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Patriotic Popcorn

Patriotic Popcorn is the perfect snack for fireworks on the Fourth of July. Make your popcorn in the Instant Pot and then toss with candies and sweet treats for an easy red, white, and blue dessert.

patriotic popcorn with red, white, and blue chocolate candies in a bowl

Little babies + late nights + loud noises hasn’t been my idea of fun for the last decade or so but, now that the kids are getting older, I am getting more excited about celebrating Fourth of July as a family!

I have a few red, white, and blue desserts recipes on the blog, like these patriotic popsicles and berry galette, but I wanted something a little more snackable and shareable to bring to a cookout this year. This patriotic popcorn checked all the boxes for a fun 4th of July dessert!

popcorn with red, white, and blue drizzle in a sheet pan

Ingredients Needed

This recipe can be easily customized with many other ingredients if you prefer- think all the things red, white, and blue! For example, you can add white chocolate pretzels, unmelted white chocolate chips, freeze-dried raspberries, strawberries, or blueberries, or chex cereal.

To make this recipe, you will need:

  • Buttered popcorn: You can use unbuttered popcorn as well. Even kettle corn would work, though the taste will be different. You can use pre-popped popcorn or use 1 ½ (3 ounce) bags of unpopped popcorn.
  • Salted peanuts: You could substitute another type of nut, like chopped walnuts or almonds instead.
  • White chocolate chips: You can use 12 ounces of white chocolate bars as well. Or, you could use white candy melts, which won’t taste of white chocolate, but will work.
  • Salted butter: Unsalted butter can be used, though I like how the extra salt helps cut through the sweetness.
  • Shortening: You might need to use more or less shortening depending on the type of white chocolate chips you have.
  • Powdered sugar
  • Red, white, and blue M&M’s: If you want to use this recipe for another occasion or holiday, you can easily change the color of the M&Ms and sprinkles.
  • Candy melts: Feel free to change up the colors used depending on the occasion.
  • Red, white, and blue sprinkles: Other sprinkles can be used if you are using for another occasion or holiday.
  • Mini marshmallows

Supplies Needed

  • 1-2 Gallon-sized plastic (ziploc) bags
  • Large sheet pan
  • Mixing bowls
  • Measuring tools
  • Medium saucepan or microwave safe bowl
popcorn kernels in an Instant Pot

Instant Pot Popcorn

I started making popcorn in the Instant Pot a few months ago and never looked back. This method is almost as easy as tossing a bag in the microwave, but somehow so much tastier! All you need is popcorn kernels, coconut oil, and salt.

Get step by step instructions for How to Make Instant Pot Popcorn here.

popped popcorn in an Instant Pot

How to Make Patriotic Popcorn

  1. Pour popped popcorn into a large bowl.
  2. Combine with the salted peanuts and set aside for now.
  3. Melt the white chocolate chips, salted butter, and shortening together.
  4. Pour the melted chocolate mixture over the popcorn and peanuts and gently stir to combine.
  5. Place the popcorn and peanuts in a gallon Ziploc bag or two.
  6. Add the powdered sugar, seal the bag, and shake to combine.
  7. Pour popcorn onto a large sheet pan and sprinkle on the m&ms and marshmallows.
  8. Melt the red and blue candy melts.
  9. Drizzle the red, then blue candy melts onto the top of the popcorn.
  10. Before the candy melts dry, evenly add on the sprinkles.
  11. Allow to cool to room temperature and then break apart into pieces.
white bowl with patriotic popcorn with a white brick background

How to Store

Place this popcorn in a plastic bag and store at room temperature for 1-2 weeks. Do not freeze or refrigerate.

Be sure to print off a few Fourth of July word search printables to keep kiddos busy before the fireworks!

a few kernels of popcorn in a small wooden spoon

More Fourth of July Recipes

patriotic popcorn with red, white, and blue chocolate candies in a bowl

Patriotic Popcorn

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Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 5 minutes
Servings: 12 cups
Calories: 473kcal
Author: Emily Grace

Ingredients

  • 12 cups buttered popcorn about 1 ½ three ounce bags popped
  • ½ cup salted peanuts
  • 12 oz white chocolate chips or vanilla candy melts
  • 3 tbsp salted butter
  • 2 tbsp shortening
  • ¾ cup powdered sugar
  • 1 cup red, white, and blue M&Ms
  • 2 cups mini marshmallows
  • ¼ cup red candy melts
  • ¼ cup blue candy melts
  • cup red, white, and blue sprinkles

Instructions

  • Pop the popcorn according to instructions on the back of a 3 ounce bag of popcorn. Pour into a large bowl, making sure to discard any unpopped popcorn kernels.
  • Combine with the salted peanuts and set aside for now.
  • In a microwave or medium saucepan over medium-low heat, melt the white chocolate chips, salted butter, and shortening together. Stir frequently to prevent burning.
  • Pour the melted chocolate mixture over the popcorn and peanuts. Gently stir to combine. Be patient as this can take a little bit to combine everything.
  • Place the popcorn and peanuts in a gallon Ziploc bag (if necessary you can split it evenly into two bags).
  • Take the powdered sugar and pour it into the plastic bag(s). Close the bag and shake it around, making sure the powdered sugar coats everything thoroughly.
  • Pour popcorn onto a large sheet pan and sprinkle on the m&ms and marshmallows.
  • Melt the red and blue candy melts in the microwave, stirring every 15 seconds until smooth.
  • Drizzle the red, then blue candy melts onto the top of the popcorn.
  • Before the candy melts dry, evenly add on the sprinkles.
  • Wait until the chocolate has completely cooled and set before breaking the popcorn apart and serving, about 30 minutes.

Nutrition

Serving: 1g | Calories: 473kcal | Carbohydrates: 57g | Protein: 5g | Fat: 26g | Saturated Fat: 14g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 2g | Monounsaturated Fat: 7g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 16mg | Sodium: 178mg | Potassium: 177mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 46g | Vitamin A: 154IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 86mg | Iron: 1mg
Did you make this recipe? Mention @GraceGoodEats or tag #graceandgoodeats!

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