Monday, 25 November 2013

Metcalfe's Skinny Topcorn (Popcorn) Review

Brand marketers know that when they put the word 'SKINNY' on their product, they're bound to get a lot of interest from passing shoppers. And without a doubt, I'm one of them. Nevertheless, I’m always sceptical until I’ve read the nitty gritty nutrition details as it's often the case that they’re not really skinny at all!

So it was when I spotted this popcorn snack by Metcalfe’s while I was doing an online Ocado shop. There were two varieties available: Sea Salt or Sweet ‘n’ Salt. Having a sweet tooth, I opted for the Sweet ‘n’ Salt with 115 calories per bag.

Metcalfe’s Skinny ‘Topcorn’ is called ‘The Original popcorn brand’, though I must admit I hadn’t heard of them. The pack is quite a large 25g and contains a good portion of popcorn. It does look like you get a lot for your 115 calories.

Metcalfes Skinny Topcorn popcorn

Looking at the ingredients, it’s thankfully not too long. The Sweet ‘n’ Salty contains popped corn, sugar, vegetable oil and salt.

Metcalfes skinny sweet cinnamon popcorn
My absolute favourite - Sweet Cinnamon Spice
Opening them up releases a deliciously sweet popcorny smell, like you find in the cinema. It’s clear to see which ones are sweet and which are salty as the sweet ones have a yellow colour and are slightly crunchier. But the saltiness rubs off on all of them and the result is totally yummy. It’s not easy stopping once you get started, but they do last a long time (if you don’t eat handfuls at a time)!

Metcalfes Skinny Topcorn popcorn
Inside the bag

But are they really any ‘skinnier’ than other regular shop bought popcorn?

I took a look at the calorie details of some other branded sweet and salty popcorn packs by comparing like for like quantities per 100g.

Here are the results:

Tesco’s Sweet & Salted Popcorn (25g bag):
515 calories per 100g / 129  calories per bag

Tyrrells Crisps Sweet & Salty Popcorn (80g bag):
505 calories per 100g / 404 calories per bag

Butterkist’s Sweet & Salted Popcorn (150g bag):
500 calories per 100g / 750 calories per bag

Blooms Sweet & Salt Popcorn (140g bag):
491 per 100g / 687 calories per bag

Metcalfe's Skinny Topcorn Sweet n Salt (25g bag)
460 calories per 100g / 115 calories per bag.

Heston’s from Waitrose Salted Caramel Popcorn (125g bag):
433 calories per 100g / 541 calories per bag

Propercorn Popcorn Sweet & Salty (30g bag):
428 calories per 100g / 128 calories per bag.

Levels of fat and sugar are quite similar for all, but Propercorn’s fat content is the lowest. The main problem when it comes to actually eating them, is that all pack sizes aren’t the same. So even if you opt for a lower calorie popcorn and it comes in a bigger bag, it’s unlikely many of us would bother with measuring out an exact portion size.

As for the question – is Topcorn any skinnier than other comparable flavour popcorn snacks, I would have to say no. It is, however, packed in a suitable portion size which can really help to reduce overeating.

Metcalfes Skinny Topcorn popcorn
The contents of the whole pack

Other flavours available in the Metcalfe’s Topcorn range include: Chocolate Crackle, Heat n Sweet, Wasabi Glaze and Sweet Cinammon Spice. They’re sold in a range of outlets including Tesco, Sainsbury, WH Smith Waitrose, Greggs and CafĂ© Nero.

Some varieties are also available in a sharing bag, 75g or 80g.

Nutrition Information per bag: 115 calories, 1.6g protein, 17.8g carbs, 4.9g sugar, 4.8g fat, 0.8g saturates, 2.9g fibre, 0.34g salt.

Traffic light food

Related Popcorn posts:

Graze Box Snack Healthy Popping Corn Review - Click here
Graze box Snack Savoury popcorn review - Click here
Shapers Popcorn Snacks - Click here
Cadbury Choc Full of Popcorn review - Click here
Marks & Spencer Guilt Free Popcorn - Click here
Is Popcorn a Healthy Choice for Dieters - Click here

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