March 31, 2014

Popcorn Balls

These are one of my kids favorite snacks!  They resemble rice krispy treats but I feel a they are a little healthier with the popcorn, cheerios and nuts.  I do have to omit the nuts if my kids are taking them to school for lunch/snack because of nut allergies.  But they turn out yummy either way.  You can easily add or subtract ingredients depending on everyone's tastes, just keep the proportions about the same.  I added M&Ms, sprinkles & animal crackers for the take-home favors for Ashley's Animal birthday party.  They were a huge hit!

Kid's Favorite Popcorn Balls
1 package regular sized plain microwave popcorn
2 Tablespoons butter
2 1/4 cups mini marshmallows
2 cup cheerios cereal
1 ounce (or small handful) pretzel sticks, broken into pieces
1/4 cup peanuts


1. Microwave popcorn according to package directions.  Pour popcorn into a bowl removing any un-popped kernels. Set aside.
2. Melt butter in a large pan.  Add marshmallows and stir for 2 minutes or until marshmallows melt.  Remove from heat.  
3. Add 4 cups popcorn and remaining ingredients.  Stir until fully coated.  
4. Cool for 2 minutes then form into 12 large or 24 mini balls.  Cool 5 more minutes.

The Pet Treat popcorn balls above are the take-home favors from the Animal Birthday Party.  You can add the animal crackers when you add the popcorn and cheerios.  If you want M&Ms, wait until after the initial 2 minutes of cooling or the coating will melt into the marshmallow turning it into a rainbow of colors.  Also, if adding sprinkles, wait until after forming the balls or they will disappear.

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