How to make perfect popcorn at home

5 Tips for perfect popcorn at home | Such the SpotAre you a popcorn lover like I am?  I mean, what’s not to love about freshly-popped popcorn drizzled with melted butter and sprinkled with salt?  It’s good stuff–if it’s done right, that is.  And there really are a lot of ways to mess up a good thing.  Microwave popcorn, for instance.  Yuck.  Hot air popcorn doesn’t compare either.  Not to fear, I’m offering my five no fail tips for perfect popcorn at home, every time.  These methods have yet to fail me and they won’t fail you, either.

1.  Organic kernels

I know it seems hard to believe, but I’ve tried several different brands of popcorn kernels and I’ve found that organic kernels result in fewer unpopped kernels in the bottom of the pan.  I don’t know why but it’s true.  If you can find organic kernels, use them.

2. Invest in a Whirley-Pop.

When it comes to the most effective cooking mechanism, I swear by my Whirley-Pop. I can whip up a batch of popcorn in under five minutes in this thing and it leaves hardly any unpopped kernels.  The secret is to crank it constantly over medium-high heat until the popping slows to one pop every 3 seconds.   Immediately remove from heat at that point and toss it with melted butter.


3.  Butter to popcorn ratio

The only thing worse that soggy, butter-logged popcorn is dry, unbuttered popcorn.  For the perfect bite in every handful, use 2 T. melted butter to every 1/4 cup unpopped kernels.

4. Creative flavors

Try using flavored oils as a base instead of plain old coconut oil every time.  One uh-mazing option is truffle oil-popped popcorn topped with melted butter and truffle salt.  You can also toss buttered popcorn in fresh herbs like rosemary or thyme.  Add in a handful of grated Parmesan cheese and you’ve got yourself a gourmet snack.

5. Accompaniments

If you ask me, popcorn is even tastier when it’s served alongside chocolate.  My candy of choice for serving with popcorn is almond M&M’s.

How to make perfect popcorn at home


  • 1/2 c organic popcorn kernels
  • 4 T. butter, melted
  • 1 T. coconut oil
  • salt to taste


  1. Combine coconut oil and popcorn kernels in Whirley-Pop popcorn maker. Crank handle constantly over medium-high heat. Remove from heat when popping slows to one pop per 3 seconds. Toss with melted butter and salt to taste.
1 review
Nutrition Facts
Serving Size
Amount Per Serving As Served
Calories 401kcal Calories from fat 204
% Daily Value
Total Fat 23g 35%
Saturated Fat 14g 70%
Transfat 1g
Cholesterol 41mg 14%
Sodium 195mg 8%
Carbohydrate 44g 15%
Dietary Fiber 8g 32%
Sugars 1g
Protein 7g

Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs:

Calories 2000
Total Fat Less than 65g
Sat Fat Less than 25g
Cholesterol Less than 300mg
Sodium Less than 2,400mg
Total Carbohydrate 300g
Dietary Fiber 25g

9 Replies to “How to make perfect popcorn at home”

  1. Not being a big fan myself, I make my kiddos popcorn in a hot air popper…no butter or salt. I do give them m&m’s though! Guess I should learn the difference.

  2. I didn’t know they had organic popcorn kernels! Where do you buy them? Do they have them at Trader Joe’s?

    I haven’t tried the whirly-pop but I do have the West Bend Stir Crazy Popcorn Popper. You just put the oil on the surface, pour the popcorn kernels on, and there is a rod that stirs it for you. It only takes 3 minutes and I rarely have unpopped kernels and NEVER burned kernels.

    1. Oh yes, Sarah, they totally do. I get mine in the bulk bins at Sprouts but I do believe I’ve seen bagged organic kernels at TJ’s, too. Your popcorn maker sounds awesome!

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