Kettle corn is a sweet, tasty popcorn spinoff. It is often found at fairs and carnivals. If you are on a weight loss journey, you may be wondering if you can still indulge in this treat and stay on track for your goals.
Kettle corn is not good for weight loss. It is higher in calories than regular popcorn. The extra calories in kettle corn come from the sugar that is added to kettle corn.
While kettle corn is not inherently good for weight loss, it can still be incorporated into your diet without wreaking havoc on your weight loss goals. This article will take a deeper look at kettle corn and how it can impact weight loss.
What Ingredients Are In Kettle Corn?
Kettle corn is made of four basic ingredients. These ingredients are popcorn kernels, oil (usually sunflower oil), sugar, and salt. Some microwave versions of kettle corn have additives as well.
Below, we will take a closer look at the ingredients, calories, and nutrition content of kettle corn:
Kettle Corn Calories
Not all kettle corn has the same amount of calories or nutritional facts. It depends wholly on the amount of each ingredient per batch. So we will examine two brands to get an estimate about kettle corn content.
Boom Chicka Pop is a popular popcorn brand that carries various popcorn flavors. One of the flavors is Angie’s Boomchickapop Sweet & Salty Kettle Corn and is available at Amazon.com and other stores. One serving size of this pre-popped kettle corn is two cups; it is about 140 calories. It contains about 110 milligrams (0.11 gram)of sodium. You will get 18 grams (0.63 oz) of total carbohydrates and 8 grams (0.28 oz) of sugar.
Kettle corn is also available as unpopped and microwaveable. Orville Redenbacher’s Kettle Corn is also readily available at Amazon.com and other stores. One serving of this popcorn is about 4.5 cups once popped. It nets 160 calories. It packs 60 milligrams of sodium. The total carbohydrate is 20 grams (0.70 grams). While there is no sugar, there is sucralose in its place to sweeten the kettle corn.
Kettle Corn Other Nutritional Value
Neither Boom Chicka Pop nor Orville Redenbacher list any vitamins, potassium, or calcium in the nutrition facts. Both have some iron, with Boom Chicka Pop at 4% having twice as much iron as Orville Redenbacher. Boom Chicka Pop has 2% of dietary fiber, while Orville Redenbacher has 3% dietary fiber.
How to Cook Kettle Corn?
Kettle corn is easy to make. In about 20 minutes’ time, you can have a fresh bowl of kettle corn in front of you. You will need to gather the basic ingredients you probably already got at home:
- 60 ml (¼ cup) of vegetable oil or butter
- 30 g (¼ cup) of sugar (Both brown and white work well)
- 60 g (½ cup) of your favorite popcorn kernels
- Salt (to taste)
Here’s how to prep it:
- Add the oil to a wide pot or pan.
- Turn on the stove on medium to medium-high.
- Once you see the oil shimmer, add your popcorn and sugar.
- Shake the pan every 10-15 seconds as the popcorn is popping.
- When the popping stops, remove the pan or pot from the stove.
- Enjoy your kettle corn!
The kettle corn is ready! It will be hot, so pour it into a bowl and let it cool. You may need to shake or stir to break up any clumps to form. You can lightly salt it if that is what you prefer.
Is Kettle Corn Bad For You?
You may be wondering now if kettle corn is bad for you. The answer is: not entirely. While it does contain the processed ingredients sugar, oil, and salt, it is still popcorn.
Kettle corn is popcorn, and popcorn is a whole grain. Whole grains are good for you. Whole grains are high in fiber and linked to a lower risk of many health conditions, including heart disease, diabetes, and some cancers.
While you may trade off calories, kettle corn still retains the benefits of traditional popcorn. The key to eating kettle corn when watching your weight is moderation. You will need to eat less kettle corn per serving than regular popcorn to continue to lose weight.
Is Kettle Corn Fulfilling?
A key component to weight loss is eating foods that leave you feeling satiated. When you are satiated, you are less likely to overeat. Kettle corn is less filling than regular popcorn, but kettle corn will still provide some fulfillment.
However, it may be more difficult to reach satiety because of two factors: lower fiber than regular popcorn and the smaller serving size in comparison. Kettle corn may be a better option as a fun treat rather than an integral part of a weight loss plan.
What Is The Healthiest Popcorn?
Air popped popcorn is the healthiest popcorn. It does not need to be cooked with any added oil, making it extremely low in calories. You reap the full benefit of a whole grain snack with air popped popcorn.
Air popped popcorn is simple and requires a simple, small household appliance. Air poppers are small, lightweight, easy to use, and reasonably priced. We own this Hamilton Beach Electric Hot Air Popcorn Popper available at Amazon.com, and it pops light popcorn in about three minutes.
Taking a look now at Orville Redenbacher’s Gourmet Popcorn Kernels available at Amazon.com, a serving is three tablespoons of unpopped kernels, which yields about 7.5 cups once popped. It is a whopping 120 calories. The total fat is only 1.5 grams (0.05 oz). Total carbohydrates are only 29 grams (1.02 oz). There is no sugar or sodium, and there is the benefit of four grams of protein.
Of course, you may be tempted to add flavoring to your air popped popcorn. This is okay in moderation. Add a dash of salt if it suits your tastes, but take care not to overdo it on the salt and butter, as this will add calories to this otherwise healthy snack.
Kettle corn, like many foods, is okay in moderation and is not necessarily terrible for a weight loss plan. Small amounts from time to time are okay. However, if you are looking for snacks that contribute to weight loss, you may want to consider air popped popcorn instead.