Tips When Making Stovetop Popcorn

How to Make Stovetop Popcorn Perfectly, Every Time | Bon Appétit

There are many ways to make popcorn, but have you ever cooked it the stovetop way? You don’t need a microwave oven and an air popper to enjoy fresh and healthy popcorn. You can make it on your own on the stove top in just a few minutes.

Here are five easy tips that will ensure you get tasty, fluffy results every time without any artificial additives or preservatives:

Use Good Quality Cooking Oil

Popcorn requires a substantial amount of cooking oil so it is important to use the right kind. 

Vegetable or canola oil are good choices since they have high smoking points, which means that when exposed to heat, these oils don’t break down easily. They also do not leave an odd taste in your popcorn. You may use coconut oil as well if you like the taste and smell of it.

Use the Right Amount of Oil

The best ratio when it comes to oil and corn is a tablespoon of oil per every three or four tablespoons of kernels. Many sellers of the best popcorn in Singapore for example, recommend this to ensure each kernel pops open so none are wasted. When your popcorn’s done, you want about a tablespoon of unpopped kernels. 

If you’re making stovetop popcorn in a saucepan, just remember that 1/4 cup of unpopped kernels means the temperature is too low.

Add Your Seasoning After Popping

Adding seasonings before popping isn’t a good idea because it may burn and make the popcorn taste bitter or burnt. 

You can add salt (if desired) or other seasonings such as butter, sugar, garlic powder, chili powder, or cayenne pepper after popping. You can also add nutritional supplements, such as omega-3 fatty acids, to your oil before popping if you want a healthy boost of these nutrients in your food.

Keep The Lid On At All Times While Popping

It is important that you keep the lid on tightly during the whole process of popping to ensure that all of the kernels pop and you don’t end up with burnt bits in your popcorn. If some kernels do not pop, simply strain them out before serving.

Never Leave Popping Unattended

The stove is a source of heat so it is important never to leave cooking unattended. Always stay in the kitchen and give the pan your full attention until you finish popping. 

If you need to go to another room for whatever reason, turn off the heat and wait for a few minutes before leaving.


In the past, making stovetop popcorn always ended in a gooey mess. The kernels were burnt to a crisp while the starchy hulls didn’t pop open, leaving an unappetizing cob covered with a thin film of grease. 

With a few technique changes and utensils that allow for better air circulation, you can make stovetop popcorn that’s as delicious as the  best popcorn in Singapore.

Jacqueline M. Faulkner

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