Don't be corn-fused: See results of pre-popped popcorn tests
Posted June 8
Whether it's salty, cheesy or buttery, popcorn is a great snack.
With the rise in popularity of pre-popped popcorn, you don't even need to stop at the microwave first.
Ready-to-eat popcorn is not only easy, it's also whole grain and a good source of antioxidants—the compounds that help repair cell damage.
Consumer Reports tested 15 popular brands, from salty to sweet to cheesy.
Five brands made from just popcorn, oil and salt were tested. One surprise was Skinny Pop. Although it scores "very good" for taste, Consumer Reports said despite its name, it has more calories and fat than the other four.
Smartfood Delight Sea Salt's large, plump kernels got "very good" marks for taste and "good" marks for nutrition.
The best was Angie's Boom Chicka Pop Sea Salt. Testers gave it excellent taste and good marks for nutrition.
As for the sweet and cheese-flavored popcorns, Consumer Reports found some weren't as unhealthful as you'd think.
Two cups of Cape Cod's Salted Caramel have just 10 more calories than its sea-salt version and about one more gram of fat. But the same amount of Angie's Boom Chicka Pop White Cheddar has 50 more calories and three times the sodium than its sea salt version.
Another option: make your own popcorn at home. You can do stove top or microwave, which lets you control what's on it. It's also easy and inexpensive.