Popcorn. In many ways, it’s on a very short list of truly perfect foods. It’s healthful, affordable, and versatile. It’s also a very simple food. No complicated ingredients or processes, which is a major selling point for consumers looking for more natural snacks. Throw in the fact that it’s just plain fun and tasty, and it’s no surprise that popcorn is among the year’s biggest food trends.
Our trip to the Fancy Foods Show earlier this year confirmed this trend. Aisle after aisle contained snacks with a popcorn twist, both sweet and savory. In honor of National Popcorn Poppin’ Month, we’d like to take a closer look at a few of the popcorn-related products that have, um, popped up recently.
- Bourbon-infused popcorn – Philadelphia-based Metropolitan Bakery has found a way to take the classic snack and marry it with “rich notes of bourbon and sweet caramel.” But they don’t stop there. The company also offers other gourmet popcorn flavors, including “Stout with Smoked Almonds” and “Spiced Peanut Butter.”
- Pop-it-yourself popcorn kits – As the makers of Jiffy Pop will tell you, half the fun of the “popcorn experience” is popping it. That’s the inspiration behind the Popcorn P.I.Y. (pop it yourself) Kit from a company called 479 degrees. The kit includes 32 ounces of organic popcorn kernels, flavored oil, gourmet seasonings (including toasted coconut sugar and roasted onion salt), and retro paper cones for serving the treat.
- Popcorn chips – Not content with the popped kernel shape of the traditional snack, several companies have molded the kernel into potato chip or tortilla chip shapes in an effort to put a new spin on the old favorite. Two recent entries include Kellogg’s Special K Popcorn Chips (available in butter and sweet & salty flavors) and PopCorners (featuring a six-flavor lineup with unusual options like cheesy jalapeño and caramel).
- The pop-up bowl – The pop-up bowl isn’t necessarily a new take on the popcorn itself, but it does redefine how popcorn is popped and served. Created by Orville Redenbacher (a company that knows a thing or two about popping corn), the pop-up bowl takes the paper bag of traditional microwave popcorn and transforms it into a bowl. Not sure what we’re talking about? Check out the video on the company’s website.