own popcorn instead, or go for gourmet variants with clear and detailed nutrition information before consuming this ever-popular snack.