Popcorn can be a nutritious snack enjoyed at any time of the year if you pick the right toppings. Popcorn enthusiasts are always on the lookout for salt substitutes that don’t sacrifice taste and are good for you at the same time.

If you love that taste of salt but don’t want the sodium, Benson’s, Morton Salt Substitute, and Nu-Salt are great salt substitutes.  You can also use other seasonings, such as cheese for savory flavors, sugar and cinnamon for a sweet flavor, or chili powder for a spicy taste.

Let’s get the creative juices flowing and discover what you can top your popcorn with for a delicious combo your taste buds will love and taste great even without sodium. These ideas can easily make a unique batch of popcorn with items you already have in the cupboard.

What Are Ways To Make My Popcorn Spicy Without Salt? 

Die-hard spice fans can find ways to get the heat they want without kicking up the sodium level. Here are a few spices to try when you’re looking to raise your popcorn flavor a few notches.

  • A tried-and-true spicy combo. Use three parts paprika and one part chili powder after you’ve sprayed your popcorn with olive oil.
  • Go Cajun! Use a small amount of coconut oil in your saucepan and stir in garlic powder, cumin, basil, and a hint of cayenne.
  • Want some sweet heat? All you need to do is add some chili powder and cayenne pepper to a small bowl, along with two tablespoons of all-natural honey. Pop in the microwave for a few seconds and you’re good to go.

How Can I Make My Popcorn Cheesy With No Salt? 

If you love cheese, many options will provide the flavor you want without the sodium intake. One great combination to use will only require three ingredients: a mixture of parmesan cheese, black pepper, and some garlic powder. As an added bonus, the adhesive nature of the cheese will ensure every bite is delicious and you’ll probably end up making some more. 

Are you a fan of the “nacho” flavor, much like what you would find eating a bag of Doritos? Gather the following spices: garlic powder, onion powder, cumin, paprika, and chili powder, and make an extra fine powder by grinding it in a coffee grinder. You could still consider adding a salt-free substitute mentioned above as well for additional flavor. 

Can’t decide which butter is best to use when making popcorn, check out the article What is the Best Popcorn Butter?

What Are Some Sweet Combinations For My Popcorn? 

No one ever said flavoring your popcorn without salt can’t include appreciating your “sweeter” side. Here are a few simple recipes to try that will give your popcorn that sweet rush (even without tons of added sugar)!

  • Caramel Popcorn: Simmer a few tablespoons of olive oil and maple syrup and drizzle it over your popcorn. 
  • Cinnamon and Sugar: You only need a few tablespoons of sugar if you mix the popcorn well. 
  • Dark Chocolate: Melt some dark chocolate chips in the microwave and toss on your popcorn.

What Are Some Creative Ways To Flavor Popcorn Without Salt Or Too Many Calories? 

Popcorn itself is a healthy whole grain snack that provides a good amount of dietary fiber. However, most of us envision the kind you get at the movie theaters with loads of extra butter and salt.

At home, try swapping butter with a spray bottle of olive oil. As for seasonings to combine that don’t have salt, here are some unique ideas.

1. “Everything Bagel” Popcorn: You’ll need a mixture of poppy seeds and sesame seeds, along with garlic powder and onion powder.

2. “Italian” Popcorn: Do you love the taste of a hot breadstick that just came from the oven? Look for Italian seasoning (without salt) at the grocery store and sprinkle it on your favorite snack with a bit of garlic powder.

3. “Lemon Pepper” Popcorn: Black peppercorns and some lemon zest provide a unique flavor that keeps you coming back for more!

4. “Chili-Lime” Popcorn: Looking for a Mexican twist? Get a bottle of Sriracha and a little bit of lime juice. Then, thoroughly toss your popcorn for a zesty combination that pops on your palette.

5. “Wasabi” Popcorn: If you want something that tastes great and clears up your sinuses, you must try this one. Wasabi paste and a little sesame oil is the answer.

If you are thinking about purchasing a popcorn maker, check out the article Are Popcorn Makers Worth It?

Why Are People Interested In Salt Substitutes For Popcorn? 

While the FDA recommends some sodium in your diet, most Americans consume way too much. As a result, your risks are much higher of developing high blood pressure and heart disease.

There’s no denying that salt can make any food or snack taste great but having it in moderation is imperative. If you love popcorn, finding a tasty alternative isn’t as hard as you think.

Especially in recent times, more families are placing a high priority on their well-being and health. That doesn’t mean you need to sacrifice taste. If you have children, it can become challenging to find healthy snacks they enjoy, so keep trying new flavors on your popcorn until you find a winner.

So, whether you like sweet or salty, spicy or fruity, there are seasoning options for everyone that will add flavor to your popcorn without the sodium.  Try one of the salt substitutes and see which flavor you like as they all have a slightly different flavor and it will be a personal preference for each person. 

I recommend you start light with the salt substitute application on your popcorn to test it out before you cover your bowl with it.

So, get popping and try some new salt substitutes toppings!

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