Reminiscent of classic popcorn balls, these salty-sweet treats make for awesome low-fat, lunch box-friendly snacking. Make a batch with the kids this weekend to enjoy throughout the week.
1 (10-ounce) package miniature marshmallows
1 tablespoon unsalted butter
1/8 teaspoon kosher salt
10 cup salt- and oil-free popped popcorn (such as SmartPop)
1 ounce bittersweet chocolate, finely chopped
How to Make It
Coat an 8-inch square baking pan with cooking spray. Line with parchment paper, allowing paper to extend over edges of pan; coat paper with cooking spray.
Combine marshmallows, butter, and salt in a Dutch oven over medium heat. Cook mixture until melted and smooth, stirring constantly. Remove from heat. Stir in popcorn. Transfer mixture to pan, pressing with parchment paper coated with cooking spray.
Place chocolate in a microwave-safe bowl. Microwave at HIGH 1 minute; stir until smooth. Drizzle chocolate over popcorn mixture. Refrigerate 5 minutes. Lift mixture from pan, and cut into 12 bars.
I didn't have luck with the "chocolate drizzle" so I left that off. Microwaving chocolate chips does not make them easy to drizzle without thinning it and mine wound up turning into a clumpy mess. The popcorn part was easy if not messy. I used the back of a spoon I sprayed with nonstick spray to press into the pan. Cutting was tricky - definitely needs longer than 5 minutes to set up in the fridge. Flavor was ok. But probably not anything I'd make again.
I admit it, I made these for me! I love marshmallow rice krispy and I love popcorn balls, so this seemed like the perfect recipe. It was easy to make and came together quickly. I used my Norpro microwave popcorn bowl. Five minutes in the fridge was not enough time to chill the chocolate drizzle, so I ended up leaving it in the fridge for more than 30 minutes and that was too much time because they were very hard to cut at that point, but the chocolate was solid. Overall, I think it was too high of a ratio of marshmallow to popcorn, and pressing the mixture into the pan really caused the popcorn to loose it's shape and texture. The whole bar just became chewy and not even that reminiscent of popcorn. A little more salt would have been nice to give it more of a salty sweet balance. As it's written, I couldn't taste the salt at all.
My daughter and I loved this recipe. Super easy and fast to make. Be sure to pick out the unpopped kernels before adding to the marshmallows. It's tricky, but save some for the second day. We thought the treats had more flavor the second day.
I loved this recipe - very easy to make, and overall very tasty! Tips / Tricks: 1) I used Skinny Pop (plain) for the recipe (makes sure no kernels are in your bars) and for easy (~2/3 of a big bag); 2) thinned my chocolate for "drizzle" with 2 tbsp of fresh brewed strong coffee. Will make again and again - good for snacks for kids (and you!) through the week. Not enough to feed a crowd, but enough for a small family to really enjoy / share. Enjoy!
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