Food & Drink/ Humor & Impulse

Jailhouse Popcorn from Prison Ramen

Jailhouse Popcorn from Prison Ramen adds intrigue to movie night by replacing traditional treats with a surprisingly delicious movie snack made of ramen. But the truly amazing part is the story behind the recipe, and the terrifying offscreen drama that occurred during one particular prison movie night.

The following story and recipe are excerpted from Prison Ramen:

Movie night in prison was usually a big deal. We didn’t get to watch any new or R-rated movies, but they did bring in a big old projector and showed movies on a huge screen in the chow hall. It kind of made it feel like you were actually at the movies. One movie night involved some famous people — but not actors. A vicious hit was carried out by members of the L.A. gang, the Crips. There was a guy in the prison who was a member of the rival group — the notorious Bloods. You could tell this was a planned hit by the precise mechanics of the execution. The projector was set up, and the guys were in a pretty good mood. But just as the lights went out and the movie began, the soundtrack kicked in and got loud. That was the cue. Right next to me, there was a sudden movement and I saw the guy I knew to be a Crip put his hand over the Blood’s mouth as he simultaneously sliced his neck with one smooth, quick motion. Before the lights came on, the assassin was out of the chow hall, nowhere to be seen. That night, nothing that happened on the screen matched the drama around us.



  • 1 pack chili flavor Ramen
    Note: Chili flavor Ramen is best for this recipe. Other flavors just don’t do it.


  1. Crush the Ramen in the wrapper.
  2. Open the wrapper on one end only and take out the seasoning packet.
  3. Sprinkle the seasoning into the crushed Ramen, close the bag, and shake until the seasoning is distributed.

Prison RamenPrison Ramen
by Clifton Collins and Gustavo “Goose” Alvarez; Foreword by Samuel L. Jackson

A unique and edgy cookbook, Prison Ramen takes readers behind bars with more than 65 ramen recipes and stories of prison life from the inmate/cooks who devised them, including celebrities like Slash from Guns n’ Roses and many others.

Instant ramen is a ubiquitous food, beloved by anyone looking for a cheap, tasty bite—including prisoners, who buy it at the commissary and use it as the building block for all sorts of meals. Think of this as a unique cookbook of ramen hacks.

Coauthors Gustavo “Goose” Alvarez and Clifton Collins Jr. are childhood friends—one an ex-con, now free and living in Mexico, and the other a highly successful Hollywood character actor who’s enlisted friends and celebrities to contribute their recipes and stories. These stories are a first-person, firsthand look inside prison life, a scared-straight reality to complement the offbeat recipes.

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