Who doesn’t love popcorn?
And there is just something about popcorn at the movie theater: it’s so buttery and delicious… home-made never quite measures up.
But I found the secret ingredient, and you’ll never guess what it is.
We all know we should be getting only GOOD fats in our diet… right?
If you’re like me, you may be realizing you need MORE (good) fats….
Well if you like popcorn, you’re in luck, because this Real Food Movie Theater Popcorn is full of them.
Who knew popcorn could be healthy? And this is not your mother’s dry, bland, tasteless air popper popcorn. This is buttery, delicious, salty popcorn just like at the movie theater, but without all the bad oils, artificial colors and chemical flavorings.
Here’s the misconception: most people think “healthy” food is gross, like eating cardboard or rice cakes.
But it’s not! Healthy, real food is what we were designed to eat! When real, whole food tastes good and we can’t get enough—that means we should eat more of it!
Our bodies have been conditioned to crave chemical additives, excitotoxins and fake flavors, instead of the nutrients that accompany naturally delicious and satisfying food.
Once you realize that, everything changes.
When most Americans want popcorn, they grab a bag of microwave popcorn from the pantry, tear off the plastic, and stick it in the microwave for 3 minutes.
It’s quick and easy, right? It can’t be THAT bad for me….
There are dozens of dangerous chemicals in most microwave popcorns, from the artificial buttery flavoring to the coating on the bag that prevents the oil from leaking through the paper. Some of them even have teflon inside of the bag! You are exposed to all of these chemicals and absorb them by smelling, touching and eating microwave popcorn.
But who wants to make popcorn on the stove?
Isn’t it difficult? And messy? And not as good?
If you use an air popper, there isn’t any oil used and that popcorn can be bland. So I’ve never been a big fan of that, because if I’m going to eat popcorn I want it to taste good!
Plus popcorn is the perfect opportunity to get some good, nourishing, satiating fats into our diets.
And the fats I use are really good ones. One of them you may not have used before, but you can get it pretty much anywhere.
So let’s get onto the recipe.
For the past few years, I’ve used an old stainless steel pot I have and it worked just fine, so you don’t need any fancy equipment.
I recently moved and I threw out that old pot so for Christmas my husband bought me this great stovetop whirlypop pot, and I’m in LOVE! If you want something specifically for your popcorn that will be perfect every time, definitely consider one of these. (Make sure to get the stainless steel and not the aluminum, because aluminum is bad for our brains).
Now that we have the tools out of the way, let’s get to the ingredients!
Coconut oil is very filling, very nourishing, and can even contribute to weight loss! It has so many benefits, and it tastes great. It can even help you to fight off or prevent illness!
Most people already have some of this in their pantries these days… but if you don’t, definitely get some!
Butter or Ghee
Butter is a very nourishing food, and it can be an important source of key vitamins like Vitamin D, Vitamin K2 and Vitamin A. If you can, get butter from grass-fed cows. Kerrygold is a very tasty one. I like to add butter because it (obviously) adds a rich, buttery flavor and boosts the nutritional content of your popcorn by a lot!
If you are sensitive to dairy, you can buy or make ghee. All the flavor and health benefits, none of the casein or other milk proteins!
And now… for the secret ingredient!
Red palm oil is a very exceptional oil, because it contains forms of Vitamin E and other vitamins that aren’t found in any other food. That makes it great for skin, eyes, heart, and other organs.
Here are just a few of the proven health benefits of red palm oil:
Protects heart health
Protects against skin cancer
Alleviates joint pain
Increases milk production in lactating mothers
Controls blood glucose levels
This is one great oil you will want to have in your arsenal. I love it with popcorn (gives it that unique movie theater flavor)… but so far I haven’t found anything else I like to eat it with.
Oh and by the way, red palm oil is not the same as palm kernel oil, which has been responsible for deforestation and killing of some wildlife. Red palm oil does not carry these concerns (Nutiva guarantees it!).
You may have heard that salt is BAD BAD BAD.
But like with most things… this is only partially true.
When salt is consumed in its whole, natural form, it is actually one of the best things you can eat.
The problem is when we process all of the nutrients out of it to get the snow-white iodized table salt you find most places. That’s when it can cause problems.
(The problems do not arise out of the food itself, but in the processing and types of foods we consume).
Unrefined salt contains dozens of trace minerals, including magnesium.
You probably know that trace minerals (especially magnesium) are vital for overall health and wellness… and salt is the best, easiest way to get them.
But what type of salt? My favorites are Redmond Real Salt, Celtic sea salt, and Himalayan salt (in that order). There are a lot of types, and each type has varying profiles of trace minerals, so it’s probably a good idea to get a variety.
Additionally, low salt consumption has been shown in clinical studies to increase mortality in the population significantly.
Here are more benefits of consuming salt daily.
Bonus Ingredient for Extra Credit: Nutritional Yeast Flakes
They don’t sound very appetizing, but nutritional yeast flakes actually add a cheesy flavor to popcorn that I really like.
(Just make sure the one you get isn’t “fortified” with synthetic vitamins like B-12 and folic acid. We want real, not fake, nutrition).
A few benefits of nutritional yeast:
- Support the health of hair, skin & nails
- Contribute to digestive health
- Enhance immunity
- Boost Energy
If you can’t eat dairy or just want a nutritional boost to your popcorn–it’s definitely worth trying!
The recipe is simple:
- Organic Popcorn Kernels (enough to coat the bottom of the pan)
- 1 T Coconut oil
- 1 T Red Palm oil
- 1 T Butter or Ghee
- Real Salt
- Nutritional Yeast flakes (optional, but it gives it a cheesy flavor I like and adds nutrition too!)
- Add all 3 oils to the bottom of your pan and turn on the heat (medium-high)
- Once the oils are melted, swirl the pan around until combined
- Add the popcorn kernels (enough to coat the bottom of the pan)
- Swirl the pan again to make sure the oil is evenly coating the kernels, which should be a thin layer at the bottom of the pan.
- Once the kernels start popping, turn the whirly crank or shake the pan a bit to keep the popcorn from burning.
- As soon as the popping slows, turn off the heat and allow the popcorn to finish popping.
- Sprinkle with real salt and nutritional yeast flakes (optional) and enjoy!
I’d love to hear what you think–or if you have another secret ingredient I should know about–comment below!
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How I discovered processed food is the devil
Chemicals in Most Microwave Popcorn
What are “forever chemicals” and why are they in my popcorn???
Top 3 Dangers of Microwave Popcorn
Health Benefits of Red Palm Oil
Health Benefits of Coconut Oil
Health Benefits of Butter
Study: Low Salt Intake Increases Mortality
Health benefits of Nutritional Yeast