Tag Archives: popcorn

5 Things to Know About the New Food Labeling Laws

movie-popcorn

Late last week the Food and Drug Administration made a huge announcement that basically holds more businesses accountable for the calories in the food they choose to serve. The new food laws, which falls under the Affordable Care Act, will absolutely affect you; expect to know how many calories are in that tub of popcorn at the movie theater, for instance.

Let’s break down the most important changes you will notice next year.

1. All major businesses will need to display their calorie counts. 

Some big cities are already held to this standard, like New York City. But the FDA’s new laws will require any establishment that sells prepared food (and also has more than 20 locations) to display its food’s calorie information. A one-stop independent bakery will not be affected, but your local and booming coffee purveyor that’s become a chain will not be exempt.

2. Calories will be on the menu. 

Calorie content will appear on menus and menu boards in restaurants, though bakeries, coffee shops, pizza joints, movie theaters, and amusement parks will be affected, as well. The idea is to provide easy access to the caloric information of your food choices to help you realize exactly what you are ingesting. The FDA also hopes that it will inspire restaurants to make healthier food preparation choices. (more…)

Eat Like the Royals: 7 Ballpark Recipes Celebrating the Kansas City Royals’ World Series Run

Last night, my social channels bled blue as the Kansas City Royals clenched their first playoff bid since 1985. Chants of going all the way were deafening and will no doubt silence any time soon. It’s a moment these Midwest baseball fans have waited, in some cases, all their lives for. There are a lot of long games ahead for these fans, as many as seven if things go their way, which means a lot of tailgate-inspired eating is on the horizon.

How does one eat like a Royal? There’s no pinkies out around here like those other royals. This is both KC Missouri and Kansas — around here, it’s all about the meat!

Here’s how to eat like a Royals fan — we’ll even show you a few ways to trim down these ballgame faves so you don’t need to up-size your new champions T-shirt!

CLEAN CARAMEL CORN

clean caramel corn laurenslatestimage credit laurenslatest.com

No ballgame is complete without Cracker Jacks, but they’re kind of terrible for you. We love this recipe from LaurensLatest.com that uses coconut oil, maple syrup, sea salt, and vanilla to craft a treat as indulgent as the classic. Popcorn is naturally gluten-free, if that’s your thing. This recipe is also vegan and without adding processed sugars.

beef meatball kabobsimage credit Kacy Meinecke/DietsInReview.com

JALAPENO CHEDDAR BURGER BITE KABOBS

Grilling a batch of big, juicy burgers  these parts. But there are ways to teach these old dogs new tricks! Treat the burger as a side or appetizer with this tiny meatball kabobs. They’ve got big flavor, as we stuffed all-natural beef with jalapeno and cheddar cheese. (more…)

Feed Your Kids Whole Grains. According to Science, They’ll Eat Them

It’s assumed that kids will turn up their noses at whole-grain foods like oats, whole wheat bread, and brown rice if offered to them, but that may not be the case.

girl eating popcorn

In another strike against “kid food,” a new study from the University of Florida indicates kids will eat whole grains if they’re offered. In fact, they’ll eat them in equal amounts to foods containing refined-grains, especially if they’re snack foods.

One of the authors of the study, Allyson Radford, said, “We tried to choose foods we thought kids would enjoy, such as cereal bars, macaroni and cheese and SunChips and found that they ate the ready-to-eat snack foods the most.”

“We were interested to see if they would eat the whole-grain foods as much as the refined-grain foods, and so we were pleasantly surprised that they would eat the same amount whether the food was whole or refined.” (more…)

4 Foods Proving Carbs Are Not the Enemy

Whether you love them, hate them, or aren’t sure what to do with them, there’s no question that carbs are a hot topic when it comes to healthy eating.

grains

Despite what information you may be relying on now, carbs aren’t all-bad. In fact, there are some that are absolutely essential for a healthy diet. It’s important to not overdo it on carbs like sugar. Because there are so many different kinds of carbs, it can be difficult to determine which ones are good and which are bad. The confusion can lead to people cutting carbs entirely, but that isn’t the best solution for your health.

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Oprah’s Favorite Things Returns with 6 Items for a Healthier Lifestyle

In 1996 Oprah greeted her audience with a treasure trove of free gifts and prizes as she debuted the hottest giveaway daytime TV had ever seen. Oprah’s Favorite Things has grown to be the stuff of legends, and people would give arms and legs to have a seat and a chance to take home the media mogul’s top picks for holiday gifts. Oprah’s a giver, a giver of high-quality, high-end, premium gifts and it’s hardly anything you’d find on a clearance rack.

Since the end of her wildly popular daytime talk show, Oprah’s Favorite Things has faded in to TV history. But now through her OWN network, O Magazine, and a new partnership with Huffington Post, Oprah’s breaking the two-year hiatus with the announcement of 48 items on the 2012 Favorite Things list.

Some of it is quite posh and not likely to make it on to the holiday budget of most of her fans (like a nearly $2,000 Jetson-style battery-powered scooter), but some of it is completely in reason. Even better, a few items on her list are even good for you!

Top of the list is the Q37ci elliptical trainer. It’s a pricey addition to a home gym at $3,099, but it certainly pays for itself with dedicated use. She says her trainer Bob Greene turned her on to it and she loves the various options for total body workouts in one machine. (more…)

4 Healthier Halloween Treats to Give Them Something Good to Eat

“Trick or Treat, Smell My Feet, Give Me Something Good to Eat!” is the anthem sung by children everywhere on Halloween. We’re not advocating the smelling of feet because, eww yuck. But, giving them something good to eat? Let’s get on that already! Children have been asking for years, so why don’t we listen?

This year, fill the jack-o-lantern pails with a treat that’s good for them and that they’ll actually enjoy eating. Yeah, we think kids should have more fruits and vegetables too. But, if you put an orange in those tubs, it’s not likely to make it to their bellies.

We scoped out some of the healthier treats available this year in cute Halloween packaging so you can feel good about giving them something less scary this year!

Angie’s Kettlecorn

We were skeptical when we got a big bag, and then thankful that we got a big bag! This stuff is so darn good the biggest and smallest of goblins and ghouls will enjoy.

What’s In It: Four things – popcorn, corn oil, sugar, sea salt. That’s it!

The Numbers: The individual half-ounce bags have 70 calories and 4 grams of sugar.

Comparison: 1 roll of Smarties has 6 grams of sugar.

Where Is It: We found them at Target in a 24-pack for $7.99 (more…)

Halloween Food Crafts for a Healthy and Delicious Way to Celebrate the Season

Whoever said you couldn’t play with your food likely never really knew the joy of eating. We certainly aren’t suggesting tossing handfuls of spaghetti across the table at your annoying little brother, but we do think that the fall season is perfect for a little crafting-meets-snacking.

Some of our favorite seasonal treats are perfect for gathering ’round the family, getting plenty messy, sharing lots of giggles, all while making something yummy to enjoy as we gear up for Halloween. Fun and delicious treats don’t have to be sugar bombs. These homemade treats are healthful and fun to eat, too!

Ready to dig in?

BROWN PAPER BAG POPCORN

Forget the microwave popcorn you think you know. With nothing more than a brown paper sack, whole popcorn kernels, and a microwave, you’ll have light and airy popcorn in minutes without the chemicals, calories, and sodium.


The kids will love helping you make this, whether it’s movie night or a Halloween party. Make the popcorn something special with our Cinnamon Raisin Popcorn treat, which is simply brown bag popcorn, cinnamon, and raisins.

To share with friends or handout at a school party, let the kids make Hand-O-Lanterns to decorate each brown paper sack. Just paint their palms orange, their fingers green, and press on to the bags. When the paint dries they can use black markers to draw pumpkin faces!

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McCormick’s Saigon Cinnamon Makes Over Homemade Microwave Popcorn

It finally felt like fall this weekend. I hope it did where you are, too! I spotted patches of red and orange in otherwise bright green trees. We lit a fire inside and even needed hoodies to go outside. For the first time since the official first day of fall, it felt crunchy. That’s my word to describe fall – crunchy. Which is appropriate, because one of my favorite fall snacks is popcorn.

My other favorite fall flavor is cinnamon. I don’t care if it’s on a cinnamon roll, toast, oatmeal, cookies, applesauce, topping my yogurt, or wafting from a candle, my nose simply cannot get enough of this scent. So on a recent trip to the McCormick spice headquarters, as part of the Fitbloggin’ conference, outside of Baltimore, Maryland, I found myself in cinnamon-loving heaven.

We went through some of their consumer research experiments, one of which had us tasting traditional ground cinnamon next to Saigon cinnamon. I would have said cinnamon is cinnamon before that afternoon. But the ground cinnamon that I add to French toast every Saturday morning suddenly tasted like red hots candies compared to the earthy, warm, woodsy flavor that came from the McCormick Saigon cinnamon. I fell in love with cinnamon all over again.

As soon as I returned home, making something with that cinnamon was all I could think about. With the fall season in full swing, and McCormick encouraging us to freshen up one of our recipes, the only logical choice was marrying cinnamon and popcorn. Maybe some raisins, too. Cinnamon Raisin Popcorn sounds like a pretty incredible fall snack, doesn’t it? (more…)

Scouting Calories for Charity: Girl Scout Cookies vs. Boy Scout Popcorn

Trail's End PopcornThe Boy Scouts and Girls Scouts teach children a lot of noble life lessons, but unfortunately their practice of using high-calorie snacks for fundraiser no longer seems noble in a nation facing an unprecedented childhood obesity crisis. It’s easy to pick apart the Girl Scout cookies for their inherently high levels of sugar and fat, but a closer look at the Trail’s End snacks sold to support the Boy Scouts shows they are little better.

On the FAQ page of the Trail’s End website, there is a discussion of the health benefits of popcorn, which is a whole grain. However, the amount of added sodium, sugar and fat in the Trail’s End products pretty much negate this one healthy aspect. For example, the ingredients list on the Classic Carmel Corn reveals that three forms of sugar precede the actual popcorn. Also of concern are the artificial flavors and colors found in a number of these products. The nuts found in the trail mix may offer some real nutrients as a snack, but again the 10 grams of sugar show’s there’s an awful lot of candy.

Below is a quick look at some of the most popular Girl Scout Cookies and Trail’s End Snacks.

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Celebrate Grilling Season with Healthy Substitutions

It’s that time of year – time to break out the barbecue and invite your friends and neighbors over for a cookout. Spring and summer are prime time for great food, good friends – and great food to celebrate the warm weather.

Of course, we all know that with summer on the horizon, bathing suit season is just around the corner. Don’t undo all of the hard work you’ve done at the gym this year.  To keep your diet balanced, celebrity nutritionist Carl Germano, RD, CDN, shared five simple swaps to keep you eating great tasting foods – and looking and feeling great.

Instead of: Beef Burger or Sliders with Cheese

Try: Turkey Sliders with sliced tomato

Ground turkey breast is leaner than most types of ground beef and sliced tomato will offer a powerful punch of lycopene – without the saturated fat in most cheeses. If you must have cheese, try a sprinkling of feta, which is lower in fat and calories than most varieties.

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