It’s April 1st, and I made you ice cream… APRIL FOOLS!!! While this may remind you of sunny day ice cream treats and is super fun to make and eat with your kids (or for yourself), it’s actually a healthy snack. Popcorn is a whole grain and naturally gluten free, and the glaze is easily made vegan isn’t loaded with sugar. So get ready to “churn” out some Mint Chocolate Chip Glazed Popcorn.
Mint Chocolate Chip Glazed Popcorn
Actually, I’m trying to fool myself. You see, I have a serious ice cream addiction. Physical, psychological – I NEED the stuff! Summer, winter, hot and steamy, cold and snowy – it doesn’t matter. How many servings does it say you should get out of a carton? Eight or ten or twelve or something – not even close. I try to get through most of the week with smoothies or yogurt, but by Friday or Saturday (or both), I’m either making a late night run to the grocery store or Carvel. Or sending The Hubby. And I’m not talking about a small dish of vanilla. Bring on the Sundae Dasher!! If I get a little cup, I’m looking for more.
And yeah, I gave it up for Lent.
I’m dyyyyying here, people. People accuse me of cheating because I’m making banana “ice cream” or parfaits and stuff. But while that helps me get by, it’s soooo not the same. I am practically getting the shakes as I write this because I am craving it so badly. Forget ham and kielbasa and potato salad and homemade bread (our usual Easter fare). For me, I’ll be celebrating Easter Sundae!
So, you know, Mint Chocolate Chip…
This Mint Chocolate Chip Glazed Popcorn is so much fun. It has the light minty flavor of mint chocolate chip ice cream, with the little pops of chocolate from the mini chips scattered throughout. I don’t know about you, but when I think mint chocolate chip, it really just has to be green, so I did add a crop or two of green food coloring. If that’s not your thing, leave it out, but I think it makes it so much more whimsical.
And the best part of this snack is that even though it is fun and tasty, it’s also pretty healthy. Popcorn is a whole grain, and its coated with just a light glaze made with a little honey and butter (or agave and coconut oil, if you want a vegan option). And like I said, I used mini chocolate chips. These scatter around so much that you only need a little bit to really get chocolaty bits throughout.
So if you make up a batch for an after school snack and dream of sunny days. Or double it and fill little bags or maybe you can even find little leprechaun gold pots at the dollar store for your kids’ class parties for St. Patrick’s Day. Whatever you do, just try this easy, fun, and yummy popcorn recipe!
What would be the hardest food for you to give up?
- 4 cups popped popcorn (see Note*)
- 3 Tbsp honey (should be able to use agave or maple syrup for strict vegan)
- 2 Tbsp unsalted butter or coconut oil
- ⅛ tsp vanilla
- ½ tsp mint extract
- a few drops green food coloring (optional)
- 1 Tbsp (or more, if desired) mini chocolate chips
- Preheat oven to 325°F and line a baking sheet with a silicone mat or parchment paper. Place popcorn in a large bowl.
- In a small pot, combine honey and butter or coconut oil over low heat, and stir until melted and smooth.
- Remove from heat and stir in vanilla, mint extract and food coloring (if using)
- Drizzle mixture over popped popcorn and gently stir until evenly coated. This may take a couple of minutes to ensure the glaze is evenly distributed.
- Spread popcorn into a single layer on prepared baking sheet.
- Bake for 5 minutes, remove from the oven and stir, then spread back out into a single layer.
- Return to the oven and bake in 3 minute intervals, stirring each time until the popcorn is nearly dry. You will probably need two or three more 3 minute intervals. Be careful to avoid burning the popcorn.
- Remove from the oven, let cool for a couple minutes, then use a spatula to push the popcorn pieces close together. Carefully sprinkle the chocolate chips over the popcorn, trying to keep most of it on the popcorn and not falling through and landing on the baking sheet (some will, which is okay). The chips will slightly melt and adhere to the popcorn.
- Allow to cool completely, until the chocolate chips have resolidified. Popcorn will continue to harden as it cools. Store in an airtight container, if it lasts that long.
Want some more healthy snacks?
- Banana Nut Bread Granola Bars
- Peanut Butter & Jelly Cookie Dough Dip
- Gluten Free Cheddar Crackers – “Goldfish” & “Cheez-Its”
And here some from my friends…
- Orange Julius Homeamde Jello from Find Your Balance
- Apple Crisp Fries from Food Done Light
- Strawberry Kiwi Fruit Leather from FoodBabbles