Popcorn is everyone’s favorite snack, but did you know it also makes a versatile ingredient in the kitchen? When you get creative, popcorn can go way beyond the snack bowl. Here are some fun ideas on how to incorporate popcorn into recipes.
Of course, the first step is to either make some popcorn or get your hands on some that’s already made. Depending on the recipe you’re making, you might want to go with a sweet popcorn like caramel or kettle corn – if it’s a more savory dish, you might lean more towards salt & pepper or cheddar. Lucky for you, we make many gourmet popcorn flavors to choose from so no matter what recipe you’re making, we have just the thing. Onto the ideas!
Next time you’re having a bowl of oatmeal, consider topping it off with some popcorn. Our Cinnamon & Brown Sugar Kettle Corn would be fantastic here. Our get adventurous and try to make some buttered popcorn pancakes!
As you can see in the picture above, popcorn makes a fabulous salad ingredient! Every salad needs a good balance of textures, and popcorn in a salad gives you a nice crunch. Be careful not to sop on the salad dressing so the kernels get soggy – I used our Sea Salt & Cracked Pepper Kettle Corn which has a slightly sweet coating which helped guard against the salad dressing. I found the kernels still crisp at the end of my salad.
The next time you make a soup that calls for a crunchy garnish – like croutons, tortilla chips, or pumpkin seeds – use popcorn instead!
Here’s where you can really get creative – first you can try using crushed up popcorn as a substitute for bread crumbs (think of a piece of roasted or sautéed chicken that’s coated in a popcorn crumb crust – yum!) Or use it as a topping for mac & cheese (Buffalo or Cheesy Cheddar Popcorn would be perfect) or inside a sandwich for a unique crunch.
Need a side dish for your main course? Make some popcorn purée – it’s just like a polenta, but with a popcorn twist and goes great with roasted chicken.
There’s nothing more classic than a chocolate chip cookie, but we decided to give them a caramel corn spin with this recipe. We did a similar thing to brownies – caramel corn and desserts are just meant to be together! Or you can follow our lead and make popcorn marshmallow bars – a unique spin on Rice Krispie treats – we used Buttered Popcorn, but you can use just about any flavor you like. Candy coated ones might even be the better way to go so the popcorn doesn’t go as soft when the hot butter/marshmallow mixture is stirred in.
Want to go extra decadent? Check out this blog of eight sweet ideas.
Making a cocktail with popcorn is another fun alternative – most times recipes will call for popcorn infused liquid and use the popcorn kernel as a garnish.
The sky’s the limit when it comes to finding ways to incorporate popcorn into recipes. You may find yourself reaching for the kernels more and more as you get adventurous in the kitchen. Remember, our gourmet popcorn – nearly 100 flavors! – is just waiting for you to turn it into your next great meal or dessert.