Popped Amaranth Crunch

Two words: movie night!

Cooler weather is coming, and so is snuggling up with your sweetie, family and friends on comfy couches for movie night. Wow them all with a gluten-free snack that is not only a nutritionally superior alternative to popcorn, but after one bite, will have everyone wondering how movie night ever existed without it.

Quinoa seems to be the big buzz these days (and rightfully so), but give another delicious ancient grain a try. Popped amaranth is a calcium-, lysine- and iron-rich complete protein with a popcorn-y taste and puffed texture that complements the buttery flavor of organic cashews and the sweet crunch of organic almonds, magically.

You can prepare Popped Amaranth Crunch baked at a low temp in the oven, or highly raw (our fave) in the dehydrator. Either way, it is a guilt-free snack that everyone will enjoy—especially your body.

Plant-based, raw, vegan

Makes: 3-4 cups (be sure to double or triple the batch for larger groups)
Preparation Time: baked: 30mins  | dehydrated (optimal nutrition): 6-8 hours

Tools:
Dehydrator (optional, but optimal, keeps beneficial enzymes and nutrients alive)
Large bowl
Skillet

Ingredients:
1 cup popped amaranth grain (how to pop)
1 cup organic cashews, soaked (how to soak)*
1 cup organic almonds, soaked (how to soak)*
2 tbsp raw, wild-harvested honey (you can substitute organic brown rice syrup or raw agave nectar)
1/4 tsp pink Himalayan or Celtic sea salt

*You can skip the soaking process, but soaking makes nuts easier to digest and assimilate. Read more about why soaking is optimal.

Let’s Get Started:
Pop
your amaranth grain. Set aside.

– – –
TIPS:
In my pantry, I keep already soaked and dehydrated nuts in glass jars so they are ready for me to use. I also keep popped amaranth on hand (to add to salads, etc.), so for this recipe all I have to do is hit my pantry and fridge, toss ingredients in a bowl and mix.

When you buy nuts and are unpacking groceries, soak them immediately. Before bed that night place them in the dehydrator and they are ready to store in the morning.

Dehydrated nuts will last for months (in airtight glass jars) in your pantry.

When you pop your amaranth for this recipe, make extra and store in an airtight jar in the fridge for 4-6 weeks.
– – –

If you are baking Popped Amaranth Crunch (using soaked nuts):
Place nuts on a parchment-lined cookie skeet and bake at 250°F for 10-20 minutes to dry them out. In a large glass bowl, mix together all ingredients and place back on the parchment-lined cookie sheet and bake for 10-15 more minutes. Allow to cool and serve. If any is leftover (ha), store in an airtight container in your pantry.

If you are baking Popped Amaranth Crunch (using unsoaked nuts):
In a large glass bowl, mix together all ingredients and place on a parchment-lined cookie sheet and bake for 20-30 minutes. Allow to cool and serve. Store in an airtight container in your pantry.

If you are dehydrating Popped Amaranth Crunch (using already soaked and dehydrated nuts OR unsoaked nuts):
Mix together all ingredients. Place on the dehydrator screen and dehydrate at 95-100°F for 2-4 hours. Allow to cool to room temp (honey hardens) and serve. Store in an airtight container in your pantry.

If you are dehydrating Popped Amaranth Crunch (using soaked nuts):
Dry almonds and cashews well with a towel and in a large glass bowl, mix together all ingredients. Place on the dehydrator screen and dehydrate at 95-100°F for 6-8 hours. Overnight works great. Allow to cool to room temp (honey hardens) and serve. Store in an airtight container in your pantry.


SUBSTITUTIONS

1. Try adding roasted jungle peanuts or pecans to the mix.
2. Add some cinnamon.
3. Dried fruit like banana or apple would be great too.

Read the comments or add yours.

Comment Rules

  1. What a fantastic idea! Will have to make this recipe this weekend.

  2. Heather-Can’t wait to try this, considering I cracked a tooth on regular popped corn.

  3. I am so in love with this snack! I pop way more than I need to because I love the “pop fizzle” of the amaranth. I use a screen op top of my pan to keep the little amaranths in the pan. This will save me a lot in dental work (I was eating a lot of popcorn)!

  4. juliana

    I LOVE this recipe! Although, I added more popped amaranth so each serving would be slightly less rich.

    The sad news is, I totally overcooked it. Whoops. So since it didn’t clump into chunks like it was supposed to, and it was ever so slightly burned, I turned it into a cereal!! I have truly missed cereal since giving up wheat and this recipe is definitely going to get tweaked for homemade cereal! 🙂

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