Yes, yes, yes!!! I just read that popcorn is a good, healthy snack. One that will not “derail” my diet. I’ve heard that before, but it’s so good to see it said at a reputable website.

Yes, yes, yes!! I love popcorn. Have ever since the long ago days when my brother Jeff took me to the movies on Saturday and doled out the kernels one by one.

The article was about 10 healthy snacks and one of the points that was made was this one:

"You should think of a quick snack as a mini-meal,” advises Debra J. Johnston, RD, registered dietitian and director of nutrition services at Remuda Ranch, a treatment program for eating disorders in Wickenburg, Ariz. 

A mini-meal!! Imagine, popcorn as a mini-meal.

I have to confess that on occasion, when my husband Ed is away on business and I am alone, I sometimes go to the movies with my friend Susan and popcorn is my meal. And I don’t mean mini-meal. I get the big bag because like most Americans I can’t resist the fact that it is SO much bigger than the smaller one and only costs a dollar more.

I only make popcorn at home occasionally. It’s a snack I really should think of more often because if I had homemade popcorn to nibble on while reading or watching TV, it might cut down on more caloric items (like yogurt raisins, which sound healthy but are sugar-loaded candy, after all, or potato chips, which are probably the worst snack there is because they are high-fat, high-calorie and addictive (at least for me)). 

Fairway has great store-made packaged popcorn, but I have found that when I buy the package I eat half on the way home from the store.

Not good.

Homemade — is good but I tend to cook it after I’ve eaten a meal so I don’t gobble it all up.

Here’s how to make popcorn. It isn’t difficult and takes only a few minutes. Also, you don’t need any special equipment. Just a large pot. The recipe is dressed up a bit to add variety to your popcorn choices. But you can leave out the additions and just pop the kernels in the vegetable oil. 

Garlic-Parmesan Popcorn

2 tablespoons vegetable oil

3 large cloves garlic, cut in half

1/3 cup corn kernels

1-1/2 tablespoons olive oil

1/2 cup Parmesan cheese

1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper

salt to taste

Heat the vegetable oil in a large pot over medium-high heat. Add the garlic and cook for 2-3 minutes to brown the pieces and flavor the oil. Remove the garlic and add the popcorn kernels. Cover the pan and cook, popping the corn until all the kernels have popped. Place the kernels in a large bowl. Pour the olive oil on top and toss the ingredients. Sprinkle with Parmesan cheese, cayenne pepper and salt. Makes about 8 cups