Keto Popcorn- Almost ZERO carbs!

This keto popcorn is crispy, crunchy, and seriously addictive, you won’t believe it is low carb! Made with just one ingredient, it’s easily customizable and tastes like cheese puffs! 1 gram net carb per serving. 

Keto popcorn

When it comes to salty keto snacks, my favorite recipes to make are tortilla chips, crackers, and this keto popcorn. 

To this day, I will wholeheartedly admit that I’m a savory snacker. I’ll always take a bag of chips over any dessert any day, and that’s not an exaggeration. Growing up, my mom would give me cheese and crackers for dessert (this was my choice!) and when I first moved out of home, my cupboards were filled with every cracker, potato chip, and pretzel variety you could think of! 

My all time favorite snack though would always be popcorn. There’s something special about having something crispy, salty, and crunchy all in one. It’s also relatively healthy. Although, when I first started a low carb diet, I had a few little issues… 

Is keto popcorn? 

Although popcorn is considered a healthy and low calorie snack, it is far from keto friendly. Per one cup serving, it contains just 32 calories, however, the carbs in popcorn can take someout out of ketosis. Luckily, you can easily make your own low carb alternative.

I’ve been meaning to share a keto popcorn recipe for quite some time. Although it is a little time consuming to prepare, it only needs one ingredient to make!

No popcorn kernels and no grains are needed, but you’d never tell. The texture is crispy, crunchy, and deliciously puffed up. It’s salty, easily customizable, and with no evident cheesy flavor!

I had some friends over for a movie night and made them all taste this and they could NOT believe how much it tasted like real popcorn- It reminded them of cheese puffs!

How do you make keto popcorn?

The Ingredients

  • Cheese– Any block of cheese can be used. I prefer using cheddar, as it is mild flavored. Colby Jack, sharp American, and Gouda can also be used. 
  • Flavorings– Herbs and spices to toss the popcorn in once it has been prepared. 

The Instructions

Start by chopping your block of cheese into small 1/4 inch cubes. Place the cubes of cheese on a lined baking sheet and cover with a dishtowel. Place the sheet in a cool area and keep it there for at least 24 hours, for it to try out.

Now, bake the cheese cubes for 7-8 minutes, until puffed and popped. Remove it from the oven and let it cool completely, before patting the popcorn to remove excess oil and enjoy. 

low carb popcorn

Tips to make the best low carb popcorn

  • Do not overbake the cheese or else it will deflate after it puffs up. 
  • Your popcorn must be cooled completely, before adding any flavoring to it. 
  • The longer you let the cheese dry out, the more it will puff up. Ideally, 72 hours will yield the best popcorn. 

Flavor variations

While this popcorn tastes delicious on its own, here are some fun and popular flavor options for some variety. 

  • Sweet and salty– Sprinkle 1/4 teaspoon salt and 2 tablespoons keto powdered sugar or 1/4 cup granulated sweetener of choice. 
  • Cheddar cheese– Add 2 tablespoons of cheddar cheese powder. 
  • Butter– Melt and cool 2 tablespoons butter, drizzle through the popcorn, then sprinkle1/4 teaspoon salt. 
  • Ranch– Add 1 tablespoon ranch seasoning. 
  • Parmesan garlic– Sprinkle 2 tablespoons of parmesan cheese and 1 teaspoon garlic powder through the popcorn. 

Storing and freezing keto cheese puffs

  • To store: The popcorn can be stored at room temperature, in a sealed container, for up to 4 weeks. 
  • To freeze: Place the popcorn in a ziplock bag and store it in the freezer for up to 6 months. 

keto cheese puffs

More keto snack recipes you’ll enjoy

keto popcorn
  • 1 cup cheddar cheese from a block * See notes
  • 1/4 tsp salt ** See notes
  • Line a large baking tray with parchment paper and set it aside.

  • Slice your cheddar cheese into 1/4 inch cubes. Place them on the lined sheet and cover with a dishtowel. Let the cheese dry out for at least 24 hours.

  • Preheat the oven to 200C/400F. Line a new tray with parchment paper. Transfer the dried cheese onto it and bake for 5-7 minutes, until popped and puffed up.

  • Remove from the oven and let cool completely. Use a paper towel to soak up any excess oil.

* You can use another type of block cheese but it will be much more flavorful. Do not use mozzarella. 
** See the body of the post for flavor options. 
TO STORE: The popcorn can be stored at room temperature, in a sealed container, for up to 4 weeks. 
TO FREEZE: Place the popcorn in a ziplock bag and store it in the freezer for up to 6 months. 

Serving: 1serving | Calories: 116kcal | Carbohydrates: 1g | Protein: 7g | Fat: 9g | Sodium: 176mg | Potassium: 31mg | Fiber: 1g | Vitamin A: 284IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 207mg | Iron: 1mg