Crunchy Peanut Butter popcorn bars are an easy recipe for back to school snacks. What’s not to love about crunchy peanut butter and popcorn, mixed together into a yummy popcorn bar? A healthy mix of savory peanut butter and crunchy popcorn, it’s a fresh take on an old favorite. Plus, it features the whole grain goodness of popcorn!
And when it comes to snacks for kids, these are a hit. School is just around the corner, and healthy snacks are important for kids – and adults, too. This recipe satisfies a lot of cravings: it’s a little sweet, a little savory and has a nice crunch. Plus, the protein of the peanut butter helps keep you full. But this isn’t just a back to school recipe. These peanut butter popcorn bars are a quick and easy treat perfect for adding to you holiday cookie platter, too!
People have asked us: Do these crunchy peanut butter popcorn bars pack up well for a road trip? Yes, yes they do. A quick tip, though: Try to keep these popcorn bars a little cool. Otherwise, you could have some melted peanut butter. Family and friends also have suggested adding in candies into the mix – like M&Ms or other chocolate bits. That’s a great idea, too!
The last time we made a batch was when we were hosting a flash-back movie night for the kids. Looking for a good after-school movie to show with this after-school snack idea? Here is our favorite movie suggestion to pair with this recipe:
MOVIE: Back to the Future (1985). The sci-fi cult classic follows the antics of a California teen, Marty McFly (Michael J. Fox), who travels back to the 1950s when an experiment by his eccentric scientist friend Doc Brown (actor Christopher Lloyd) goes awry. Traveling through time in a DeLorean never looked more cool.
MOVIE TRIVIA: Did you know that Fox was not the first actor cast as Marty McFly? The role originally went to actor Eric Stoltz, who was a rising star at the time. But a few weeks into filming, director Robert Zemeckis and writer Bob Gale realized that Stoltz wasn’t bringing the quirky energy to the film that they wanted. The solution: replace Stoltz with Fox.
Pop your popcorn and set aside. Grease a 13 x 9 x 2 inch pan and set aside.
In a large pot, combine the corn syrup, sugar and peanut butter. Place the pan over medium heat, and bring this mixture to a boil while stirring constantly. (Seriously, stir constantly. Otherwise, you will have a burned mess on your hands.)
Lower the heat to low. (This helps prevent scorching.) Over low heat, boil your sauce for three minutes. Continue to stir the whole time.
After three minutes, remove the pan from the heat and add your popped popcorn into the pan.
At this point, please be careful, because the mixture is VERY HOT. Stir the popcorn and sauce with a wooden spoon to coat everything well.
Carefully scoop the popcorn into your greased pan and press it down so that it's flat and even in the pan. Let the popcorn cool and cut into square-shaped bars, and serve.
Serving Size 1 bar
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily value may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.