Mexican Chocolate Popcorn

5 from 4 votes
(Click the stars to vote)
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If you are craving a sweet and crunchy snack, this Mexican Hot Chocolate Popcorn is just what you need. Whether it’s movie night or you just need to satisfy those afternoon hunger pangs, you’ll love this chocolaty treat with a hint of warm spices. Bonus is that it’s naturally gluten free and can be made vegan too!

A tall striped popcorn box filled with Mexican Hot Chocolate Popcorn.

Why You’ll Love Mexican Hot Chocolate Popcorn

Sometimes you just need a crunchy snack, but aren’t craving something salty. That’s the perfect time to make this easy chocolate popcorn recipe. It’s sweet but not too sweet, and the combination of cocoa with ginger, cinnamon, and cayenne is just so unexpected and cozy. Here’s why you are going to add it to your snack rotation:

  • Stays crunchy. While I do love popcorn coated in melted chocolate, it does make it a bit soggy. Just like my Mint Chocolate Chip Popcorn, the glaze on it ensures it keeps its crunch.
  • Naturally gluten- and dairy-free. Corn is a gluten free grain, so that means popcorn is gluten free too. And since I opt for coconut oil (though you can use butter or vegan butter), it’s free of dairy too. Swap the honey for syrup and it can also be made vegan.
  • Customizable. The combination of sweet, salty, and spicy is a party in your mouth, but you have complete control over how much spice you add if you want to increase or decrease the level of heat.

Cuisine Inspiration: Mexican-inspired
Primary Cooking Method: Stovetop and oven
Dietary Info: Gluten-free, Dairy-free and vegan option
Skill Level: Easy

⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

Mmmmm! I love how crunchy this turned out! My toddler loves it, I love it, and I can hardly wait to wow my hubby with it for a Valentines Day treat! – Becky

Mexican Hot Chocolate popcorn in a red and white striped popcorn container that is tipped on its side.

Mexican Popcorn Ingredients and Substitutions

Here is a quick overview of what you’ll need to make this easy glazed popcorn recipe. Be sure to scroll to the recipe card for the full amounts and detailed instructions.

  • Popped popcorn. You can pop it yourself without any butter or oil, or use a “Natural” microwave popcorn, as these usually don’t have butter flavor or salt.
  • Honey. If you are looking to make it vegan, use agave or maple syrup.
  • Coconut oil. This is dairy-free and adds a subtle coconut flavor, but you can also use unsalted butter.
  • Cocoa powder. Dark cocoa gives it that deep color and flavor, but regular is fine too.
  • Mexican Chocolate Spice Mix. I like to keep this simple spice blend on hand in my pantry, but you can also just add cinnamon, ginger, and a pinch of cayenne pepper. Adjust the spices depending on the level of heat you like.
  • Kosher salt. Just to balance the sweetness and enhance the flavors.
A striped popcorn box tipping upside down to spill out the Mexican hot chocolate popcorn inside.

Storing Chocolate Popcorn

This Mexican Popcorn should be stored in an airtight container at room temperature. Just be sure it is cooled completely so it doesn’t trap any moisture. If sealed well, it should keep for up to a week. Leftover popcorn actually can also be frozen, and will stay fresh for up to 3 months!

Chocolate-covered popcorn spilling out of a red and white striped popcorn container onto a white napkin.

More Mexican Chocolate Recipes

Once you’ve made up a batch of that spice mix, there are so many things you can do with it besides just this Mexican Chocolate Popcorn. Stir it into a batch of brownies or chocolate cupcakes, or try one of these recipes:

A closeup of chocolate popcorn spilling out of a red and white striped box.
5 from 4 votes

Mexican Hot Chocolate Popcorn

If you are craving a sweet and crunchy snack, this Mexican Hot Chocolate Popcorn is just what you need. Whether it's movie night or you just need to satisfy those afternoon hunger pangs, you'll love this chocolaty treat with a hint of warm spices. Bonus is that it's naturally gluten free and can be made vegan too!
Prep: 10 minutes
Cook: 11 minutes

Ingredients

  • 4 cups popped popcorn see Note*
  • 3 tablespoons honey, or agave or maple syrup
  • 2 tablespoons coconut oil or unsalted butter
  • 2 tablespoons cocoa powder, dark or regular
  • 1/2-1 teaspoon Mexican Chocolate Spice Mix, adjust depending on how spicy you like it, or a combination of 1/2 tsp cinnamon, 1/4 tsp ginger, 1/8 tsp cayenne pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt

Instructions

  • 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, coconut oil or butter, cocoa powder, Mexican Chocolate Spice Mix (or combination of spices as per Note**), and salt over low heat, and stir until melted and smooth.
  • 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.
  • Allow to cool completely. Popcorn will continue to harden as it cools. Store in an airtight container, if it lasts that long.

Notes

*You can pop your own in the microwave or air popper without any oil or butter, or if you use microwave popcorn, use the plainest kind you can find, usually labeled “Natural”.
Nutrition Facts
Mexican Hot Chocolate Popcorn
Amount Per Serving (1 cup (approximately))
Calories 155 Calories from Fat 72
% Daily Value*
Fat 8g12%
Saturated Fat 6g30%
Polyunsaturated Fat 0.3g
Monounsaturated Fat 1g
Sodium 147mg6%
Potassium 83mg2%
Carbohydrates 23g8%
Fiber 3g12%
Sugar 13g14%
Protein 2g4%
Vitamin A 22IU0%
Vitamin C 0.1mg0%
Calcium 8mg1%
Iron 1mg6%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.
Disclaimers: Please discuss your individual dietary needs (i.e. gluten free) with a physician. Even when not specified, be sure to verify all ingredients are gluten free, if needed, by reading labels on all packaging and/or confirming with the manufacturer this varies by brand and can change at any time. Nutrition information shown is an estimate and not guaranteed to be accurate.

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9 Comments
  1. Becky

    5 stars
    Mmmmm! I love how crunchy this turned out! My toddler loves it, I love it, and I can hardly wait to wow my hubby with it for a Valentines Day treat!

  2. Hi Brianne – a healthier chocolate popcorn? I’m on it! 🙂 Love! Thank you so much for sharing this at Best of the Weekend! Hope you have a happy Saturday and a wonderful weekend!

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