25 sweet and savory ideas for popcorn toppings. Salt and butter are great, but why not try kettle corn, salted caramel corn, or even pesto or BBQ flavored popcorn!
For me, there’s nothing more fun than popping popcorn over an open fire. Fall is the perfect time to do this, whether in a fireplace or over a fire pit. But whether you’re popping inside or outside, it’s all about the popcorn toppings!
As far as toppings go, salt and butter are great, but there are so many more toppings to experiment with!
These also make a great gift for any popcorn/movie fanatic! Mix up the powdered combinations, seal in labeled glass spice jars, and pair with DVDs or gift cards to purchase movies.
Note: use these links to find high-quality herbs and gourmet salts for the recipes below.
How to Make 25 Delicious Popcorn Toppings
These topping recipes are simple and most can be stored if you make enough for next time.
Sweet Popcorn Toppings
2 teaspoons sugar or sugar substitute, ½ teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon cocoa powder, ½ teaspoon cinnamon, ½ teaspoon cayenne pepper, ¼ teaspoon sugar or sugar substitute, ¼ teaspoon salt
1 Tablespoon brown sugar, ½ teaspoon sea salt
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon, ¼ teaspoon ground cloves, ½ teaspoon ground ginger
1 teaspoon freeze-dried strawberries (crushed), 1 teaspoon dried milk powder (or coconut milk powder or almond milk powder), ½ teaspoon sugar or sugar substitute
1 teaspoon dried sumac powder, 1 teaspoon freeze-dried blueberries (crushed), 1 teaspoon sugar or sugar substitute, ⅛ teaspoon smoked salt
1 Tablespoon cacao or cocoa powder, 1 teaspoon dried mint leaves, ½ teaspoon sugar or sugar substitute
Chocolate Peanut Butter
1 Tablespoon cacao or cocoa powder, 1 tablespoon peanut butter powder, ½ teaspoon sugar or sugar substitute
1 tablespoon bacon (cooked very crisp and crushed), 1 teaspoon maple syrup powder or brown sugar
1 Tablespoon freeze-dried raspberries (crushed), 1 teaspoon cacao or cocoa powder, ½ teaspoon sugar or sugar substitute
Savory Popcorn Toppings
1 teaspoon dried oregano, 1 teaspoon dried rosemary (crushed), 1 Tablespoon Parmesan cheese
1 teaspoon curry powder, 2 teaspoons coconut flakes
½ teaspoon onion powder, ½ teaspoon garlic powder, ¼ teaspoon black pepper, ½ teaspoon dried parsley, 1 Tablespoon buttermilk powder, ¼ teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon cumin, ½ teaspoon chili powder, ½ teaspoon celery salt
Smoked Paprika and Parsley
1 teaspoon of each
1 Tablespoon fresh chopped basil, 1 teaspoon crushed pine nuts, a bit of olive oil to coat
2 Tablespoons hot sauce, 1 Tablespoon butter; melt hot sauce and butter together, drizzle over the top, and mix well
1 teaspoon smoked paprika, 1 teaspoon dark brown sugar, ½ teaspoon black pepper, ¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper, ¼ teaspoon celery salt
½ teaspoon ginger powder, ¼ teaspoon wasabi powder, ½ teaspoon sugar or sugar substitute, 1 teaspoon soy sauce or ponzu
1 teaspoon dried lemon peel or powdered lemon juice, 1 teaspoon dried dill weed
1 Tablespoon dried kale (crushed), ½ teaspoon Himalayan pink salt, ½ teaspoon nutritional yeast
1 teaspoon fresh chopped cilantro, ½ teaspoon lime juice powder, ½ teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon sesame seeds, 1 teaspoon poppy seeds, 1 teaspoon garlic powder or dried garlic flakes, 1 teaspoon onion powder or dried onion flakes, ½ teaspoon salt
Instructions for Popcorn Toppings
With all of these, mix the dry or fresh ingredients first, then set aside.
If the recipe calls for oil or another liquid, drizzle over the popcorn first, then mix in the dry or fresh ingredients.
If the recipe doesn’t call for a liquid, simply mix dry ingredients into the popcorn. For dry ingredients that tend to fall to the bottom, drizzle with a bit of butter or olive oil, then remix.
Notes for Popcorn Toppings
When using a sugar substitute, remember that some of them, like stevia, are much sweeter than sugar. Begin by using a smaller amount than the recipe calls for, taste, then add more if needed.
The amounts of any ingredient can be changed to suit your taste. For example, if you want more spice, add more cayenne pepper. If you want to tone it down, add just a bit of pepper.
If you are presenting these as gifts or selling them, remember to label the container with the ingredients, especially if it contains coconut, nuts, or peanut butter.
Do you have any unique ideas for popcorn toppings? If so, share them with us!
25 Ideas for both Sweet & Savory Popcorn Toppings was written by Debra Maslowski.