Part of having a healthier eating lifestyle is eating healthier snacks. At my work center there is a snack bar that has a few apples and bananas but everything else is candy bars, pre-packaged doughnuts and Danishes. It can be hard to resist those snacks if you don’t have any healthier alternatives stashed away at your desk.
One of those alternatives I tried today was 100-calorie popcorn. I wasn’t sure if 100 calories was going to last long in my bottomless stomach. 100 calories isn’t a lot, so I went to a trusted brand: Jolly Time.
Jolly Time has been around for 90 years and has put out a lot of popcorn products. I figured if I was going to go healthy with my popcorn I should go with their brand which is the Jolly Time Healthy Pop Minis Kettle Corn popcorn flavor.
Appearance and Nutrition. The Jolly Time Healthy Pop Minis are exactly that: minis. The bags are so small! Was I going to get some underdeveloped kernels? And how exactly do you make popcorn smaller? The mini bags are so small they can’t even be cooked on a normal popcorn setting. I’d say maybe two minutes if you are lucky, so don’t walk away from the microwave when you start cooking.
As far as nutrition goes, the calories are pretty obvious: 100. And although popcorn in general isn’t too bad of a snack, you can add on hidden fat calories with some flavors and oils. However, the Jolly Time Healthy Pop brand does live up to its name. There are only 2 grams of fat, 23 carbs and less than one gram of sugar in each serving (one bag). Even the salt is relatively low with only 280 milligrams which ends up to about 12% of your recommended daily allowance. So far it doesn’t sound like a bad deal.
Taste. This tastes like a healthy snack that you can live with. I really didn’t get the full effect of Kettle Corn flavoring that I thought I would, but there was a hint of the sweet-salty mix in the popcorn. What surprised me the most was that I felt almost full by the time I finished the bag. These weren’t big, fluffy popcorn pieces that came out, but each piece was crunchy and sweet-salty. They pop up to about four cups which is a perfectly good amount of popcorn one person can handle. If you are an hour away from lunchtime and you really need a snack to hold you over, the Jolly Time Healthy Pop Mini bags will do the trick.