I really love me some salty-sweet popcorn, it reminds me of good times had at the state fair, football games, rodeos and kiddy carnivals! What I don’t love so much is the sugar overload, and that’s why I’ve made this “skinnier” version and added beet juice powder to boot! Read on to get all the details and full recipe — package some up as a Valentine’s Day snack for your sweetie!
Even though I’ve eaten it all, I have my gripes about most of the types of popcorn we snack on these days including microwave popcorn (most have too many chemicals and did you know you can pop your own in a brown paper bag), convenience “healthy” popcorn in bags (tasty if you can afford it) and sugary kettle corn and caramel corn (so much sugar)!
Air popping is another great method that doesn’t add any fats, however my Sugar-free Beet Kettle Corn needs just a touch of oil to encourage the dry coating to adhere to the fluffy popped kernels. I’m a pro at popping popcorn on the stove top, my mom had me make it as a frugal snack several times a week when I was a kid. As the oldest, I was in charge of everything from measuring out the oil and popcorn, shaking the pot continuously over the burner, listening for the slow down in pops, adding just enough salt but not “too much” and divvying it up fairly among my brother, his playmates and my friends that were over hanging out.
Back in the day, we just used vegetable oil, even melted Crisco (gasp), that’s how it was done in the 1970s. My Sugar-free Beet Kettle Corn uses just a bit of coconut oil, a much better oil option, to lube up the kernels for exploding in the pot. Just that little bit of coconut oil, along with the steam, makes the popcorn much happier to evenly accommodate the dry topping without it all spilling to the bottom of the bowl.
The topping for Sugar-free Beet Kettle Corn is a simple mixture of beet juice powder, a sugar substitute (I’m a big fan of Ellyndale Naturals™ Sugarless Sugar™ )and salt. Pro tip: make sure you have all these three dry ingredients already mixed up and ready to toss on BEFORE the popcorn is done. If you wait and mix up after, the popcorn will have cooled and nothing will stick. Bummer.
FYI, this is the Beet Juice Powder I used, this isn’t a sponsored post or anything — but some of you may not even know what beet juice powder looks like (you can find it on the health food aisle at most finer stores).
Sugar-free Beet Kettle Corn is a great way to satisfy that salty-sweet urge without eating every chip and piece of candy in your sight. It only has 99 calories per 4-cup serving! It also can make your fingers kinda pink like Cheese Puffs make fingers orange – but beet juice powder is SO MUCH HEALTHIER than cheese puff dust. Amen and dig in.