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Sweet and salty recipes for a poppin' new year


Last updated 1/15/2020 at 3:31pm

Photo courtesy the Popcorn Board

There's a lot to celebrate in the New Year including National Popcorn Day, Jan. 19, and the Chinese New Year, Jan. 25. The Popcorn Board has new recipes to help celebrate.

Visit the Popcorn Board at for healthier eating options and recipes for award show season, the big game day, and more.

National Popcorn Day is celebrated at the end of January, although its exact date is a matter of debate. Various sources report it as Jan. 19; others claim it takes place on whatever day the "big game" falls on.

Caramel Pecan Corn


o 10 cups freshly popped popcorn

o 2 cups pecans pieces

o 1 cup firmly packed light brown


o 1/2 cup butter or margarine

o 1/4 cup light corn syrup

o 2 teaspoons vanilla extract

o 1/2 teaspoon baking soda


1. Preheat oven to 225 degrees. Spray 15 x 10 baking sheet with non-stick spray. Mix popcorn and pecans in large bowl.

2. Combine brown sugar, butter and corn syrup in medium saucepan. Over low heat, stir mixture until sugar dissolves. Increase heat to high and boil 5 minutes. Remove from heat; stir in vanilla extract and baking soda.

3. Pour over popcorn and pecans, immediately stirring gently to coat. Pour mixture onto prepared baking sheet, spreading evenly.

4. Bake for 1 hour in preheated oven. Cool completely. Break into pieces and store in airtight container.

Chinese New Year Medley


o 6 cups popped popcorn

o 2 cups Oriental rice cracker mix

o 3 tbsp. butter or margarine

o 1 tbsp. soy sauce

o 1/2 to 1 teaspoon ground ginger (may vary to taste)

o 1/2 to 3/4 teaspoon sesame oil (may vary to taste)


1. Mix popcorn and rice cracker mix together in a large bowl.

2. In a small microwave-safe bowl, microwave butter on HIGH until melted, about 20 seconds. Stir in soy sauce, ginger and oil.

3. Drizzle over popcorn mixture; toss.

4. Spread mixture on a baking sheet and bake in a 300° F oven for 20 minutes, stirring once.

5. Allow to cool, serve or store in airtight container.

Score big with Buffalo Ranch


Nothing blasts the winter blues like gathering your favorite fans to watch the Big Game. Good friends, a giant flat screen and fantastic food make it worth everyone's while to come out of hibernation. Remember, though, under those football jerseys and team tees is your beach body - and yes, Memorial Day is just three short months away.

Happily, there are options that will get you swimsuit ready without skimping on Game Day flavor. Of course, there's always the standard veggie platter (skip the dip!). But gathering with friends to watch the Big Game is a time-honored tradition that comes with its own special menu, at the top of which is an American favorite: buffalo wings. Named for their birthplace of Buffalo, New York, these bad boys are a staple of Game Day gatherings everywhere. But six of them will set you back more than 400 calories. Add ranch or blue cheese dressing and in you're in for at least a couple hundred more.

This year, shake out the fat and calories by pairing spicy buffalo taste with another American classic: popcorn. A healthful whole grain (fiber), naturally low in fat, popcorn delivers the satisfying crunch your guests crave. This easy-to make Buffalo Ranch Seasoning Mix lets you sprinkle the crowd-pleasing flavor of wings on top of a heart-healthy snack that won't bring regrets on the scale come Monday morning. Touchdown!

Blazing Buffalo Ranch

Seasoning Mix for Popcorn

Makes: about 2 tablespoons seasoning mix


1 tablespoon ranch dressing or dip mix (from a 1 ounce package)

1 tablespoon seafood spice mix (or celery salt)

1 teaspoon garlic powder

1 teaspoon powdered sugar (or sugar)

1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper

1/4 teaspoon vegetable oil

6 quarts popped popcorn

Cooking spray, optional


1. In a small bowl, blend ranch dressing mix, spice mix, garlic powder, powdered sugar and cayenne pepper. Sprinkle with vegetable oil and blend until well incorporated.

2. Place popcorn in a serving bowl and spray lightly with cooking spray. Sprinkle seasoning mix over popcorn to taste and toss. Store leftover seasoning mix in an airtight container for future use.


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