Let’s cut the bullshit: popcorn is the greatest snack ever invented. There is literally nothing not to love about fluffy crunchy butter and salt. I’m pretty sure that 90% of my friends are only my friends because I bought a Whirley-Pop and make them popcorn every time we hang out.
Despite its perfection, all popcorn isn’t created equal. I won’t argue that popcorn made from an Air Popper tastes like stale nothingness, or that microwave popcorn gives you the delightful-sounding but actually deadly disease “Popcorn Lung“. To be honest, I almost always skip over store-bought popcorn because it can’t hold a candle to the homemade version. But I was willing to branch out when I saw Smartfood Cinnamon and Brown Sugar Popcorn.
Smartfood has always been one of the better popcorn options, so if anyone could do it right, it’s probably them. I like the idea of a cinnamon and brown sugar popcorn. I’m hoping for a lot of brown sugar sweetness with some spicy cinnamon notes. This is something that I wouldn’t make on my own; I tried to make kettle corn once and almost burned my house down. Apparently sugar burns easily? Who knew?
Anyway, let’s dive in!
Opening the bag, I’m hit with a smell that I can only describe as FRENCH TOAST CITY. There’s a ton of fresh, sweet cinnamony goodness. The taste is pretty similar, but it’s not quite as awesome as the smell. Smartfood definitely took a simple approach wih, and I mean that in a good way: it’s straight-up cinnamon and sugar with no other flavors. The airiness of the popcorn fits in really well with the light flavors, and the major sweet notes make it feel like a real dessert.
Sorry to say, though, I have to address the cinnamon-flavored elephant in the room. The spice is reeeeally overpowering here. I adore cinnamon, but it requires a light touch: if you use too much, it’ll be all you can taste. This popcorn is just a tsunami of cinnamon. There’s the rare piece that has more brown sugar flavor instead, and those are super tasty. I so wish that they had gone that route instead. Instead, every handful of Smartfood Cinnamon and Brown Sugar Popcorn is basically like taking the cinnamon challenge.
My mouth was completely dry after just a couple pieces, but when armed with a tall glass of milk, this is such a delicious snack. The milk cuts the insane amount of cinnamon and brings out more of the brown sugar sweetness. I don’t really like being forced into drinking milk every time I want a snack, though. And I’m not being dramatic when I say that these are borderline inedible without a drink on hand. I’m pretty torn in how I feel about them. I wouldn’t bring them to a party or just grab some to eat with lunch, but if I was extremely prepared and jonesing for some milk then these would really hit the spot.
So, it’s no accident that they put the “cinnamon” first in Smartfood Cinnamon and Brown Sugar Popcorn. The brown sugar is delightful and I wish there was more of it, but the cinnamon piledrives it out of the way in every bite. I compared it earlier to French Toast, and I’d still stand behind that, but it’s lacking the balance of the real thing. Maybe some butter flavoring would help smooth things out. As it stands, though, enjoy at your own risk.
How Much I Love The Video In That Last Link: 9 out of 10
Likelihood of Me Making French Toast Now: Already Did out of 10
Overall Rating: 5.5 out of 10