We are huge popcorn fans, and one of our favourite “popcorn recipes” is to air-pop some popcorn and make a popcorn trail mix!
Our popcorn mix-in “ingredients” change every time, but for the most part I try to offer one treat-y option, and the rest are healthy options — mostly dried pantry items, but sometimes a fresh fruit makes a great addition.
What I do is set out a sectioned tray filled with several different mix-in, give the kids each their own individual bowl with a handful of popcorn to fill up and customize to their heart’s content!
The kids love having a say in their snack and creating different flavour combinations is a great sensory experience!
This is a great idea for a party, or just for an easy afternoon snack – whether you’re serving toddlers or school-aged kids.
I only set out enough of the treat-y option for them each to get a sprinkle of it in their bowl, and they tend to work together to ensure that they all get an equal portion. If you think this would be an issue with your group, you could always pre-mix the fun mix-in before dispersing the popcorn (so they all already have their portion), or you could just skip that popcorn trail mix-in altogether.
Older kids can have fun rummaging through the cupboards to find their own mix-ins, with the sections of the tray serving as a bit of a limiting factor.
Here are some of our favourite popcorn trail mix additions:
- apples (dried or fresh)
- cheese — shredded or cubed, even melted on top is delicious!
- chocolate chips
- cocoa nibs
- shredded, unsweetened coconut
- craisins (dried and unsweetened cranberries)
- Cheerios, granola, or any other crunchy breakfast cereal
- nutritional yeast — check out our post on how nutritional yeast can make popcorn a full meal!
- pecans or any kind of nut
What would you add to your popcorn trail mix?