Savoring Home: Perfect popcorn

Do you like popcorn? Okay, loaded question. I’ve never actually met anyone who doesn’t. However, movie theaters and microwaves taken their toll over the years. It is amazing how many people have forgotten how real popcorn tastes.

Did you know popcorn counts as a whole grain? It does! Today’s recipe is the classic, cheap and healthy way to get a popcorn fix in 5 minutes, without any butter flavored lung cancer. Once you try this recipe, you’ll never waste your money (or risk your health) with those microwave bags of corn again.


  • Canola oil
  • Salt
  • Butter
  • Popcorn: We use the organic bulk popcorn (in the self-serve bins) at Whole Foods. We like the price and have noticed that we get fewer un-popped kernels (“old maids”, really?!) at the end of each popcorn batch.


We are making 3-4 quarts of popcorn today, so we are using 1/2 cup /120 mL of popcorn kernels. You can adjust this recipe up and down in quantity very easily.

Pour around canola oil the bottom of a big, heavy pot. We’re using about 2 Tablespoons/ 30 mL for this quantity of kernels, but you should just use enough to lightly cover the bottom of your pot. Swirl it around to make sure the oil covers the pot bottom and heats well.

Turn on your burner to medium-high heat, then place 1 kernel in the pot and place the lid loosely on the pop.

We’re going to wait for it to pop, then we’ll know our oil is hot enough and add the rest of our kernels.

POP! Now we add the rest of our kernels to the pot, swirl them around to make sure they get coated in oil and rest the lid loosely on the pot again.

And we wait, but not for long. Let the popcorn pop. When most of the popping sound has stopped, move the pot off the hot burner and let it sit on another burner for about a minute.

This allows the few remaining kernels to finish popping without burning the popcorn on the bottom of the pot. We all know how awful that can smell. In the meantime, we are going to melt our butter in the microwave.

We are using a whole stick of butter (8 Tablespoons/113 grams) because we are making a large batch of popcorn. You can adjust your measurement to whatever you prefer.

Now the butter and salt are standing by…and our popcorn is ready!


We take gallon size zip-loc bags of this recipe into every movie theater we visit. I just carry an small tote bag as my purse that day and in we go. Our stuff tastes much better, costs WAY less and uses real butter, instead of warm flavored oil. (What is that oil made of anyway?)

In case you are a real popcorn aficionado or become one with this recipe, I want to share two other great resources which we adore at our house.

This book, for great popcorn recipes you would have never thought of, some of which are very addictive:

This online popcorn company, which carries beautiful varieties of popcorn to taste, including two great sampler packs for taste comparison:

(Hint! Hint! These make great gifts!)

Do you have a favorite popcorn recipe? Do you use popcorn as part of another recipe? What is your favorite drink to go with popcorn? Leave a comment and share some snacking ideas!

Posted on June 23, 2011, in Food, Recipes. Bookmark the permalink. 1 Comment.

  1. I had heard that microwave popcorn was bad for you, but I didn’t know there was a thing called Butter Lung Cancer.

    I’ll have to tell my dad about this. He lives and breathes microwave popcorn…literally.

    Thanks for the reminder about pan popcorn. I think it goes really well with chocolate milk.

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