4th of July Popcorn

This post may contain affiliate links. Please read my disclosure policy.

Independence Day is almost here, and we’ve got a fun, patriotic popcorn mix to get the party started! This 4th of July Popcorn is packed with delicious white chocolate-covered popcorn, crunchy pretzels, and red, white, and blue M&M’s. It’s super easy to whip up and you can jazz it up with your choice of sprinkles or extra candy. Let the festivities begin!

Overhead image of this 4th of July Popcorn

4th Of July Popcorn

The countdown to the Fourth of July is on, and we’ve got just the snack to ignite your patriotic spirit! Meet our festive popcorn mix – complete with the colors that symbolize this fun holiday!

At the heart of this snack mix is popcorn generously smothered in smooth, creamy white chocolate. To balance the sweetness, we incorporate crunchy, salty pretzels. The holiday spirit is brought to life with M&M’s® in festive red, white, and blue colors. We also top everything off with colorful sprinkles that add to the excitement. This combination is simply irresistible – a sweet, salty, and chocolaty treat that’s downright delicious!

The icing on the cake? The simplicity of making it! Even if you don’t consider yourself a pro in the baking department, you can easily assemble this snack in no time!

Ingredient shot-- image of all the ingredients used in this recipe

Ingredients in 4th of July Popcorn

  • Popcorn. Purchasing already-popped popcorn makes this recipe come together a little bit quicker, but it’s also a bit more spendy. If you’d rather pop your own, these are the packets we use (lightly salted plain popcorn). Of course, you can also use kernels in a popcorn machine or on the stovetop.  Whatever type you choose to use, measure out 8 cups of cooked popcorn for this recipe. If you make plain popcorn, don’t forget to add a touch of salt.
  • Pretzels. To add some contrasting salty to the sweet, we love pretzels here. Any work — if they’re large, quickly break ’em down with your hands!
  • M&M’s. We’re using the Red, White, and Blue mix of M&M’s here. 
  • White chocolate melts or chips. Choose chocolate made for melting like these melting wafers or you can use white chocolate chips. You’ll get both a better melt and a better flavor with high-quality brands like Ghirardelli® or Guittard®. 
  • Oil. We recommend adding a touch of oil or shortening to the chocolate before melting. This helps to smooth out the chocolate and makes coating easier.
  • Sprinkles. To add a final touch of color and crunch to this 4th of July Popcorn, you can add some red, white, and blue-colored sprinkles. This ingredient is completely optional–but it really adds to the fun.

QUICK TIP

We mention several brand names in this post: M&M’s, Ghirardelli, and Guittard. We respect trademarks and mention these products by name because we truly believe they are of higher quality than others–plus, they are easily recognizable. These are the brands we use in our test kitchen, but of course, you’re welcome to use similar products under different labels.

Process shots of 4th of July Popcorn-- images of the popcorn, pretzels, and M&Ms' being added to a bowl and white chocolate being melted

Tips For Melting Chocolate In The Microwave

  • Choose the right bowl: Use a microwave-safe bowl that won’t heat up excessively. Glass and ceramic bowls are your best bets.
  • Heat in short bursts: To avoid overheating, microwave the white chocolate in 30-second intervals, stirring after each session. This helps to evenly distribute the heat, ensuring smooth and even melting.
  • Monitor carefully: Keep a close eye on the chocolate as it melts. Overheating can lead to the chocolate seizing up, turning lumpy or grainy. Stop microwaving as soon as most of the chocolate is melted and continue stirring until the rest melts.
  • Stir, stir, stir: Frequent stirring is key to achieving a perfect melt and also helps to prevent any chances of the chocolate burning.
  • Keep water at bay: Water can be chocolate’s worst enemy, causing it to seize up and turn grainy. Make sure all utensils and bowls you use are absolutely dry.
  • Use a lower power setting: If your microwave has the option, try using a lower power setting. It might take a bit longer, but it gives you more control and reduces the risk of overheating.
  • Rescue seized chocolate: If your chocolate does seize, try adding a teaspoon of vegetable oil or clarified butter (for every ounce of chocolate) and stir until smooth again. Avoid using water-based substances like milk or cream; these could worsen the situation.

Process shots-- images of the white chocolate being poured into the bowl with the other ingredients and it all being mixed together

How To Make 4th of July Popcorn (Tips)

  • Use fresh popcorn: Pop the corn just before you plan to use it for the best flavor and texture. 
  • Choose a large bowl: To avoid spilling, use a big bowl when combining the ingredients with the white chocolate. This will make it simpler to stir everything together and ensure an even chocolate coating.
  • Line the Pan: For an effortless cleanup, line your baking sheet with a non-stick baking mat, foil, or parchment paper. This keeps the popcorn from sticking to the pan, and it’s a breeze to lift off once everything has hardened.
  • Sprinkles galore: Get playful with your sprinkles! There’s no limit to the options – use patriotic-themed sprinkles, a mix of different colors, or a variety of shapes to bring a fun, festive vibe to your popcorn.
  • Use quality white chocolate: The better the quality of your white chocolate, the better your popcorn will taste. Look for high-quality white chocolate that’s creamy and melts well for the best results.
  • Let it cool: After spreading the coated popcorn on the lined baking sheet, give it time to cool and harden. This will allow the chocolate to set and make the popcorn easier to handle and more enjoyable to eat.

Process shots of 4th of July Snack Mix-- image of the milk chocolate being pipped over the entire snack mix

STORAGE

Storing 4th of July Popcorn

The ideal way to enjoy this popcorn mix is to prepare it fresh and consume it within a day or two. To retain its freshness, store it in an airtight container at room temperature.

Bear in mind that the white chocolate can cause the popcorn to soften over time, so for the best texture, enjoy the popcorn within the first couple of days of making it.

Should you need to store it for a more extended period, consider stashing the popcorn mix in the freezer. This could help delay the softening process, keeping your snack mix crisp for a bit longer.

Up-close overhead image of the treat on the tray

QUICK TIP

Don’t let unpopped kernels ruin your treat! Wondering how to be sure none are missed? Easy! Simply put the popcorn in a large bowl and cover it with a cooling rack. Turn it upside down and give it a good shake over a plate. Like magic, all those pesky unpopped kernels will fall out! You can then scoop the popcorn-free kernels from the bowl and continue with your recipe. 

More Festive 4th Of July Treats:

FOLLOW ALONG! Subscribe to my newsletter and follow along on Facebook, Pinterest and Instagram for the latest updates, recipes and content.

4th of July Popcorn

5 from 1 vote
Independence Day is almost here, and we've got a fun, patriotic popcorn mix to get the party started! This 4th of July Popcorn is packed with delicious white chocolate-covered popcorn, crunchy pretzels, and red, white, and blue M&M's. It's super easy to whip up and you can jazz it up with your choice of sprinkles or extra candy. Let the festivities begin!
Print Recipe

4th of July Popcorn

5 from 1 vote
Independence Day is almost here, and we've got a fun, patriotic popcorn mix to get the party started! This 4th of July Popcorn is packed with delicious white chocolate-covered popcorn, crunchy pretzels, and red, white, and blue M&M's. It's super easy to whip up and you can jazz it up with your choice of sprinkles or extra candy. Let the festivities begin!
Course Dessert, Snack, treat
Cuisine American, Vegetarian
Keyword 4th of July Popcorn
Prep Time 15 minutes
Chilling Time 30 minutes
Total Time 45 minutes
Servings 12 servings
Chelsea Lords
Calories 338kcal
Cost $10.85

Ingredients

  • 8 cups plain popped popcorn (Note 1)
  • 2 cups mini pretzel twists, broken in half
  • 1⅓ cups Red, White, & Blue M&M's (one 10 oz. bag) (Note 2)
  • 2 cups good-quality white chocolate chips (11-12 oz. bag will work)
  • teaspoons vegetable or canola oil
  • 2 tablespoons Red, White, & Blue sprinkles, optional
  • Optional chocolate drizzle: 1/2 cup milk or semi-sweet chocolate chips and 1/2 teaspoon vegetable oil

Instructions

  • PREP: Line an extra-large sheet pan with foil, parchment paper, or a silicone liner. Set aside.
  • MIX: In a very large bowl, measure and add the popped popcorn, making sure no kernels make it in! (See Note 3.) Break the pretzels (roughly in half), measure, and add those in. Add in the M&M's.
  • WHITE CHOCOLATE: Place the white chocolate chips and oil in a microwave-safe bowl. Heat in bursts of 30 seconds, stirring in between each burst until the chocolate is melted and smooth. Be patient to avoid burning the chocolate. Once the white chocolate is smooth and fully melted, use a spatula to scrape it out and over the popcorn mix. Working quickly, toss everything to get evenly coated in the white chocolate.
  • FINISH MIX: Spread mixture onto prepared pan, space in one layer, and immediately sprinkle with sprinkles (if using).
  • OPTIONAL MILK CHOCOLATE DRIZZLE: If desired, combine milk chocolate chips with vegetable oil in a microwave-safe bowl. Heat in bursts of 30 seconds, stirring in between each burst until the chocolate is melted and smooth. Be patient to avoid burning the chocolate. Once the milk chocolate is smooth and fully melted, transfer to a small zip-top bag. Snip off the tip of the bag and pipe evenly over the popcorn.
  • HARDEN: Let the popcorn harden at room temperature or in the fridge until it becomes solid. Once solid, break it into pieces and enjoy! Store any leftovers in an airtight container at room temperature. For the best flavor, eat within 1-2 days.

Recipe Notes

Note 1: Popcorn: Purchasing already-popped popcorn makes this recipe come together a little bit quicker, but it’s a bit more spendy. If you’d rather pop your own, these are the packets we use (lightly salted plain popcorn). Of course, you can also use kernels in a popcorn machine or on the stovetop.  Whatever type you choose to use, measure out 8 cups of cooked popcorn for this recipe. If you make plain popcorn, don't forget to add a touch of salt.
Note 2: M&M's: If you can't find the specific red, white, and blue mix, grab regular M&M's and just pick out the reds and blues for this recipe.
Note 3: Remove the kernels: Put the popcorn in a large bowl and place a cooling rack over the top. Invert and shake over a plate....and all of the unpopped kernels will come out! Scoop the rest of the popcorn out of the bowl and proceed with the recipe.

Nutrition Facts

Serving: 1serving | Calories: 338kcal | Carbohydrates: 45g | Protein: 5g | Fat: 16g | Saturated Fat: 9g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 3g | Trans Fat: 0.05g | Cholesterol: 10mg | Sodium: 131mg | Potassium: 126mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 32g | Vitamin A: 75IU | Vitamin C: 0.4mg | Calcium: 89mg | Iron: 1mg

We do our best to provide accurate nutritional analysis for our recipes. Our nutritional data is calculated using a third-party algorithm and may vary, based on individual cooking styles, measurements, and ingredient sizes. Please use this information for comparison purposes and consult a health professional for nutrition guidance as needed.

DID YOU MAKE THIS RECIPE?

I love hearing from you when you've made one of my recipes! Tag me on Instagram at @ChelseasMessyApron or leave me a comment below.

 

More Recipes You'll Love

Fruit Pizza Recipe

32 mins

Fruit Pizza Recipe

Click the Bookmark Icon to Add to Your Favories

Apple Dump Cake

1 hrs 10 mins

Apple Dump Cake

Click the Bookmark Icon to Add to Your Favories

Brownie Trifle

2 hrs 20 mins

Brownie Trifle

Click the Bookmark Icon to Add to Your Favories

Bundt Cake

1 hrs 10 mins

Bundt Cake

Click the Bookmark Icon to Add to Your Favories

FREE BONUS

FREE BONUS

EASY MEAL SECRETS:
How to Make Mealtime Hassle Free!

5 secrets to easy, fast and delicious dinners.

  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.

Leave a Comment:

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Recipe Rating




0 Comments

Never Miss a Recipe

  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.