Friday, June 19, 2009

Popcorn: A Frugal and Healthy Snack

Three growing boys with endless appetites might scare the most frugal of shoppers. Personally, I do feel a bit nervous about our grocery bill as the boys approach their teenage years. For the moment, I still feel somewhat in control of satisfying their hunger without breaking the bank.

Popcorn has always been a favorite snack of mine. I can remember as a child my stepmother popping batches of salty corn, filling large paper bags with the crunchy treat, packing Kool-Aid in a thermos, and the entire family heading to the Drive-In Theater. What great memories!.

I still have a strong love for popcorn and can usually be found indulging my craving just about every evening while I watch TV or read a book. As snacks go, popcorn is a fairly healthy choice - if it's not covered in butter. Popcorn is also a frugal snack if you stay away from the microwave stuff.

I'm a bit lazy when it comes to popping corn on the stove. Thankfully, I have found a great way to make popcorn in the microwave without the added chemicals or cost of purchasing such brands as Pop Secret or Act II. I buy a bag of kernels (usually around 99 cents) and a supply of brown lunch bags (cost varies - online prices seem to be about $1.00 per 40 count).

I figure the cost to be about 10 cents per bag of popped corn (this does not include oil, butter, or salt).

~ Homemade Microwave Popcorn ~

Measure roughly 1/3 cup of kernels into a paper bag.

Fold over the top of the bag twice and place in the microwave. My microwave has a popcorn button that goes for about 3 1/2 minutes. Every microwave varies so you'll have to test yours out to see how long it takes without burning.

Take the bag out of the microwave, open the bag and pour in about 1 tablespoon of oil. (I use canola.) Sprinkle in salt, close the bag, and shake. Taste and add more salt if needed.

Check out more frugal ideas at Life as Mom.


  1. Now I am craving popcorn.

  2. I didn't know you could do it yourself! I'd probably burn it.

  3. Just love the paper bag popcorn...brillant! I'm an addict to popcorn and use my Whirly pop proabably every week, but now I can eat my popcorn and be lazy too....



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