I started by air popping a batch of popcorn, removing 6 cups and keeping the rest tucked away for some snacking later on. I love air popped popcorn with a little sesame oil ,Chinese 5 spice and sea salt or coconut oil and cinnamon...mmm a bet a little mandarin orange spark mixed would be divine.. There are endless flavor combinations so play around with your favorite oil and spices, or the old stand by, olive oil and sea salt. yum.
The original recipe calls for 1/4 cup of sugar...but we are doing things the clean advocare way so I decided to sub a 1/4 cup of chocolate muscle gain. I used raw mixed nuts for my nuts, and I had some pistachio walnut butter on hand from some protein balls I made recently.
I used my handy dandy pampered chef chopper to chop up the nuts into small pieces. I plan to make some nut butter out of this delicious combo real soon, so stay tuned.
Next grab a small sauce pan and on low heat melt the coconut oil. Depending on how warm your house is yours may already be liquid...My house is on the cool side so mine was solid. Add cocoa powder, spices (to taste) and nut butter, cook on low until combined and smooth about 2 minutes. Oh this is looking sooo good. Makes me wish that google smell wasn't just a April fools prank and you could smell this.
Spread popcorn on parchment paperlined baking sheet, top with chopped nuts then drizzle with chocolate. Use your hands or a spatula to cover the popcorn as best you can. Next sprinkle the magic...err quinoa over top of the popcorn. Bake at 300 for 30 minutes, stirring half way through. I don't think it would be the end of the world if you didn't stir at 15 minutes though...so sit back, relax and drool for a bit.
Stick the pan in the fridge to cool for about 15-30 minutes to allow chocolate to firm up and ENJOY! I immediate had to portion mine out into small baggies for fear of eating the entire batch. This is not super sweet and if you need or want sweet add some splenda or stevia to the mix. Sit back and watch a movie and chill.
Spicy Chocolate Popcorn with Quinoa ala Queen of Quinoa (adapted)
- 6 cups popped popcorn
- 1/2 cup chopped nuts of choice (I used raw mixed nuts, but this would be awesome with any kind)
- 2 tablespoons whole quinoa (uncooked)
- 1/4 cup coconut oil
- 1/4 cup unsweetened Hershey's cocoa powder
- 1 scoop Chocolate Muscle Gain
- 2 tablespoons nut butter of choice ( I used pistachio-walnut)
- 1/2 teaspoon cayenne (start with less and work your way up if you're not a fan of heat)
- 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt
- Preheat the oven to 300 degrees . Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside.
- Add the popcorn to the baking sheet, then sprinkle with nuts making sure they're evenly dispersed.
- Heat the coconut oil over low heat in a small saucepan until it melts. Whisk in cocoa powder, coconut sugar, nut butter, cayenne and salt. Cook for 2 - 3 minutes until everything is fully combined and it has thickened only slightly.
- Drizzle the chocolate sauce over the popcorn-nut mixture and gently mix all the ingredients together.
- Sprinkle the quinoa over the mixture.
- Bake for 30 minutes, stirring the mixture once during cooking.
- Remove from oven and let cool completely. Put in fridge to firm up for about 15-30 minutes
Nutrition: 120 calories | Fat 9.5g | Protein 4g | Carb 7.5g | Fiber 2.5g
Adapted from Queen of Quinoa/ Spicy Chocolate Popcorn with Quinoa