Popping grains

This winter got addicted to home made nuts n’bolts. I loved eating this savoury snack, though felt guilty eating store bought cereals laced with preservatives and whatever else. So had been racking my brain for alternatives.


I tried a couple of batches using pretty much the same original nuts n’bolts recipe, but substituted the cereals for Western Family puffed rice.







When I picked up the puffed rice package off the shelf in the grocery isle, I read only 2 ingredients, one being puffed rice, and the other some short abbreviation for something so didn’t think anything else about it…thinking I was going to make a delicious snack that I finally didn’t have to feel bad about eating….until awhile later when I looked at the package again, and read the ingredients once more:

(1) puffed rice

(2) BHT



My initial thought was “no big deal” until I stopped and decided not to be lazy and look up what exactly those 3 letters stood for.



So…I started to think about what else I could use to make my savoury snack instead of anything store bought and found out about “popping” whole grains!


I tried everything I had on hand:

Whole grains such as:

rye, oat, spelt, buckwheat, short brown rice, quinoa & sushi rice.







The trick is a hot skillet and 1 T at a time, or whatever can fit evenly with all the grains touching the bottom of the pan.

The kernels are quick to pop taking only a minute or two, shaking the pan as the grains heat.

Some grains take longer or shorter to pop, and some grains pop bigger than others.





So far I found I liked the popped spelt the best. It popped nicely and has a lovely nutty flavour!

I was also surprised with how quickly and easily the short grain brown rice popped and how deliciously crunchy it became!

I had to use a pot with a lid to pop the oats, as the kernels were popping right out of the pan!

Though the oat kernels popped very well,  they tasted rather bland.

I had popped 5 cups of various grains during this first trial.

I decided to use parts of my original nuts n’ bolts recipe for this trial so then added:
1 cup of roughly chopped raw almonds
1/4 cup raw sunflower
1/4 cup raw pumpkin seeds
1/2 cup raisins

In a measuring cup, add and mix together:

2-3 T avocado oil (the kernels don’t absorb like cereals but the spices adhere to the kernels with the help of the oil).
1 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp onion powder
1 tsp Himalayan sea salt
2 T balsamic vinegar

Drizzle over grain mixture, stirring thoroughly.


Place the whole batch evenly on a large cookie sheet or two smaller ones and bake at 200f for an hour, stirring and turning the batch over 3 or 4 times until the nuts are golden.









When cooled, store in an airtight container.

Old jam jars work great!








Read more about popping grains:


Read more about BHT:



Click to see more recipes!

Click to go directly to my original nuts n’bolts recipe!

Click to see my wheat free savoury popped grain recipe!

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