Popcorn for breakfast! Why not? It’s a grain. It’s like grits, but with high self-esteem.James Patterson
Whether you’re into sweet or savory snacks, these vegan (and dairy-free, obvi) popcorn balls will do the trick. I finally started work this past week and realized that one lunch in Boston = 2 hours of work… So meal prep, here I come!
I don’t mind making lunch at all, which should be obvious based on the fact that I have a cooking website. However, I DO mind waking up any earlier than I already do to catch my train. So, after compiling a significant amount of research over the past few weeks, I can finally begin my dairy-free guide to meal prep. These popcorn balls are the first of many fun work snacks! (Or regular snacks. Or activities to do with children when babysitting. These are just easy.)
You could easily mix in some chocolate chips to make these a little sweeter, or perhaps some cinnamon and extra sugar at the end. I personally like to pretend I’m a healthy eater at least until noon during the week, so I opted out of adding extra sugar. Do your thing, though!
I like the fact that these popcorn balls took me exactly 15 minutes to create, including the time it took me to pop the popcorn itself. I wrapped each ball individually with cling wrap, and now I have 5 snacks to bring to work this week. There’s literally so few calories in popcorn; I’m pumped.
If you attempt these popcorn balls, you’ll have to let me know how they end up. Be super careful not to start forming them immediately after the mixture finished boiling – it’s still hot! (I speak from unfortunate experience. You would think I would know better than to reach into a pot of just-boiled liquid, but no.)
Anyways, good luck people and happy summer! Whether you’re working, traveling, taking classes, whatever… have fun doing it and eat good food on the way!
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Vegan Popcorn Balls
- 1 bag popcorn popped
- 1/2 cup granulated sugar
- 1/4 cup light corn syrup
- 1/2 stick dairy free butter
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
- 1/4 tsp baking soda
- Spray down a pan typically used for brownies with cooking spray. Make sure it's evenly coated.
- Pop your popcorn! (Unless it's already popped. In that case, toss it into the brownie pan and warm it in the oven at 200F while you prep the sticky stuff.)
- Boil the corn syrup, dairy free butter, sugar, and salt together. Stir the whole time with a wooden spoon. Once the mixture starts boiling, let it boil for a minute, then remove it from the heat.
- Add the baking soda and vanilla into the mixture. Stir super well.
- Take the popcorn out of the oven if you were warming it up. Otherwise, let's get started making these popcorn balls! Drizzle the mixture on top of the popcorn in the brownie pan and use the wooden spoon to mix the whole thing together. It doesn't have to be perfect, just fairly even.
- Either coat your hands in shortening (ew) or spray down 2 plastic sandwich bags with cooking spray and use them as gloves. Form handfuls of the coated popcorn into roughly 3 inch balls, squeezing a bit to stick them. It's okay if the popcorn breaks – it'll still taste good, I promise.