Healthy Peanut Butter Popcorn (gluten free w/ low-carb option)

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Looking for kid-friendly, budget-friendly, and healthy snack ideas? This Healthy Peanut Butter Popcorn is going to knock your popcorn-loving socks off.

peanut butter popcorn in bowl.

We LOVE popcorn in this house and this peanut butter popcorn is one of our all-time favorite snacks.

And I suspect it will soon be yours too.

To make this popcorn, all you need to do is pop the popcorn, combine the topping ingredients in a pan, heat and stir, and then drizzle them on top of the popcorn.

That’s all.

And the recipe is easily adaptable for special diets too.

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Ingredients

This is a simple list of what you’ll need to make this recipe. For the full list with amounts, scroll down to the recipe card.

  • popcorn (I recommend using organic)
  • coconut oil (for popping)
  • peanut butter (I recommend peanut butter made from Valencia peanuts because it has a lower mold content. Almond butter or another nut or seed butter can also be used.)
  • sweetener (you can use either honey, maple syrup, coconut sugar, or a low-carb sweetener)
  • vanilla (optional, but recommended)
  • salt
peanut butter popcorn in bowl.

Variations

  • Add chopped nuts or seeds to the drizzle or sprinkle on the popcorn after drizzling.
  • Melt this Homemade Chocolate Bar or a store-bought chocolate bar and drizzle on top in addition to the peanut butter drizzle. A white chocolate drizzle would taste great as well.
  • Top the popcorn with chocolate chips after making. These White Chocolate Chips would be a great topping too.

Recipe Notes

  • Peanut butter and almond butter are particularly scrumptious, but any nut or seed butter will work – see Homemade Nut or Seed Butter to make your own.
  • You can use any healthy sweetener for this recipe. Honey and maple syrup are sweeter than sugar, so you will likely need less of those.

More Healthy Popcorn Recipes

If you love popcorn as much as we do, you’ll love these other healthy popcorn recipes.

  • Dorito Popcorn – the great taste of Doritos — on popcorn! You can use this seasoning in so many ways.
  • Healthy Kettle Corn – use whatever sweetener you like. Make this delicious popcorn totally sugar-free or at least refined sugar-free. Yummy no matter how you make it.
  • BEST Popcorn Seasoning Ever – put this on your popcorn and prepare to see it disappear
  • Herb Popcorn – deliciously seasoned with garlic and herbs

The BEST Stovetop Popcorn Popper

This popper is really great.  Your kids will have a great time helping in the kitchen with this safer popper. Plus, it’s stainless steel, not aluminum, which is a sturdier and I think, much better option for a healthy kitchen.

I Recommend
Great Northern Stainless Steel Stovetop Popcorn Popper

Great Northern Stainless Steel Stovetop Popcorn Popper

I love that this popper is stainless steel (not aluminum) -- no shaking needed and makes up to 5 quarts in minutes!


Between the healthy coconut oil and the homemade nut or seed butter and the organic popcorn, this really is a nice option for an easy healthy snack for the whole family.

peanut butter popcorn in bowl.

Healthy Peanut Butter Popcorn

This Healthy Peanut Butter Popcorn is the perfect blend of sweet and salty for a great easy healthy snack that everyone will love!
Print Pin Rate
Course: Dessert, Snack
Cuisine: Dairy-Free, Gluten-Free, Vegan
Keyword: easy peanut butter popcorn, healthy peanut butter popcorn
Servings: 16

Ingredients

  • 8 cups popped popcorn (I recommend organic)
  • 1/3 cup sweetener
  • 6 tablespoons peanut butter or almond butter
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt

Instructions

  • Heat sweetener and peanut butter in a small pan, stirring over medium heat, until blended.
  • Add salt and vanilla. Stir to combine.
  • Immediately pour over popcorn and stir to coat using large utensils.

Notes

    • Peanut butter and almond butter are particularly scrumptious, but any nut or seed butter will work – see Homemade Nut or Seed Butter to make your own.
    • You can use any healthy sweetener for this recipe. Honey and maple syrup are sweeter than sugar, so you will likely need less of those.
  •  

Nutritional information is provided as a courtesy and is merely an approximation. Optional ingredients are not included and when there is an alternative, the primary ingredient is typically used. We cannot guarantee the accuracy of the nutritional information given for any recipe on this site. Erythritol carbs are not included in carb counts since they have been shown not to impact blood sugar. Net carbs are the total carbs minus fiber.

Do you have a favorite popcorn topping to share?

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38 Comments

  1. Just made this (using peanut butter and a stevia baking blend) and it is delicious! I’ve been hounding your blog and trying out new recipes weekly, thank you so much for the fantastic ideas!

  2. There are not currently any GMO varieties of popcorn. Feed corn, corn syrup, corn additives ect. and recently Bt sweet corn, which just came out on the market summer 2012 are mostly all GMO though. If anybody finds some definitive information to contradict the info about popcorn, please post a link. Thanks!

    1. I have heard that, but I am very suspicious that this is not the case. I read some old info on the internet about it…is there anything more recent to validate this? I have had some really styrofoamey-tasting popcorn that makes me think GMO has crept into popcorn somehow. Thanks!

  3. I would like this a lot, but corn is so full of mold and I am trying to get that stuff out of my body.

    Peanuts are also loaded with mold.

    1. We don’t eat peanuts at least. I know–they are really bad. I think much worse than corn b/c of how they are grown.

  4. Adrienne,
    Seems as if you think organic is non-GMO.
    not true.
    The organic assc. allows GMO without labeling.
    Support Prop 37 in CA if you really want to know what you are eating.

    1. Hi Susan. Can you share more please? I have been sharing a lot about Prop 37 on my FB page. Thanks for bringing this up!!

  5. Hi Adrienne,

    I recently came across your site and have been very inspired by all your recipes 🙂 Just one question: I made this today, but my popcorn didn’t turn out as crunchy. They got kind of soggy and lost their characteristic crunchiness due to the caramel nut butter mixture. Is that supposed to happen? I think I might have had too much of the mixture as compared to the popcorn :/ maybe that’s what did it? Ok, thanks !

    1. Hi Afrina. The popcorn doesn’t turn out that crunchy. The photo is misleading…sorry about that. I posted this at the beginning of my blogging adventure and just couldn’t make myself post the “real thing” as it isn’t that attractive. Maybe now that I have a better camera I can try to get something. I’ll add it to the post that the popcorn is not crunchy really like caramel popcorn. But if you add less of the topping it is more crunchy, which is what we typically do.

      There is a “photo credit” at the bottom of the post to show that the photo isn’t mine, but maybe I should move it up to just under the photo to make it more clear. Thanks for the compliments!

    1. Us too. We just eat popcorn and very occasionally homemade organic corn bread and organic chips when they are at a function.

  6. Adrienne, I just want to say that there are many people who think that all corn, even organic corn, is GMO. There is no longer such a thing as non-GMO corn. This is, thanks to Monsanto, the result of cross-pollination. So I think you have to be careful about your corn consumption, if you are avoiding, as you should be, GMO foods.

    1. Hello Willom. Yes, I was aware of that issue. I don’t know what to do about it. Have you completely given up eating corn? Ugh.

  7. Hi,

    I am hosting a Holiday Cookie Recipe swap and would love to get the word out to other bloggers to post and share their recipe. I do get good traffic on my site so it would mean traffic for others.

    I would love it if you could share the idea with you blogger friends.

  8. That sounds quite delicious. Haven’t had popcorn at the movies in years as it became cardboard and I later learned about GMOs. About 2 years ago U.S. corn was already about 95% GMO (soy too) unless organic. The statistics I’ve been finding in the last several months is that it is now 100% GMO. So it’s going to have to be strictly organic now. I’m finding out more and more that many food allergies are related to GMOs, not the actual real food as originally created by God/Mother Nature.

    1. I am really concerned about GMOs too. We have no GMO corn in our house and I am gradually getting more restrictive w/ my kids at potlucks and the like. It’s really frightening to read about how the pesticides bred into our foods are now finding their way into our bloodstream. It’s so sad to see how big corporations are wrecking our food supply. Hope you like the recipe!

  9. found your post from sweets for a saturday. sounds like a delicious snack! i’ll have to try making this soon!

  10. I don’t know anything about the heavy metal toxicity, I will read about that. I have used the kal pwdr stevia but not the liquid and I could not find erythritol locally. However I did find the vegetable glycerin and it was a tiny 6 oz bottle for $6. I have yet to look online for any. Thanks for all the tips though. We have alot of learning/add/adhd (6 children in all 4 with glitches) in my household and are trying to combat those things with diet, hence the anti-candida diet, everyone failed the spit test. We are on week 9 of a 3 month strict diet.
    We loved the fudge have made it twice this week. However my popcorn came out VERY soggy…… 🙁 What is the texture of yours usually like?? After a few days in the fridge it did harden some but the popcorn was far from crisp?? I used 8 cups of popcorn. Any thoughts?

    1. While I like to support local stores, financially I cannot always do that. You can get the vegetable glycerine on internet sites like iherb. If you use my referral code of RUR466 you will get $5 off your first order. Free shipping starts at $40 and they have 2 freebies available per order as welll (check the “free” tab at the top of the page). (Also if you click on this link to iherb I believe you get the discount as well. In any case, I think you will be pleased w/ their prices. They carry erythritol as well.

      Regarding the texture. this isn’t a crisy popcorn, but ours isn’t “very soggy”. We typically make it w/ 16 cups of corn since the sweet part can be a bit overpowering in my opinion. Try that and let me know what you think.

  11. Which sweetener did you use for the popcorn? I would love to know what your favorite granulated sweeteners are? Zylitol seems to upset my stomach, I have used it in baked oatmeal (1 cup) twice this month and both times my stomach was upset later. We are anti-candida right now and am desperately looking for ok sweetners.

    1. I have hesitated to talk about the sweeteners that I use since we have had a number of issues with them and some that I am using are not considered to be “whole foods.” And I am definitely a whole foodie. Anyhow, we had issues w/ xylitol as well, but I have heard that if you use a little and work your way up, it might be OK down the road. Also, it is considered by some to be a candida fighter and good for dental health. That being said, have you tried Sweet LeafLiquid Stevia (there are some really good flavors – Yum!)?

      Also, we have used erythritol, with little stomach issues, if any. I think it is the most benign of the sugar alcohols. Also, I am hoping to have a stevia / oligofructose option to share soon. One other to consider is vegetable glycerine. I find that if you mix several sweeteners together to get a more clean / sugar-like taste.

      Let me know how that helps! I am willing to help w/ any and all candida questions (not that I can help w/ everything, but believe me, I can empathize.) Have you looked at heavy metal toxicity? I am finding that to be key as well.
      Take care,
      Adrienne

  12. Hi Adrienne, I just wanted to let you know that my husband and I really enjoyed this popcorn for a snack last night. I LOVE popcorn and everything peanut butter, so this was a perfect fit! Thanks for the recipe. 🙂

    -Mindy

  13. Oh, I have been happening upon some wonderful popcorn posts lately – I must make some soon. I really think my kids would love this and especially my child allergic to peanuts! Thanks for sharing this with us at the Hearth and Soul Hop!

  14. What a great variation and I am so glad you didn’t have to suffer through eating more than one botched batch (ha ha)! It looks so yummy. Your picture is worthy of a magazine. Nice Tasty Tuesday entry!

  15. We had already eliminated dairy, gluten, and chocolate after realizing they were making him sick. His face immediately broke out after eating popcorn (which is how we figured out chocolate). We took out corn for awhile and then reintroduced it and the same thing happened.

    I did not know that about the GMO corn. I’ll have to look and see what kind I was using. I’d love to know your popcorn substitute. Even if it is more expensive, it might be something I could make every once in awhile for a treat.

    Thanks!

    1. We have so many food allergy issues as well that I know hard it is. My oldest has been breaking out around his mouth for awhile now and it isn’t going away so I am not sure what it is. It was almost certainly kicked off by a bit of egg white he ate.

      Anyhow, the popcorn substitute is popped sorghum. I was actually thinking about purchasing it when I thought I was allergic. Now I am not sure if it is an allergy or just a glycemic load issue or something that is healing. I have seen recipes online, but it appeared that there was quite a bit of variation in the outcome of the attempts.

      Regarding corn, if your corn isn’t organic then it almost certainly is GMO. I don’t have the stats in front of me, but I know in 1999 30-40% of all corn was GMO and I believe the numbers are around 80-90% now.

      Let me know what you sort out!

  16. I saw Frugal Gourmet’s peanut butter popcorn too 🙂 She’s been putting it up on her weekly menus for quite awhile, but didn’t link it to a recipe. I found The Nourishing Kitchen’s peanut butter popcorn recipe. I used to make it until I figured out Griffin had a corn allergy. Boy, do I miss the simplicity/thriftiness (is that a word?) of popcorn!

    1. What happened to lead you to learn of his allergy? I ask because I have been dealing with some issues, but they seem to be resolving. I also found a popcorn substitute that you might be interested in. But I can’t say that it will be as thrifty! I assume you have been eating organic corn? There are a number of anecdotal pieces out there highlighting GMO corn as being the source of a good number of corn allergies.