DIY Popcorn Shakin’ Cups – Mess Free Mix-ins – Pop Secret Popcorn

Enjoy family movie night with Pop Secret popcorn and this genius container hack for serving up the snack!

The end of summer is especially bittersweet this year, not just because our leisure time is coming to an end (well, the kiddos’ respite anyway), but my oldest is heading off to college. Yup, that’s right – this mama bear is letting go of a cub and even with my stoic sensibilities, I’m getting a little choked up just typing out the words. With the Big Boy literally leaving the den in 10 days, our family movie nights seem even more special this summer.

Add your favorite ingredients to customize Pop Secret Popcorn flavors.

Movie night is a great excuse to hang out together (an increasing rarity in the teenage years), have some laughs, engage in some invaluable pre and post movie discussions – and, naturally, share some yummy Pop Secret popcorn and sensible snacks together!

Popcorn with Chocolate Chips and Almonds makes a healthy salty-sweet snack!

Now, over these last 18 years of watching movies with my kids, I’ve learned a several things. First, my lone female vote in a house with four male people means I don’t have a say in what we watch – we’ve made the natural boy progression from non-princess Disney productions to action and shoot-em-up flicks. Not a lot of romantic comedies and historical fiction in the DVR queue – of all the guy movies we watch, I like the superhero stuff best – that’s why I’m pretty pumped to have just watched the 2005 version of “Fantastic Four” in preparations for the reboot coming to theaters. By the way, if you Buy any 3 Pop-Secret items between 7/31 – 8/31 and get a Free ticket to the Fantastic Four movie (up to $5) while supplies last

Make these DIY Popcorn Shakin' Cups for your next party or family movie night.

The second important thing I’ve learned is that no matter the age, boys are just messy – and this includes my husband to a degree. Sharing one big bowl of popcorn means crushed kernels left all over the floor and greasy finger being wiped off on the couch. Hello, napkin? And, of course there will always be a bit of sibling squabbling over who gets to hold the bowl, who’s hogging all the food and exactly what toppings are put on the popcorn. To resolve these irritating movie-time issues, I came up with this a great popcorn-eating hack that will rock your socks off – Popcorn Shakin’ Cups!

These Popcorn Shakin’ Cups allow 1) everyone to have their own portion of popcorn, 2) customizable “mix ins” to be added and neatly shaken up to combine, and 3) the popcorn to be eaten straight from the lid opening to mouth (meaning no messy fingers)! Yes, I know – GENIUS!

Putting popcorn and custom mix-in ingredients into cups with domed lids is an easy and mess-free way to make and eat!

It’s easy to put together your own Popcorn Shakin’ Cups -purchase tall, clear plastic cups (mine are 20-ounce but I’ve seen them larger) and domed lids (usually found at an industry or party warehouse or sweet talk your convenience store for some shake/slurpee lids). Next fill with popcorn and your favorite mix-ins – I did almonds and chocolate chips, but Parmesan cheese and garlic salt, or cinnamon sugar and pecans are other yummy popcorn ideas. Add a cute label if you like –and that’s it! Eat, enjoy and toss – no clean up! Great for a party!Popcorn is perfect for family movie night -- you'll love these DIY popcorn cups.

I picked up my mom-of-teenage-boys-sized haul of Pop Secret at Walmart – I got the Sea Salt flavor for movie night plus an extra box of the Pop Secret 100 Calorie Pop 94% Fat Free Kettle Corn for me to keep on hand for sensible snacking in the afternoon. Also, note to self – perhaps I should buy Pop Secret popcorn flavors by the cart full because a variety of boxes would be great to slip into oldest son’s college care packages since he has a dorm microwave.

Have you seen any good movies this summer? What is your favorite popcorn flavor or mix-in?

This post is part of a social shopper marketing insight campaign with Pollinate Media Group® and Pop Secret, but all my opinions are my own. #pmedia #pop4Fantastic4

Movie Night Manna – Crunchy Caramel Almond Popcorn with Coconut Oil & Honey

jennifer fisher - - caramel almond popcorn coconut oil honey

Did you know that the average American scarfs down more than 50 quarts of popcorn per year? I know I eat my fair share. In theory, this whole grain sibling in the maize family is a healthy whole grain snack, low in calories (just 31 per cup, air-popped) and high in dietary fiber. But, more often than not, the “healthy treat” is a real fat and sodium bomb. A study by the Center for Science in the Public Interest revealed that a large tub of popcorn (from Regal Cinemas), holds 20 cups of popcorn with 1,200 calories, 60 grams of saturated fat and 980 mg of sodium. This doesn’t even include the mystery yellow oily substance the concession stand pours on top after asking, “do you want butter with that”?

Store-bought microwave popcorn is even worse. For extended shelf life, the kernels are sitting in artery-clogging trans-fatty oils and use the chemical diacetyl for fake butter flavoring. According to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, there are nearly four dozen other chemicals in a package of microwave popcorn including the aforementioned nasty diacetyl. Diacetyl vaporizes at high temperatures and seeps out when you open the bag and breathe in the buttery aroma. Repeated exposure to the toxic steam can actually give you “popcorn lung.” This sounds silly, but it is a serious respiratory disease known as bronchiolitis obliterans.

The good news is that you can make your own popcorn completely free of anything using a brown paper lunch sack. It’s as easy as making toast or boiling water. In celebration of “Caramel Popcorn Day” on Sunday, April 7th, you can jazz up your plain popcorn with a healthier sweet coating.  I hope you love my Crunchy Caramel Almond Popcorn with Coconut Oil & Honey recipe  In fact, why don’t you pop in a movie tonight and make this salty-sweet snack can be the starring attraction!


Crunchy Caramel Almond Popcorn with Coconut Oil and Honey 

  •  ¼ cup organic popcorn kernels
  • 2 teaspoons coconut oil (I am fond of the Now Foods brand)
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • 2 teaspoon Stevia (2 – 4 packets)
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1-ounce (about 24) roasted, salted almonds
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt

jennifer fisher - - brown bag popcorn

Pour popcorn kernels into brown lunch-sized paper bag. Fold down top and place in center of microwave; cook on high for approximately 3 minutes or until kernels have slowed down to popping every three seconds. Set aside.

In 2-quart pot, melt coconut oil over medium-low heat. Add honey and Stevie, stir until well-combined, approximately 1 minute. Stir in vanilla. jennifer fisher - - cool caramel popcorn

Stir in baking soda; this will cause mixture to foam up. Remove from heat and toss in almonds and popped corn. Stir until popcorn is coated with caramel mixture.

It’s fine to eat as is, but if you like it crunchier, place on parchment-paper lined rimmed baking sheet and bake at 250 F degrees for about 30 minutes. Sprinkle with sea salt.

Makes four 1-cup servings.