Movie Night Popcorn: 3 Ways

No matter how young you are or old you get, sometimes there’s just nothing better than a good ol’ fashioned movie night. Some of my best memories with my girlfriends were spent piled on the couch, with a bottle of wine and those classic rom-coms that just never got old. I’m pretty sure I’ve memorized all of Pretty Woman and I’ve seen St. Elmo’s Fire at least 175 times. But for some reason my two year old doesn’t appreciate John Hughes classics as much as I do and these days our movie options are pretty much restricted three options: Madagascar 1, Madagascar 2 and Cars. Last weekend my husband and I really scored when we had to got to sit through a marathon of all three.  Oh yeah, the ultimate trifecta…

But no matter how much my life may change, some things will always remain the same. And one thing I can always count on? When I watch a movie—be it of the Julia Roberts or kid-friendly cartoon variety, my hand will automatically reach for a bowl of popcorn. Here are 3 healthy-ish twists on the beloved movie-time snack.

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Made Over Caramel Corn

This is my healthy take on caramel corn! I created a simple syrup using just coconut sugar and water. By now, you already know about my love for coconut sugar and it’s natural caramel flavor makes it the perfect popcorn topper. If the syrup makes the popcorn a little soggy, you can crisp it up by laying it on a baking sheet and popping it in the oven for 10 minutes minutes. So easy and ridiculously delicious!!

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups of coconut sugar
  • 1 cup of water
  • air popped popcorn

Directions:

  • Put the coconut sugar and the water in a small pot and bring to a low boil until the sauce thickens a bit.
  • Remove from heat and pour over air popped popcorn until everything is combined.
  • To make the popcorn extra crispy, lay everything out on a pan and bake in the oven for 10 minutes at 250 degrees.
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Nutritional Yeast "Cheesey" Popcorn

This recipe might sound like it's straight out of Haight-Ashbury, but let me tell you something. It’s yummy, healthful, and vegan—which get you a ton of points out here in California. I’ll admit, the name “nutritional yeast” can be a bit frightening. But this product is available at most health stores and just a few sprinkles gives anything—especially popcorn—a cheesey taste. Not to mention it contains lots of vitamins and added nutrition.

Ingredients:

  • air popped popcorn
  • Nutritional Yeast (also known as brewer’s yeast)
  • sea salt
  • 1/2 cup of olive oil

Directions:

  • Pour olive oil over popcorn and shake until it’s well covered.
  • Combine with the Nutritional Yeast and salt until flavored to desired. Enjoy!

Zaatar and Cumin-Spiked Popcorn

Zaatar is like the salt of the Middle East. They put it in everything. And why wouldn’t they? It’s flavorful and adds just the perfect amount of zing. The dash of lemon adds a nice tangy flavor. If you want to really kick it up a notch, I’d serve this with a round of fresh lime mojitos. So refreshing!

Ingredients:

  • Air popped popcorn
  • Zaatar (available at speciality stores and some grocery stories)
  • 1 tbs of fresh lemon juice
  • sea salt
  • ½ cup of olive oil

Directions:

  • Combine everything until flavored to desire.
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Actress, model, active humanitarian, & Mom! Author of 'Everyday Chic'.