February 23, 2011

Spiced Popcorn for a Quick Snack {Powernap}

Spiced PopcornThis is the latest installment of my Powernap column. The series where I share quick, easy food that can be made for all kinds of situations. Powernaps are short and sweet, and so are these recipes. These are the things I make in a jiffy when I need a quick snack, am in the mood for a recipe experiment, or simply need to clean out the pantry.

Today’s Powernap: Need insta-satisfying salty snack, preferebly not laden with calories.

Like most people, I am often faced with instant gratification snack dilemma: I want a salty snack right this second (!!), but not a boat load of calories. Everyone touts the benefits of snacking on vegetables. But, I’ll be honest, I rarely consider vegetables a satisfying snack unless they are roasted and placed atop a garlic rubbed crostini. For quick mid-day snacks I usually crave something salty and crunchy, like potato chips or crisp french friends. The only problem with those is that they are not known for being bathing suit friendly, and with summer approaching I need to be mindful of my waistline! When faced with my snack dilemma the other day I had to think fast. Last week I OD’d on Dorie’s delicious buttery Jammer cookies and knew I needed to dial it down this week to compensate for the several sticks of butter I’d already ingested. Enter spiced popcorn.

Spiced Popcorn

I am a huge fan of popcorn have come to believe that are at least a gazillion ways to flavor it. We have an air popper so that is how I always make ours, though you could easily pop it on the stovetop as well. In this case I popped the popcorn into a large bowl, then added a mixture of butter, Parmesan, paprika and freshly cracked black pepper. It was a spicy, salty treat that satisfied my salty craving without going overboard.


Spiced Popcorn


1 cup popcorn kernels
2 tablespoon unsalted butter, melted
2 tablespoons freshly grated Parmesan cheese
1 teaspoon paprika
1 teaspoon freshly cracked black pepper
½ teaspoon coarse sea salt


1. Pop the popcorn in an air popper or on the stovetop. Pour it into a large mixing bowl.

2. Melt the butter in the microwave and stir in the Parmesan, paprika, sea salt and pepper. Drizzle it over the fresh popcorn and toss well, but gently, with your hands. Serve up!

Naptime Notes

Naptime Recipe Serving ideas

This is a great party snackĀ  for adults and kids.

Naptime Stopwatch

5 minutes!

Naptime Reviews

Even my daughter liked the spicy additions to her usual favorite afternoon snack!

More Naptime Recipes