Just Poppin’ In


WRITTEN BY: Sabrina Peng

The biggest struggle for any foodie is the balance between a healthy lifestyle and an irresistible craving for sugar. Dessert is for many an essential ending to a great meal because it provides such a sweet and satisfactory conclusion. Oftentimes though, cakes, cookies, and other high-calorie goodies can weigh heavily on the conscience (and the waistline!). Luckily for Dallas-area residents, Steel City Pops has the perfect solution to this delicious dilemma.

Steel City Pops is the brainchild of Jim Watkins, inspired by a Nashville shop selling Mexican paletas, or pops. True to its word, the brand produces its high-quality pops with all-natural, gourmet ingredients, which are listed clearly for any customer to peruse. Best of all, Steel City Pops is completely transparent about the number of calories its pops contain, making choosing a pop based on flavor and calories possible without compromising personal diets.




Anyone who knows the Dallas area food scene is probably intimately familiar with Steel City Pops. Located in three states – Texas, Alabama, and Kentucky, the Steel City Pop brand has taken over the Dallas area metroplex in particular, with stores in Dallas, Fort Worth, Garland, and two nearby universities – including my own college, Southern Methodist University! The Dallas location isn’t too far from SMU, but why Uber or drive when you can walk to the student center on campus and grab a pop that way?



When you’re choosing a pop to eat, think about what type of flavor you want, right now. Are you looking for something refreshing and light? Or are you craving something more substantive and rich? Steel City Pops generally offers two types of pops – fruity and creamy. The fruity side includes everything from strawberry lemonade to root beer, while my favorites on the creamy side are coffee and coconut. Depending on the specific Steel City Pops location, there might also be cookie pops in vanilla chocolate chip and cookies and cream versions – slightly more expensive but also loaded with tiny bites of texture.

The brand’s university pop-ups at SMU and rival TCU have fewer options than the actual stores in terms of flavors, but I’ve made it a personal tradition to reward myself with a pop every Tuesday at 5 pm for surviving my hardest classes. The lady at the stand waits for me every week with another great recommendation to add to my rapidly growing repertoire of pop flavors!

P.S.: if you’re ever in Dallas, don’t forget to “pop” in to Steel City Pops. Ice, ice, baby!

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